God Is Faithful To His Children

Isaiah 49:14-16 (KJV)  But Zion said, The LORD hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me.  [15]  Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.  [16]  Behold, I have graven thee upon the isaiah_49_14t16_god_is_faithful_to_his_children_engravedgodpalms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me.

I was watching an old Andy Griffith episode called A Medal for Opie. The annual Sheriff’s Track and Field competition was coming up and all the boys in town – particularly Opie Taylor – wanted to win a medal. Opie was extremely excited, and Barney Fife the deputy didn’t help. Barney told Opie he could guarantee him a win on the day of the competition. And Barney helped Opie – kind of – the only way Barney can ever help. Opie was sure that he was going to win the race. Then the Race Day came. Opie was ready. He was sincere. He was certain. He got on his mark, got set, and GO! They were off. And in under a minute Opie came in dead last.

There was no medal for Opie.

Opie walked off the field, refusing to participate in any other events that day. When Andy got home at the end of the day Opie was sitting, sullen, unspeaking on the sofa. He looked like a little dark cloud! Andy asked Opie why he left, and Opie said – sotto voce – “Because I didn’t win”. Andy told Opie he needed to be a good sport, that he needed to go congratulate his friends. Opie refused. Andy told Opie “Son, I’m ashamed of you!”. Later on Opie came back to his daddy and said “I don’t want you to be ashamed of me”. Then Andy taught Opie what it meant to win – and how to be a graceful loser.

In the 70’s the Child Psychologists began to tell parents that losing is bad for a child’s ego. Everyone’s a winner. As a result parents began to give awards to all the children just for participating. Children were patted on the back and praised even when they ran the ball in the wrong direction. They were elevated even when they missed the ball and hit someone in the head with the bat. Everyone’s a winner! So last week thousands of young people took to the streets demanding that the American System be changed because their side didn’t win.

When no one stepped up and gave them what they wanted they began rioting,
destroying personal property.

This is the result of bad parenting. Not everybody wins. And sometimes you have to go through some dark valleys before you come to a path that leads to a mountaintop. The personal accounts that the Bible gives us of great people shows that there are highs and lows in every life.

  • Moses didn’t start out blessed – he was supposed to be aborted! His mother instead put him in a little ark and floated him down the river to where the Princess of Egypt found him. Moses was 80 years old when God called him to lead Israel out of Egypt. Moses was 120 years old when God buried him, never entering the Promised Land.
  • Joseph spent at least 13 years as a slave and as a prisoner before he stood before Pharaoh and was made Prince of Egypt.
  • David was a Shepherd boy when Samuel anointed him to be King of Israel over the current King Saul. David had to wait 15 years living like the late David Janssen (March 27, 1931 – February 13, 1980) did on that old T.V. show called The Fugitive. When King Saul died David didn’t immediately rule Israel. He became King of Judah while Saul’s son Ishbosheth ruled the rest of the nation.

I could go on and on, but the reality is that – like that old Carole King song:

Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose,
And most times you choose between the two …

We have all had times when we have felt that God was no where near.

  • Sometimes we brought this on ourselves. We did what our Lord said not to do, and as a result we feel far from Him.
  • Sometimes people bring this on us. A careless word spoken from an arrogant, unfeeling person, can make us feel little and lonely.
  • Then there are times when the circumstances seem to weigh us down. We hurt, we suffer sickness or a loved on is in the valley of the shadow of death. We feel as if God is not there. We cry out as our Jesus did on the Cross:

My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?

Our thoughts betray us. Pain haunts us. Has God abandoned us? Jesus knew that the Father had not abandoned Him, but in the midst of pain we all have cried out. The pain is to much. I cannot bear it. Where is my God?

God is always there. That’s what the Lord tells us today.
When the bad times come, don’t feed the flesh. Don’t destroy, and sulk.
Look up. Hear His Word. Know He is faithful to His Children.
God is in control!

1 God Will Not Abandon His Children. He Cannot! Zion, God’s Old Testament Children, cried out. They had abandoned God and wandered off into the world.

When you wander from God, you wander into a mine field!

Like the Prodigal Son of Jesus’ Parable of Luke 15:11-32, Israel said “Father, give me my share of the estate .. I’m leaving home”. God’s Child left home and, wandering from God, lost his wealth and position. He found himself doing one of the worst jobs that could be done.

The Prodigal Slopped Hogs.

I don’t know if you’ve ever slopped hogs, but it is a miserable job. Granddaddy raised hogs for meat. I hated slopping them. You carried leftover and rotted food in a 5 gallon bucket out to the farthest part of the farm. You don’t want hogs living in smelling distance of the house.

You don’t want to slop hogs unless you are a Sewer Worker like Norton
on the old Jackie Gleason Honeymooner’s Show.

You smell a hog pen long before you see a hog pen. It was a long walk from the house to the hog pen. If you weren’t careful you slopped that garbage over on your feet, and then you stunk like a hog. When you got there you either lifted the mess over the fence and splattered yourself and the hogs while filling the trough – or you went in the gate and risked getting nipped and pushed around by the hogs.

The Child of God who wanders from God suffers like the Prodigal suffered. Finally the Prodigal realizes that he should have stayed with his Father. “The servants eat better than I do. I’m eating out of the trough. I’ll go back to my Father and say, Father I have sinned against Heaven and against You. I am no longer worthy to be called Your son. I’ll be a hired servant if you’ll let me!” Israel was like that. Every Child of God who has wandered away from the Father’s Presence is just like that. We head back to Him, repentant, filled with sorrow. And as we head back we dread the meeting for we think that Father will shame us, mock us, perhaps discipline us.

Then we see Him right where He was.
The Father is still there in prayer.
The Father is right there on the property of His Word, His Bible.
We pick up the Book.
We come back to our Church Family.
And He runs to us, embracing us in love, saying
Bring the best robe and put it on him.
Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.
Bring the fatted calf and kill it – we’re going to have a barbecue.
My son has come home!

God’s Israel had sinned and turned away from God, but God is there all the time. When we sin and do things our way, turning from God, God does not depart. He is there. He loves us. Yet God calls His Children to follow Him. He said:

Isaiah 59:2 (ESV) … your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear.

What is the solution? Come home. Turn your heart to Him.
But God will not abandon even the most obstinate Child.
And Israel was an obstinate Child.

God declared …

Isaiah 49:15 (KJV) Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.  

Most women have a maternal instinct. Most would not “forget her sucking child”. Most women would feed and care for the child the more so because that baby is helpless. There are a few mothers – let’s call them monsters – who would leave their children suffering and screaming while they went out to pleasure themselves. There are a few like that. But most mothers would not dare do such a thing. God knows the hearts of man and woman. God said they may forget, yet I will not forget thee. God does not abandon His Children. He loves His Children. We may leave God (and sometimes foolishly do) but God is always there. The Scripture declares:

Hebrews 13:5 (ESV) Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

The greatest possession we have is our Heavenly Father. He is there for us if we have called upon the Name of Jesus, receiving Him.

Romans 10:13 (KJV) For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

John 1:12 (KJV) But as many as received {Jesus}, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

Repent and turn to Him if you, like the Prodigal, have wandered away. He is there, waiting for you.

2 See The Depth Of God’s Love For His Children In This Next Statement. God said:

Isaiah 49:16 (KJV) Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands …

Let’s break this verse up.

a First we start with the word BEHOLD! The word BEHOLD is a word of wonder, of admiration, of excitement. Found in 1275 verses in the Bible BEHOLD was used by God when He presented Eden to Adam and Eve:

Genesis 1:29 (KJV)  And God said, BEHOLD, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

or when God looked with wrath at the mess man had made of the earth, telling Noah:

Genesis 6:13 (KJV)  And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, BEHOLD, I will destroy them with the earth.

or when Pilate presented Christ – beaten and bleeding – before the people:

John 19:5 (KJV)  Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe. And Pilate saith unto them, BEHOLD the man!

BEHOLD, I have graven thee upon the palms of My hands. This is a word of amazement in this text. Who did the Lord engrave on the palms of His hands? Was it Angels, perhaps Michael or Gabriel? No. God engraved sinners on the palms of His hands, rebels who deserved no grace.

Romans 5:8 (KJV) But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

The religious crowd mocked Jesus for those He lovingly ministered to. Look at Jesus. Isn’t He confused? They say He is a Prophet, but He is fellowshipping not with us, but with sinners, with tax collectors, with questionable women. If He was a Prophet He would know better.

Jesus Christ is MORE than a Prophet. He is the Messiah. He is the Great Physician, the One Who came to heal the broken. Jesus told the Pharisees:

Mark 2:17 (KJV) … They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

God manifested Himself in the flesh for all people, for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). But the Pharisees confused themselves with their clothing, their schooling, their rituals.

We are all sinners.
We are all broken.
When we come to Christ by faith, God writes us on His hands.

b Now Look At The Pronouns “I” And “You”. Who inscribed the Child of Faith on God’s hands? Was it I? Was it you? Can a mere mortal come close enough to God to make a mark on His hands? Absolutely not. No one can write on God’s hands but God Himself. Salvation is not a work that any person can do, but it is a work that God has done and offers to all who receive Christ as Lord and Savior. The Scripture declares that ..

Romans 10:9-11 (ESV) … if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11 For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.”

When you realize yourself to be a sinner, broken and undone, and call upon Jesus Christ to be your Savior, God writes you on His hands. The powers of darkness cannot overcome this great promise to God’s Child …

I have engraved YOU upon the palms of My hands

Your name is written in the Book of Life. Oh, praise God for that! We are told in …

Revelation 20:15 (ESV) And if anyone’s name was not found written in the Book of Life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

The ANYONE’s are thrown into the Lake of Fire. Those Whom God does not know, the ones that Christ says “I never knew you”, they are cast into the Lake of Fire because their name is not written in the Book of Life. When you receive Christ you receive everlasting life.

When you come to God personally and receive Him personally and start a personal relationship with Him through Christ then God writes your name into His Book of Life (Revelation 3:5; Philippians 4:3). But God ALSO writes YOU on His hands!

I have engraved YOU

God personally touches us. When God created the worlds and the Heavens God spoke it into being. When God created everything with a Word the scripture says:

Job 38:7 (ESV) … the morning stars SANG TOGETHER …

but God did not sing. Yet with His people the Lord says:

Zephaniah 3:17 (ESV) The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save;
he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.

God cherishes His people. God inscribes US on the palms of His hands. Not just our Names, but ALL of us. He “numbers the hairs of our head”. He knows us personally, and loves us so much that He makes us a PERMANENT MARK in His life, on his hands!
What a glorious truth!

God knows you better than you know yourself. He knows your sins and your drawings. And yet, He loves us anyway. The Perfect loves the Imperfect. Forever. Forever.

c Now Look At The Words “Palms Of My Hands”. God does not inscribe us on the “works of His hands”. God has made the works of His hands – this earth and the things around us – to be temporal and temporary. As the Psalmist testified:

Psalm 102:24-27 (ESV) “O my God,” I say, “take me not away in the midst of my days— you whose years endure throughout all generations!” 25 Of old you laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. 26 They will perish, but you will remain; they will all wear out like a garment. You will change them like a robe, and they will pass away, 27 but you are the same, and your years have no end.

We are not engraved on this earth, nor on the things that God has made. We are engraved on the palms of His hands. The things of this world will perish, but God’s hands will never perish.

No one can separate God’s hands from God.
No one can separate God’s hands from God.
No one can separate God’s hands from God.

Word Study No one. You are – if you have received Christ as Lord and Savior – if you have believed in Him – as PERMANENT AS GOD YOUR FATHER IS PERMANENT. You have forever life. You are engraved – חָקַק the Hebrew Chaqaqengraved or cut into the hands of God.

This is a picture of the Christ.
He took the nails FOR YOU.
He bore the pain FOR YOU.
He suffered and lay down His life FOR YOU.

Notice that God says “I have engraved you on the palms of My HANDS”. Not just one hand, but two. You are on His right hand of blessing and on His left hand of justice. If you have received Christ you will never hear “depart from Me, you cursed ones, into eternal fire, prepared for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41)”.

God would have to toss both of His hands into the flames to cast off His Child.
That will never be.
Them that are in His hands are forever in his hands, blessed be the Name of the Lord!

3 Knowing This Great Promise And this Great Reality Should Excite You To Serve The Living God! The Apostle Paul told his disciple Timothy:

2 Timothy 1:6-7 (ESV) For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, 7 for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.

Why should the Children of God go about hung over with despair, gloomy and doomy? We should be an upbeat and glorious people, unafraid of the world around us, ever willing to serve our Lord. We are engraved on the hands of our God. We are bound to Him. Let us go forward, trusting and loving Him as He loves us. Let us stand up for Him, showing His Mark on us as He shows our mark on Him.

And if you do not know Him, today is the day to receive Him. Dr. Henry M. Morris wrote:

(begin quote) “For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:12-13). The Lord Jesus Christ Himself, on the very last page of Scripture, says: “whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely” (Revelation 22:17). So, whosoever will, may come! One can contemplate later, with deep thanksgiving, the mysteries of the divine call, but first he must come, and if he so wills, he may! (end quote)

May God touch your hearts with His Word.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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