Friday, April 5, 2013

The Always Faith

This is a bit long this morning, but I promise you will be blessed if you stick with it. This devotional today has the potential to change your life completely.

There are some passages in the Word of God that some find tough to deal with. Many are tougher for some more than others. From what I can gather after almost 25 years of teaching and preaching the Word, is that the level of one's faith is the determining factor. Sorry, I know some folks don't like to consider the "faith factor", but that's what I have personally found. 

I have further found that most bible passages are pretty straightforward and not too difficult to understand particularly in the gospels when dealing with the words of Jesus directly. So, the issue must rest soley upon the receiver and not the Author. Jesus IS the WORD so He knows what He is talking about.

Let's take one of the most simplest of Jesus statements. It's easy to read, and appears to be intended to be simple to obey.

Mark 11:22-24 (Amplified Bible) - "(22) And Jesus, replying, said to them, Have faith in God [constantly]. (23) Truly I tell you, whoever says to this mountain, Be lifted up and thrown into the sea! and does not doubt at all in his heart but believes that what he says will take place, it will be done for him. (24) For this reason I am telling you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe (trust and be confident) that it is granted to you, and you will [get it]."

Let's tear into it a bit.

The first thing Jesus says is "Have faith in God."  Easy right? Well, easy to read. Easy to understand. Apparently not so easy to do.

Many, many, many people fail at the starting gate, and this is why they fail to appropriate the rest of the passage. They fall down and skin their nose at "Have faith in God."

Note that it is intended to be understood as to have faith in God "constantly".  All of the time. Never ending. Always. It's not meant to be understood as have faith in God only when you need to. This attitude will break down eventually. You may have enough faith in God one moment for His ability to find you a new job, but not enough the next moment to cure your disease.

Now let's look at the next verse. Jesus is trying to further establish the criteria for faith. He takes an absolute impossible situation and uses it as a teaching method. Is He suggesting that you actually try to take a mountain and throw it into the sea? Not at all. But He is comparing your present problem and difficulty as being like a mountain, and if you erase all doubt and establish great belief, and trust in Christ, you can SPEAK to your difficulty (mountain) and dismiss all of your troubles in a moment of faith.

Then Jesus explains that He said all of that to say this...He puts it as "For this reason I tell you.", or "Therefore I say to you."...

...WHATEVER you ask for in prayer, BELIEVE that it has been granted, and YOU SHALL HAVE IT!

It doesn't get more simple than that. But if it is so simple, why have so many failed to receive? I betcha there are more than a few reading this right now who are beginning to squirm under the mere mention of it, and will decide against the Word by interjecting their own philosophy or inherited bad theology. Yes, there are many who will just not believe the Words of Jesus simply for what they say as written! They will feel the need to qualify them somehow or defer to some "learned scholar".  These types of folks will never get what they are praying for because they violate the very first order of Jesus which is "to have faith in God constantly".

Are there conditions to receive? Absolutely. However, they are all contained in the Word. We must understand that this criteria is for the BELIEVER. And that the BELIEVER must PRAY. And that the BELIEVER must PRAY with unlimited FAITH. And that the BELIEVER must REFUSE to DOUBT in his HEART.  And that the BELIEVER MUST BELIEVE that WHATEVER it is they need has ALREADY BEEN GRANTED!

By the way, "asking" is essentially believing and thanking God for what He has already given you in Christ Jesus. I suggest a thorough reading of Ephesians Chapter 1 to see exactly what I am saying here.

In other words, whatever it is you need today, right now, at this moment, YOU SHALL HAVE IT, and you must believe BEFORE you see it that you ALREADY HAVE IT!  God has done much more stranger things than that in the Word, so frankly I am always a bit surprised when this is met with so much neglect and ignorance. 

Hey, John had to believe it and he did...

1 John 5:14-15 (Amplified Bible) - "(14) 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), He listens to and hears us. (15) And if (since) we [positively] know that He listens to us in whatever we ask, we also know [with settled and absolute knowledge] that we have [granted us as our present possessions] the requests made of Him."

I believed it 27 years ago and Jesus has NEVER failed me yet. Have I received everything I ever wanted? No, because sometimes what I have wanted did not line up with the will of God for me. However, as I became more acclimated and familiar with the Word, His will for my life became more clear (His will is His Word), and I was able to appropriate the blessings and riches that Jesus established for me.

If John believed it you can believe it!  Stop making excuses and arguing with God. Simply believe.

Keep telling yourself that today. You don't have to convince God, you need to convince yourself.

Be blessed, and live in expectation.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

No comments:

Post a Comment