A Promise of Success

Read Judges 1:1–4

“And the LORD said, Judah shall go up: behold, I have delivered the land into his hand” (v. 2).

When phone caller ID service first became available, I received a call and recognized it as my elderly mother’s phone number. She was startled when I answered, “Hi, mom!” and she asked how I knew it was her. I told her my new phone system had caller ID and not only could I see who was calling but where they were and what they were wearing. Since my mom was so predictable, I guessed what outfit she had on and described it to her. I happened to be right, and she was aghast responding, “That’s not right that phone companies can do that!”

I confessed to my mother that I had made up the story, and she laughed with relief. However, I am reminded of our God who is also predictable. Just as my mother’s daily habits were predictable, God’s promises are foreseeable, and we can count on His guaranteed outcomes. He never changes, and we can trust the promises He has given us. God assures, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you … to give you an expected end” (Jer. 29:11). It is such a comfort to know that God not only thinks about us but He also promises to take care of us according to His perfect, divine will and plan for our lives. (Clifford Churchill)

’Tis true, oh, yes, ’tis true.
God’s wonderful promise is true;
For I’ve trusted, and tested, and tried it,
And I know God’s promise is true. — Leila N. Morris

“God never made a promise that was too good to be true” (D. L. Moody).

This devotional is the Monday, January 22, 2018 entry of Opening the Word.

Israel’s History Foretold

Read Genesis 15:8-16

“And also that nation, whom they shall serve, will I judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance” (v. 14).

With each move, from parsonage to parsonage, from one church and town to the next appointment, our possessions increased. I have a mental picture of that move from our first church to the second. All we owned fit in the back of a borrowed pick-up truck. We saw the baby dresser and rocker at the back of the truck as we followed in our car down Mississippi’s red-clay roads. My pastor/husband’s books could fit in one bookcase, assembled by his father, and now his study has floor to ceiling built-in shelves nearly full of books and resources.

God’s promise to Abram included “great substance” after 400 years of affliction in a strange land. God repeated that promise with specifics to Moses: “When ye go, ye shall not go empty” (Ex. 3:21). The Israelite men and women would “borrow” gold and silver jewelry from their Egyptian neighbors. Thus, Israel would “spoil the Egyptians” (Ex. 3:22). The gold and silver, along with fine linen, would be used to build the tabernacle. (Ann Coker)

The God of Abram praise, All praised be His name,
Who was, and is, and is to be, Always the same!
The one eternal God, Whose timelessness is clear;
The First, the Last: beyond all thought, Throughout the years!
— Daniel ben Judah

What God promises He fulfills in His good time.

This devotional is the Tuesday, October 24, 2017 entry of Opening the Word.