All of the promises of GOD which ultimately benefit the sons of GOD, were made directly to JESUS CHRIST as their SUBSTITUTE and MEDIATOR. We see this clearly set forth in Paul’s letter to the Galatians, “Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.” (Gal 3:16) He speaks of the same to the Romans, “For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.” (Rom 4:13) Many have erred in thinking that the activity of Abraham’s “FAITH” was counted (i.e.; imputed or applied to his account) to him as “RIGHTEOUSNESS”. Yet the reality is that the ONE who is the OBJECT and BASIS of Abraham’s FAITH is that RIGHTEOUSNESS. It is not simply that Abraham believed, but rather that he “believed GOD”. CHRIST is the RIGHTEOUSNESS of HIS saints in every generation. “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.” (1Cor 1:30-31)
It is not possible that a man can have a right understanding of the application of the promises of GOD, if he does not recognize that all of these promises come to men through and in JESUS CHRIST. HE is the INHERITOR of all of the blessings of GOD. The glorious truth that is now revealed is that the sons of GOD, those who were hidden in HIM from before the foundation of the world, are made heirs and joint heirs with HIM. “And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (Gal 3:29) “And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.” (Gal 4:6-7)
This truth lays an axe to the root of all of man’s religious endeavors wherein he would attempt to earn the favor and blessing of GOD through his own obedience. This is the error of the Jews which is repeated in the free-will religion which is so appealing to the flesh and so prevalent in the present day. “For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end (i.e.; the goal or conclusion) of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.” (Rom 10:3-4) “The law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.” (Gal 3:24-25) CHRIST is the FAITH of HIS people. They have no HOPE but HIM. HE is their OBEDIENCE. HE is their PERFORMER. HE is their LAWKEEPER. HE will never leave nor forsake them that are HIS.
When the LORD came into the world as an infant of days, HE was overshadowed by those Angels which were given charge to watch over HIM. “Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet. Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.”(Psa 91:9-16) HE came to do HIS FATHER’s will, and HE performed it perfectly and fulfilled the exact purpose for which HE was sent into the Earth. “Thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.” (Mat 1:21) “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” (Tit 2:14)
The LORD said that HE is the DOOR of the sheep. (see John 10:7) HE calls HIS sheep by name and they follow HIM. “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.” (John 10:9) As we read this, our thoughts are turned to the promise given to CHRIST (and in HIM to those who are HIS sheep) in Psalm 121:8, “The LORD shall preserve thygoing out and thy coming in.” Just as all aspects of the life of the MAN CHRIST JESUS, was watched over by HIS FATHER, so too are the steps of the righteous who are hidden in CHRIST. There is no time when HE does not preserve them and keep them from falling.
The LORD made a similar promise unto the nation of Israel, but it was conditional based upon their obedience to the law which HE had given them. “Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out.” (Deut 28:6) They did not receive this blessing because they did not abide under the conditions upon which it was promised. This is given for our instruction as Paul points out, “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” (Rom 8:3-4)
Foolish is the man who expects to receive such blessings on the basis of partial obedience (which all will confess is the best that a sinful man might do; see Rom.7:14-25) or weak faith. Apart from the perfect RIGHTEOUSNESS of CHRIST there can be no fulfilment of the law nor any blessing bestowed upon that basis. CHRIST is our LAWKEEPER and HE is that ONE who directs our going out and our coming in. “O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether. Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me.”(Psa 139:1-5) This promise is first fulfilled in CHRIST and bestowed on all those who are HIS. “Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.” (Psa 139:7-10)
This is the heritage of the sons of GOD. They have reaped the benefits which CHRIST has procured for them, they have inherited all of the blessings which the FATHER has been pleased to give unto HIM. The Psalmist said, “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.” (Psa 139:6) We cannot fully appreciate the blessings which are ours in CHRIST, so we are compelled to fall down and worship at HIS feet even with that multitude which no man could number. “I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.” (Rev 7:9-12) Do you rejoice in the RIGHTEOUSNESS of CHRIST or do you seek to add to that which is PERFECT?
Weary, working, burdened one, Wherefore toil you so?
Cease your doing; all was done Long, long ago.
Till to Jesus' work you cling, By a simple faith,
Doing" is a deadly thing—"Doing" ends in death.
Cast your deadly "doing" down, Down at Jesus' feet;
Stand "in Him," "in Him" alone, Gloriously complete. (J.Proctor c.1860)