He Cannot Deny Himself
A popular song from the 1960s claimed that all the world needs is love. Love, of course, is fine. However, the world needs much more, such as godly wisdom; integrity; commitment; and faithfulness. Though these qualities are in short supply among men, God possesses them all in abundance. And one of His greatest attributes is faithfulness.
God’s faithfulness, in fact, is a major theme of Scripture. King David praised it repeatedly in the Psalms: “Your mercy, O Lᴏʀᴅ, is in the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the clouds” (36:5). The apostle Paul assured us of God’s faithfulness when he wrote, “He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it. But the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one” (1 Th. 5:24; 2 Th. 3:3).
Although many people today refuse to acknowledge the fact, the greatest proof of God’s faithfulness is the Jewish people. Scripture teaches that God blesses obedience and punishes disobedience, and history confirms that truth through the nation of Israel. Israel is God’s principal object lesson. And if He were to forsake Israel after all He has promised it, He would be neither faithful nor trustworthy; and there would be no assurance that He would not also forsake His church.
They’re Still Here
Today there are as many people living in the state of Florida (15 million) as there are Jewish people in the entire world. They are so small in number that, after everything they have suffered over the millennia, it is astonishing they are even here. The reason for their survival is the faithfulness of God.
In ancient times the prophets warned the Jewish people of the terrible judgments they would endure if they abandoned God’s law and the Mosaic Covenant that they had pledged to accept. Yet, in the midst of Babylon’s devastating destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C., the prophet Jeremiah declared, “Through the Lᴏʀᴅ’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness” (Lam. 3:22–23). Through Jeremiah, God reminded Israel and the world that He is faithful, even if they are not.
Unlike the United States and other countries, whose abandonment of God may eventuate in their disappearance from the earth, Israel is guaranteed to survive forever:
“For I am with you,” says the Lᴏʀᴅ, “to save you; though I make a full end of all nations where I have scattered you, yet I will not make a complete end of you. But I will correct you in justice, and will not let you go altogether unpunished” (Jer. 30:11).
“Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb?” God asked. “Surely they may forget, yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; your walls are continually before Me” (Isa. 49:15–16).
God has made specific promises to Israel. In Genesis 17:8 He declared, “I give to you and your descendants after you the land in which you are a stranger, all the land of Canaan, as an everlasting possession” (emphasis added). This promise went from Abraham to Isaac to Jacob and Jacob’s physical descendants: the children of Israel. God not only has the right and power to make this promise, but because He is faithful, He will see it through.
Today God’s faithfulness should be obvious to anyone who has toured Israel. It is a modern, vibrant, blossoming country adorned with beautiful farms and lush vegetation––just as God promised. He told the Jewish people they would one day return to their land, and they have (Ezek. 37). He also told them, “The wilderness and the wasteland shall be glad for them, and the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose; it shall blossom abundantly and rejoice” (Isa. 35:1–2). What became barren and desolate under the Gentiles has become beautiful and productive under the Jews. The world, particularly Bible-believing Christians, should recognize modern Israel as a partial fulfillment of prophecy, and give glory to God.
Unfortunately, most people pay scant attention to God’s Word and give Him anything but glory. As for what they think of Israel, many see it as an obstinate obstacle to peace. They feel it should simply commit suicide and let the Palestinians take over.
Ultimately, however, God will have His way. He is on record about the security of His nation. Israel will never be destroyed:
Now it shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the Lᴏʀᴅ’s house shall be established on the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow to it. Many people shall come and say, “Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lᴏʀᴅ, to the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways, and we shall walk in His paths.” For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lᴏʀᴅ [ʏʜᴠʜ] from Jerusalem (Isa. 2:2–3).
The God whom we serve is always faithful. Just as He is faithful to His church, so is He faithful to His Chosen People. As Paul wrote, “If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself” (2 Tim. 2:13).
Israel possesses a portion of the Promised Land today amid much turmoil. But someday it will possess everything God promised, amid peace.