The puzzling promise
Until his word [to his cruel brothers] came true, until the word of the Lord tried and tested him. (Psalm 105:19 AMP)
The LORD’s promise tested him through fiery trials until his prediction came true. (Psalms 105:19 GW)
Ah! What puzzling the promises of God can cause. Puzzled by its content vs. the place we presently find ourselves, puzzled about its fulfillment. The promise itself also presents us a test we must pass, a jigsaw puzzle we must completely fit. The creator of the puzzle always knows the final picture before he breaks it up into pieces, we the solvers have little (sometimes vague) information of the picture or the way the pieces fit but must follow the shaping of the pieces to get the perfect fit. We always stumble across new elements of it as we go along fitting in the perfectly and imperfectly shaped pieces. We do however know one sure thing about the picture, it is beautiful.
Joseph in declaring God’s vision for his life set himself up for a test (for testing) of the validity of the revealed word. Until the puzzle was done, he could not see the complete picture of the dream. All the pieces of, turns in his life would make for a beautiful picture; God’s picture. Abraham’s faith in God’s word also set him up for a testing of his trust in the promise (faith in the ability/authenticity of the promisor/promissory note). In both cases, we see that despite the seeming non-performance of the word and all the contrary events and experiences (the weirdly shaped pieces) that seemed to negate it, both recipients stayed faithful; undaunted by all that surrounded. Paul talking about Abraham says:
His faith did not leave him, and he did not doubt God’s promise; his faith filled him with power, and he gave praise to God. He was absolutely sure that God would be able to do what he had promised. (Romans 4:20–21 GNB)
The promise spoken to them remained true for as long as the promisor remained able. Their all-powerful father came through for them as Yahweh despite the conditions of their imprisonment. Joseph was physically bound by positions as a slave and prisoner. Abraham was imprisoned by his age, the weakness of his body presented a natural limitation to God’s promise.
God All-mighty came true on his promise to both therefore bringing validity to their predictions. The uninhibited promisor blew off their limitations and as a result they entered seamlessly into their rest. They entered into rest by being in harmony with the life-giving, dream-fulfilling and puzzle-completing glory of God.
The same God who in so many instances is borne witness of as “Yahweh; the God whom nothing is impossible for” is the same one delivering promises to us. We should just as Mary responded “I am the Lord’s servant, may it happen to me as you have said” respond, declaring fearlessly the promises made to us.
The bible is replete with, full of promises made by our maker to us and in accepting to walk in them (accepting to solve the puzzle), we set ourselves up to be tested by the words of the promise. But as faithful as he was, faithful also shall he be to us. Rest easy, you too shall pass the test, you too shall properly fit the puzzle and testify of its completion; the fulfillment of the puzzling promise .
Originally published at suffusedwithlight.me on October 24, 2015.