Archive for August, 2015

Walking by Faith

Thursday, August 27th, 2015

Christianity is a religion of faith (Rom 3:27;10:8;Gal 1:23). It is referred to as ‘the faith’ in Jude 3 and elsewhere. We are told that we walk by faith and not by sight. We have never seen God, or the Holy Spirit. We did not witness the resurrection, nor have we seen the risen Christ. Nevertheless, we believe! Infidels reject Christianity because of this, yet they will accept other things by faith with less evidence than we have for Christianity.

We must be careful to maintain the distinction between faith and opinion. Faith requires evidence (Rom 10:17; John 20:31). Faith presupposes testimony. No testimony-no faith! Opinion is what we think, or believe, without any evidence. Here are some examples. In Genesis 2:9 we are told that the tree of knowledge was in the garden-faith. What was the tree?-opinion. Samson caught 300 foxes in Judges 15:4-faith. How?-opinion. Nicodemus came to Jesus by night-faith. Why at night?-opinion. We can only go so far as God has instructed us in faithfully serving Him, no further.

To obey the Gospel of Christ is to walk by faith. Every step in our obedience is a step of faith. We are to believe (Luke 13:3,5). We are to repent (Acts 17:30). We must confess Christ before men (Rom 10:9,10). We are to be baptized for the remission of our sins (Acts 2:38). We do not see how baptism remits our sins, but we are told by Jesus and His Apostles it does (Acts 22:16;1 Pet 3:21;Col 2:12; Rom 6:3-5)

To come together to worship God upon the first day of the week is an act of faith (Acts 20:7;Heb 10:25;1 Cor 16:2). What we are to do in our worship is also a matter of faith (John 4:24) whether it be praying, singing, communion, or proclaiming God’s word. We must never insert our opinion as to what God would like, or would appeal to the masses and claim that we are living by faith.

Doing what God says in His word makes men and women of faith (Heb 11). The faith that leads us to obey God today will justify us just as it did those who are listed in Hebrews 11. Men and women are justified by faith when they obey what GOD HAS SAID, not other men’s opinions.

Our Warfare

Saturday, August 15th, 2015

“So then, my beloved, even as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” Philippians 2:12 ASV

Paul begins this verse with “so then”(ASV) or “wherefore” (KJV) thus drawing a conclusion from the preceding verses; wherein he writes of Jesus Christ giving up His glory to be fashioned as a man and dying on the cross for the salvation of our souls. The conclusion is that we must be about our own salvation with fear and trembling. The phrase indicates the seriousness of the task at hand.

Paul speaks not of terror, but of wholesome, serious caution. The caution that keeps one from ever doing that which would bring dishonor to God. It is recognition of the fact that our soul’s salvation is the most important and all-consuming concern we should have. It cost our Savior His very life on the cross and as soldiers of the cross we must be in earnest!

“Fools make a mock at sin;…”(Prov. 14:9) Men often talk lightly and idly about the devil and his wiles. Holy Scripture teaches us a very different lesson. We are engaged in a lifelong struggle against him. The conflict is deadly, awful. Its issues are most momentous–life or death, heaven or hell. The soldiers of the cross must be in earnest, for they “wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers, against the world-rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness”(Eph. 6:12). To talk lightly of the enemy, to jest about such matters so tremendous, is not only unseemly; it is dangerous. It puts men off their guard, and exposes them to the insidious assaults of the tempter.

We dare not take lightly the mortal struggle in which we are engaged. In the New Testament we find terms like “warfare”,”armor of God”,”the good fight of faith”,etc., used to express the Christian’s life. As we consider the society around us and the direction the world is headed, we cannot allow ourselves to become complacent.

Let us commit to labor more earnestly in this conflict-within & without!