“Don’t ever promise more than you can deliver, but always deliver more than you promise.” – Lou Holtz
“A promise must never be broken.” – Alexander Hamilton
Have you ever made a rash promise to God? I have heard of those who have made “foxhole” promises to God, and they go something like this: “God if you do this…. I will do this for you!” Sometimes we can make rushed, rash, and unthoughtful promises, and we ought to be careful when we direct these promises to God.
Leviticus talks about a “singular” promise in 27:2. A singular promise simple means it is extraordinary, special, above and beyond the norm, a solemn promise to God. There are some things that already belong to God, and we ought not think they are special when we give them. Three things are shown in Leviticus 27 to already belong to God: Firstlings, Spoils of war, and tithes. There were special dedications, vows, and promises people could make to God above the norm.
There are many of these vows or singular promises made in the Bible, some righteous and some foolish. Jacob makes a vow to God in Genesis 31. Jonah makes a vow to God to go to Nineveh when in the belly of the whale. Hannah vows to give her son back to God if God would give her a son. Jephtha makes a foolish vow that cost him his daughter. It begs the question, why would someone want to make a vow? Why would someone want to go above and beyond the normal and go to the extraordinary with God?
From Leviticus 1-26 a consistent them has been established, God is holy. If you have paid attention you have gathered a secondary theme in the background as well, GOD IS GOOD, real good! I believe the goodness of God led some to want to do something more for God. Before they make any promises or commitments though, God wants to make sure they understand that He takes vows seriously.
I believe there are some wonderful applications that can be made in our life today from this text. When you make a promise to God, He takes that very very seriously. God will always fulfill His promises, and He expects us to fulfill our promises to Him. Matthew 5:37, “But let your communication be, Yea, yea: Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil.” Be someone who keeps your word to others and to God. Be honorable in your dealings and upright in your promises.
If the Lord has prompted you to give above that which is expected in your tithe (you cannot give a tithe, it already belongs to Him), be faithful. God lead you to make that promise during the mission conference, building program, or special day, and He can sustain you through the completion of that promise.
God in His providence has led you to a New Testament Church where you are a faithful member. Let that promise of church membership mean something. Get involved, be faithful, give, serve, and honor the Lord with the use of your spiritual gifts there.
If you are married, you have made a promise to God and your spouse. Be faithful with the words you declared at the altar, “…to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part.”
Be a Christian who is known for keeping their word. If you make promises, keep them. Be thoughtful when you make a promise, and only make them if you can fulfill the promise. Today, be a vow keeper.
Daily Scripture Reading
Leviticus 26 - 27
(Follow this Scripture Reading Plan to accompany this devotion and read through your Bible in a year)
“I am the LORD your God, which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, that ye should not be their bondmen; and I have broken the bands of your yoke, and made you go upright.”