We profit from the Word when we perceive to whom the promises belong. They are available only to those who are in Christ. "For all the promises of God in Him [the Lord Jesus] are yea, and in Him Amen" (2 Corinthians 1:20). There can be no intercourse between the thrice holy God and sinful creatures except through a Mediator who has satisfied Him on their behalf. Therefore must that Mediator receive from God all good for His people, and they must have it at second hand through Him. A sinner might just as well petition a tree as call upon God for mercy while he despises and rejects Christ.

Both the promises and the things promised are made over to the Lord Jesus and conveyed unto the saints from Him. "This is the [chief and grandest] promise that He hath promised us, even eternal life" (1 John 2:25), and as the same epistle tells us, "this life is in His Son" (5:11). This being so, what good can they who are not yet in Christ have by the promise?

None at all. A man out of Christ is out of the favor of God, yea, he is under His wrath; the Divine threatenings and not the promises are his portion. Solemn, solemn consideration is it that those who are "without Christ" are "aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world" (Ephesians 2:12). Only "the children of God" are "the children of the promise" (Romans 9:8). Make sure, my reader, that you are one of them.

How terrible, then, is the blindness and how great is the sin of those preachers who indiscriminately apply Divine promises unto the saved and unsaved alike! They are not only taking "the children's bread" and casting it to the "dogs" (Matthew 15:26), but they are "handling the word of God deceitfully" (2 Corinthians 4:2), and beguiling immortal souls. And they who listen to and heed them are little less guilty, for God holds all responsible to search the Scriptures for themselves, and test whatever they read or hear by that unerring standard. If they are too lazy to do so, and prefer blindly to follow their blind guides, then their blood is on their own hands. Truth has to be "bought" (Proverbs 23:23), and those who are unwilling to pay the price must go without it.

- Arthur W. Pink Profiting From the Word Chapter 8: "The Scriptures & God's Promises"

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simul iustus et peccator

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