Your loyal followers trust in you, for you, LORD, do not abandon those who seek your help.
One of the most key elements of faith that is often overlooked is revealed through the understanding of this simple word, trust. Years ago a great man of God Dr. Lester Sumrall was asked by a young minister what faith was. Dr. Sumrall looked at the young man and asked him, “ How far can you trust God”? When you define what trust is, it is simply another word for faith. It means you are fully convinced.
For example, how many parents who love their children would take a young baby and give it to someone to take care of for days if they had not gotten to know that person? But, if you knew them well by having built a relationship with that person, and therefore had developed a trust in them, then it wouldn’t be difficult to do. So it is with God. Many struggle in their faith walk because they have not really gotten to know the One who they are to put their trust in. They just know about Him.
The best way to develop this relationship is through a daily time in His Word. Especially in the New Testament where we learn about our covenant, and through Jesus we can get to know God. Jesus said if you have seen Me, you have seen the Father. Whenever you open the Word of God you should treat it as if you just sat down to spend time with Him. God’s Word is God speaking to you. Take the time to develop a genuine relationship with your God, and as you do, trusting Him will become a lot easier.
1 Corinthians 15:22
For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.
Because of Adams sin man became estranged from God, separated from the Father and life itself. All who are in Christ are no longer spiritually dead (separated from God), now through their union with Christ they are alive, reunited with the Father. We are one spirit with Him, filled with the life of God, the God-kind of life. God wants to father us and lead us into this God-kind of life, or life as God has it.
Can we really experience life as God has it? Absolutely, for Jesus Himself declared that we could pray that the Father’s will be done here on earth just as it is in heaven, and He declared that the works He did we could do also. We must take time to develop our relationship with the Father, and He will lead you into this new life. Jesus is our model to follow in developing that relationship. He taught us in Matthew 16:24 that if anyone desires to follow in His footsteps he must deny himself, and take up their cross to follow Him. The most important part of that verse is the word “desire”.
For years I taught people about denying the old self nature and taking up their cross, which means to give up our way of living and choose His way instead, but if you don’t have the desire to do so it won’t happen. What you have a desire or passion for, you will pursue no matter how challenging it may become. We are the one’s who determine what we will desire or pursue in life, no one else. If we will make our desire in life to follow Jesus, we can and will get to know our Heavenly Father, and He will lead us into this new life right here on earth, for we have been made alive with Him.
For with the heart one believes…
There is sadly much confusion in the body of Christ when it comes to exercising faith. Many will often say they are believing God when facing circumstances in their life, but nothing ever seems to change. When you walk in the God-kind of faith, it always produces results because it is a spiritual law. One of the most significant keys to faith is found in this above verse of scripture. Faith believes in the heart, not the head.
Far to often Christians have knowledge in their head of what scripture promises them, and because they know it in their head they think they have faith. For example, faith also confesses and acts upon God’s promises. So the person who knows this may be confessing God’s promises, but still get no results. It’s like have a bullet in a gun that has no gun powder in the shell. Without the gun powder you have nothing to propel the bullet to hit it’s target. Without faith in your heart there is nothing propelling your confession to work.
Faith must be in the heart of the believer for faith to work. When it is you will be fully convinced in your heart not your head, that what God has said is already so, for faith is always present tense. It calls those things that be not as though they already were. If faith is not in your heart your confession will not work. To get faith in the heart comes by hearing and meditating on God’s Word. You do so until the light on the inside comes on where you are fully convinced in your heart of God’s Word. When you are convinced in your heart, faith will work because it always does.
1 Corinthians 1:30
But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption.
What Jesus became for us we now have, because we are in Him. Because we are in Him we have wisdom from God (the mind of Christ), the ability to know and see things the way God does. We have righteousness (right standing with God), and with knowledge of our right standing with God we have the right to all He has provided for us.
We also have sanctification (set apart to pursue God), the ability to now know Him through an intimate relationship as we pursue Him. We also have redemption (deliverance from evil and all it’s works), for we have been redeemed from the curse of the law which includes spiritual death, sickness, and poverty. Jesus bore all these things for us and thereby purchasing our freedom from them.
Get to know Jesus through the Word of God, and the more one who is born again does so, the more you get to know the new you, because we have become one spirit with the Lord. Reading and meditating on the Word of God is spending time with the unseen Christ, for He is the Word that became flesh. The written Word reveals to us the living Word, Jesus Christ, and as you get to know Him you get to know this new you because we are “in Christ Jesus”.
1 Corinthians 1:2
To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus,…
The real you, the spirit man on the inside has been sanctified in Christ. The word sanctified means to be set apart and dedicated unto God. Sanctification of our spirit man was God’s part, now we respond by sanctifying our soul and bodies. Jesus in praying for His disciples said in John 17 that we would be in the world but not of the world. In His prayer He prayed we would be sanctified by God’s Truth, for His Word is Truth.
2 Corinthians 7:1 – Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. We are to cleanse our life from all filthiness of flesh and spirit. The fleshly part deals with the sins of the flesh. The spiritual part deals with things that are harmful to you spiritually, such as false teachings and just wanting your ears tickled. Don’t fall for the “feel good” preachers who won’t teach you how to get free from the old fleshly nature.
When you know the full Truth of God’s Word, the Truth sets you free. If we will learn from the Word who we now are in Christ on the inside, and become doers of the Word and not just hearers only, we will be set apart by the Truth on the outside. Become one with the Word of God by hearing and doing the Truth, and you will live a life set apart from the world.
so we, being many, are one body in Christ…
The key here is “one body in Christ”. Jesus is the head, we are the body. Whatever is true of the head is true of the body. When you look at a person you don’t look at their head and body as separate, and so it is with us, for we are one with Christ. We are in Him and therefore we have become one spirit with the Lord. As He is so are we in this present world.
See yourself as one with Christ. Everything Jesus is we have become. We are more than conquerors because He is more than a conqueror. We are to rule and reign upon this earth as earth warriors, trampling upon all the powers of darkness, knowing the works of evil are no match for us because they are no match for Him. He became wisdom from God, and therefore we have the mind of Christ.
We can come boldly to the throne of God’s grace and never be afraid to approach our Heavenly Father just as Jesus would never be afraid to do so. He is our healer, so we have been healed. Who Jesus is we have become because we have been made one with Him. When we walk in this reality by faith in our hearts, we can walk in all that He is, for we are the body of Christ.
For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.
The word for law here means “rule”. Before Christ we were under the rule of sin and death (separated from the God-kind of life). But in Christ Jesus we are now under the rule of the Spirit of life, which is translated as a life real and genuine, a life active and vigorous, devoted to God, and blessed. The old nature of sin leading to death has been removed. As you receive a new spirit within you, your spirit now has residing in it the Spirit of God Himself. His Spirit is where this “Zoe” life comes from.
To allow this new life to rule over us, we need to walk in line with the Word of God, and be led by the Spirit of God that now dwells in us. Jesus said the Words He spoke are Spirit and they are life. When we choose to walk in line with God’s Word, which includes having our thoughts governed by His Word, we are coming under the rule of this law of the Spirit of life, which frees us from the rule of sin and death (separation from the God-kind of life).
We also need to be led by the Holy Spirit from within. The Holy Spirit bears witness with our spirit man. We need to learn to listen to our spirit, what our heart is leading us to do. Our conscience is the voice of our spirit man. If we listen to our conscience we can be led by our spirit and walk in the Spirit of life. Follow the inward witness, and walk in line with the Word of God, for the Word and the Spirit agree. As you do you will experience the rule of the Spirit of life over you, and you will walk free from the power of sin and death, no longer separated from the life God has for you.
Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? No, but by the law of faith.
One of the most humbling and yet important truths pertaining to faith is that faith is a spiritual law. The reference in the above verse to the word “law” means that which is established. For example there is the law of lift, which was established by God and has always been in existence here on earth. Man did not invent it, so he cannot take credit for the law of lift. God created this law.
To try and explain this law in simple terms, when an airfoil (wing of a plane) goes through the air it redirects the air to follow a path that goes downward. This change in direction causes a downward force applied to the air. This results in the air causing an upward force on the airfoil (wing) and that creates lift. It works whenever these elements are applied. So it is with faith. Faith is a law and therefore it always works. It is not something we take credit for because we did not create it, God did. Our part, like the law of lift, is to figure out what it takes to see this law work.
Faith has three elements that when combined like the air, airfoil, and the force created causes lift. Faith believes in the heart, not the head, faith speaks in line with that belief, and then faith acts upon that belief. When applied, faith like the law of lift always works, for it is a law. We never boast about faith, because we did not create the law of faith, God did. Our part is to believe in the heart, which comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God; to speak in line with, and to act upon what we are fully convinced of in our heart. When we do, just like the law of lift, we will see faith work.
THEREFORE, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit.
Once you are born again there is no condemnation for the believer who does not denounce Jesus Christ. The word condemnation is defined as a damnatory sentence or judgement of guilt. The reason is because the old sinful man within has been done away with and we are made new. Jesus on the cross not only bore our sin, He bore the punishment our sin deserved.
This is why in Isaiah’s prophecy about Jesus, he said that Jesus was stricken and smitten by God. Jesus then went into hell itself paying the full price for our sin and the judgement that is to come for the sin of man. So the damnation (separation from God) that man deserved has been taken away for those who receive Christ as their Savior, as long as they do not lose their confidence steadfast to the end as revealed in Hebrews 3:14.
He has promised to never leave you nor forsake you. If we still focus on and see ourselves through the fleshly man on the outside, we will feel condemned. But if we see what God sees, our new spirit man within, choose to not live according to the flesh but live in accordance with this new nature within us, we will not feel condemned for we will see our new nature. Become spirit conscious and spirit led, governed by your new nature, and you will not fall prey to feeling condemned.
“For I am the LORD, I do not change;…”
In this day in which we live we have certainly seen things change very quickly in our world today. I have seen things happen I never thought I would see in my lifetime. In the midst of this ever changing world, there is one thing we can secure ourselves to Who never changes, our God. Here in Malachi God stated the fact that He does not change. In Hebrews 13:8 we are told Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Let me share a couple of powerful truths about our never changing God.
First of all because God never changes we don’t have to keep buying a new and different Bible to try and figure out how God does things. All we have to do is go to His Word, learn of God and His ways, and adapt our life to Him, and see our lives change for the better. Many times people say certain things that happen are from God or are His doing, but once you get in the Word and learn of Him you can know what is of God and what is not of God. Many are deceived because they have not come to know Him through His Word.
Another powerful truth about our unchanging God as stated in 2 Corinthians 1:20 is that every promise He has provided in Christ is available to us. Some still do not know that all the promises of God are for everyone, to which we are to give our amen, exercising faith to receive them. He does not have favorites, we simply have to believe in what Jesus has already done for us. He does not change His mind about any of His promises. So in this ever changing world choose to look too and walk with our unchanging God who never changes. You will be glad you did.