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Faith & Faithfulness | Hebrews 11 | Counterfeit Faith | Righteous live by Faith | God's Faithfulness | Words of Faith | Cultivating Faith | God's Extreme Faithfulness | Faithfulness in Temptation | Testimonies on Faithfulness
I don't know whether you yourself have made any New Year resolutions, but if so, they are an admission that you have not done well in your past. Your standards have not met up with your own expectations. Even if we don't make a New Year's resolution, we can identify with these people because we are also inconsistent. We are a weak people because we do not carry out what we know we should. It almost seems irrational that man would ever do something that does not serve his best interests, but again and again we find man not able to do what he deems as proper and good but a captive and slave to his lusts and base desires. Why, for example, would a man get drunk and beat his wife just as he did last week?!
God never needs to make such resolutions. God is completely faithful. Where man again and again has to set his resolve to get something done that he knows he should do, God seamlessly and effortlessly does all His holy will. God's will is His resolve. What He wants, is. Faithfulness is being consistent with whom a person is and wants.When a person is faithful, what he says perfectly reflects his will and purpose. What he does, beautifully displays his person and inner resolve.
There are many differences between man and God.
•God is all powerful while man must lean upon other powers to get things done.
•God is truly independent; man is dependent.
•God never was made, but every man was made.
These are inherent differences between God and man. Some of the differences between God and man, however, shouldn't exist. Faithfulness and holiness never should have been distinguishing characteristics between God and man. Only because man has fallen into sin by the snare of the evil one, has he lost his hold on his higher calling. Perhaps these resolutions are a sort of fossil reminding us of this former state.
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Who is happy to think of Peter and his failure?
Peter promised a certain thing and yet did not fulfill it. Just when Jesus needed Peter's companionship the most, Peter failed him. Mark 14:29-31 says,
But Peter said to Him, "Even though all may fall away, yet I will not." And Jesus said to him, "Truly I say to you, that you yourself this very night, before a cock crows twice, shall three times deny Me." But Peter kept saying insistently, "Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You!" And they all were saying the same thing, too.
But they all failed Jesus. They all scattered like sheep before a pack of wolves.
A faithful person is true to ones real being and purpose. This goes back to the aspect that we were all made in the image of God. His holiness was imparted to us. Before the fall, man would consistently live out his person. There was no difference between what who he was and what he did. His desires matched up with what was good. There was no despair over failure nor tears over mistakes. What man said or did all perfectly proved and reflected the will of his inner person.
Today man displays his unfaithfulness through lots of ways. He is unfaithful to his spouse by not loving her. He is an unfaithful parent by not consistently disciplining ones children or regularly training them in godliness. He is not faithful to his employer when he steals time or does less than capable. Man is not faithful by showing disrespect to those in authority over us.
People are unfaithful. Think of all the pornography going over the networks.
People are unfaithful. Think of all the children out of wedlock.
People are unfaithful. Think of all the lies being told.
People are unfaithful. Can you admit to your participation in being unfaithful to God who called you into existence? Healing and true faithfulness can only come when we confess our unfaithfulness in light of God's holy light and ask the God of faithfulness to change our lives.
God is faithful. God's pledges and oaths are different from man because He is faithful. His word is sufficient. Any word he says is totally consistent with who He is and what is true. This is the reason Jesus rebuked the people in Matthew 5:33-37,
"Again, you have heard that the ancients were told, 'YOU SHALL NOT MAKE FALSE VOWS, BUT SHALL FULFILL YOUR VOWS TO THE LORD.' ... But let your statement be, 'Yes, yes' or 'No, no'; and anything beyond these is of evil."
God does not try to impress people. God does not lie. Romans 3:3-4 says,
"... Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, as it is written, "THAT THOU MIGHTEST BE JUSTIFIED IN THY WORDS, AND MIGHTEST PREVAIL WHEN THOU ART JUDGED.""
God can't lie. He only can express what is real and true. This is why it says that "everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with gratitude" (I Timothy 4:4). God always and completely expresses Himself whether it is in creation or in speech; they are perfect and without flaw. If we did note a flaw of design or a word taken back, then that would reveal an imperfect God. This is why the Hebrew word faithful and truth are the same word. This is why we are told that "His words will never fail." Or "Heaven and earth will pass away but my words will never pass away." Matthew 5:17-19 says,
"Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass away from the Law, until all is accomplished."
God's faithfulness is expressed in His great salvation plan.
A perfect eternal plan of salvation was designed to display God's glory and incorporate impoverished sinners into His loving plan. Jesus knew perfect arrangements for His death were made because He knew God had it all planned.
"This Man, delivered up by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death." (Acts 2:23, NASB).
Faith is simple trust in God's eternal plan and will. Faith does not create anything but realizes it. God did not have to save man, but once He resolved to save man He went to all lengths to carry out His plan, even the death of His own Son.
God's faithfulness is also seen in His judgment.
Some people think this aspect of God's plan to be a flaw - pain, death and judgment. They are ignorant of God's faithfulness. To allow evil to flourish without ending its control would be a perpetual blemish of darkness in the world. Punishment of the wicked and rebellious is right and good. We reflect this same judgment in our own hearts. If someone guilty goes free, our hearts are depressed and enraged. It is as if evil had victory over justice. When, however, a proper sentence is given and served by the wicked, our hearts can rest. God's case against the world has not yet come to term, but it is coming. God's faithfulness will be seen when all the judgments spoken against the wicked come true. There are not only the promise of heaven for those covered by the blood of Jesus in the book of Revelation, but the great outpouring of His judgment on the rebellious. Revelation 22:11-12 says,
Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong; and let the one who is filthy, still be filthy; and let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness; and let the one who is holy, still keep himself holy. Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done.
God's faithfulness is perfect.
God's faithfulness is the consistent and true expression of Himself, perfect and without flaw. All that God does is good, right and perfect. We see this in the Garden of Eden; we see it in the creation of Eve. This is what Paul says of the will of God in Romans 12:2.
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. (Romans 12:2, NASB).
God is faithful; He cannot be unfaithful. This is why the Psalmist in Psalm 89:1 says "To all generations I will make known Thy faithfulness with my mouth." And in verse 2, "In the heavens Thou wilt establish Thy faithfulness." God has expressed His will and person in nature, in the Bible and in His Son Jesus Christ. He who stands against this expression of God is a transgressor and will be judged for all the times he defied God's outworking of His person. Judgment stands to make things right. If you think all the natural disasters are horrible, I hope you realize that these are just warnings and previews of God's serious and total effort to set things right. God is about to make a new heavens and earth where there is no sin and falseness. There are no tears there in the land of faithfulness. Animals will not be scared. The environment need not worry about being abused for man will then wonderfully reflect God's will and purpose.
But we must not wait to the coming world for God's faithfulness to show up in our lives. The kingdom of God is in our midst. If God is faithful, then one can be sure that once He works in our lives, we ourselves will be changed into His image. One of these changes have to do with being truthful and faithful people. We must do what we have pledged to do, whether at work, school or home. We speak truth and put away evil talk. Listen to Colossians 3:8-10,
But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him.
There are a number of very important truths about Christian growth addressed here in becoming faithful men and women of God.
1) We confess our failures and ask God to cleanse us from our sins.
2) We renounce the evil ones hold on our lives in certain dominating areas.
3) We ask God to regain the areas of compromise. They can be general as in being a faithful father or faithful witness for Christ or specific areas such as letting truth overcome your propensity to lie to a certain person. We ask God to take us back to where we should be.
4) We exercise our wills to conform to His being. Remember the faithfulness of Christians is living out God's will in our lives. Whatever He wants becomes our instant day or life's agenda.
This is the reason we need to meditate on His Word daily. His Word is truth. Without it, we quickly lose focus. With His Word, He brings us back to who He is and what He wants. We submit to His will not by saying it but by doing it. Don't choose to use your temper or power displays to get your will done.
As we grow in our lives, by consistent acting and thinking of His will, we find that we begin to be His faithful servants. Psalm 31:23-24 says,
"O love the LORD, all you His godly ones! The LORD preserves the faithful, And fully recompenses the proud doer. Be strong, and let your heart take courage, All you who hope in the LORD."
And even though times are tough, nights are long, meals are sparse, encouragements are few, God is near you. You know God works all things out for His glory. Time on earth gives us opportunities to trust Him according to His promises to get done what is needed. God has given us the heart to love and do His will. He wants to build faithfulness in our lives so that we begin to live out the call of our new nature within us by the Holy Spirit.
Be a faithful, firm, steadfast and steady man and woman of God. Leave your sin and flee to Christ. Only then will you be freed from those compromises with your flesh and the world. It is then our worship services will become alive because His Spirit freely reigns over us. Awake my brothers and sisters for the eternal holy One wants today to exert His will through your life. Say 'Yes, yes' to His great and holy work. Perfectly reflect His heart and purpose in our wills and lives.
All for Jesus, all for Jesus, all my being's ransomed powers.
All my thoughts and words and doings, all my days and all my hours.
God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
1 Corinthians 1:9
No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.
1 Corinthians 10:13
But as God is faithful, our word to you is not yes and no.
2 Corinthians 1:18
Scriptures typically quoted from the New American Standard Bible unless noted:
(C) Copyright The Lockman Foundation 1988