by:Pastor Matthew Mitchell
In today’s world we often struggle with the fact that many of the people that we care about leave us. They leave us through death, and sometimes by their choice. Either way does not make it easy. We are torn apart, because their departure leaves us in a state of desperation, and loneliness. Our society is filled with children who desperately cling to anything, and many times find the wrong thing to cling to, because we have men who have neglected their responsibilities of being a dad. We have husbands and wives who have put their own selfish desires ahead of their spouse and left their family. We have even one time or another not taken care of some responsibility and left it for someone else to take care of. In a society like ours, how could we ever expect God to stick around when we are haters of God, or disobedient children. Be honest with yourself – would you stick around to deal with you? The answer is probably not. It is so easy to run away, than to deal with life and responsibilities.The great thing about our God is He is not like us, and He will never leave you, or forsake you. No matter what you do, God’s love never ceases to exist for you; even in times of punishment. Hebrews 13:5 says, “Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, ‘I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you.’” (NASB) We have this promise that God will always be there for us. God will be there for you so that you do not even need to worry about money, or how your needs will be met. When we are faithful to God in the little things, He is always faithful in the big things.Before we had a relationship with God we were considered enemies of God, or even haters of God. We did not believe, and did not want anything to do with God. Romans 5:8-11 says, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.” (NASB) As we have already learned, no man seeks after God, so God seeks after us. God sent His Son to redeem us so that He could know us and we could know Him. John 12:47 says, “If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world.” (NASB) God did not send His Son into the world to save the world, then to just leave it, or abandon it. God sent His Son so that the world might have a chance to be reconciled to Him and ultimately be saved.The salvation of Jesus Christ is to show in a very personal way that not only did God create us, but also that He desires to have a relationship with us, and He went as far as to buy us back with the precious blood of His Son Jesus Christ. The price was so precious, and it was as equal to His love for us. God is seeking for you, and made the way possible to be able to be with you.When we have that relationship of Jesus Christ through His salvation, God not only saves us, but also gives us the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is that seal, or proof of the promise that God will always be with us. Romans 8:9-11 says, “However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him. If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.” (NASB) The Holy Spirit is given to us to give life to us. Without the Holy Spirit we are still dead. God cannot leave us or abandon us, because without Him there is no life for us. The Holy Spirit is always with us every step of the way in this Christian life, because He is our life. The Holy Spirit is given to every believer to help every believer until the time that Jesus Himself comes back for us.The Holy Spirit is not just our life giver, He is the seal of the assurance of our relationship with God. 2 Corinthians 1:19-22 says, “For the Son of God, Christ Jesus, who was preached among you by us – by me and Silvanus and Timothy – was not yes and no, but is yes in Him. For as many as are the promises of God, in Him they are yes; therefore also through Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us. Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and anointed us is God, who also sealed us and gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge.” (NASB) The Holy Spirit is God’s pledge to us so that we can know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the promises of God are true. The promise is God’s pledge that He has saved us from the power of death and sin. That promise is to show us that we are God’s possession. Paul also writes to the church in Ephesus to tell them of the reason of the Holy Spirit’s sealing. Ephesians 1:13-14 says, “In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation – having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit to promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.” (NASB) The Holy Spirit is that pledge of God’s promised inheritance. The inheritance of God is that of the adoption as His children. That inheritance is the eternal life given to us through the acceptance of Jesus Christ as our Savior. The Holy Spirit is the pledge that we are God’s possession.Not only are we given the promise of the Holy Spirit to give life to us and be God’s pledge to us, but also Jesus Himself promised that He would never leave us. Matthew 28:19-20 says, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (NASB) In Jesus’ farewell speech to His disciples, He told them to go and share the story of His salvation with everyone. As they were to go to everyone, He promised that He would never leave them and that He would be with them every step of the way until this earth passed away. Jesus will always be with us. We have no need to fear anything. In times of trials Jesus is here. In times of persecutions Jesus is here. In times of triumphs Jesus is here. In times of doubt Jesus is here. In times of great joy Jesus is here. Jesus will always be with us no matter what.Jesus has promised us that He would never leave us. To leave us would be to leave us in complete loneliness, but He gave us the Holy Spirit to be our comforter, helper, life giver, and pledge in His absence. Jesus promises to never forsake us. To forsake us is to abandon, give up, or to renounce us, but Jesus gives us a promise that He is coming back for us. John 14:3 says, “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” (NASB) Jesus told His disciples that if He were to go away from them that He would not be deserting them, but that He would be going away for a reason. He was not abandoning them, but preparing a place for them. When the time came that He would accomplish this place He was preparing for them He would return for them. This is the hope of all of us who believe in Jesus Christ. Our God, Savior, and Lord has not given up on us; He is coming again to get us. When He gets us He is taking us to be with Him, because where He is we should be.It is this coming back that is different then any other belief system. It is this hope we have that lets us know that the love of Jesus Christ is the real deal. See, the reason our culture does not have the assurance and confidence of hope, is because they have nothing to hope for. Hope is a powerful thing. If there is no hope there is nothing but emptiness. Emptiness leads to loneliness and ultimately to complete desperation. I have seen lives and families in complete desperation and destruction because there is no hope. No matter who you are, or what kind of desperation you are in, hold to this promise, this pledge of hope. God will never leave us, or forsake us. Jesus gave up His life for us, so that He could start that relationship with us that we so desperately need. Jesus went to prepare that place for us to be with Him. Jesus did not leave us alone but gave us the Holy Spirit so that we would not have to fight the fight on our own strength, and to be His pledge of His promises. Jesus is coming back to take us to be with Him for all eternity, because He has not abandoned us.Will God ever leave me, or forsake me? The answer is no. I do not live a life in Christ that I ever have to worry that I am not good enough, or have done enough. My God did it all for me. I was talking with a young man by the name of Casey. Casey believed in Mormonism. As Casey and I talked about his belief system I found that Casey’s whole system of hope was based on one thing: if he was good enough. I asked Casey the obvious question, would he ever be that good? As Casey thought, he came to the conclusion that everything that he believed was not enough to give him that assurance that he was not all alone in this world. He looked at me and reluctantly said, “I don’t know if I would ever be that good.” See, what Casey realized is that his system of belief did not give him the assurance that his god would be there no matter what. There was no pledge, or promise. That day Casey turned from his system of belief, because he found that in Christ Jesus it did not depend solely on him. In fact the confidence that he would never be alone did not depend on if he was good enough, but solely on the promise and pledge of a God that loved him so much that He did it all for him. Take comfort and confidence in life that no matter what you do, or what you don’t do, that your God and your Savior will never leave you or abandon you. Keep looking to Jesus.