are three divine promises in which the believer can daily delight and
constantly rejoice: (a) The promise of divine preservation-John 10:28-29;
(b) The promise of divine providence-Rom. 8:28 and (c) The promise of
divine provisions-Phil. 4:19. This editorial deals with the theme of divine
preservation and notes that there are three entities God promised to preserve:
God promised to preserve His Son-Ps. 16:10: "Thou wilt not
leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine holy one to see
corruption." In this passage, looking prophetically ahead, Christ
reaffirmed a promise made by His Heavenly Father. God promised to preserve
(a) Christ's spirit-Luke 23:46, Christ's soul-Ps.
16:10a and (c) Christ's body-Ps. 16:10b.
Acts 2:31-32 confirms that Ps. 16;10 is a distinct reference to Christ's
resurrection when it states "He seeing this before spake of the resurrection
of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither did his flesh see
corruption. This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses."
In these correlated OT (Ps. 16:8-11) and NT passages (Acts 2:22-36), it
is intriguing to note the change in the heavenly seating arrangement.
Before His condescension, in Ps. 16:8, Christ is portrayed as being seated
on the left hand of God, a statement that corresponds
with O.T. passages concerning the Father's seating on the right on the
divine throne-Ex. 15:6, Ps. 17:7. After his victorious resurrection and
return, however, Ps. 16:11 indicates that Christ is now seated at the
Father's right hand, a fact that the NT confirms in numerous
passages such as Heb. 1:3, 8:1, 10:12 and others.
God promised to preserve His saints-II Tim. 4:18: "…and
the Lord will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom." As one commentator
states, Paul here expressed his "assurance concerning the future."
In that verse, Paul manifested his unflinching confidence in the doctrine
of eternal security! The Greek root word for preserve here is sozo, a
word that means "to save, deliver" and "protect."
It is the same Greek word used for Christ's deliverance in salvation in
Matt. 1:21 "…thou shalt his name JESUS: for he shall save his
people from their sins." Christ himself used the Greek word sozo
in Matt. 18:11 when he stated that the "Son of man is come to save
that which was lost." Bible salvation is an eternal deliverance that
every genuine believer possesses now-John 10:28-29.
This eternal preservation is also proclaimed in O. T. passages in Ps.
97:10 and 121:7, as well as in David's concluding statement in Ps. 23:6
"…and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."
God's preservation of his saints is based on three Biblical tenets: (a)
the finished provision of salvation-Heb. 10:12; (b) the
factual promises of Scripture-Phil. 1:6 and (c) the full
presence of the Spirit-John14:16.
God promised to preserve His Scripture-Ps. 12:6-7: "The
words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth,
purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, thou shalt preserve
them from this generation for ever."
The Hebrew word for preserve is natsar, meaning "to guard, protect"
or "maintain." A related root means "to maintain—without
fail." A second Hebrew word for preserve which has special reference
to saints is shamar, which means "to hedge about, guard, protect"
and "attend to." Would God do anything less for His Word than
He would do for His saints?
In Scripture, God unquestionably (a) preserved His thoughts-Jer.
29:11, thoughts that do contain His message-I John 1:5, 3:11. The emphasis
of Scripture, however, is not on God's thoughts, but
on God's Words! Emphasis upon God's thoughts/God's message
as to what constitutes the Scripture is a position dangerously close to
Neo-Orthodoxy and only a slim step away from this dangerous apostate theology.
In Scripture, God has also (b) preserved His theme-the
person of Christ-Luke 23:27, John 5:39. From Genesis one to Revelation
twenty-two, Christ is the preeminent subject. Finally, in Scripture God
has (c) preserved His text. It must be carefully noted
that God's thoughts and God's theme are delineated in God's text-His written
An important fact that cannot be over-emphasized is that God's Word is
composed of God's Words! The Inscripturated Word (II
Tim. 3:16) in which we find the Incarnated Word (John
1:1) is composed of God's Words (Ps. 119:57, 103). If we can't be sure
we have God's complete words, then we can't be sure we have God complete
Christ placed his unquestioned confidence in the exact words
of inscripurated revelation when he stated in Matt. 4:4 that man should
live "by every [exact] word" that proceeds
"out of the mouth of God", and in Matt. 24:35 when he declared
that "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my [precise] words shall
not pass away." For these three blessings: the preserved Son, the
preserved saints and the preserved Scripture, the believer should be ever
grateful (Ps. 107: 8-9). D. J.