Remember God's Promises: If It's Listed (in His Word), It's Still Available
- Chad Napier Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
- 2022 7 Jun
I often catch myself perusing Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, eBay, or ads from many of the other sites which allow people list things they are wanting to sell. When the economy is bad, business is booming from these sites and pawn shops. People are needing to get a deal on wants and needs, while the seller is looking to get rid of an item taking up space while making a dollar or three. Most of the time, it is a wasted effort looking for that diamond in the rough at a reasonable price to satisfy both the buyer and seller. One of the most heartbreaking results is finding that desired widget for almost a “give away” price only to receive a reply message indicating that the item has already been sold. Most of the listing programs do not automatically delete sold items and many sellers neglect to take down their sold listings. Recently it has become common practice for the seller to place the language “if it’s listed, it’s still available” because of the endless number of inquiries asking, “Is this item still available?”
Our Bibles contain many listings for the provisions of all our daily needs which we often find ourselves in search of. We never have to question God, “I wonder if that is still available?” The promises and the powers were “listed” at least two thousand years ago, but the freshness of the listing is as good today as it was when first listed. We often consider when a listing was placed as to whether the item is legit or still available. Things listed months prior signal the probability that the price is too high, no longer available, or the item is junk or a fake. God’s promise made possible through His Son certainly was costly, but because of the cost, its value is worthy of eternity. Because salvation has no expiration date and has eternal duration, we know it must be genuine and free of any defects. It is a blessing to consider all of the promises, powers, and privileges we have access to because they are listed (in His Word) and thus still available to His people.
Photo Credit: ©Unsplash/rodlong
Salvation Is Still Offered Freely
If salvation had a monetary price tag, our society would mortgage its life savings for Jesus to be added to its portfolio. Even the most ungodly desire to have a “religious” wedding and a “spiritual” funeral held by clergy. These events are worldly acceptable for the inclusion of God and the families often feel that the price is irrelevant. When something has an attached price tag, it has a negotiable and verifiable market value. The shopper then can compare his or her financial ability with the degree of the need. Thus, the buyer can boast about his or her ability to afford such an asset or privilege. Worldly status can be bought for a price. Thankfully, God freely gave his only begotten Son as a sacrifice for mankind as a propitiation for the punishment of our sins. We were great in need, but poor in resources.
Paul wrote in Romans 6:23 that we were dead in our sins, “but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Jesus Christ was freely given and He freely and voluntarily gave up His life in Glory for us to be forgiven of our sins. As Ephesians 2:8 reminds us, it was by God’s grace that we “have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.” Paul wrote in Romans 6:14 that, “sin shall not have dominion over you: for you are not under the law, but under grace.” Thus, we are freed from the bondage and future judgment of a sin-laden life. Salvation was not of our own doing because it was not within our capabilities. Sin gave us the need and Jesus provided its availability.
The Vine of Spiritual Fruits
Growing up every child had dreams of receiving that large present that contains progressively smaller boxes of gifts for a birthday or Christmas. The gift of salvation imparts the fruits of the Holy Spirit to the believer. Paul in Galatians 5:22-23 wrote to the believers that “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, [and] self-control.” The impartations cannot be attained by man within his own power or desire. They can only be enjoyed through the provision of the Holy Spirit. As much as we can attempt to love, find joy, make peace, impart patience, show kindness, reflect goodness, be faithful, and exhibit gentleness and self-control, we fall woefully short once adversity is introduced or the temperature of the environment arises.
In Acts 8:18, Simon witnessed the Holy Ghost was given “through laying on of the apostles’ hands.” He offered the apostles money and requested he also be given “this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.” Peter rebuked Simon and told him, “thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.”
Availability of Deliverance
The account of the deliverance of Paul and Silas from the inner courts of the prison in Acts 16 is a familiar story to the believer. In verse 25, we read “and at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.”
The midnight hour is usually the time of the most pain and suffering when we are in midst of a trial or physical ailment. A toothache seems to intensify the most after dark during the quiet of the night. Midnight, of course, is the middle of the darkness. Instead of trying to “sleep through it”, Paul and Silas made the conscious decision to pray and sing hymns unto the Lord. These faithful acts directed unto our Lord activated supernatural powers to shake the ground, open the doors, and loosen the bands. No matter what issue we are encountering, we can pray and sing praises unto our Savior. It is then that the door of our room of despair is opened and the binding constraints are loosened.
Power to Minister
Doubting our own abilities is inevitable when we are asked to teach a Sunday School class or fill a pulpit. We were correct in this assessment. It is easy to preach the “Who He Calls, He will equip” sermon citing Exodus 4:10-11 wherein Moses told the Lord that he was unable to serve because he was not eloquent, slow of speech, and slow of tongue. The Lord then connected him with Aaron to serve as his spokesman thereby eliminating the excuse. Certainly, God will place people in our lives to assist and mentor our spiritual service. However, our obedience is not dependent upon another man because the Holy Spirit is our guide.
The words of Jesus in John 14:26 remind us that the Holy Ghost will “teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance.” Further, in Ephesians 3:7, Paul wrote, “I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power.” The calling, power, and ability to minister is an available gift which is only provided from above.
Photo Credit: © Getty Images/Moostocker
Help Wanted to Give Witness
Every believer has a testimony detailing the transformation performed by Christ in their life. We may not be able to quote the scriptures from the “Romans Road” or use deep theological words, but we each can give a testimony of what we were and what we are now. Having a testimony and the opportunity to give witness to someone are both blessings. If not for the gift of salvation, we would have nothing of which to testify.
In Acts 1:8, during the establishment of the church, Jesus proclaimed that the early believers “shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you; and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” It was with “great power” that the apostles were given “witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.” We did not bear witness to the resurrection of the Christ upon the cross, but we have the ability give a first-hand testimony as to our own resurrection through His victory over sin and the grave.
The Power to Praise in Poverty
We may find ourselves in a financial, physical, or spiritual feeling of poverty with the inability to buy a resolution. A cursory audit of our blessings, however, reveals to us many reasons to praise our Lord. Hebrews 13:15 tell us “through him let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.”
Psalm 50:23 promises that praise offering “glorifies” our Lord and “to one who orders his way rightly I will show the salvation of God!” Thus, the praise that glorifies Him for our blessings will give us deliverance in our time of need.
Boldness is an attitude needed and readily available for the believer. In this “cancel culture,” the world would have us believe our success and mere existence are quietly seated in the corner of our church not causing any worldly disruptions. Following the healing of the lame man in Acts 3 and his proclamation that it was made possible “through faith” in Jesus, Peter, and John were commanded, “not to speak at all nor teach the name of Jesus.”
Our world is not worried about our belief in God or our “religious” prayers offered to a common deity. It, however, does take issue when the power of Jesus Christ is mentioned and invoked. The same was true in the ministries of Peter and John. The authorities were not concerned until “faith in Jesus” was attributed to the healing powers. In response to the demand not to preach His name, Peter and John answered “for we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard” in Acts 4:20. The apostles then prayed in Acts 4:29-30 for the Lord to “behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, by stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus.”
In verse 31, the Lord answered by shaking the place “where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.” The result was that “the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and one soul” and “great grace was upon them all.” The foundation of preaching has always been the bold conveyance of the gospel through Jesus Christ. Accordingly, the apostles boldly proclaimed their “witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus” without worry or regard for the dictates of man. This same boldness is not only available but demanded from our Savior because the world has a desperate need to hear about His power.
Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/Sergio Yoneda