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Faith

We are living in the days where great faith is needed to survive in this world. I often cringe when I look at the news. What do we have to look forward to? Today, we face a volatile economy, with the dow plunging more than 2,300 points on this past Thursday and deemed to be the worst day on Wall Street since 1987 (they are said to have rebounded from the plunge). There is a global crisis, a pandemic, as the coronavirus outbreak continues to spread, topping out at 125,000 cases globally. The world is in a sheer panic with consumers buying items such as, toilet paper and hand sanitizer in bulk and major events, schools and entertainments venues shutting down. As for our political climate, well, Trump is our president. I will leave it at that. Violence and Sodomy, as we know, continues to run rampant. Not to mention the natural disasters we face. This list goes on and on.

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Faith

  1. 1. FAITH “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
  2. 2. INTRODUCTION We are living in the days where great faith is needed to survive in this world. I often cringe when I look at the news. What do we have to look forward to? Today, we face a volatile economy, with the dow plunging more than 2,300 points on this past Thursday and deemed to be the worst day on Wall Street since 1987 (they are said to have rebounded from the plunge). There is a global crisis, a pandemic, as the coronavirus outbreak continues to spread, topping out at 125,000 cases globally. The world is in a sheer panic with consumers buying items such as, toilet paper and hand sanitizer in bulk and major events, schools and entertainments venues shutting down. As for our political climate, well, Trump is our president. I will leave it at that. Violence and Sodomy, as we know, continues to run rampant. Not to mention the natural disasters we face. This list goes on and on.
  3. 3. FaithoftheSonsofMen If you do not have the word of God, you might find yourself very fearful and distraught. Why? Because most people in this world put their faith in a great many of things that have nothing to do with God. They believe in the American constitution and the greatness of this country. They believe in the superiority of capitalism. They believe in their man- made values and traditions, placing God’s name on them to make them appear to be good. These very beliefs are now being challenged and threatened because of the times we live in.
  4. 4. FAITHOFTHERIGHTEOUS But that is not the case for us. The bible teaches us that there will be a falling away of goodness in every facet of this world and we see the prophecies of God unfolding before our eyes. The puzzle pieces are gradually coming together and we have to remain watchful and in constant prayer. We must have faith during these perilous times.
  5. 5. FAITHIS…… • However, the faith of God is often used loosely, taken for granted and misinterpreted. In fact, people will proclaim faith in God without any thought as to what it really means. So what exactly is faith? • Faith is….. • firm, unwavering belief, trust and confidence in God’s law, promise and authority • The driving force behind obedience. • Not based on sight but based upon experience • Is a fruit of the spirit and a spiritual gift
  6. 6. FAITHWITHOUTWORKSISDEAD • The world will often misinterpret scriptures Paul wrote about faith and say that all you have to do is believe and proclaim that Jesus is our Savior. But that could’t be farthest from the truth. Our faith comes alive and is manifested through our obedience of the commandments and testimonies. James spoke about this plainly in chapter 2: 17-20, “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?”
  7. 7. FAITHWITHOUTWORKSISDEAD Consider this. It is not enough to say, “I love my children.” You have to show this love on a daily basis through your action. How do you do this? You feed and clothe them. You provide a roof over their heads. You nurture and comfort them. You teach them the laws of God and steer them in the right direction through discipline and living a good example yourself. For a person who blatantly neglects or abuses their child, if they said they loved them, would you believe them? Of course not, because they are not showing it. Therefore, we must show and prove our faith through obedience to God.
  8. 8. HEBREWSCH.11 Though Paul is often misunderstood, consider Hebrews Chapter 11. In verse 1 he states, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Paul was depicting what true faith is. There are two key words, substance and evidence. In this context, substance is something tangible that you can see and evidence is also tangible, a sign or proof that something is valid and true. Now we cannot see God and we cannot see His promise per se, yet we believe. Do we not? How so? Because He made His truth and promise known to us in His word. He spoke to us through his Holy Spirit. This point requires more explanation.
  9. 9. FAITHISAGIFT Recall that faith is a spiritual gift and a fruit from the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 12: 8 -12 & Galatians 5: 22). It is the Holy Spirit that convinces us of righteousness and bears witness to the testimony of Christ (St. John 14: 26) He also bears witness to the testimony within us (Romans 8: 16). When we have the Holy Spirit within us, we are able to believe all things that God has told us and apply it to our lives.
  10. 10. WEOVERCOMETHROUGHFAITH Through faith, we can overcome the trials and persecutions we face. That is why God said, “Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts” (Zechariah 4: 6) and in Matthew 17: 20, “if ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.”
  11. 11. LIFEEXPERIENCE • Through faith, we gain life experience. As such, true faith is real and tangible enough on its own through our works and exploits. We do not need God in front of our faces or to see blatant signs to believe in the promise. That is what it means to live by faith.
  12. 12. LIVEBYFAITHNOTSIGHT Paul continues to depict faith using examples of righteousness from saints that came before us. However, unlike, Israel of ancient days, we live in a time where the truth is trodden down in the world and we have yet to see miracles like those before us. God spoke of the us, the remnant, as such in 2 Esdras 1: 37, “I take to witness the grace of the people to come, whose little ones rejoice in gladness: and though they have not seen me with bodily eyes, yet in spirit they believe the thing that I say.”
  13. 13. INCONCLUSION In conclusion, let the faith in our Lord, Jesus Christ, forever reign in our hearts, minds and souls that we may stand firmly on his word and let our light shine though we may be surrounded by darkness in these perilous times. May God be with you all. Amen.

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