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Journey Through Hebrews 6:13-20: When God Made His Promise To Abraham

When God Made His Promise To Abraham

Hebrews 6:13-20 New International Version

13 When God made his promise to Abraham, since there was no one greater for him to swear by, he swore by himself, 14 saying, “I will surely bless you and give you many descendants. 15 And so after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised. 16 People swear by someone greater than themselves, and the oath confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument. 17 Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath. 18 God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged. 19 We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, 20 where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.

            God made His promise to Abraham. God’s word is filled with promises for you and eye. Promises involve something being declared that will come to pass that has not come to pass. When God makes a promise, it being fulfilled is based on God’s power and authority. He is sovereign and all powerful. Because every promise is fulfilled by the power of God, we can know that He will always be faithful. Nothing can stop or stand in the way of God’s power. The only thing the devil can do is try to cripple our faith and trust in Jesus Christ. But God has given us countless examples in His word of how He has worked in the lives of people to demonstrate and reveal His character and nature to us.

            There is no one greater than God. Because there is no one greater than God, He swore by Himself. We can know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God will do exactly what He says He will do. He has created us with purpose and destiny. This entire journey we are on with Jesus is like our own wilderness journey the Israelites went through. But we need to learn from their mistakes and shortcomings. They rebelled against Almighty God because of unbelief. Unbelief is always the source of all rebellion. If we are walking by faith, instead of rebelling against God, we will come in alignment with His will because we know that He will fulfill everything He has promised.

            Our faith only grows when it is tested. James tells us to count it all joy when we go through trials of various kinds. This may sound crazy to some, but the greatest blessings in our lives will often follow the greatest trails. Trials test and refine our faith. Even though at times we may feel like abandoning ship and giving up, we must realize they are only feelings. Our relationship with God is not based on feelings, it is based upon the truth of His word that is unchanging. Jesus is the solid rock on which we can build all things because it is a foundation that is unshakable.

            God’s promise to Abraham was “I will surely bless you, and give you many descendants”. To Abraham this promise at times may have seemed impossible and never going to happen based on his age and not having a son to carry on his name. But the purposes and plans of God are higher and different than our own. Age doesn’t matter. Circumstances don’t matter. Color of our skin doesn’t matter. They only thing that matters is who has made the promise. If God has made the promise than all He would need to do is speak a single word and everything will change. Often, we can allow the lies of the enemy to dictate what we believe, but we must recognize them for what they are.

            But when we examine the life of Abraham, we see the faithfulness of God. We see in a circumstance that seemed impossible, that God was faithful. God is always faithful because He is the one who brings to pass the promise. If God makes a promise, then He will fulfill His plan and purpose. But the key for us is choosing to trust. We must build our lives on the promises of God and when doubt and fear try to creep in, slam the door.

            Abraham waited patiently and he received his promise. Waiting on God is not fun and it is not comfortable. But often the greatest work of God is done in the place of waiting. We are matured in Christ in the place of waiting. God is always faithful when it comes to His promises and His plans. The very things He has spoken, He will bring to pass by His power and His authority. This is why when God gives us a promise we never have to doubt. His word is filled with promises for our lives that we can build our lives upon.

            When people make a promise, they most times put forth an oath. When a person makes an oath they will swear by something to confirm the validity of their oath. Often they will swear by someone great then themselves. The oath that is made confirms the promise that has been made and certifies the promise. It removes all doubt. For if I swear by someone greater than myself, I am showing that I am giving backing to the promise I am making. But there is no one who is greater than Almighty God and therefore, He simply swears by Himself. He is the great I Am.

            God is not only unchanging but so are His purposes. Every plan and purpose that God is accomplishing on the earth was set forth before the foundations of the world. Everything God accomplishes on the earth is by His grace and His power. He doesn’t need us, but He chooses to use us and work through us. This is why we can trust Him at His word. We never need to fear. Abraham believed God and it was created to Him as righteousness. This is the model of how we are to live. The believers that this letter was directed to were considering abandoning Christ. But over and over the Holy Spirit through the writer of the letter encourages them to hold fast because of the faithfulness of Almighty God.

            It is impossible for God to lie. We who have come to know Christ have fled to Him. He is our city of refuge. He is our rampart and our place of safety. Though we may have persecution and suffering in this world, it is to Jesus we run. The enemy would try to convince us to run from God, but God calls us to draw near. It is in drawing near that we find strength and courage to overcome. He is the hope that is set before us. Not only in what He has done at Calvary, but in His returning one day to establish His kingdom. This world is not our home. Our hope is found in Jesus Christ alone.

            Our hope in Christ is our anchor. It is secure and unmovable because He is unchanging, and His word is true. It is impossible for God to lie. If we have built our lives upon the truth of God’s word and His promises for us, regardless of what we face, we know that God is faithful. The purpose of an anchor is at its most basic level, an anchor is a device to keep a vessel in one place. To keep a vessel in one place, anchors are used to combat wind and currents that want to move the vessel off course. The purpose of an anchor is to keep a vessel from going off course. Jesus is the anchor of our lives. The trials and challenges we face try to move us from the will and purpose of God of our lives. But it is Christ who is our faithful and secure anchor on which we can build all things. He is our unshakable foundation. Jesus said this about building our lives upon Him in Matthew 7:24-27 24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

            If we will build our lives upon the word and commands of Jesus, our lives will be unshaken because they will be rooted and grounded in Christ. It doesn’t mean that storms won’t come. If we examine what Jesus said, He told us in this world we will have trouble but to fear not He has overcome the world. Every vessel when it begins a journey will often face storms, but when those driving the vessel face storms, they develop maturity and experience as they learn to navigate the storms. The storms we face as believers are essential for the purposes and plans of God being accomplished in our lives.

            Jesus is our anchor, and He has entered the inner sanctuary on our behalf. He is our faithful and compassionate High Priest. The writer of Hebrews continues to point back the the High Priesthood under the old covenant. For it was the High Priest who was able to enter the holy of holies on the day of atonement for the nation. It is Jesus Christ who is our mediator who stands between us and the Father. We can approach the throne of grace with confidence because our sins have been dealt with. His blood has been shed. We have been washed clean.

            Jesus is our forerunner. The word forerunner means running forward; forerunner; herald.[1] It is Jesus who has gone before us and made all this possible. He is the only reason we have forgiveness, and He is the only reason we have salvation. To abandon Christ for the law results in nothing. To abandon Christ is to give up everything. Momentary trials are not meant to destroy us but in the hands of God will be turned into a blessing and will be a place of greater growth and maturity.

            Jesus has become our High Priest in the order of Melchizedek. As we move through the book of Hebrews the writer will look at the individual known as Melchizedek. We know very little of Melchizedek but what we do know is that He was the King of Salem, and he was the priest of Almighty God during the day of Abraham. It was Melchizedek who shared the bread and the wine with Abraham. It was Melchizedek who Abraham paid a tithe to after his victory in battle. The figure of Melchizedek will be shown to reveal the supremacy of Jesus Christ over the old covenant priesthood. For it was through the line of Levi that the High Priest would come. But Jesus was born of the line of Judah. But His covenant is a better covenant that is eternal.

            We have all that we need in Jesus Christ. As we continue our journey through the book of Hebrews the greatness and supremacy of Jesus will be revealed again and again. Regardless of what we face, Jesus is our only sure foundation. Even if everything is removed from our lives, if the only thing that remains is Jesus, we have everything. He is our faithful and compassionate High Priest. Regardless of what we face, He understands all that we are facing and will lead and guide us to victory.

Prayer

Father thank you for your promises. Thank you for your faithfulness. Thank you for sending your soon Jesus. Thank you that you are our anchor and that regardless of what we face, you will always lead and you will always provide. Father I pray that your word would be written on my heart. I pray that my life will glorify and honor you in all things. Father have your way in all things and my your name Jesus be glorified in all that I do. In the mighty name of Jesus. Amen!


[1] Rick Brannan, ed., Lexham Research Lexicon of the Septuagint, Lexham Research Lexicons (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2020).

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