Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Devotion: The Cure For Weak Faith

Recently, we talked about “taking a snapshot” of you and your faith.  The purpose of “that snapshot” was not to give you a picture of where you wanted to be with your faith but to reveal to you where you were with your faith and where your faith currently stood.  Just in case your faith is not where it should be, we thought it would be encouraging to look at a portion of the life of Abraham (Abram before his name changed), who would later become known as “the father of the faithful” and see how he ended up with that honor.

“Clearly, God’s promise to give the whole earth to Abraham and his descendants was based not on his obedience to God’s law, but on a right relationship with God that comes by faith.  If God’s promise is only for those who obey the law, then faith is not necessary and the promise is pointless.  For the law always brings punishment on those who try to obey it.  (The only way to avoid breaking the law is to have no law to break!)  So the promise is received by faith.  It is given as a free gift.  And we are all certain to receive it, whether or not we live according to the law of Moses, if we have faith like Abraham’s.  For Abraham is the father of all who believe.  That is what the Scriptures mean when God told him, ‘I have made you the father of many nations.’  This happened because Abraham believed in the God who brings the dead back to life and who creates new things out of nothing” (Romans 4:13-17 NLT).

“Even when there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping—believing that he would become the father of many nations.  For God had said to him, ‘That’s how many descendants you will have!’  And Abraham’s faith did not weaken, even though, at about 100 years of age, he figured his body was as good as dead—and so was Sarah’s womb.  Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise.  In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God.  He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises.  And because of Abraham’s faith, God counted him as righteous.  And when God counted him as righteous, it wasn’t just for Abraham’s benefit.  It was recorded for our benefit, too, assuring us that God will also count us as righteous if we believe in him, the one who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead.  He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God” (Romans 4:18-28 NLT).

Abraham’s faith does not appear to be anything special, but there is one exception.  His faith totally believed in and trusted in God and in the promises of God.  “Abraham believed the Lord, the Lord counted him as righteous because of his faith” (Genesis 15:6).  Because of Abraham’s “strong and unwavering faith,” he became known as “the father of the faithful, the father to all of them who shared like faith.”  All who shared this faith were accredited with the same righteousness as Abraham was.  But here is the thing that we found most interesting.  Before, Abraham was “the way to God,” but when Jesus came on the scene, he became “the way to God.”  Jesus made it possible for “all mankind to be declared righteous.”

“I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).  “I am the light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life” (John 8:12).  “Don’t let your hearts be troubled.  Trust in God, and trust also in me” (John 14:1 NLT).  “You search the Scriptures, for you believe they give you eternal life.  And the Scriptures point to me” (John 5:39 TLB)!

Jesus tells us that no one comes to the Father but by or through him for he is “the true and living way.”  Jesus also says that he is the “light of the world and those that walk after him, will not have to walk in darkness because they will have the light the leads to life.”  He goes on to say that we “should not let our hearts be troubled,” if we trust and have faith in God, then we “should trust and have faith in him.”  We know that everything in our Christian life depends on our faith.  We can develop our faith through knowledge by listening to, knowing, and understanding the word of God.  When we listen to, know, and understand the word of God, then it will cause our faith to grow, “for faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17).  The greatest hindrance to our faith is our own human reasoning and the greatest limitation to our faith is us.  What we do with the faith that we have been given is entirely up to each of us, but it is you that must grow your faith, that must develop your faith, and that must exercise your faith.  Though Jesus was speaking to those of his day, he tells us as well that when we search the scriptures for eternal life, they, the scriptures all point to him.  So, if your faith is not where it needs to be, you just might want to start with Jesus as he appears to be “the cure for weak faith” and the key to having Abraham-like faith, “a strong and unwavering kind of faith”

We always give thanks to God for the ability to share our commentary and the accompanying inspirational message with you.  We constantly pray that you will be blessed as well as informed by them and that you will be the better for having read them.  If you are blessed by them, please share so that others may be blessed as well.  Amen.

Enjoy your blessings - KW

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