Faith as a grain of mustard seed

Jesus spoke of faith as a seed.  He’s referring to the fact that it will grow…if planted properly.

Faith grows…when it is properly planted in the human heart.

Do not worry about the size of your faith.  Do not think that it is insufficient.  Just keep it planted.  That means use the faith you have; rely on it.  If you use the faith you have today, it will be larger tomorrow.

If you wait until you have more faith to put it into practice, you will never have more faith.  But if you put into practice the faith you have – no matter how small it may seem to you – it will grow.

Unpracticed faith is unplanted seed.

The Word of the Lord Makes All the Difference

When a man trusts his wife, what does it mean except that he trusts her to keep the vows – that is, the promises – she has made to him.  Before she makes those promises to him, he has no right to expect the sort of commitment, loyalty, and behavior that those promises imply.  After she makes those promises to him, he has every right to expect those things.  Her giving her word makes all the difference.  Of course, the same things are true in reverse when it comes to the woman trusting her husband.

Thus we see that when it comes to husbands and wives, the exchanged promises create the relationship and establish their respective responsibilities.  Until the promises are exchanged, he is just a man and she is just a woman.  Once they give their word to each other, however, they become husband and wife.  Thus their word makes all the difference.

It is the same way between us and the Lord.  His word – that is, His promises to us – make all the difference.  Without those promises from Him, what would we have a right to expect?

Therefore, trusting the Lord has everything to do with what He has said.  That’s why the Bible is so important.  Without it, we’re just guessing what He wants from us…and what we have a right to expect from Him.  Thus the word of the Lord makes all the difference.

Everyone Has Faith

The question is not whether you have faith.  Everyone has faith.  Everyone.  The only difference is where a person places his faith.

Some place their faith in others.  They trust people.  Maybe they trust some people more than others, but the point is that they trust what others say about life and its meaning.

Some place their faith in themselves.  That is, they trust in their own opinions about life.

The wise person, however, trusts in God – and specifically in Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, as testified to in the historical documents we call the Bible.

Again, every person you know has faith.  Every person you know is trusting someone or something.  Since no human being knows everything, he has to trust someone or something for the things he doesn’t know.  Thus every person has faith.

Therefore, the question is not whether you have faith, for surely you have it.  The question is, “Where are you placing your faith?”  Better yet, “In whom do you find yourself trusting this day?”

Keep coming back to this understanding and it will be well with your soul.

Thus says the Lord,
“Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind
And makes flesh his strength,
And whose heart turns away from the Lord.
For he will be like a bush in the desert
And will not see when prosperity comes,
But will live in stony wastes in the wilderness,
A land of salt without inhabitant.
Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord
And whose trust is the Lord.
For he will be like a tree planted by the water,
That extends its roots by a stream
And will not fear when the heat comes;
But its leaves will be green,
And it will not be anxious in a year of drought
Nor cease to yield fruit.”
–  Jeremiah 17:5-8

Waking Up

Don’t just wake up to the world this morning; wake up to God.

We wake up to God when we are willing see Him who is unseen.

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
–  Hebrews 11:1

Most people are unwilling to go around all day seeing someone who is unseen.  Where do you stand?

“…as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
–  Joshua 24:15

Two Things We Learn from the Life of Jesus Christ

The life of Jesus gives us two profoundly important takeways:

  1. His life reveals what God is like.
  2. It reveals what our lives should be like.

Therefore, let us imitate Jesus, knowing that the God to whom we are relating thinks and acts as He did.

These two simple truths are profound and powerful.  You could spend your whole life practicing them…and well we should.

Galatians 3:11

The righteous man shall live by faith.
Galatians 3:11

Do you want to be right with God?  Trust Him.

Trust is a way of life – a way of looking at life.

When you trust Jesus Christ, you depend on Him.
… you rely on Him.
… you lean on Him.
… you look to Him.

Your faith in Christ makes you spiritually alive.  Without it, you’re spiritually dead again.

Without faith, it is impossible to please Him (Hebrews 11:6); with faith, all things are possible (Mark 9:23).

Live by faith – it’s the right thing to do.

Galatians 3:7

Therefore, be sure that it is those who are of faith that are the sons of Abraham.
– Galatians 3:7

Jesus came to give His fellow Jews – and even the whole world – a new way to read the Bible.

No longer would it matter if someone was a physical descendant of Abraham.  It would only matter if someone lived like Abraham lived – that is, by faith.

As Paul writes elsewhere, “he is not a Jew who is one outwardly…but he is a Jew who is one inwardly” (Romans 2:28, 29).

Therefore, your race is fixed…and doesn’t matter.  And your gender is fixed…and doesn’t matter. But your heart is changeable…and it matters more than anything to change it to be like Abraham’s..and God’s.

 

 

Faith Is Something You Think

There’s more to faith than what you think, but certainly you must think your faith.  For if your faith does not affect your thinking, then it really isn’t faith.  It’s something else.  Maybe you could call it “pretend faith” or “wannabe faith.”

Real faith becomes a part of the way you think.  If you have faith in God, then you think about Him.  And you think about Him in a trusting way.

One time Jesus was on a boat with His disciples.  After He had fallen asleep, a storm came up that frightened His disciples so much that they woke Him.  He calmed the storm with a word and then turned to them and asked, “Where is your faith?”  Obviously, He saw no sign of faith in their thinking.  That’s where it needed to be if it was going to do them any good.

Bible notes on this post.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ to those who want to hear about Him without having to join a church – or anything or anyone else – but Him.

It’s Better To Be Sure…

It’s better to know just a few things about God and be sure of them than to know many things about God and be unsure of them.

If you become confused about God, retreat to the few things – even the one or two things – that you know for sure.  Camp on those and you’ll have a place from which you can resist confusion and, in time, have your confidence in God restored.

This will work even if all you know is that Jesus is Lord and that the Bible is the word of God.

Bible notes on this post.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ to those who want to hear about Him without having to join a church – or anything or anyone else – but Him.