Jesus said that if a
person has faith as a grain of mustard seed, he or she could
move mountains (Matt. 17:20). The faith Jesus talked about is
the belief that Jesus is who he said he is; that his words are
God's words; that Jesus lives to intercede for the seeker and
believer; that God answers prayer and does what he has
(Rom. 4:21;8:32; 15:8; Jude 24).
Faith is the
confidence that a person may "come boldly to the throne of
grace," and obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of
need (Heb. 4:16). Faith is defined as "the substance of things
hoped for, the evidence and assurance of things not seen". The
faith of Abraham and Sarah is a prime example of
steadfastness, along with that of other Old Testament figures
It is by God's grace
through the believer's faith that he or she is saved, and not
by works previously performed without faith. And a believer is
"created in Christ Jesus" for Christian good works as God has
ordained (Ephesians 2:8-10). James says, "Show me thy faith
without thy works, and I will show thee my faith by my
(James 2:18). In this vein, Jesus said that one must
"count the cost," for faith involves forsaking the things of
the world (Luke 14:28-33) without forsaking a world in need
(John 17:15-18;Romans 12:2). Jesus said, "Seek ye first the
kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things
shall be added unto you" (Matt. 6:33). He also said that his
message is a sword and that a believer may encounter
persecution because of his or her beliefs (Matt. 10:34-39).
The epistles exhort
believers to remain steadfast in the faith in the face of
trials and tribulations (I Peter 1:7;Heb. 12:3-4). Repentance
(a turnaround or turning away from sinful conduct and thought)
is also a requirement, and steadfastness includes staying
clear of sin and resisting temptation (Heb. 6:1-8). In this
respect, God provides the means to escape, to bear temptations
(I Cor. 10:13; James 1:2-4).
A precondition for
God's forgiveness is forgiving others (Matt. 6:14-15;Eph.
4:32), and if "we confess our sins," God is "faithful and just
to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all
unrighteousness." A believer must also guard against doubt and
unbelief which can be a hindrance to a truly spiritual life
and receipt of blessings (Mk. 9:24;Matt. 17:19-20;Jas. 1:6-8).
There is that constant struggle with self, that "old man" who
tries to assert himself, as well as the continual battle
against satanic influence (Eph. 4:22-24;Matt. 17:19-20;Jas.
1:6-8). But a spirit-filled believer has victory over all
these obstacles through vigilance and steadfast resistance.
The "bottom line" for
the seeker and believer is to be "perfect even as your Father
who is in heaven is perfect." Jesus said that this goal is
reachable through a spiritual love for all even enemies,
persecutors, or those who spitefully use others. God loves
saint and sinner alike (Matt. 5:38-48;Lk. 6:27-35). One should
not judge others, lest he or she be judged by the same
standard (Matt. 7:1). A person should act toward others as he
or she wants to be treated (Lk. 6:31). Helping another in need
is the same as doing it for Jesus. Spiritual gifts are to be
exercised and used for the benefit and edification of others
(Rom. 12:1,5-21); Eph. 4:12-16) These principles apply in
every situation including relationships in the family (I Cor.
7;Col 3:18-21) and in the workplace (Col. 3:22;4:1).
Jesus taught that the
key is having a humble heart (Matt. 23:11-12) and a boldness
for the faith, realizing that servanthood in the kingdom of
God is friendship with Christ (John 15:14-15).
Hebrews Chapter 11
Now faith is the substance of things
hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
2 For by it the elders obtained a good report.
3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were
framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were
not made of things which do appear.
4 By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent
sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was
righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being
dead yet speaketh.
5 By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see
death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for
before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased
6 But without faith it is impossible to please
him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is,
and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek
7 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen
as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his
house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of
the righteousness which is by faith.
8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a
place which he should after receive for an inheritance,
obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.
9 By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as
in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac
and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:
10 For he looked for a city which hath foundations,
whose builder and maker is God.
11 Through faith also Sara herself received strength to
conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past
age, because she judged him faithful who had promised.
12 Therefore sprang there even of one, and him as good
as dead, so many as the stars of the sky in multitude,
and as the sand which is by the sea shore innumerable.
13 These all died in faith, not having received the
promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of
them, and embraced them, and confessed that they
were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
14 For they that say such things declare plainly that
they seek a country.
15 And truly, if they had been mindful of that
countryfrom whence they came out, they might have had
opportunity to have returned.
16 But now they desire a better country, that
is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called
their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.
17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up
Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his
only begotten son,
18 Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be
19 Accounting that God was able to raise him
up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a
20 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning
things to come.
21 By faith Jacob, when he was a dying, blessed both
the sons of Joseph; and worshipped, leaning upon the
top of his staff.
22 By faith Joseph, when he died, made mention of the
departing of the children of Israel; and gave commandment
concerning his bones.
23 By faith Moses, when he was born, was hid three
months of his parents, because they saw he was a proper
child; and they were not afraid of the king's commandment.
24 By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused
to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter;
25 Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people
of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;
26 Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than
the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence
of the reward.
27 By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of
the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.
28 Through faith he kept the passover, and the
sprinkling of blood, lest he that destroyed the firstborn
should touch them.
29 By faith they passed through the Red sea as by dry
land: which the Egyptians assaying to do were drowned.
30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they
were compassed about seven days.
31 By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them
that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace.
32 And what shall I more say? for the time would fail
me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of
Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and
Samuel, and of the prophets:
33 Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought
righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions,
34 Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of
the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in
fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.
35 Women received their dead raised to life again: and
others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they
might obtain a better resurrection:
36 And others had trial of cruel mockings and
scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:
37 They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were
tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in
sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted,
38 (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in
deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves
of the earth.
39 And these all, having obtained a good report through
faith, received not the promise:
40 God having provided some better thing for us, that
they without us should not be made perfect.
Galatians Chapter 3
O foolish Galatians, who hath
bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose
eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified
2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the
Spirit by the works of the law, or
by the hearing of faith?
3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye
now made perfect by the flesh?
4 Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be
yet in vain.
5 He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and
worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of
the law, or by the hearing of faith?
6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to
him for righteousness.
7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the
same are the children of Abraham.
8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify
the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto
Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with
10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under
the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that
continueth not in all things which are written in the book of
the law to do them.
11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight
of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by
12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth
them shall live in them.
13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law,
being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is
every one that hangeth on a tree:
14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the
Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the
promise of the Spirit through faith.
15 Brethren, I speak after the manner of men; Though
it be but a man's covenant, yet if it beconfirmed,
no man disannulleth, or addeth thereto.
16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made.
He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to
thy seed, which is Christ.
17 And this I say, that the covenant, that was
confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four
hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it
should make the promise of none effect.
18 For if the inheritance be of the law, it
is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham
19 Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added
because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom
the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in
the hand of a mediator.
20 Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but
God is one.
21 Is the law then against the promises of God?
God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have
given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.
22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that
the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them
23 But before faith came, we were kept under the law,
shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.
24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring
us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under
For ye are all the children of God by
faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ
have put on Christ.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither
bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are
all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's
seed, and heirs according to the promise.
TRUST THE LORD
I Peter 5:6-11
therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you
in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for
you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil,
as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same
afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the
world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his
eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a
while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle [you].
To him [be] glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
My son, forget not
my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments: For length
of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee. Let
not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck;
write them upon the table of thine heart: So shalt thou find
favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.
Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto
thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and
he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear
the LORD, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy
navel, and marrow to thy bones. Trust in the LORD, and do
good; [so] shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt
be fed. Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give
thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the LORD;
trust also in him; and he shall bring [it] to pass.
He that spared not
his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not
with him also freely give us all things?