The best parent faces a major challenge when a child cries out, “But you promised!” A promise fulfilled is an expression of the integrity of one’s character. Can a child believe that a parent will fulfill the promise that now shapes the future of their relationship?
Paul reminded the churches in Galatia of the story of Abraham, and how God promised this childless “father” that he would become “a great nation” (Genesis 12:2). Could Abraham believe God to fulfill such a scandalous promise? Building on Genesis 15:6 (Abraham “believed the LORD”), Paul used this word to teach believers that “those who rely on faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith” (Galatians 3:9). The life of Abraham teaches us that God is a promise-keeper.
Paul went on to assert that this faith is the means by which “we . . . receive the promise of the Spirit” (v. 14; see Acts 2:33). Furthermore, God uses this “free gift” in believers to complete the work of Christ. He exhorted them to “keep in step with the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25). It is our task as well.
Author: Robert W. Smith
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