Sunday, November 29, 2009

Faith and the Thanksgiving Connection

Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
     --Psalm 100:4

Since it's Thanksgiving weekend, I thought:  "What more appropriate time than this to talk about the importance of praise and thanksgiving in connection with faith?"

Friday, November 27, 2009

Faith: How Do I Get It?

...God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

     --Romans 12:3

So, if God has given everyone the measure of faith, why are there differing amounts of faith?  Even in scripture, there are three types of faith referred to:  no faith, little faith and great faith. What is the measure of faith that the Apostle Paul is talking about?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Where Will You Spend Eternity?

Being a Christian doesn't mean joining a church. Being a Christian is much more than that.

The world and the people living in it have always searched for answers. Our history is littered with great philosophers and philosophies, with scientists and scientific knowledge, with a wide variety of spiritual leaders and belief systems. Somehow, we intuitively know that there has to be more. Our souls, and hearts and minds cry out -- even when we have reached the pinnacle of success -- "Is that all there is?"

Astronaut John Glenn has this to say:

"To look out at this kind of creation and not believe in God 
is to me impossible."

Life without God will always leave you with an emptiness, a longing that can't be filled, it will leave you searching for answers.  Jesus is the answer

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Faith: What is it Anyway?

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."
     -- Hebrews 11:1

So, what can we see about faith in this verse?

First, faith is now.  It says "Now faith is".  There is some debate over whether or not the word "now" was actually in the original Greek text.  So, let's say that it wasn't.  That leaves us with "Faith is..." The last time I checked, the word "is" is present tense. So, even without the word "now" faith is still obviously rooted in the present.

Why is this important? Because a lot of people believe that God will fulfill their needs and desires some day -- even if it's only in the sweet by and by. So, here's our problem: if we believe that God will answer our prayers at some point in the future, then when we use our faith to pray, we are putting the answer off into the future.

Let me see if I can explain this a little better. If you believe that tomorrow God will answer your prayer, and tomorrow never comes (because it's always today), then when will you receive your answer?

If this is still a bit muddy, take a look at this scripture from Mark:

Friday, November 20, 2009

We Walk By Faith

For we walk by faith, not by sight.

-- 2 Corinthians 5:7

Or, at least, we're supposed to. But, sometimes it seems like that's easier said than done. I know the Bible says that Jesus died to redeem me from the curse. (the curse being three-fold 1) spiritual death, 2) sickness & disease, and 3) poverty. But, when I'm in the midst of those last two, sometimes it's easy to forget that I've been redeemed and to believe instead what my sight or senses tell me rather than to rely on God's Word. After all, seeing is believing, right?

How do I walk by faith when the world and my circumstances are screaming the exact opposite of what God's Word says?