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Romans 4:17-22
A Promise in a Borrowed Tomb

A Promise in a Borrowed Tomb
Romans 4:17-22

Has God made you a special promise? Not a promise in the Bible that God has told us that is ours in Christ Jesus. God speaks and gives promises to all those who walk righteously before God, and know Him as Lord and Savior. Well, there is a Biblical principle at work. When God desires to fulfill His promise to you, He first puts that promise in a tomb along with all the ways and means by which that promise can be fulfilled. He lets it die and then buries it. Until you understand that principle, you’re going to be frustrated. 

1.    The Example of Abraham:
a.    God made a promise to Abraham in Genesis 12:2. God told Abraham that this promise would be fulfilled though his son. Years went by and it didn’t happen. Now they’re too old. God let it die and put it in a tomb and rolled a stone in front of it. Why does God do that?  The reason He gives us the promise is that He wants to give us an anchor to hold the ship when the storms come (Hebrews 6:19). It's a promise to anchor your faith and hold you steady in the storm. Did you receive a very special promise from the Lord for your life? Now, this promise, I'm talking about something personal – a desire of your heart, a gift, a special burden. Does it look like it's dead and buried by the natural circumstances of life? Are things worse instead of better? God is in the process of fulfilling the promise, but before he fulfills it, He lets it die. What did Jesus say to His disciples regarding Lazarus before He raised Him from the dead?  John 11:14-15, “Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. (15)And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him.” 

2.    How You Can Know:
a.    How can you know God is going to raise your promise from the dead and fulfill it? First, God will keep reminding you of what He said. If God gave you that word, He’ll never let it go. He’ll keep bringing it back, no matter the circumstances. Second, you can know the promise is going to be fulfilled by the things God does in relation to the fulfillment of the promise itself. 1 Thessalonians 5:24, “Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.” God gives grace in relation to your promise. God does things here and there that confirm and remind you that He is faithful Who promised. And lastly, just before the fulfillment of the promise, there'll come the darkest hour of all. The storm will break on you just prior to the fulfillment. 

3.    The Example of Moses:
a.    (Acts 7:17-19) It's time now for the promise given to Abraham to be fulfilled. Israel’s population is booming and soon they’ll have an army large enough to overthrow Egypt. And God takes that promise and throws it in a tomb. All the firstborn are killed. Hope is lost. But something amazing happens. Acts 7:20 says, “In which time Moses was born…” If Moses had come earlier, they would not have wanted to leave. God had to wean them away from Egypt (Exodus 12:41-42). And that’s what God is doing in us before He fulfills our promise. He has to wean us from all confidence in the flesh until finally we say, “God, I trust You!” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

b.    You can trust God! Now, He’ll vet those promises and reject those that were borne of the flesh, but every one that is borne of the Spirit, He’ll bring to pass. He’ll make an end of all our ways and means of bringing it to pass, let it die and bury it in a tomb, but it’s only a borrowed tomb! Because He resurrects it and gets  all the glory! And God is saying, “You can trust Me. I’m faithful.” And He gives us time and opportunity to learn to trust in Him Alone. Don’t give up on the promise. The anchor is set, sure and steadfast within the veil. Hold on. Hold on. Don't look at the circumstances. Don't look at the impossibilities. God is able. Nothing is impossible with our God!