Thursday, March 22, 2018

Without Faith, It Is Impossible To Please God

Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)  2 Corinthians 5:6-7

Faith is God-centered, not man-centered.  It is a gift of God, not something man produces through self-efforts of his own mind.

Faith is not the same as "mind over matter" which is taught by some religions. "Mind over matter" teaches that man can overcome all problems in the real world [the world of matter] by using his mind, reason, or willpower. These teachings are man-centered.  They rely on self and not on God. "Mind over matter" is not based on the Word of God.  According to the word of God, there are different types of faith:

NATURAL FAITH:  This is a natural trust in things that have proven stable. For example, faith that the chair on which you are sitting will support you. This faith is not "faith toward God.” It is a natural faith in certain things around you that you have learned by experience are usually dependable.  

The type of faith we need is God centered and display what we mean when we speak of "faith toward God":

v          Sanctifying Faith:

I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me.
 (Galatians 2:20) 

Sanctifying faith enables the believer to live a holy life after conversion. Faith toward God includes sanctifying faith which is believing you can live a holy life.  You do not do this by your own strength but through the power of God which dwells within you.

v          Defensive Faith:  

Faith is one of the weapons for defense against your spiritual enemy, Satan:  

Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. (Ephesians 6:16)  

Satan will try to attack your faith by sending "darts" of unbelief into your mind. Having faith toward God provides a spiritual defense to these attacks.

v           Saving Faith:  

Saving faith requires a personal response toward God. No person can respond on behalf of another.

Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 5:1)  

Faith toward God, combined with true repentance, is saving faith. Salvation is knowing, believing, and personally accepting the Gospel message.  Each person is saved by his own response to the Gospel.  Faith is a fact. It is the gift of God to men to enable them to be saved:  

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God... (Ephesians 2:8)  

But faith is also an act. Each person must act upon the faith given him by God. Faith toward God is your response, your action by faith toward Him.  After you have experienced "faith towards God" and become a believer, the spiritual fruit of faith increase your faith toward God. 

Unfortunately, sometimes our faith can be Misplaced Faith:

You can have misdirected faith. Misdirected faith can be in...

  • Natural Weapons:  For I will not trust in my bow, neither shall my sword save me.  (Psalms 44:6)
  • Great Men:  Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.  (Psalms 146:3)
  • Self:    He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered. (Proverbs 28:26)
  • Idols:  They shall be turned back, they shall be greatly ashamed, that trust in graven images, that say to the molten images, Ye are our gods. (Isaiah 42:17)
  • False Prophets:  Trust ye not in lying words...Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit. Jeremiah 7:4,8)
  • Natural Power:  Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the Lord our God. (Psalms 20:7)
  • Wealth:  Lo, this is the man that made not God his strength; but trusted in the abundance of his riches, and strengthened himself in his wickedness.  (Psalms 52:7)
  •  Friends:  Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me. (Psalms 41:9)   
Having faith is not enough. Your faith cannot be misplaced. True faith is directed faith. It is "faith toward God.”

There are two reasons why faith toward God is so important and why it is required:

ü  It Is Necessary For Salvation:  

The first reason faith toward God is important is that you cannot be saved without it:  

He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned. (Mark 16:16)

For by grace are ye saved through faith... (Ephesians 2:8)

These by the wayside are they that hear, then cometh the Devil and taketh away the Word out of their hearts lest they should believe and be saved. (Luke 8:12)

ü  You Cannot Please God Without Faith:  

 The second reason faith is important is that you cannot please God without it:

 Without faith it is impossible to please Him: For he that cometh to God must believe  that He is and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.  (Hebrews 11:6)

(Biblical Studies)