Theme: New Year: New Expectations. Prov. 24:14
By Biodun Sotunmbi
1. It is not often the case that children of God recognize that there are 3 categories of expectations.
The first is the expectations of God concerning His created beings.
i. That man should be fruitful and multiply and dominate the earth, Gen. 1:26-28
So, in creating man God has sown a seed. He expects the seed to grow and bear fruit, John 15:8
ii. God expects to receive our worship and thanks offerings, for creating, sustaining, caring for and protecting us, Ex. 20:3-7, Ps. 100:4
Satan: The second category of expectation is that of the devil. He expects man to worship and serve him so that he may be seen as operating on the same level as God, Matt. 4:9&l 0
Man: Between God and the devil is man. He too has expectations. He experts to live long, to live in health and prosper materially and spiritually.
The problem he has is that he cannot guarantee any of these. He must depend on God or the devil
2. God offers promises most of which ale conditional on our performance. Ex. 23:25 and 26. Isaiah 1:19; Gen. 12:1-3
* From what we know God’s promises are credible,
(a) Because He owns the entire universe whatever He promises to do He has the resources to hack them up Ps. 24:1,
(b) From experience Christians know that He is reliable. If He promises He will not fail. His word is His bond, Ps. 18:30, Num 23:19.
He said to Abraham
…By myself have I sworn…
That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the seashore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies.
And in thy seed shall all the nations 1)1 the earth he blessed…Gen. 22:16-18 (c) This promise has been fulfilled in the number and spread to Judaism. Christianity
(d) But this loving God can also curse, even His own anointed when provoked, by those who breach His trust 2Sam 12:9-12; I Sam. 2:30-36. The curse sticks like leech
3. The devil can offer promises but
(a) He owns nothing by himself. If he gives anything away it is stolen, John 10:10
(b) While you can depend on God and His word the devil is unreliable. He is a
liar and a murderer, John 8:44.
So he cannot save anyone, not even himself, ultimately, as he will end up in the lake of fire. Rev. 20:10.
4. Man and his expectations. For Christians these expectations can he grouped into 3
God has the capacity to satisfy all of them.
But He expects you to play your own part. He wants you to obey Him completely. No half obedience as in the case of King Saul - I Sam 15: 1-23. He wants you to have confidence and trust in Him as Shadrack, Meshark and Abednego did even in the face of horrible death Daniel 13:16-18, I Sam. 3:16-18
Most of our expectations, this new year, are a carry-over from 2015. God is not unaware. He does not go on leave.
We should understand that delay is not denial. Hannah faced years of delay in child bearing. But she was steadfast in asking.
By the time God opened His gate of blessing she bore not just Samuel but 3 more sons and two daughters I Sam 2:21
Conclusion: For God to meet your needs you must do the following
i. obey and serve Him, Isaiah 1:19
ii. have faith and exercise it as the centurion did in Luke 7:2-10
iii. pray persistently, Luke 18:1-8
iv, give liberally, to God and to man, 2Chro. 1:6 Luke 6:38