Monday, 29 December 2008

faith...

Call it stupidity or “throwing brains out through the window” faith ain’t faith until it doesn’t have back-up. If it has a way of escape just in case things do not turn out the way it is desired, it is not really faith. Where there is real faith, an outcome opposite to the desired one is given no consideration. In fact, faith aint real faith until it has some element of risk (well from a human perspective). As you might well be aware, we are, strictly speaking not human beings but rather spirit beings with ‘human’ influence. The use of the term trichotomous to describe man sounds posh and theologically sound but it is not necessarily an absolute truth. This is simply because the term implies that man is a ‘compound’ of 3 components (body, soul and spirit). However man is actually just Spirit who possesses a Soul and inhabits a body (flesh). I won’t get much into this because this is not the issue at hand. The reason I’m explaining this is that although faith is a something within the real you and me (the Spirit) we are still in possession of a soul (will, intellect and emotion) which is the ‘human influence’ and that’s where the battle usually arises; While the God given faith says there is evidence that it is gonna happen as desired and expected, the soul says but “what if it doesn’t?” It is in those circumstances that real faith chooses to be ‘stupid enough’ to put reputation on the line and risk everything (in essence is not risking at all coz at the end of the day the faith moves the heart of the God and things happen). The moment the decision to ‘risk everything’ is taken, victory is guaranteed, I mean the three Hebrew boys (Meshack, Shadreck and Abednico) won the contest against Nebuchadnezzar long before the Lord went into the furnace to deliver them. Deciding to go into furnace as opposed to worshipping a false god was in itself a ‘risky’ thing to do, but even if the fire would have killed them they’d still have won the battle, why? Remember the king wasn’t intending to kill them in the first place; he was trying to get them bow to the false god. So the decision to be willing to go into the furnace was in itself a victory since they were not gonna go into the fire. One man of God nicely summed it in this way, “Their knowledge told them that God CAN deliver, their faith said God WILL deliver and commitment said even if He doesn’t we’re still not going to be bow”. This brings us to another point which is the fact that faith requires knowledge of the word of God and enough commitment to put one’s reputation and life on the line because it is through the commitment that the voice of the flesh (human influence) can be overcome. So what exactly is this faith? The writer of Hebrews could not have summed it up more beautifully when he said,

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 1:1. (KJV)

Note that not only is there hope (desire and expectation) but there is also evidence that although that which is desired and expected is not seen as yet it does exist and is awaiting physical manifestation. The writer (who’s been thought to be Paul by many scholars) mentions something profound in verse 6 of the same chapter; he says “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 him.”

We all know that we cannot do anything to make God love us more or less, after all He loved us while we were still sinners but isn’t it interesting that without faith we can never please him? Isn’t it interesting that although he loves us unconditionally, his taking pleasure in us is conditional and that condition is faith? I’ll leave you to think about that one. Please, do not misunderstand me and do things against the word of God and claim to be using faith. The knowledge of God’s word is a pre-requisite, if you do not know the word of God, there is not a way you can claim to have faith because faith comes by hearing and hearing the word of God-Rom 10:17. In fact God’s word is so binding that He himself obeys and honours it, He said he’s honoured his word above his name. You maybe aware that someone’s name in Hebrew culture (unlike nowadays) was essentially that particular individual’s being. The word of God must therefore be really supreme for Him to raise it above his name, i.e. his being or Himself. This perhaps explains why God let ‘one little girl’ in middle of the garden of Eden to be deceived into sin and spoil the whole of the human race and condemn them to death even though he could have easily stopped her. I’m not gonna go into that now, hopefully next time. Be blessed!

4 comments:

andyd said...

Amen, great article Dave. God revealed this through this article and todays word for today which is exactly along the same lines- If we have faith that God loves us- if we truely believe that, then we will see the things of miracles that we hope for. Why? because believing that we are loved overcomes any feelings of unworthiness that lead to a negative belief that God will not bless us or answer our prayers for others. This is faith but faith in a falsehood/lie. God is love, and like you say He has always loved us. So read the word and pray accordingly, believing that His love is translated into action, His Kingdom after all is, in part, the physical manifestation of His will. Amen, and dGod bless.

Dave said...

Thanks a lot mate. I couldn't agree with you any more there. The success of our prayer lives is usually on the other side of a recognition of our sense of worth before the Lord and His love for us.

beaks said...

Hi Dave, I love this! I was reading through my journal this afternoon and a bit stuck out to me that I'd written down from a book in January, but it's become more and more relevant to me recently:

"We must be willing to place ourselves in a position where, if God does not show up we will be seen as complete fools. Most have not been willing to take that risk...We will never witness the sea part if we don't take the path that dead-ends at the beach while the enemy's forces are breathing down our necks...Because we are not in dangerous places, there is no reason for Almighty God to step in and deliver us"
(Neil Cole, The Organic Church, p87)

Until there's no other option, it's all too easy to depend on ourselves, like you said the soul kicks in and finds a hundred and one ways to avoid reaching 'dead-end'. But God loves us and he WILL deliver us: just by continuing to believe we are defeating the enemy!

Thanks for this, it's really encouraging :)

Becca

Dave said...

Well said Becca, I love that statement from Neil's book. Gotta get hold of the book soon. Thanks:)