Monday, August 24, 2015

Fruit of the Spirit - Faithfulness

We hear people say “just have faith and it will work out” to comfort others when they are going through a stressful situation or a serious problem.  What does that really mean?  The Bible says, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”Heb. 11:1.  The Bible also says it is impossible to please God without faith.  “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Heb. 11:6.

Faith is confidence, belief, and trust.  It is our evidence of what we have not seen or the invisible spiritual things.  It comes before prayer is answered.

The book of Hebrews is called the faith chapter and reminds us of some of the men and women in the Bible who lived by faith in the Old Testament.  The book of James tells us that faith without works is dead (James 2).  Living in faith is not just believing that God exists.  It is demonstrated by service and obedience to God.

God is faithful to man.  He is the author of faith and gives faith to every person who wants it.  A true Christian’s faith means to be completely believe that there is no other truth apart from God’s Word on which to build their life.  A person of faith is a person who fully trusts God will do what He says in every situation. 

Do you have that kind of faith in God? 

You can be faithful in many things.  Faith is a devotion to others and principles.  It is a positive attitude and an active attitude.  It is steadfast and true in the middle of evil.  Faithfulness is love, steady, true, and trustworthy.  It possesses staying power in spite of feelings and difficulties, even after the first joys seem to have disappeared (John M. Dreshcer).

How are you faithful to others?
Do you do what you say you will do?
What kind of attitude do you have?
Do you stay positive in difficulties?
Faithfulness means to continue with the job you have been given and not yielding to your restless desire for change.  It is a quality of a friend.  It points to God and His purposes and away from self and any preoccupations (Evelyn Underhill).

God’s Word is the Source of Faith

How do you get more faith?  God gives faith to those who seek it.  Faith is increased by drawing close to God through prayer and studying His Word.  Our faith is increased by reading and hearing the examples of faith in church.  “… faith comes by hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.”Rom. 10:17.  Faith is surrendering all the way to Him and do His will, then praying.  That’s how you get to know Him.  We are too close to material things, but through prayer we come closer to God and the spiritual things.

Rely on Jesus completely.  Trust in His power and love.  Believe in His teachings.  Believe even though you don’t understand all the things He does in your life.  He has experienced all your pain and all your temptations.  He knows your daily difficulties.  He has overcome the world and has prepared the way for you to receive eternal life.  He is always ready to help.

How are you relying on Jesus?
Do you believe He died for you?
Do you go to Him when troubled?

Never before has the world needed faith in God as it needs it today.  The world is a mess.  It needs Jesus.  The world is killing babies through abortion and selling their body parts.  It is exchanging the truth of God for a lie (Rom. 1).  Men are marrying men and women are marrying women.  They call it marriage, but it’s not marriage in God’s eyes.  There are more and more murders, sex outside marriage, lying and deceit, and our prisons are full of lawbreakers of all kinds.  When will it stop?  The time is coming soon.  God has been waiting for people to repent and come to Him, but He won’t wait forever.  When Jesus returns, it will be too late.  If you are not a child of God, repent and confess your sins and trust in Jesus.  He is waiting for you.

Principle:  A person of faith is a person who fully trusts God will do what He says in every situation

Next time we will talk more about the characteristics of the fruit of the Spirit.  We still have gentleness and self-control to cover.  Hope to see you here.

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