“But as surely as God is faithful, our message to you is not “Yes” and “No.” 19 For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us—by me and Silas[c] and Timothy—was not “Yes” and “No,” but in him it has always been “Yes.” 20 For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. 21 Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, 22 set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.23 I call God as my witness—and I stake my life on it—that it was in order to spare you that I did not return to Corinth. 24 Not that we lord it over your faith, but we work with you for your joy, because it is by faith you stand firm.” 2 Corinthians 1.18-24
This segment has within it some of the best promises written in Scripture. As Paul continues to encourage, teach and instruct the church, he does so by faithfully fulfilling God’s promises to his people.
He begins by affirming his preaching team which includes himself, Silas (his mentor) and Timothy (his disciple). They always preached Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God, and affirmed his promises among the people. Saying, “no matter how many promises God has made, they are “yes” and in Christ.”
What does this mean, “Yes” and in Christ? I believe God offers abundance of life for those who trust in him. Promises to forgive sin, to erase debt, to grant life today and eternal life to come. And, they all come through Christ. No promises God makes does not include his Word, The Word, the Son of God, Jesus Christ moving through them.
And Jesus, in all these affirmative promises “makes both us and you,” Paul writes, to “stand firm in Christ.” What did he do? And this I love — he “anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.” Now a whole sermon could be written about this one passage. It’s incredible. But this is what he does — First, we stand firm. Second, he choses (i.e. anoints) us. Third, he seals us with his promise. Fourth, he places his Spirit within us. Fifth, he wraps up this promise with the guarantee that what we have now we will experience in full in heaven.
Why wouldn’t anyone want this? The joy, the freedom, the life in Jesus is fantastic. For those who have humbled themselves, turned from sin and towards the Savior, life with God is the best.
Now sometimes we get in a rut, down and depressed. We in the USA might have all we need materially, but we lack relationship and meaningfulness. We struggle, we sin, we lose our joy. And I believe this is Satan’s great strategy. He invites us into sin, and sends demons to latch on to those who love sin. If sin leads to death (Romans 3:23) then surely it can lead to lack of joy.
We must rid ourselves of sin, rejecting evil and remembering the one who selected us, put his Spirit in us, sealed us and filled us. The Holy Spirit of God lives in us so that the Word of God might be experienced and proclaimed.
Have you embraced the promises of God today? Why not reject sin, repent of evil, help right broken relationships and turn to the one who never stops turning our way — Jesus, the Christ.
“O Lord God, you are good. Help me in my unbelief! Help me uncover hidden sin which hampers me from knowing you fully. Help me walk in fullness, in anointing and in truth. I love you Lord for you never give up on your people. I praise your holy name. For you are good and your love endures forever. Yes and Amen!”