Sunday Live Service 07 June 2020 – Grounded in Faith
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Grounded in Faith
1Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses]
- Peter says our faith is more precious than gold (1 Pet. 1:7).
- faith is the central concept of Christianity.
- We can be called Christians only if we have faith.
What Is Faith
- The Greek word for faith is pistis. It means to have trust or confidence.
- Faith is the dynamic interaction of our spirit man with God.
- Faith is a fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22).
As we walk with the Lord
- We are exhorted to increase our faith through living our faith (Rom. 1:17).
- We must put on faith (1 Thess. 5:8)
- We must grow in faith (2 Cor. 10:15)
- We must be steadfast in faith (1 Cor. 15:58)
- We must be strong in faith (Rom. 4:19-20)
To have faith is to trust God and believe that He is, that He can be in us and that He also has promises just for us. The opposite of faith is mistrust. Psalm 37:3 declares, “Trust in the LORD, and do good.” Proverbs 3:5 adds: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart.”
To trust someone is to make them a refuge. Think of a baby bird that hides itself under its parent’s feathers. David beautifully describes this concept in Psalm 57:1: “And in the shadow of Your wings I will make my refuge.” If our life is characterized by mistrust, then we are not walking in faith. The enemy does not want us to walk in faith; therefore, he will do everything he can to break down and destroy reliable relationships in our life.
Faith is believing what God has said. Unbelief is the enemy of faith. When Satan plants unbelief in our mind and we choose to agree with it, we have quenched our faith. Hebrews 3:12 warns, “Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief.” Unbelief simply wants us to believe that God is not able. It creates an atmosphere that negates God’s ability. When we fall for this line of thinking, we are unable to enter into the promises and plans God has for us. The real strategy of the enemy is to build a belief system within each of us that is contrary to who God is.
Faith is loyalty. Faith is standing with God in the place He has asked us to stand, no matter what the circumstances may be. Faith’s opposite is betrayal. When we make a commitment of loyalty to God, we call it a covenant. Walking in loyalty is a sign that we are walking by faith. Walking in loyalty is a sign of covenant. Covenant signifies relationship.
It is difficult to overcome an act of betrayal. One of the greatest contrasts in the New Testament is between Jesus’ loyalty and Judas’s betrayal (Luke 22). The act of betrayal wounds and becomes imbedded in our emotions. The result is that after a hurtful experience we then guard ourselves in our relationships.
4. Fidelity — Unfaithfulness
Faith is fidelity. Fidelity is a faithful devotion to duty, obligations or vows. Unfaithfulness is a lack of faith. The faithfulness of God is the basis for our faith. To choose a path of unfaithfulness negates our ability to trust. God is faithful, and His faithfulness is not dependent upon our faith. However, our faith reflects His faithfulness.
5. Dependence — Independence
Faith is dependence. To depend on others means that we rely upon them and we are influenced by them. It usually means that who we are has, in part, been determined by something in the character of those people upon whom we depend. Dependence is also linked to submission. If we are dependent, then we rely upon someone else for existence, support and success. Proverbs 3:6 leaves no doubt about what we should do: “In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” In other words, when we depend upon God, He will straighten our paths.
An independent spirit that cannot trust in or submit to authority will not be able to walk in faith. When Jesus saw the centurion’s understanding of authority in action, He said, “You have great faith!” (Matt. 8:9-10).
6. Confidence — Insecurity
Faith is confidence. First John 5:14 (AMP) explains: And this is the confidence (the assurance, the privilege of boldness) which we have in Him: [we are sure] that if we ask anything (make any request) according to His will (in agreement with His own plan),
The definition of the Greek word peitho is “confidence.” This means to be convinced, to have an inward certainty, to win over, to prevail upon, to persuade, to induce a change of mind by the use of argument. The opposite of confidence is insecurity. If we are plagued by insecurity, we are agreeing with the voice of unbelief. Insecurity — which can also manifest itself as fear — is believing that God’s promises will fail. Where there is true faith there is no room for insecurity or fear.
7. Wholeness — Fragmentation
Faith is wholeness. When we are linked to God through faith, we can walk in peace and be whole. The enemy loves to fragment us, which is the opposite of wholeness. When we walk in peace, we have harmony, we are calm, and we trust in God. Any place in our life in which we don’t have peace usually is a place that the enemy has broken to pieces. Where faith is absent there is fragmentation.
Faith is obedience. Throughout the Word of God faith is demonstrated through obedience. First John 3:24 reads, “Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him.” I love what Mary, the mother of Jesus, was quoted as saying: “Whatever He says to you, do it” (John 2:5). This boils down the whole issue of faith to a single sentence. If we love and trust God, we will do what He asks us to do. Disobedience reveals a lack of faith. When we disobey God, we are saying that we do not have faith that He knows best or that He can keep His promises. God has made it clear that we are to go into battle and He will protect us. If we say no, then we are not only disobeying Him, but we are also declaring that we do not have enough faith to believe that He will protect us.
9. Witness — Silence
First John 5:11 (AMP) reads, “And this is that testimony (that evidence): God gave us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.” To be saved we must confess our faith. We do this when we first believe, but that confession of faith should not be limited to a single moment in time. It should be an ongoing part of our life. That’s what made the great cloud of witnesses (Heb. 12:1) who they were—they confessed their faith no matter what the circumstances. In the midst of discouragement, they uttered their faith.
For our faith to be truly faith, we must be willing to speak up. The opposite of being a true witness for God is keeping silent. Silence, at times, can simply be unbelief and timidity. A believer is a witness. First John 5:10 summarizes this:
He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. If we move in faith, we will be bold witnesses — we will speak up.
10. Love — Hate
Faith is love. Second Thessalonians 3:5 reads, “Now may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the patience of Christ.” Galatians 5:6 adds to this point: “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.”
We are accepted on the grounds of faith, not by any law or rule. As we show love, our faith increases. Our faith becomes energized when we allow ourselves to love, God and people. When we love one another, God abides in us. Love has so many wonderful benefits. Love casts out fear. Because we love God, we eagerly obey Him. Because we love God, we easily show loyalty. Because we love God, we are able to trust Him.
The opposite of love is hate. A person who says he is in the light yet hates his brother is actually in darkness (see 1 John 2:9). This means that if we walk in darkness, we will lose sight of where we are going and the One whom we are following. Hatred causes our faith to stop functioning.
The opposite of love is hate. A person who says he is in the light yet hates his brother is actually in darkness (1 John 2:9). This means that if we walk in darkness, we will lose sight of where we are going and the One whom we are following. Hatred causes our faith to stop functioning.
Eight Qualities Of Faith People
- Energize an eternal perspective. Individuals with faith see beyond this world to the eternal realities. Rather than live for the moment and for this world, they look to the next, knowing that this life is not all there is.
- Having an uncanny dependence on God. This quality is evidenced primarily by a life bracketed by prayer. They talk to God as if they know Him, because they do. And because they believe He hears them, they are less anxious than most.
- Love the Word of God. They love to read it, study it and hear it read as well as preached.
- Outrageous courageous. When it comes to standing up for what they believe in, they aren’t inclined to sit on their hands. These people possess a heroic boldness that flows out of their perspective of, total dependence on, and love for God’s Word.
- They are living examples of what it means to endure. Quitting is not a concept with which they are familiar. And because faith heroes view life as a long-distance race, speed is not nearly as important as stamina.
- Take obedience very seriously. Pleasing God matters much more than accommodating people’s unpredictable expectations.
- Unquestionably self-controlled. They are not victims as much as they are victorious. They decide what the circumstances call for and act accordingly, even if it means voluntarily laying down their lives.
- Marked quite simply by love. Their eyes do not lie. Their countenance can warm the coldest room. They genuinely care for other people, and their actions prove it. Some might call it “faith in action.”