We all need it from time to time . . . a place where we can go to recoup . . . firm ground where we can get our feet back under us . . . a safe haven . . . a sure foundation. Whether it’s part of our regular cadence, such as nightly respite after a long day or, a place of refuge to flee to when enemies attack, I’m thinking everyone, at some point . . . on some interval . . . needs to touch base with a place where they can escape the barrage . . . and refuel the tank . . . and recalibrate their GPS. For the believer, one of those places is found in the promises of God. As the writer to the Hebrews reminds me this morning, there we have a sure and steadfast anchor for the soul.
So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of His purpose, He guaranteed it with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf . . . (Hebrews 6:17-20a ESV)
In Hebrews, the author is reminding his readers of a better way . . . founded on a better Person . . . on the basis of a better covenant . . . established by a better work . . . laying before them a better hope. But, though the way is better . . . the way isn’t easy. A lot of pressure to turn back . . . pressure from past tradition . . . pressure from present people and circumstance . . . pressure from future uncertainty. And so, these believers are encouraged to keep the faith . . . and patiently persevere . . . that they might “inherit the promises” (6:12).
The promises of God . . . in them lie the sure and steadfast anchor for the soul.
Promises founded in the “unchangeable character of His purpose” or, as the NKJV renders it, “the immutability of His counsel.” Immutable . . . that’s the theological term. Our God is immutable . . . unchanging . . . “with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change” (James 1:17). And, as such, His purposes are immutable . . . fixed . . . unalterable. And so, God’s promises, based on God’s purposes, can be counted on. They too are without derivation . . . and thus, they become “the hope set before us” . . . a sure and steadfast anchor for the soul.
An anchor for the soul . . . a hope that enters behind the curtain into the holy presence of God Almighty Himself. The promises being that safe place, that sure place. God’s covenant providing a reliable foundation though the ground may tremble around us . . . providing a secure fortress sufficient to protect from the enemy’s assault . . . a refueling center when we we’re running on empty and think we are about spent.
Promises finding their fulfillment, ultimately, in the Person and the work of God’s blessed Son . . . our Mighty Savior . . . our Glorious Lord . . .
For all the promises of God find their Yes in Him. That is why it is through Him that we utter our Amen to God for His glory. (2Corinthians 2:20 ESV)
God’s purposes . . . God’s promises . . . God’s precious Son having paved the way. Our patience . . . our perseverance . . . enabled by God’s precious grace through the power of His Holy Spirit.
That’s the place of respite . . . that’s our firm foundation . . . that’s our sure and steadfast anchor for the soul.