Saturday, January 28, 2012
A Fulfiller of Promises
IS IT hard for you to trust others? Sadly, we live in a world where trust is routinely destroyed. If you were hurt by someone you believed in—perhaps because of lies or broken promises—your trust may have been shattered. There is, however, someone you can trust without ever being disappointed. “Trust in Jehovah with all your heart,” Proverbs 3:5 urges us. Why is Jehovah deserving of such trust? To answer that, let us examine the words of Joshua—a man who put his complete trust in Jehovah—recorded at Joshua 23:14.
Consider the setting. Joshua, Moses’ successor as leader of Israel, is approaching 110 years of age. During his long life, he has observed firsthand many of the mighty acts that Jehovah performed in behalf of Israel, including the miraculous deliverance through the Red Sea some 60 years earlier. Now, a reflective Joshua calls together Israel’s “older men and its heads and its judges and its officers.” (Joshua 23:2) The words he now speaks reveal not just a wisdom born of age but the meditations of a heart full of faith.
“I am going today in the way of all the earth,” explains Joshua. The phrase “the way of all the earth” is an idiom for death. Joshua is, in effect, saying, “I do not have much longer to live.” Knowing that he is about to die, Joshua no doubt has spent many quiet hours contemplating his life. What parting words does he have for his fellow worshippers?
Joshua continues: “Not one word out of all the good words that Jehovah your God has spoken to you has failed. They have all come true for you. Not one word of them has failed.” These are the words of a man who has full trust in God. The reason? Looking back on all that he has seen, Joshua has come to know that Jehovah fulfills His promises—always. The implication is clear: Joshua wants his fellow Israelites to have absolute faith that all of Jehovah’s promises for their future will also come true.
Commenting on Joshua 23:14, one Bible reference work says: “Bring forth every promise from the Bible; then search the annals of the world; and inquire of every creature in it, to find one single instance of God’s violating or forgetting a promise.” If it were possible to conduct such an examination, we would reach the same conclusion as did Joshua—Jehovah’s promises never fail to come true.—1 Kings 8:56; Isaiah 55:10, 11.
The Bible contains a record of God’s promises that have been fulfilled, including some that are being fulfilled before our very eyes. It also contains Jehovah’s wonderful promises for our future.* Why not examine that record for yourself? A study of the Bible may convince you that the Fulfiller of promises is worthy of your trust.
Here are a few of the promises, or assurances, that Joshua saw fulfilled. Jehovah would give Israel a land of their own. (Compare Genesis 12:7 with Joshua 11:23.) Jehovah would deliver Israel out of Egypt. (Compare Exodus 3:8 with Exodus 12:29-32.) Jehovah would sustain his people.—Compare Exodus 16:4, 13-15 with Deuteronomy 8:3, 4.