You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
16 For [gar] men [anthropos] verily [men] swear [omnuo] by [kata] the greater [meizon]: and [kai] an oath [horkos] for [eis] confirmation [bebaiosis] is to them [autos] an end [peras] of all [pas] strife [antilogia].
17 Wherein [en] [hos] God [theos], willing [boulomai] more abundantly [perissoteron] to shew [epideiknumi] unto the heirs [kleronomos] of promise [epaggelia] the immutability [ametathetos] of his [autos] counsel [boule], confirmed [mesiteuo] it by an oath [horkos]:
18 That [hina] by [dia] two [duo] immutable [ametathetos] things [pragma], in [en] which [hos] it was impossible [adunatos] for God [theos] to lie [pseudomai], we might have [echo] a strong [ischuros] consolation [paraklesis], who [ho] have fled for refuge [katapheugo] to lay hold [krateo] upon the hope [elpis] set before us [prokeimai]: KJV-Interlinear
16 For men swear by one greater than themselves, and with them an oath given as confirmation is an end of every dispute. 17 In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, 18 in order that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we may have strong encouragement, we who have fled for refuge in laying hold of the hope set before us. NASB
People, when they enter into agreements (promises), they enter into the agreement by means of a higher power. In order to have any reliability on the agreement a person has to have some type of power to assure that the agreement will be adhered to.
That higher authority is the due process of our legal system. Your promise to perform is backed up or supported by the legal system or by some form of collateral. This gives both parties some assurance that their agreement will be fulfilled.
Yesterday we spoke of simple promises, like calling someone back on the phone. But real promises or oaths, or agreements, usually have to do with a purchase with financing or with the performance of some type of service or work in exchange for payment, and so forth. Even payment of wages in exchange for work is a form of a promise.
But there is a higher promise which comes from God. He has made a promise for great rewards, great blessings, even salvation is a promise. And, you receive these promises when you fulfill your part of the agreement.
For salvation you have to believe in Christ. In other blessings of the spiritual life, you have to fulfill your part responsibly by growing up spiritually to maturity.
In this world any agreements man can make are not without risk. A person can default on their part of the agreement and then you have to hunt them down, serve them, go to court, and get your judgment. Even then, if they have nothing, you won't collect what is due you. Anyone of us can be cheated, and that is just a part of this life. Sometimes people take advantage and there is nothing you can do about it.
But with God there are two immutable things that make His promises secure and certain.
First God is immutable and second, God is veracity. These are two of His ten characteristics of essence. His word is unchangeable. God cannot lie. He always tells the truth. Since whatever God does, He is bound by His word. His promise is unchangeable, and that is further confirmed by His oath. That is like having a promise or a contract with an additional seal placed upon it.
His promise is unchangeable and His oath is unchangeable, and they are both supported by truth. These are the two immutable things. There is no one else to appeal a decision to with regard to Gods promise, so God appeals to His own immutability and veracity.
Having the oath on top of the promise is kind of like having a performance bond placed on the agreement. If the other party fails then you can look to the insurance company to make everything right with their bond.
In the world we have no assurances of any kind. When things are destined to not go right in this world, there is nowhere you can run to in order to force the right outcome.
With God however, you can run to His essence and that becomes your refuge, your assurance of safety, your fortress of security, your divine shield of protection against any and all failure. With God there is no failure, but only certainty of fulfillment of His promises. That is your confidence and hope for a better life, an infinitely better life than anything you can imagine.
You can't go anywhere in this world, in this life and get a better deal.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.