Faith Perfected –
“Faith does not grasp a doctrine, but a heart. The trust which Christ requires is the bond that unites souls with Him; and the very life of it is entire committal of myself to Him in all my relations and for all my needs, and absolute utter confidence in Him as all sufficient for everything that I can require”
– Alexander MacLaren
“…looking to Jesus,
the author and perfecter of faith…”
Faith lays hold of its author and looks to Him for its perfection in pure obedience.
“You see that faith worked with his works,
and by works faith was perfected“
Grace makes the heart willing to walk in the way of Faith.
“…but has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith“
See: Faith Perfected – Part One
Thought for Today
“They looked unto him, and were lightened:
and their faces were not ashamed”
There is light in none other. It is the Light of God shining forth in the face of Jesus Christ whereby men and women are enlightened. The light of His life is what causes His people to arise out of the clutches of this world; its darkness, its ways, its offerings and temptations. In seeing Him, in beholding His countenance, we are lifted into heavenly places; the veil is parted and we behold His Glory.
“…unto them that look for him shall he appear”
Looking implies dependence; the eyes are guided by that which one desires. We look for Him for He is our salvation. He is our comforter. He is the hope which makes us not ashamed to declare Him to the world and more importantly to one another. In the seeing of Him the offenses and rejection of friends and foes are dissipated. “Their faces were not ashamed”; their hopes of life and godliness renewed. The ability to rise up from every circumstance and every failure is invigorated by His light of pure wonder. Let us not shrink back because of disappointments in life. Let us ever be renewed in the beauty and power of the light that beckons us to higher and deeper things.
“Looking unto Jesus
the author and finisher of our faith”
The Mystery of the Faith
“Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience”
1 Timothy 3:9
Paul is writing to “his own son in the faith” in the Spirit of God’s love and wisdom. He is instructing Timothy about THE faith. Many in our land speak of “a” faith which is nebulous, indistinct and relatively impotent. “The” faith is powerful and filled with the living vitality of God to bring men and women into a definite expressions. THE faith defines those who hold it and clarifies and individualizes their expression. An indistinct expression of Christ within a life will always be the result of “a” faith which produces nothing powerful or particular to the individual. The typical faith of our day renders an impotent expression; living and serving God from the resources of self rather than from the matchless resources which are ours through THE Faith of Christ.
Contentment with a nominal expression of the living Christ is the bane of religion. It is the product of a faith held within the intellect but never touching the heart strings of the individual. It has no fire, no purpose and no sense of the heartbeat of the living God. It is a faith in word only, void of the works of faith through which men and women are accosted by the certainty and substance of God. It ventures nothing, costs nothing and in God’s eyes is worth nothing. It is THE faith that pressed Peter out of the boat; it is THE faith that produced expressions of power within the lives of holy men and women of God in Hebrews 11. Without THE faith it is impossible to please God; with it, impossible to remain inactive and unaffected by its wonder. Within the scope of THE faith it is impossible to live an uneventful and ineffectual life. The Faith OF Christ must produce the workings of Christ within the hearts of His own. Contentment apart from godliness is the malady of Christian religion. The purpose of THE faith is to reveal the life and heart of its author.
“Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith”
Paul pleaded with the people of God at Corinth to examine whether they were IN THE FAITH!
“Examine yourselves, whether ye be IN THE faith;
prove your own selves…”
2 Corinthians 13:5
“You hear the word, and believe it in theory,
while you deny it in practice.
I say to you, that “you deceive yourselves”
– Charles Finney
Thought for Today
Faith is Demonstrative
“And they come unto him, bringing
one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.
And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press,
they uncovered the roof where he was:
and when they had broken it up,
they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.
When Jesus saw their faith…”
The folly of the religious world with the idea that faith can be reduced to a “statement of faith”, hung on a wall, discussed at will and held within the intellect is an indictment of our generation.
Faith is the dynamic living expression of Christ Himself within the life of His own. It is the power to produce expressions that affect His moving in the situations of life. They tore the roof apart and broke into the meeting because of the power of love for their friend and their faith in God! Faith is that which is demonstrative in the sight of God. It is the very assurance of our living hope (Hebrews 11:1). It is the divine enablement to please, honor and validate our confidence in God. It is not a teaching, doctrine or some vain religious hope; FAITH is HIS life within moving us to His fulfillment.
To the disciples who marveled at the withering fig tree:
“And Jesus answering saith unto them,
Have faith in God”
Regardless of the situation each one of His own are facing at this moment the answer and the victory is our faith. “This IS the victory… even our faith” (1 John 5:4). This is not about trying to work up a faith; it is about seeking the One who is the “author and finisher” of our faith. It is His life, His person and by His love dwelling within our hearts that faith arises through the hearing of His word. Do not be discouraged or dismayed for He is come to be unto us our Saviour in every situation. Blessed be the name of the Lord!
“Looking unto Jesus
the author and finisher of our faith”
The Open Door
“For a great door
and effectual is opened unto me,
and there are many adversaries“
1 Corinthians 16:9
Difficult and adversarial situations have no bearing upon the child of God. The Open Door into the things of our Father must be filled with opposition for this door can only be entered on the grounds of Faith; a Faith that is living, pressing and teeming with the life of God. Men who wait for all the conditions to be right will never know the hidden glories of God’s provisions.
“Thou preparest a table before me
in the presence of mine enemies”
The rich provision of God’s table is served in the midst of our enemies. It is there we find the nourishment and faithfulness of our God to provide all that we need to accomplish His works in and through our lives. John on the Isle of Patmos was banished to a forlorn and desolate place for his testimony of God. It is there that he sees a great door opened and the heavens drawn back to unveil the deep and dramatic unfolding of the Revelation of Christ! We must not draw back from the doors presented to us. We must not consider the opposition and the obstacles that stand in our way; for faith never walks by sight. Many men and women of God sit in faithless inactivity waiting for the opposition to be removed before venturing into the things they have been called to.
“He that observeth the wind shall not sow;
and he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap”
The reaping in a man’s life is always in proportion to his sowing. Great testing is about to unfold in our day and it is incumbent upon us to be in the now of His Will; to step out of the confines of our world and into the open doors of His world. The way of truth is not an intellectual commodity; it is the Life of Jesus being lived out in my life today. When Jesus said “I am the Truth” He proclaimed truth to be His Life in me; not some doctrinal understanding of a teaching, but the very breath and power of His life in my own heart. Men who accomplish the works of faith are blind to the obstacles that stand in their way. They see through the barriers, they see through the weaknesses in their own lives and the limitations of their own resources for faith sees His Will and nothing else. It is a day to “lift up our eyes”, in order to see past the circumstances and be found “looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith”.