The book of Hebrews makes a very profound statement that most of us have been taught to not believe. Heb. 11:1-3,
"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good report. Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear."
You say, "Well, Dave, I believe that scripture and I often quote!" I know that you do but do you practice doing what it says? Let's take a closer look at the scripture. It says, "NOW FAITH IS!!" Notice that it did not say that sometime in the future faith is! When we prophecy or declare something that the Lord has told us that He has given to us, how many times do we ask Him to do it for us? We are always asking Him to forgive us of our sins and our unforgiven sins because we have been taught that if we don't we are going to hell.
Well, if that is true then what God said in Heb. 8:10-12, (NIV) isn't true!
"This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. No longer will a man teach his neighbor, or a man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest because I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more."
Well, Dave, are you saying that we don't have to ask God for forgiveness? God said in the scripture that I just quoted to you that He has forgiven our sins and will not remember them any longer. If that is so, and it is, then we don't have to ask Him to do something that He has already done. When Jesus died on the cross He paid the price for our sins in full and since that time we are only told to confess our sins if we make a mistake. John said in 1 John 8-10,
"If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us."
Listen very carefully to what John is saying. He did not tell us to ask our Father to forgive us. He said that we are to confess our sins or to admit to the Lord that we made a mistake. Have you ever wondered what would have happened if Adam and Eve would have confessed their sin instead of blaming the devil? This is nothing more than taking responsibility for our actions. We don't have to asked our Father to do something that He promised us to do.
We often ask God to be with us when we travel. Again, that is something we don't have to ask Him if we just believe His word. Paul said in 1 Thess. 5:18,
"In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."
We need to say to God, "Father, Thanks for being with me on this trip" because He promised that He would never leave us!
The point I am trying to make to you is that faith is not something in the future but is right now when you pray. James said that when we pray we must not doubt but believe when we pray. In James 1:5-6 he said,
"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that gives to all men liberally, and upbraids not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavers is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. "
Jesus said in Mark 11:24,
"Therefore I say unto you, What things so ever you desire, when you pray, believe that you have received them, and you shall have them."
We must learn to walk by faith. Paul said in Gal. 3:11,
"Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because, “The righteous will live by faith.” The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, “The man who does these things will live by them.”
It is one thing to believe the word of God but it is entirely a different thing to live by the word of God. What I am trying to point out to you is that we have a long way to go in order to live our lives by faith. For the most part we have been taught that so many things that Jesus said to us about living by faith will not come to pass until He comes again and then we will be made to be like Him and be able to do even greater things than what He did. However, Jesus did not say this, He said, "When you pray, believe that you have what you pray for and you shall have them!" But, He also said,
"Have faith in God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith."
Do you realize that if you believe what Jesus said here and do it, you will be prophesying? You will be declaring what is happening in your life. You say, "Well, I don't believe that!" You probably practice it all the time! This is the time of the year when many of you say to others, "That flew bug is going around and I am sure to get it!" Do you realize that you are declaring what is going to happen?
Jesus said in Luke 6:46-49,
"Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do
not do what I say?
I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice. He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.
But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.”
We need to do what Abraham did when God promised Him that He would be the father of many nations and that He would have a son. It was some twenty five years later that what God said came to pass, yet, Abraham considered the fact that he was too old to have children and Sarah never was able to have children. He, however, believed what God said to him and he became the Father of all of us who walk by faith.
Our problem is that we don't have faith in what God said we are able to do when we pray. If you really believed that Jesus paid the price for our sins and we died on the cross with Him then you wouldn't be so conscience of sin but would be conscience of righteousness because of what Jesus did for us.
Is your faith in God based upon what your five senses tell you or what circumstance are or do you believe and declare what the word of God has to say about you? Do you really believe that you are a son of God and that as such you have been given authority to walk by faith? Or have you been taught that you will one day, when Jesus comes back, be like Him and be able to do the greater things that He said in Jn. 14:12-14,
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever you shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it."
Jesus also said in Mk. 9:23,
"If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for him who believes."
John said in Jn. 1:12,
"As many as received him,(Jesus) to them gave he power (or authority) to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:"
Let's look at the natural for just a moment. When a child is born we are very carefully to feed them milk and liquids until they develop to the point that we can give them some light food and then the day comes that we can give them food from the table and yet there are still things that a child can not eat or medicine that only an adult can take. But the day comes when we expect that child to mature and become responsible for their actions.
The same is true of God's spiritual children. When they are born of God we give them the milk of the word and as they become acquainted with the word we should begin to share with them the deeper things of the word so they can mature and not remain children all of their lives but instead grow up in the word and ways of God and become mature sons of God. However, so many preachers are afraid to share the deeper things of the word of God because they are afraid of being fired and branded as a heretic.
It is time for us to grow up in the word of God and declare what His word says and walk by faith. Paul said in Heb. 6:1-3,
"Therefore leaving the principles of the
doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the
foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, Of the
doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the
dead, and of eternal judgment.
And this will we do, if God permit."
Will you declare with me the following?
We are the United States of America and we are a Christian Nation founded upon the word of God and the Lord has blessed us and is continuing to bless us because we believe in Him. This nation will continue to stand for freedom and liberty for all the people of the world and will continue to bless the nations with the Gospel message. We will not be defeated and if any nations or people come against us they will be defeated and flee in seven directions. We declare that men and women will come forth in our government and stand up for the principle set forth in our constitution!