We need promises. Promises come in many shapes and sizes. On their wedding day, making their marriage vows a couple exchange promises of love and care. In a business meeting an agreement is forged; a binding contract promises what services or products will be delivered and what payment will be received. Leaving school, a group of friends agree to meet in a hour to play some ball. Even the inanimate world offers its own kind of promises, which we call the laws of nature. We can count upon the elements of our universe behaving in the same manner tomorrow as they have today. To live well, we need reliable promises.
Today’s decisions are woven from the fibers of reliable promises. Anchored upon promises, schedules are made and people choose how they will spend their precious commodity of time. Extending through the curtain of time into a murky future, promises provide planks of security for preparing to enter the unknown. We depend upon promises. We need promises.
On a cross, God graciously offered to us the greatest promises imaginable: forgiveness and claiming us as his own. The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, spoke about these promises as he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood given for you for the forgiveness of sins.”/1
The wonderful day heralded centuries earlier by Jeremiah had arrived! As Jesus’ blood poured forth from the cross, God extended to all of humanity a new covenant promising that if they would come to his Son, “I will be their God, and they will be my people. … For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.”/2
These are promises that can fundamentally transform life and reorder how someone lives. No longer is it necessary for previous guilt to weigh down our backs and our shoulders. No longer must we needlessly wonder and worry about our relationship with the Creator. These are promises that transform life, today and tomorrow. We need promises. Most of all, we need God’s promises from the cross.
1/ Combines Jesus words from Matthew 26:28 with 1 Corinthians 11:25
2/ Jeremiah 31:33,34; Hebrews 8:10,12