“By myself have I sworn” – what does that mean

When God assures Abraham of his blessings because of Abraham’s obedience to him, God swears by himself. Genesis 22:16 starts as follows “And (the Lord) said, By myself have I sworn (promised or vowed)” What does this signify? Hebrews 6:13 gives the answer to this. It reads “For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself,” This phrase signifies not only the greatness of God, but establishes the fact that there is no one greater.

Points to ponder:
Our God is a great God and he does wondrous things (Psalm 86:10) and in blessing you and me, if he had to swear by someone, he would have to swear by himself, for there is no on greater than him.

Genesis 22:16 (KJV)
16 And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the Lord, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son:

Hebrews 6:13-17 (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:

Psalm 86:10 (KJV)
10 For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone.


Exceeding Great Reward

When God tells Abram, that he is his reward, he says, “I am thy exceeding great reward” (Genesis 15:1). The words that are used to describe God as a reward are exceeding and great. Psalm 86:10 avers that God is a great God, the only Great God, who does wondrous things. Now, here we learn that God is not merely great, he is exceedingly great.

Merriam-Webster’s dictionary defines the word ‘exceeding’ as one which is ‘exceptional in amount, quality or degree.’ and the word ‘great’ as one ‘remarkable in magnitude, degree and effectiveness’. God is not only exceptional but remarkably great as the reward.

Points to ponder:
What is the kind of reward you seek? We often strive to get the greatest reward, we can possibly get, for our achievements, but even more greater than the greatest reward, that we can get for ourselves, is God himself … who is exceedingly greater than the greatest. Seek God first by rejecting what the world has to offer so that God himself can be your exceeding great reward. Let God be our exceeding great reward.

Genesis 15:1 (KJV)
After these things the word of the Lord came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.

Psalm 86:9-10 (KJV)
All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and shall glorify thy name.
10 For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone.

God’s I Will

Genesis 12: 1-2 lists out three of God’s “I will” statements to Abram, which are:
I will show you (Genesis 12:1)
I will make you into a great nation (Genesis 12:2)
I will bless you and make your name great (Genesis 12:2).

Today, God’s three “I will” statements to you and me, who have believed in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, are the same.
God will show us … and we are asked to “O taste and see that the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:8). i.e., the Salvation of God shown to us in and through Jesus, who is good.
God will make us … into a new nation, for whoever is in Christ Jesus, he is made a new creature (2 Corinthians 5:17) … made into a holy nation, a peculiar people, who will sing forth the praises of him (1 Peter 2:9), who is a great God (Psalm 86:10).
God will bless us … for we are blessed in Jesus (John 20:29) and our names are made great by being engraved in the palm of his hands (Isaiah 49:16)

Points to ponder:
Have you tasted and seen the Salvation of the Lord in Jesus Christ?
Have you been made into a new creature, by believing in Jesus Christ?
Have you been blessed in Jesus Christ?

Genesis 12:1-2 (KJV)
Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee:
And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:

Nahum 1:5 – Quaking mountains and Melting hills

The first part of Nahum 1:5 reads “The mountains quake at him, and the hills melt.” When the Lord declared his fury against the Assyrians, in Nineveh, who were oppressing the people of Judah (God’s people), his power is described as one, to which even the natural elements (mountains and hills) succumb. So great is God’s power in his presence!

When the Lord delivered David from the hands of his enemies and the hand of Saul, David praised God by expressing that “God heard him when he cried out to the Lord and because of the Lord’s anger, the earth shook and trembled” (2 Samuel 22:8). When God went forth before his people and marched through the wilderness, the earth shook. When God visited his people on Mount Sinai during their Exodus, the mount itself was moved at the presence of God (Psalm 68:7-8) and the hills melted like wax at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth (Psalm 97:5; Judges 5:5) when God spoke (Psalm 46:6).

In the day of the Lord of hosts, everyone who is proud and lofty, and lifted up, like high mountains and hills shall be brought low and the Lord alone shall be exalted (Isaiah 2:12-14).

Points to ponder:
When God comes forth to fight for his people, even all the elements which signify stability, such as mountains and hills, shall shake and melt away at his presence. When Jesus died and yielded up the ghost on the Cross, the earth quaked and the rocks rent, and the graves were opened and the saints that slept were resurrected and came out of the graves after his resurrection (Matthew 27:50-53).
When and where God is present, there is nothing else stable except him. Jesus alone is the strong unshakeable foundation and Rock of our Salvation. Jesus is the presence of God with and in us. He is the Emmanuel, which when interpreted means ‘God with us’ (Matthew 1:23). At his presence, all the proud things of the world are brought low and only he is exalted with a name that is above all names (Philippians 2:9). And at the presence of Jesus is life – resurrected life – for the old things are passed away and the new is come to all who believe in his name (2 Corinthians 5:17). Are you alive with a resurrected life?

Nahum 1:5 (KJV)
5 The mountains quake at him, and the hills melt, and the earth is burned at his presence, yea, the world, and all that dwell therein.