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An Anchor For Our Soul

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Today’s world is in a state of upheaval and constant change.  With such an uncertain future lying ahead of us, it is wonderful to know that we have an anchor that can be relied upon to give us security, stabilization and peace in the midst of the storms of life.

This anchor is described in the Biblical book of Hebrews as “an anchor for our souls”.  What is this anchor consisting of?  What effect does this anchor have on our life? Let’s answer these, and other, questions as we begin today’s study of God’s Word.

THE SCRIPTURES:

Heb 6:13-20 (KJV)

13) For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself,

14) Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee.

15) And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.

16) For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation [is] to them an end of all strife.

17) Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed [it] by an oath:

18) That by two immutable things, in which [it was] impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us:

19) Which [hope] we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;

20) Whither the forerunner is for us entered, [even] Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

THE STUDY:

The context of the reference to the “anchor of our souls” is a very interesting one, indeed. We find the writer of Hebrews 6: referring us back to the promises that God gave to Abraham in the book of Genesis…

13) For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself,  14) Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee.  15) And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.

This promise that God gave to the Abraham is found in Genesis 17:1-3.  This promise involved the assurance of the future blessings and numerical growth of Abraham’s descendants. At this point in the life of Abraham, we find that He had no children. Abraham was 99 years old and his wife, Sarah, was 89 when God made the promise to him. As such, both he and his wife were past child bearing age.

What a miracle it would be for the Lord to give anyone descendants when the chance of having children was so small!   In spite of these seeming impossible circumstances, the Lord blessed Abraham with a son, Isaac, through whom all of God’s promises to Abraham would come true.

This was the first miracle involved in God’s keeping of His promise to Abraham.

 

16) For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation [is] to them an end of all strife.

Later, Abraham was called upon to sacrifice this same Isaac on Mount Moriah.  If you remember, Isaac’s sacrifice did not take place, because a ram was supplied that provided a suitable replacement for Isaac.  Here we find a second miracle taking place as part of God’s keeping this promise

It was during this event that the Lord reminded Abraham of the promise that had given to him.   He reaffirmed this promise in Gen 22:15-19.

In 22:15-16 He makes the statement… “By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD”.  Why did He swear to Himself?  Normally, when men swear to an oath they swear to one that is greater than themselves.  They swear to the one that can best hold them to their promises.  Normally, that is God.

However, when God swears to an oath He cannot swear to one that is greater. Our Lord is the only true, God.  He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords (1 Tim 6:15).  There is no God greater than Himself, therefore, when He swears to an oath, He can only swear to Himself.

 

17) Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed [it] by an oath: 18) That by two immutable things, in which [it was] impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us:

This whole series of events: the giving of the promise, the beginning of the fulfillment of the promise (Isaac’s birth) and then the continual protection of Isaac at Moriah… all point to the fact that God’s counsel is immutable (it cannot change).

God wants to emphasize to us all that His counsels cannot be changed. He did this by, first, making the promise and, then, by swearing upon Himself.  These two actions of God add to the confirmation that His counsels are unchanging.

Keep in mind a part of the promises God made to Abraham effect the lives of each one of us that have been saved by God’s grace.  As Christians, we have fled to God to find refuge from our sins and the judgment awaiting us for our sins. At the same time, we have become a part of His adopted family and His spiritual nation.  We have become the spiritual descendants of Abraham (Rom 4:16-18).  We have been made a part of the spiritual nation of Israel (Gal 6:14-16).  As such we have become heirs of the promises made to Abraham (Heb 8:6-13).

As we look at the promise God made to Abraham we can rest assured that His promises will be fulfilled throughout eternity  (to lay hold upon the hope set before us).  How can we know this?

  1. He promised it
  2. He swore upon Himself
  3. He has miraculously begun the process of keeping the promise He has made (birth of Isaac and His deliverance of Isaac at Moriah) etc etc etc.

.

19) Which [hope] we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;  20) Whither the forerunner is for us entered, [even] Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

This same hope, has given to us in the promises God made to Abraham. It is the hope (assurance) of us becoming a part of His family, His nation and eternally dwelling with Him in our heavenly country (the new city of Jerusalem – Heb 11:13-20).  These are now an anchor for our souls.

This same anchor is founded upon God Himself, the God of the inner veil (Ex 25:18-22), that could not be looked upon by sinful mankind.  When our Lord “swore by Himself”, He was emphasizing that these promises were founded upon Himself.  He was the strength and security this anchor would be fastened upon.

In other words, His promises to us of becoming a part of His spiritual nation and live with Him throughout eternity rests upon Him.  He is the One who will make certain these promises will take place in the lives of those who have put their faith in Him.  That is why this anchor can be described as sure (unfailing) and steadfast (secure, firm, unmoveable).

Christ is our forerunner to these eternal blessings.  He came to the earth, died on the cross and arose the third day to secure these future blessings for us.  He is now in heaven at the right hand of His Heavenly Father, preparing our eternal dwelling place for us (John 14:2-3).  He has gone before us to make certain these precious promises.

Christ’s coming and work was in fulfillment of the OT picture of Himself, the priest,Melchisedec.

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

For those who have trusted in Christ.

As Christians let us continue to strive to be faithful to our Lord, knowing that an eternity in His presence is awaiting us…

Heb 11:8-19 (KJV)

By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as [in] a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker [is] God.

Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised.  Therefore sprang there even of one, and him as good as dead, [so many] as the stars of the sky in multitude, and as the sand which is by the sea shore innumerable.

These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of [them], and embraced [them], and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country.

And truly, if they had been mindful of that [country] from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better [country], that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.

By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten [son],  Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called:  Accounting that God [was] able to raise [him] up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.

For those who have never trusted in Christ.

Do you desire to know that you have a blessed eternity awaiting you?  Do you long for the expectation of entering a city whose builder and maker is God?  If so, be honest about the life you are living.  Recognize the sins that you have committed against God.  Turn form those sins an turn to Christ.  Ask Him to forgive you and enable you to overcome them.  Trust in His work on the cross as sufficient for payment of your sins.   It is then you can know that you are a part of His spiritual nation and headed for an eternity in His dwelling place.  Look to Christ and know that His promises will come true for you.

If you have any questions concerning the way of salvation please feel free to visit or call a Bible teaching church in your area.  They will be happy to speak to you about the Lord Jesus and the salvation He graciously gives.

Or, if you would rather, feel welcome to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.  I’ll be more than happy to answer any question you may have.

Also, if you look at my blog page “How To Have A Relationship With God”.  On this page, you will find several blog entries explaining the way of salvation.

Please visit the “Settled In Heaven Ministries” homepage – http://www.settledinheaven.org

My Main Blog “Settled In Heaven” (updated twice weekly) – https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com

The following are other places you can find “Settled In Heaven” blog (updated once per month):

www.settledinheavenblog.blogspot.com

http://sih.posterous.com/

To see this lesson taught on video please go to my Video Blog at  http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

If you have any questions concerning this blog, or if you have a subject you would like discussed, please feel free to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.    I will answer all emails via my blog, email, or both.

Take A Look At My Wife’s Artistic/Scriptural Devotion Blog http://alivewithchristart.blogspot.com

Follow my Squidoo Instructional Lens “Presenting God’s Grace” “The Solemn Obligation To Present the Doctrines of Grace to the Lost and Saved Alike” http://www.squidoo.com/presenting-gods-grace

May the Lord bless your study of His Word.  Like God’s Word… may your soul’s salvation and your life’s faithfulness be “Settled in Heaven.”


5 Comments

  1. […] here: An Anchor For Our Soul Tags: earth, faith, gospel, jesus, linkedin, nature, religion, stumbleupon Posted in Uncategorized […]

  2. Debbie says:

    Thank you, Pastor Rob, for the comfort and hope this brings to us! God bless you as you study and bring us His word and His promises!

    • Rob Barkman says:

      What a wonderful turth to know that we all can look to Him during times of stress and trials, knowing we are secure in Him. Thank you Debbie for your kind words and faithfulness to Him as well. Lord bless.

  3. Thanks Rob for another great encouragement.

    There is nothing more sure than the promises of God, because God CANNOT deny His Word. No matter how bleak things might look for us; no matter what problems we face, we KNOW that God will keep His word and we are safe and secure in Him.

    What an amazing God!

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