The most common question in today’s world: Who, or what, can I trust? Too often we are betrayed by the people in our lives, or by circumstances that surround us. It may seem that nothing is stable, nothing is worthy of our trust. We can’t even trust ourselves. Where do we turn?
God always keeps his promises. It says in Hebrews 6:17-18 that God cannot lie and that his character is unchangeable. That means that God doesn’t make promises and then change his mind later. He sticks to what he says. But the Bible does more than just tell us that God is trustworthy and faithful – it shows us.
Time and time again in the Old Testament, we see God’s faithfulness shown to his people. In Genesis 6, God tells Noah that he is going to destroy the world in a flood to punish the wicked, but promises to keep Noah and his family safe in an ark, along with all the different types of animals. God keeps his promise. God comes to the aid of the Israelites time and time again, even when they turn away from Him.
God promises Abraham many decedents and a son: Isaac. When God asks Abraham to sacrifice his son, Abraham willingly acts on that command. He was so sure of God’s faithfulness that he reasoned that God could bring Isaac back to life. He knew God would not break the covenant he had made with Abraham. And God didn’t – he provided a substitute for Isaac.
But why did Abraham have so much faith in God? It all comes down to the way God designed the covenant (Genesis 15). When God first promised Abraham a son, Abraham believed him, but still expressed a degree of doubt. So to reassure Abraham, God told him to prepare what was, in Abraham’s day and culture, the equivalent of a contract. Abraham prepared the animals God told him to gather by cutting them in half. To sign the contract, both parties would pass between the animal carcasses.
But God did not allow Abraham to pass between the pieces. Abraham fell asleep, and when he woke up, God passed through them alone. This meant that the covenant was signed only by God and therefore, dependent only on him. God signed for both himself and Abraham. The certainty of God’s promise was only dependent on God, and since God cannot fail, his covenant with Abraham could not fail.
God makes that same covenant with us. God knew sin would enter the world, and he had designed a plan from before the beginning of time to reclaim us as his own. God promised his people a savior and he fulfilled that promise in Jesus. When Jesus died on that cross, it was God in human form, fully God and fully Man. No human could keep God’s law perfectly, so all had to die, unless one who was perfect and holy died in our place. Only God is perfect and holy, but God cannot die. So God had to clothe himself in our flesh and take on a bodily form to die in our place. His holy, perfect blood paid the price for our sin and signed the covenant on our behalf, because we could not. Just like Abraham, the promise of our salvation does not have any weight on our shoulders. Abraham could only passively watch as God signed the contract for both of them. The only way he could enter into the covenant was by faith, for “by faith, Abraham was counted as righteous.”
Through faith, we also enter into God’s covenant with us. If we believe that Jesus is our savior – the one who lived, died, and rose again to save us – we enter into the promise of salvation. God counts our faith as righteousness, just as he did with Abraham.
Is God’s promise of salvation trustworthy? Can we really afford to put our trust in the fact that we can be forgiven if we have faith in what God says?
Yes. God never fails. He never lies. He always keeps his promises.
It may look scary. Our sins may look too great, or the promise too impossible to believe, but those are lies from the enemy. Do not be afraid to trust God. He will never fail you. Your fear, your sin, and your doubt will never be greater than God’s love and faithfulness.
“Know therefore that the Lord your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations.”