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THE POWER OF A VOW

THE POWER OF A VOW

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred, but one thing we know for sure is that God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. Each year comes punch packed with its own challenges and exhaustion can arise when people experience periods of excessive stress and challenges in their life.  You may even be wrestling with the same thing for years and if you are out of options you probably feel emotionally drained, overwhelmed and fatigued.  

This brings me to the concept of a vow. 

If you have exhausted your options a vow may just be the pathway to your turnaround moment you have been needing. The dictionary defines a vow to be a solemn promise, pledge, personal commitment, a solemn promise made to a deity 

A vow is a voluntary promise to God but not limited to using the word vow, promise or oath. A mere change of words does not give one a “get-out-of-vows-free” card.   Anytime you voluntarily tell God you are going to do or not do something it is a vow. 

It is wise to keep the vow you made with God and not to be late in paying it!

In the book of Isaiah, it says that we bring His word before Him in a court room setting; where we plead our case before Him. Jacob and Hannah made a vow with God. God blessed and looked after them because they were committed towards the vow they made. 

  1. There is power in a vow and 7 blessings contained therein for generous people:
1 Blessed is he who considereth the poor: the LORD will deliver him in time of trouble. 
2 The LORD will preserve him, and keep him alive; and he shall be blessed upon the earth: and thou wilt not deliver him unto the will of his enemies. 
3 The LORD will strengthen him upon the bed of languishing: thou wilt make all his bed in his sickness.
Psalms 41:1-3 (KJV)
  1. The Lord will deliver you.
  2. God will preserve you.
  3. God will keep you alive.
  4. You will be blessed where ever you go.
  5. The enemy cannot touch you if you are a generous believer.
  6. The Lord will strengthen you in your time of sickness.
  7. The Lord will bless you in your time of sickness. 
 2. There are many forms of vows in the Bible and I would like to mention a few:
a. Genesis 28:20,

 

Jacob used the concept of a vow to translate his dire situation into a blessing.  

The Bible reveals how God made a promise to bless and protect Jacob and so in verse 21 Jacob responds to the promise by saying “If God will be with me…”. Jacob was not saying “I don’t know if this is really going to happen or not”. 

Scholars believe Jacob was actually saying “since” rather than “if” as if to say that it’s already done as a form of a contract as vows were exchanged between himself and God. Jacob needed more than just an ordinary miracle and he knew that by a vow he could get God to move on his behalf.

b. 1 Samuel 1:11,

The Prophet Samuel was born by the vow made by his mother Hannah who was afflicted and met with much reproach on account of her having no children. 

She vowed that if God would give her a son he would be trained up in His service from infancy and continue in it all the days of his life. God met Hannah at her point of brokenness by fulfilling the vow.

c. Psalms 66:13, Psalm 76:11, Psalm 41:1-3,

King David often made vows with God for many different reasons.  The Bible is full of vows but also full of what God does with a vow.  David made many vows and paid them in good faith and because of his faithfulness God moved on his behalf.

3. People who are in a mature relationship with God and with full comprehension of the meaning of a vow, makes vows with God: 

It requires a mature believer to fulfil a vow as seen in Numbers 30:1-16. 

God’s desire for you is to prosper and be in good health by the condition of your soul. If your soul is bound by a vow which is not being fulfilled, that very thing will torment you until it is fulfilled.  Making a vow with God is literally binding your soul to God.

4. By giving gifts of thanksgiving and paying their vows, God delivered His children as seen in Psalms 50:14-15.

Making vows to God was an ancient practice among the Israelites.  Often, they would offer a vow if God would give them assistance in a difficult situation or even deliver them from their enemies. 

We do not want to fall prey to foolish or hypocritical vows but when making an oath with our Heavenly Father it will be a well calculated decision.

5. Let us then look at some ingredients for a well-ordered vow:

 a. Write all your vows down so that you will not forget! Careless speaking comes when there are too many words of superficial chitter chatter. It is better not to make a promise than to make one and not keep it.
b. Always make sure that you fulfil your vows, you cannot compromise with God; He will not be mocked. 
c. If you are wrestling with a sinful nature that you just cannot shake or if you are burdened by sin and guilt and you cannot put your past behind you, King David always vowed something in his prayers for pardon.  
d. What is your agenda? 
An Absalom spirit has alternative motives. Absalom was a politician and sensing what the people wanted. He stirred up dissatisfaction with David’s government and campaigned against his father by promising to provide justice that David supposedly denied. He was skilled at projecting a “man for the people” image and was setting David up for a fall but David was a man after God’s own heart.
Absalom was trying to impress the king through the use of eloquent language and speech. He projected a spiritual front but his words did not match his actions. Absalom was not serving God, he was only serving his own selfish motives and that of which he could gain.  
He had no intention of fulfilling his vow, because his motive was to destroy David.
e. King David had no knowledge or discernment and therefore allowed himself to be bridged. Knowledge is power. 
f. Never neglect the counsel of the Holy Spirit.
g. Absalom died because of his lack of responsibility and commitment towards his vow with God.
It is observable that affliction led the people of Israel into covenant dealings with God. It was in David’s troubles that he swore and vowed to God. Many vows or oaths were made in anguish of his soul and in the essence of these promises he knew that God will deliver him from his enemies and also bless him. 
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