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Faith That Works

(Heb. 11:1-2, 5-7, 32-28; 12:1-2)

What is Faith?

It is the assurance that forms the basis of our hope (He. 10:22)

This assurance can overcome our self-doubt (as with Gideon)

But faith is not about what we want to happen.

Faith is not about ignoring/denying circumstances, it is about believing God anyway, in


spite of circumstances! (Rom. 8:2425; Ps. 42:11; 2 Cor. 4:18; 1 Pe. 1:8)

Even in an otherwise thoroughly corrupt society, as in Noah’s, or our day.

It is the foundation/substructure (hupostasis {hoop-os'-tas-is} Gk.) upon which a


Christian life is built (See Heb. 11:1, 7 & 13)

True faith involves unshakable, unconditional and uncompromising conviction (like


Daniel)

Faith that God is real and alive helps us maintain our integrity (1 Kings 22:14; Jer.
10:10)

It is the opposite of fear (Heb. 10:39)

Like Joshua, when given clear direction, we must act on it without fear, hesitation
or excuse (Josh. 1:10-11)

It is God’s gift, and our response to God

God has given to all people some measure of faith (Rom. 12:3)

God instills us with and activates our faith to accomplish His will

Faith means taking God at his Word and acting accordingly (Rom. 10:17)

Faith involves maintaining a personal/intimate day by day walk with God

We are called to have “Child-like Faith” - A firm belief in the reliability of God and the
truth of His word. Just as a child learns to implicitly trust its mother, so a young Christian
relies on the Lord for its spiritual leading, feeding and protection (Mark 10:15)

We are called to have unfeigned faith.


Unfeigned: anupokritos {an-oo-pok'-ree-tos}Gk. Real, sincere, without hypocrisy.
Literally translated: “Sun-tested”, as for pottery to check for hidden cracks that
may have been covered over with wax.

God’s desires for us to live lives of consistently extraordinary faith

Without faith, it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6)

We must believe that He is and that He rewards those who seek Him (Heb. 11:6)

Our unbelief frustrates God (Mark 9:19, 16:14, Matt. 14:31, 17:17, Luke 9:41, 24:25,
Num. 14:11, John 4:48, 20:27, Heb. 11:6)

Our unbelief is a roadblock to our achievement (Num. 20:12, 32:13)

Conversely, truly believing can bring us prosperity (2 Chron. 20:20)

Our unbelief causes to God withhold miracles (Matt. 13:58, James 1:6-8, Deut. 32:20)

Conversely, acting on our faith can unlock miraculous things (Matt. 8:2-3, 9:20-
22, 28-30, 15:21-28, 17:21; 20:30-34, Isa. 50:2, Acts 6:8)

Everything is possible for him who believes (Mark 9:23, 11:23, Matt.
17:20-21, 21:21, Luke 17:6, Jer. 32:17, Eph. 3:20)

Our unbelief can discourage others (Num. 13:31)

Our unbelief leaves us open to Satan’s attack (Eph. 6:16, Matt. 26:42)

Our unbelief leaves us anxious (Mark 4:36-40)

Doubt comes from leaning upon our own understanding (Prov. 3:5)

But God’s Word tells us to: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and
lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways
acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” (Prov.3:5,6).

Anxiety is the result of doing our own thing, on our own timing and with our own
resources. Freedom from anxiety comes when we desire to do what God wants,
when He wants it, with whom He wants it and by His power.

Fear comes because we fail to recognize who is with us.

We should not fear because God is always with us. (Isa. 43:1-2, Heb.
13:5)

Nothing can separate us from the love of God (Rom. 8:35-39)


Demonstrating Faith

To demonstrate faith is to act upon hope.

We can demonstrate our faith by, waiting patiently/persevering in faith, for the
fulfillment of God’s promises (Heb. 6:12 & 10:36; 1 Cor. 16:13)

Abraham waited 25 years, until he was 100 years old, between God’s original
promise & the birth of Isaac (Heb. 6:15; Gen. 18:14)

David waited for years during the wicked reign of Saul before he came to the
throne of Israel.

God’s first promise of a Messiah appears all the way back in Genesis (Gen. 3:14-
15)

God answers prayer in “the fullness of time” (Gk. Chronos) according to his plan
(Gal. 4:4)

The Lord has His own perfect timing (2 Pe. 3:9)

Faith is demonstrated by acting courageously.

Real faith shows in the “fruit” (works)

Faith must be followed by obedience.

Like Noah building the ark.

Acting in faith can (Heb. 11: 7, 32-34):

Deliver from harm (Noah’s family)

Overthrow kingdoms

Administer justice (Like Samuel & Solomon)

Obtain promises

Shut the mouth of lions (Daniel)

Quench raging fire (Shadrach, Meshach & Abednigo)

Give strength in combat

Lead to the resurrection of the dead


Help to endure severe hardship/persecution (Heb. 11:35-38)
We are called to demonstrate our faith by being prayerful & thankful instead of anxiety
(Phil. 4:6-7, 1 Pe 5:7)

Even if our faith is weak, God will respond to a heartfelt prayer (e.g. Help us
overcome our unbelief, Mark 9:24)

Prayer demonstrates faith in the existence, power, faithfulness and mercy of God
(Heb. 11:6)

Sincere/Demonstrated faith heals? (Mark 5:34)

Do you live your life as though you really believe in the promises of God? (Heb. 11:1,
6)
How would your life be different if you really lived it as though you trusted
in God’s promises? (John 14:12-14)

Strengthening Our Faith

Jesus Himself is the source and perfecter of our faith (Heb. 12:2)

The Holy Spirit can help to enhance our faith

We do not live by “blind” faith. We live trusting in one who has demonstrated His
faithful throughout the generations! The evidence of His power, love & control should
inspire us to put our hope in Him (e.g. Like Hezekiah, 2 Kings 19:15-19, see also Ps.
20:7, 2 Chron. 7:14)

The Greek word for “hope”, Elpizo, literally translated means “to cast one’s cares upon
another in trust or confident expectation.” In this case it means that we should throw
ourselves upon the unfailing love of God.

Our hope is based upon the knowledge of God’s Character, Power & Faithfulness as
recorded in the Bible (Ps. 71:5; 78:7; 121:1; Rom.15:4 & 13; 1 Pet. 1:5; Titus 1:2; Col.
1:5 & 23); Upon the resurrection of Jesus (1 Cor. 15:19-20; Rom. 8:1; Col. 1:27; 1 Tim.
1:1; 1 Pe. 1:3,4 & 21); Upon the continuing, living presence of God with us (Matt.
28:20; Heb. 13:5; Phil. 1:23; Acts. 7:55-56; 1 Thess. 4:17; Rev. 21:22-22:5); Upon the
promise of His return and of our resurrection unto eternal life into His kingdom (John
5:25-29, 14:1-3, 19, 17:24; Titus 1:2; 2:13; Col. 1:5, 23, 27; 1 Pe. 1:3-5, 13; 2 Pe. 1:10-
11; 1 Thess. 4:16-17; Rev. 1:7; Heb. 9:28; Acts. 24:15; 1 Cor. 15:50-58; Matt. 25:21 &
34; Gal. 5:5; Col. 1:5; 1 Tim. 6:19).

Each God-given victory can embolden us to take future steps in faith. Living
Exercising/Demonstrating faith strengthens/grows faith, develops confidence in God
and a firm reliance on the certainty of God’s grace, counsel and enabling. (Matt. 7:7-11)

Inspiring examples can help to enhance our faith

The Bible is a record of God’s promises and his faithfulness in keeping those
promises.
Hearing about God’s faithfulness strengthens a believer’s faith (Rom. 10:17)

By faith, the Israelites stepped into the Jordan at flood stage, and God responded
by allowing them to cross on dry land (Joshua 3:15-17)

Joshua wrote, "Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to the house of Israel
failed; every one was fulfilled (Joshua 21:45)."

A few hundred years later King Solomon reminded his generation of the same
thing when he said in 1 Kings 8:56, "Not one word has failed of all the
good promises He gave..."

These examples should inspire us to set aside whatever weight or sin encumbers
us in our Christian walk (Heb. 12:1)

Likewise, it is important to share what God has done in your life with others, including
future generations, so that they might be encouraged/inspired to trust in God themselves.

Each generation has a responsibility to pass on what they have learned & experienced
about God’s nature, works and kingdom (Ps. 71:16-18; 78:3-7; 145:4; 11-13;
Deut. 6:7, 11:19; Isa. 38:19)

Each of us individually also has a responsibility to speak about this (Ps. 96:3; 145:5; Isa.
12:4)

In Daniel 6:25-27 we see that Daniel’s faith and trust in God not only
resulted in his deliverance, but also a testimony to others. Because of
Daniel’s faith, King Darius recognized God and issued a decree that all
people must worship Him. Daniel’s testimony then was magnified
throughout the empire by the King’s decree commanding that all people fear the God of
Daniel, the Living God, whose kingdom will never be destroyed, whose domino has
no end, who rescues and delivers (those who trust and obey him)
and who performs signs and wonders.