The promises of God are sure, and can never be broken, for God cannot lie.
And there came a voice unto me, saying: Enos, thy sins are forgiven thee, and thou shalt be blessed. And I, Enos, knew that God could not lie; wherefore, my guilt was swept away (Enos 1:5-6).
When God makes a promise, we can be sure that He will keep that promise. If God were to break His promises, then God would be a liar. And if God were a liar, He would cease to be God.
The Promises of God to His Children
Because God loves His children, He speaks to them today just as He has for thousands of years. When God speaks to His children, He shares His love for them, He instructs them, and He encourages them. He sometimes chastises them so they will change their behavior and draw nearer to Him. When God sends prophets to speak for Him, the spoken or written promises they give to us are called prophecies. Prophets tell us what God has in store for us.
God also makes personal promises to His children. The story of Moses is a great example of both of the ways God makes promises.
- God made a personal promise to Moses in order to strengthen him:
And Moses said unto God, Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt? And he said, Certainly I will be with thee; and this shall be a token unto thee, that I have sent thee: When thou hast brought forth the people out of Egypt, ye shall serve God upon this mountain (Exodus 3:11-12).
- God made promises through Moses to the Israelites:
For the Lord will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts, the Lord will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in unto your houses to smite you (Exodus 12:23).
When God’s children are willing to listen to His voice, or to follow the spiritual promptings they feel in their hearts, He can help them see the blessings He wants to bestow upon them.
Some Promises of God Are Conditional upon Our Behavior
God sometimes promises blessings that are conditional upon our behavior. In the book of Genesis, we read about Cain and Abel, who were brothers. Both offered a sacrifice to the Lord. Abel offered a sacrifice of the “firstling of his flock,” as he had been instructed. Cain offered a sacrifice of the “fruit of the ground.” When God accepted Abel’s sacrifice, but not Cain’s, “Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door.” (Genesis 4:3-7)
An example of when God showed His mercy and rescinded a spoken prophecy can be found in the book of Jonah:
And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the second time, saying, Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee. So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days’ journey. And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown. So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them (Jonah 3:1-5).
The king of Nineveh made a decree that all within his kingdom, both man and beast, should not eat or drink, but should fast and pray. When God saw that they had repented and turned from their wicked ways, He mercifully did not destroy the city (Jonah 3:6-10).
Some Promises of God Are Certain
In the days of Noah, mankind had become wicked, unwilling to obey God’s commandments.
And the Lord said unto Noah: My Spirit shall not always strive with man, for he shall know that all flesh shall die; yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years; and if men do not repent, I will send in the floods upon them (Moses 8:17).
Noah began to preach to the people.
And it came to pass that Noah called upon the children of men that they should repent; but they hearkened not unto his words (Moses 8:20).
Since the children of men did not repent, God told Noah to build an ark, or a ship, and to take his family into the ark so they might be saved from the floods.
And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth. But with thee will I establish my covenant; and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons’ wives with thee (Genesis 6:17-18).
God always gives us the opportunity to repent. But if we ultimately refuse, we cannot escape the consequences of our rebellion. When He then tells us that the floods will come, we can be certain that they will.
Noah built the ark as he had been instructed. He brought the animals and his family into the ark. Then when all had been prepared, the floods came. Noah and his family were safe.
Promises of God That Are Already Fulfilled
When we read the scriptures, we can see that God made many promises to His children that have now been fulfilled. Here are a few examples:
- God promised that the Israelites would wander in the wilderness for 40 years (Numbers 14).
His promise was fulfilled when Joshua and the Israelites entered Canaan 40 years later (Joshua 3).
- God promised that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2).
His promise was fulfilled when Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem (Matthew 2:1-6).
- In the Book of Mormon, God promised the Nephite people that there would be two days and a night with no darkness, and a new star in the heavens when the Savior would be born (Helaman 14:1-7). His promise was fulfilled when the Nephite people experienced a night with no darkness, and when a new star appeared (3 Nephi 1:13-21 and Matthew 2:2).
Promises of God That Will Be Fulfilled
We can be certain that all of God’s other promises in the scriptures will be kept. Some of the promises God has made, which have not yet been fulfilled, are as follows:
- The sun will be darkened, the moon will not give her light, and the stars will fall from heaven (Matthew 24:29).
- Jesus Christ will return to earth by coming in the clouds with the hosts of heaven (Matthew 24:30).
- In the last days, two prophets will prophesy in Jerusalem. They will perform miracles and send plagues as they hold off the armies of the earth. After three and a half years they will be killed, and their bodies will lie in the streets for three and a half days. But then they will be caught up to heaven in the sight of all their enemies (Revelation 11:1-13).
The promises of God are real. We can depend on them. And if we obey God’s commandments, we can be assured of His blessings.
More about “Promises of God”
“Promises of God” was written by Daron D. Fraley. The subject “Promises of God” is of vital importance to members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. If you would like to know more about Mormons with no obligation, please click on the following links: