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Thread: Faith Checkup
10-23-10, 08:02 PM #1
Faith CheckupAgain I bring all my friends this powerful message from my Pastor last weekend.
May God bless ALL the works of your hands and may ech of you be blessed, healed and strengthened by this word.
Halls of Montezuma, Marine Corps Engineer Association,All Marine Corps, I Corps Marines
Let me tell you about a newsletter I received this week from a ministry.
In it is the story of Jim and his father. Jimís father had been an alcoholic for thirty years. Jim, his wife, and his mother had continued to pray for his father, but with no apparent result. Jimís father refused to admit he had a problem with alcohol and refused to hear anything about God. The newsletter says that one day Jim, the son, heard this minister speak about the power that is released when we begin to praise God for everything in our lives instead of pleading with Him to change it. So Jim went to his wife and said, ďHoney, let us thank God for dadís alcoholism and praise the Lord that it is part of His wonderful plan for dadís life.��
Do you see anything wrong with this so far? Let me keep going.
The author goes on to say that to praise God is to express our acceptance of something God is permitting to happen, so to praise God for difficult situations like sickness or disaster means, literally, that we accept itís happening as part of Godís plan to reveal His perfect love to us.
Okay. Come on. Do you see the problem with this? It just keeps getting worse. In fact, he goes on to say, ďThe very fact that we praise God and not some unknown fate also means that we are accepting the fact that God is responsible for what is happening and will always make it work for our good.��
Iím turning myself loose on that. I got so mad reading this stuff. Really Ė is that supposed to encourage you? So, letís thank God for the cancer. Letís thank Him that itís His perfect will for our lives and that Heís demonstrating His love for us. I mean, if God be against me, who can be for me, right? No!
Letís look at a scripture they quoted Ė Romans 8:28. It says, ďIN all things.�� We donít thank Him FOR all things. Thatís the most ludicrous thing Iíve ever heard in my life. The Bible says, ďDo not be deceived.�� God is good all the time. Heís only good. The Bible says every good and perfect gift comes from God. He doesnít change. In fact, thatís how you recognize what to resist. The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy Ė not God. We donít thank God for bad things. But this is the kind of stuff thatís out there. This is what religious leaders are teaching.
Now, donít get me wrong. The Bible does say we shouldnít be anxious for anything. So, there is a principle of praising God and thanking God, but we donít want to thank Him for what the devil is doing. Acts 10:38 says Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed of the devil. The devil oppresses, not God. This stuff makes me mad.
So, I have to talk to you about faith. Because we need faith to know that this stuff is wrong when we hear it. We need faith to know that God is good, and we need faith to receive the promises. Now, you say you already know about faith, and maybe you do. But, maybe you donít. Letís check it out. Letís see if faith is producing for you. Let me see the fruit. See, we can get really religious about anything Ė even faith Ė but we need to step back and take a look at ourselves and see if weíre progressing or if weíre just letting things happen to us. We need a faith check-up.
So, letís review. We know from Hebrews 2 that all things were given to man when he was created. We need to understand that if either God or Satan wants to operate in the world, they need men to do so. God canít move in the earth realm until a man, or woman, comes into agreement with heaven. So, if you want your circumstances to change, you have to loose heaven and bind the enemy. Thatís how it works.
And, in order to loose heaven and bind the enemy, you have to know how to tell the difference between the two. How? Romans 12:2 says that as we renew our minds to what God says is righteous, weíre able to discern the will of God and reject those things that arenít righteous. Then we can come into agreement with heaven.
So letís talk about this agreement stuff. Where does it happen? In our hearts. Mark 11:22 says our hearts have to be persuaded. Abraham was fully persuaded. The picture on the inside of him saw that baby. His heart saw the baby. The agreement between heaven and earth happens in our hearts. Itís a picture. When you close your eyes you should see what heaven says is righteous. If you close your eyes and see yourself as sick, youíre not in faith. The woman with the issue of blood was in agreement. She saw herself healed if she could just touch the hem of Jesusí garment. She had the picture.
Hebrews 11:1 says faith is the substance of things hoped for. That hope is a picture. If you have the wrong picture Ė or no picture Ė you are limiting God. You are limiting yourself. The Bible says He can do immeasurably more than all you can ask or think. He wouldnít have said that unless He wanted you to think bigger. See, some of us have learned to cope with dysfunction so long that we think itís normal. Thatís why people write these goofy newsletters Ė they think itís normal. No, itís NOT normal! We have a thought problem, a picture problem, a faith problem.
Remember Abram? He had the wrong picture. Lot had taken the best land. Abram had no children. He focused on the wrong picture. Then God told Him to lift up his eyes Ė to look at all the land he saw, and that he would take possession of it. He told him to count the stars Ė thatís how many descendants he would have. He had to change his picture. He had to change his perception of who he was. He needed a new picture of who he was as far as God was concerned Ė a new picture of what God had promised.
We all know itís easy to get comfortable. Itís easy to put up with dysfunction and just getting by when it takes effort to change. Itís easy to say your husband will never change, or that itís okay that you have to coast the car downhill a little every time to get it started, or that youíll just keep looking forward to Fridayís at 5:00. And, if you want to live that way, thatís fine, but the world is smarter than that. Theyíre not going to want what you have if thatís how youíre living.
And theyíre supposed to want what we have. Theyíre supposed to look at us and see God. So in order to make changes Ė in order to be the change agent Ė we have to do some work. The Bible says that we groan inwardly as in childbirth. What does that mean? It means that youíre going to have to birth everything you want to enjoy from the Kingdom. You have to birth heaven into the natural realm. You have to birth the picture of your faith.
What if you donít know what the picture looks like? James 1:22 tells us to get the proper picture from Godís Word. Look in the Word to find out who you really are. Because you canít just decide to have faith. Your heart isnít designed that way. Itís already been trained by failure and disappointment. It has to be trained again. It has to be trained to produce the right pictures. Only the Word of God can do that.
So, give yourself a faith check-up and, if your picture isnít where it should be, make some changes.
Meditate on the Word of God. Learn how the Kingdom of God operates. Set yourself in agreement with the Word. Even if you donít have a clue about how your life can change Ė keep the picture in there. Know the promises because promises produce pictures.
Then listen to and read stories of victory like Amyís at http://freefallmediagroup.net/www.am...ine.com/?p=237
For me personally, this is one of the best testimonies Iíve ever had in my ministry. Itís one of the greatest stories Iíve ever heard of someone who changed their picture. I hope it helps you change yours.
10-23-10, 11:08 PM #2
Doesn't the Bible say that God tests us, to see what our faith is, if it is real, genuine, true? Those tests are from God.
Doesn't it also say he chastizes His children because He loves them, when He sees them straying down the wrong path? So again, that is from God, but as a loving Father.
I thought God could do whatever He wanted to on earth, as long as it is not inconsistent with Who He is. Nothing happens in the world, nothing, without His tacit permission. It's impossible for anything to be out of the control of God.
We say that because WE don't know His plan, that what is occurring in our lives must be explained by something else, somehow.'
The fact is, we need to trust God, but also to know that He is God and can work in our lives any way He chooses.
10-24-10, 06:51 AM #3
Thank you for your input my friend. Yes you are right that God has the power to do whatever he wants exccept lie. If he said it I believe it and that is why faith works. I can always trust God to keep his word and his covinant.
10-24-10, 07:11 AM #4
I think to answer your query,we need to see from the infinite. Imagine you and I on top of a building looking down on a parade. We can see the beginning the middle the end, I believe that is the way God perhaps sees our lives. Being infinite he is not limited by time or space. we only see directly in front of us at any given time,like back when we were marching in bootcamp.Thats my thinking and I'm sticking to it ! Moz 68-70
10-24-10, 07:22 AM #5
Doug, you always inspire me. Bless you and your family. S/F
10-24-10, 10:00 AM #6
You be blessed!
10-24-10, 10:08 AM #7
gkmoz, you are right, but the Bible illuminates a lot....there are things we don't know about, but there are also things we do know about, all contained in the revealed Word, written for the sole purpose of letting us know who God is, and what He expects of us. Revealing Himself to us, not giving us all the answers as we wouldn't know what to do with the answers. So when we don't know an answer, we trust that there IS an answer, that's what I'm saying.
In fact, we don't even have to know all the answers. Our "job" is to live the Word as best we can.
One thing that cracks me up is this: quite a few people think that by wishing there is no God, that they wished Him right out of existence. I think that is the strangest point of view I ever heard. We wouldn't do it in astronomy, or politics, or geography, or math, we only do it when it comes to God. I wish there was no God, so there ain't. It would be amusing if it were not so sad.
Actually the plan is salvation, the Bible tells us what it is and how it works...God wants to save people from their own sinfulness. How we respond to that or not is called "free will". Most do not accept the invitation. He never forces anyone to accept it, offers it, explains it, leaves it up to us as individuals. But I'll tell you one thing, there is nothing scarier than the idea of standing before a holy and just God and explaining why we refused to believe, when looking all around us, it is obvious that there is a God (see Romans, "they are without excuse". But we rebel, don't want to be told what to do, you see it even on this forum, and so that is natural, human nature. The thing is, to be saved, we have to have a complete life transformation, go in a different direction.
1. Find out what God wants us to do.
2. Do it
10-24-10, 10:17 AM #8
Anyway, is there a specific area of the forum to talk about things like this rather than Inspirational Stories? I have some questions of Captain Kirk about Bible translations, e.g. NASB, NRSV, RSV, CEV etc. The NIV is the most common, but I have my doubts about it. The most accurate is the NASB, but so NRSV is accurate too......interesting that they all are translated from the original Greek, at least the NT is....translators don't go to some version already in existence and go from there, they go to the sources, and there are plenty....I think it is said that there are more ancient copies of the NT than of any other writings from that time period. 20 or 30 thousand, whereas some famous ancient writings, we have only maybe five copies of them extant.......the translations are all very similar, but sometimes they can get watered down a bit in an attempt to bring the Word to everyone, so I stick with the NRSV or NASB, but wanted to see what Captain Kirk thinks-----------
But anyway, is there another section of this forum for these discussions? And if there is, it would not long before anti-Christians would be on it, so perhaps it is best to leave it here.....in our much-touted Age of Tolerance nowadays, where we love Diversity for its own sake, and we tolerate just about anything that comes down the pike, this is in reality probably the most intolerant age in history.
10-24-10, 10:21 AM #9
Smome good points dcd188. God's holy word is revealed to the believer for us to use to direct our paths. God's promises are "Yes and Amen!" God is a good and loving god that wants no one to perish, but that all should have eteranl life through him. I remember he sais John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the word was GOD! I believe ALL his promises. My God is not a man that he should lie.
"What a fiath to trust in Jesus, Just to take him at his word."
10-24-10, 10:28 AM #10
Thanks, Doug, exactly true-----God does not want any to perish, but most will not choose the path to salvation. I had a minister once tell me that everyone will be saved no matter what! and his eyes lit up....I said to him, that sounds great! Except for one thing, the Bible says quite the opposite. It says many are called but few are chosen.
In all ages, especially the odd one in which we live now-----one of the common "complaints" (and incidentally it is a complaint because we want God to do things our way)----is that God allows suffering. But we don't stop and think that 99.9 % of suffering is due to what man has caused.
But anyway, which translation do you recommend, Doug...I use one for reading and the NASB or NRSV for study.....looking in the CEV, too, Contemporary English Version, wondering what that is like....
10-24-10, 10:31 AM #11
yellowwing, is there another place for these discussions, as we are venturing into other territories etc? Maybe we have to end it here, unless it concerns specific stories, I don't want to continue it here if it isn't appropriate, which I think it might not be, but yellowwing can tell us.....but I do have the feeling that maybe we have crossed the line----although we are not preaching to anyone, just talking, but -----I understand either way
10-24-10, 10:38 AM #12
dcb, Yellowwing does not mind as long as we stayn on topic and no fights. LOL
I have all the translations and use them all. However I Ust the international Study Bible and the New International version quite often. I use King James a lot too!
Blessings my friend
10-24-10, 10:40 AM #13
I know about the NIV, its use is really widespread, but never heard of the International Version, it must be the original NIV, but I never heard of it, learned something here, thanks Doug------
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