It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter. Proverbs 25:2

Posts tagged ‘faith’

Fear – The True Reason for Hate

Gandhi stated “The enemy is fear. We think it is hate, but it is fear.” People are naturally afraid of the unknown, what they know nothing about. It is what is different from our norm and possible change that create fear in us, things that may impact our lives, our family, and our income that causes us to be afraid. It is human nature for self to be the most important thing and those things that belong to us.

A constant state of fear speaks to what we truly believe, trust and have hope in. Our reaction to the things that are making us fearful says volumes about what or whom we hold in high esteem. If we are more afraid of losing our friends, our job or our income more than our desire to honor God, then we will compromise our values, our morals our character. It is the fear of not knowing and the fear of our loss that causes panic.

Proverbs 9:10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.

The differences, in people who place their hope in the world and the people who place their hope in God, are their perspective and response to problems. Those who are without God in this world focus on themselves, their lack and their inability to change their circumstances. They are without hope and all they know is fear and hate to move towards destruction because they do not know any other way. We see fear produce hate that causes people to attack or destroy other people, communities, even nations, just to take what think they need to live. The end justifies their means and their survival is the ultimate end, so by any means necessary they will obtain it. The people of God trust Him to provide, protect and direct their lives. Their hope is in their Creator and Almighty God Who can and will meet all their needs.

This spirit of hopelessness leaves people in a state of despair. They have no reason to try because they believe things will never get better. All they see is lack, hurt, loss and pain. When people are without hope they start looking for anything that can get them out of that bad situation. They will walk away from a hard job or difficult relationships because all they see is the bleakness of the situation and they have no hope of it getting any better. People without hope will try and do strange things even check out on life whether it is physical or mental.

1 Peter 1:21 Who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

Those who trust God can look at a crisis and know they will do well because the God they serve has promised to be with them in their storm. There are a lot of people who say they believe in God but it is another story to say they trust God. This is where perspective and response differ. Those who know their God will do well in crisis because they will say what God says about the matter. We learn how to be still in darkness because God has promised day will come after night, He will turn our mourning into joy.

Habakkuk 3:17-19 Though the fig tree may not blossom, Nor fruit be on the vines; Though the labor of the olive may fail, And the fields yield no food; Though the flock may be cut off from the fold, And there be no herd in the stalls—Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God[c] is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet, And He will make me walk on my high hills. NKJV

Those who trust God will wait on the Lord to see how He will settle the matter rather than respond in fear. We esteem pleasing our King and Sovereign Lord more important than the praises or curses of men. Kingdom people will seek the Favour of their Lord and King more than riches or the threats of this world.

Daniel 11:32 Those who do wickedly against the covenant he shall corrupt with flattery; but the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits.

Fear is the weapon the enemy uses against those created in the very image of God to get them to destroy themselves. It is fear of deficiency that makes people hate those who threaten their ability to get ahead and live successfully. Hate is only the result of self-centeredness, self- reliance and self-preservation. The natural man will operate out of his fallen nature to kill, steal and destroy anything and everything that hinders his lifestyle or progress. But those that know God’s word and trust in Him can be patient, longsuffering and persevere through difficult times because we know in whom we believe and know He is able to keep us in these difficult times.

2Timothy1:12  For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.

We all have been dealt a hand that appears to most, life is stacked against us. But God is there, no matter what the challenge, problem or hindrance, because Jesus has provided for us a way to win with the hand we have been dealt. Life becomes the sum of our choices and what we allow to direct our decisions and choices will dictate our outcome. Everyone must choose where they will put their trust. Everyone has the option to choose life or death. But most people make life choices out of habit, family tradition and social customs. They choose out of ignorance and lack of knowledge of God’s word. Not understanding they have an adversary who is like a lion seeking to see whom he may destroy. This is his tactic, fear and hate opens the door and gives him permission to devour homes, families, communities, even nations.

Deuteronomy 30:19- 20

I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live; 20 that you may love the Lord your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days; and that you may dwell in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them.”

1Peter5:8 Be sober, be vigilant, because your adversary the devil walketh about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.

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From Belief to Faith

How do we turn our belief into faith and develop a faith that will take us through the most difficult times in our lives with a peace that surpasses understanding? The process is shown to us in the steps we go through for salvation in Romans 10. If we believe in our heart, (what God said), and confess it with our mouth, (God’s Word), we will be saved. We are saved by our faith and trust in God, we believe with a firm commitment in our hearts God’s truth and we display this assurance by the confession we speak with our mouth and the actions we exhibit in the world.

The first step of faith is to hear God’s word. Once we have heard the word we make a choice of our will to believe it or reject it. Remember true belief is to have confidence, full trust and reliability of a person or thing though it may be without absolute proof. Trusting in God becomes is confirmed in our loyalty and obligation to Him. We believe right it leads to right thinking, which leads to right actions.

Romans 10:14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?

The word preacher comes from a Greek word that is translated kerusso; to herald a royal command, to proclaim publicly a divine truth. This is the responsibility of everyone who professes Christ as their Lord and Savior, to publicly proclaim truth. To announce God, the truth of Who He is in our lives and to tell all He has done in us and through us. How shall they hear without someone telling them about the goodness and loving kindness of God?

We all should ask ourselves these questions. How can people call on God when they do not believe in God? How do people learn to believe in God when they have not even heard of God? How can they hear about God if we do not testify about what He has done in our lives? How many people do not believe in God because those who call themselves Christians fail to speak about Him and all God has done in our lives? This is a sobering thought, to think someone may have been saved if we had taken time and courage to speak the truth of God to him or her.

Romans 10:6a, 8-10, 13 But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way…

But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach):  that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. NKJV

The word heart comes from a Greek word translated as kardia that speaks of the thoughts, feelings and mind of a person. It is not speaking of the organ that beats in our chest but the innermost or center part of our being, which is our intellect; it is the very process of our choice and our will.

When the word of God is given to us, or when the word of God is seen (read) or heard (taught), we may choose to accept it as truth and believe it or reject it. We make this choice every time a principle or precept of God’s is spoken to us. The heart of our mind, at that moment, chooses to believe the Light of God’s word to believe or not. .

When we choose to believe the truth, our belief in God’s word is confirmed by us speaking the very truth we heard. Our spoken confession of agreement with God’s word is established in our heart with that very declaration. Our tongue is the pen that writes on our heart the good things our Lord and King has arranged for us, and this gives us overflowing hope on matters that are before us.

Psalms 45: 1 My heart is overflowing with a good theme; I recite my composition concerning the King; My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.

What we believe in our hearts becomes what we speak. The righteousness of faith speaks this way; it says what God says about the matter. The word righteous speaks of those who are placed in right standing with God through the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus. We are made righteous by His acts alone and our belief in Him places us into a right position in the family of God. Therefore, those who are believers in Jesus speak this way; they confess, declare and acknowledge with their mouth, that Jesus is their Lord, to whom they will obey. They believe He is the risen Son of God. By this acknowledgement of God’s truth and with the confession and declaration of our belief, we are made righteous, in right standing and are saved by God.

Many people want to believe but stay silent without making a confession. Anyone in love will want to make known their love to the person of their affection. If we do not express our love then it is only a dream. It becomes part of our reality when we take a chance and declare our commitment to this love. We must understand this world was created by the power of words spoken in faith. It is the act of the public expression of faith that brings redemption back into our world and it is that belief that put us in right standing with God.

Luke 6:45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. NKJV

Belief turns to faith when we take that belief and put action with it. We may believe in our hearts a thing is true but we cultivate our faith when we express it through actions and then acknowledge it to the entire world both the seen and the unseen world. We then have declared the position on which we stand and it operates in every detail of our lives and how we live life

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A famous woman once said,” people will tell you what they really think, if you listen, really listen to what they are saying.” The word of God tells us we can tell the type of heart a person has by listening to the words they speak. It is important to listen as well as watch. People can change their actions for a short time but what is buried in their hearts comes through the very wellspring of their being through their words and eventually their behavior.

Proverbs 4:23 Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life

Faith is not only speaking what we believe in our heart but faith is putting into action what we believe. When we start planning for a vacation, we believe we are taking, we begin preparing for it. Faith is the motion we put in place as the result of our belief. If we believe we are going on vacation to the beach, we start planning to take time off from work, we pack our suitcase and we bring our swimming suit. These actions are faith actions preparing for what we believe will happen. The same is with faith in God’s word, we start preparing for what we believe will occur. Belief is moved into faith by the actions we take toward the end result. It is the hope we have for what will happen in our future.

Our Belief Systems Dictate Our Outcome

Believing in God is more than an intellectual knowledge of God. It is more than an intellectual climb to attain information about God. People will say they believe in something but what they mean is they may have a knowledge that it exists but not a commitment to fully trust in that person or thing. One of the enemy’s tactics is to get people confused about God’s Word and His truth by distorting or changing our understanding of the true meaning of words. This is done to confuse us in our reading and understanding of truth with a confused or different meaning from the original text.

To have knowledge of something in one’s mind is different than having a belief or a conviction of the soul and spirit, to be committed to that belief. Knowledge of a thing shows the receipt of information or data. True belief by definition is to have confidence, which is full trust or reliability of a person, and assurance in the truth, existence, reliability of that person or thing. Though it may be without absolute proof, your believing is the faith, the confidence or trust in a person, and becomes an obligation of loyalty to that person.

The only thing that was required of Adam was to believe and obey God’s Word of Truth. God told man that he was created in His likeness and the day he ate of the tree of knowledge he would die. The world system gives different meaning to life so to confuse people in knowing good from evil. Adam’s action to eat the fruit God told him not to eat reflected Adam’s choice to obey and listen to the enemy rather than God.

Because man obeyed Satan man became a servant and under Satan’s authority and rule. God was no longer the Sovereign King of man. God is true to His Word and He will not violate His word. Nor will God violate man’s will or his ability to choose to have another ruler over him. God could not void man’s choice and be faithful to His word. Most of us would ask, why did God allow this to happen? If God loved us, He would not let that happen or if He were all-powerful, He would stop Satan.

 

It was the love God had for man that gave man the ability to choose and God’s faithfulness to His word that restrained Him from stepping in and void the results of man’s choice. God showed His love for man by allowing him a choice and not making him a robot. God’s love, mercy and grace are seen in God providing man a Saviour. God’s faithfulness to His word is displayed in His restraint in not interfering with man’s choice but to remain true to His word to give them, dominion over the things in the earth.

Genesis 2: 16-17 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

Absolute power without rules of order and integrity will lead to brutality and mayhem. God’s word is His rule of order. He cannot and will not violate His word even at the great cost of losing mankind to rebellion and knowing the choice would destroy man in his created state. God is a God of integrity and principle and we are created to be like Him, in our life choices, to hold true to our word with integrity. An example of this is shown in Daniel. The king made a law and once a law was established the king himself could not alter or change the law. The king himself had to abide by the law that was implemented. Daniel was a man the king respected but the integrity of his word could not be violated, even at the cost of throwing Daniel into the lion’s den. This was done to keep the integrity of an earthly king’s law. It is much more important for the God of the universe to protect and keep His word!

God is not a man and He cannot lie, He must hold true to His word no matter the cost. Just as Daniel had to go into the lion’s den to protect the integrity of the king, God had to allow man a choice to hold true to His integrity. God brought Daniel out of the lion’s den just as God has provided a plan for man to be redeemed. God decided to pay the penalty for man’s rebellion and die in his stead. God provided man with another chance, to choose life rather than death to accept Jesus as their payment for sin.

Numbers 23:1 God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?

The rebellion of Adam and Eve allowed Satan to have dominion over this world system for a season. The very dominion God had given to mankind was turned over to Satan and this is why there is such hate, death and destruction in the world today. Satan comes to kill, steal and destroy man- the object of God’s love and affection the very one created in His image.

Jesus came, paid the penalty for man’s rebellion and returned the Kingdom of Heaven back to the earth and now we are able to become citizens of this kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God was made available to all who believe in His Son. Now there are two kingdoms in operation on earth trying to advance its kingdom influence in the world, the fallen kingdom of darkness and the kingdom of God which bringing the light of truth. We still have to choose, in this life, which we will serve, the true King or the father of lies and our choice will be reflected in our actions. We have the same choice Adam and Eve had a choice that will display to the world who we are listening to and obeying, the truth of God or the lies of Satan.

Knowledge is only information; it is data we have on a subject, person or thing. Belief, however, is a commitment to a person or thing. It is having faith, belief and commitment that the person is all they said they are, even if there are no substantial proofs showing we are right. This is why believing in Jesus takes faith, not just to know Him, but to trust Him. Faith believes He is God and is committed to trust Him in the face of dark circumstances. We may be unable to produce, to the satisfaction of sceptics, the evidences they want us to produce but we believe that He is and He is able and will keep His promises. Our faith and the way we live with integrity is a testament of God, His power and what He can do with a simple life that is lived for Him. A life well lived points to God’s divine strength helping us to live a life of forgiveness and love which is only by the power of God’s grace and mercy.

Right believing leads to right thinking, which leads to right actions and this is what God wants for His people. When we know how much God loves us and all He has done just for us to succeed, our action would line up with what is true out of gratitude. We will want to do what brings honor and pleasure to our God. Loving children want to bring honor to their parents who have loved and given for their wellbeing. We as children of the Most High Kings should want to bring honor to our Heavenly Father. We do this by the choices we make in our daily lives to trust God and to show His love to an undeserving world.

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