VIDEO Our Careful Unbelief, Wavering Faith

Our Careful Unbelief

…do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. —Matthew 6:25

Jesus summed up commonsense carefulness in the life of a disciple as unbelief. If we have received the Spirit of God, He will squeeze right through our lives, as if to ask, “Now where do I come into this relationship, this vacation you have planned, or these new books you want to read?” And He always presses the point until we learn to make Him our first consideration. Whenever we put other things first, there is confusion.

“…do not worry about your life….” Don’t take the pressure of your provision upon yourself. It is not only wrong to worry, it is unbelief; worrying means we do not believe that God can look after the practical details of our lives, and it is never anything but those details that worry us. Have you ever noticed what Jesus said would choke the Word He puts in us? Is it the devil? No— “the cares of this world” (Matthew 13:22). It is always our little worries. We say, “I will not trust when I cannot see”— and that is where unbelief begins. The only cure for unbelief is obedience to the Spirit.

The greatest word of Jesus to His disciples is abandon.

WISDOM FROM OSWALD CHAMBERS

To live a life alone with God does not mean that we live it apart from everyone else. The connection between godly men and women and those associated with them is continually revealed in the Bible, e.g., 1 Timothy 4:10.  Not Knowing Whither, 867 L


Wavering Faith – Dr. Charles Stanley

The Babushka Lady

Let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah. Acts 2:36

The “Babushka Lady” is one of the mysteries surrounding the 1963 assassination of US President John F. Kennedy. Captured on film recording the events with a movie camera, she has proven to be elusive. This mystery woman, wearing an overcoat and scarf (resembling a Russian babushka), has never been identified and her film has never been seen. For decades, historians and scholars have speculated that fear has prevented the “Babushka Lady” from telling her story of that dark November day.

No speculation is needed to understand why Jesus’s disciples hid. They cowered in fear because of the authorities who had killed their Master (John 20:19)—reluctant to come forward and declare their experience. But then Jesus rose from the grave. The Holy Spirit soon arrived and you couldn’t keep those once-timid followers of Christ quiet! On the day of Pentecost, a Spirit-empowered Simon Peter declared, “Let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah” (Acts 2:36).

Lord, please give me the strength and boldness to talk to others about You.

The opportunity to boldly speak in Jesus’s name is not limited to those with daring personalities or career ministry training. It is the indwelling Spirit who enables us to tell the good news of Jesus. By His strength, we can experience the courage to share our Savior with others.

Lord, please give me the strength and boldness to talk to others about You.

Speak of the matchless love of Christ to those who need to hear.

By Bill Crowder

How to Have Steadfast Faith

Hebrews 11:1-31

The apostle James challenges us to understand the connection between faith and obedience. In James 2:17, he writes that faith without works is dead. In other words, we cannot have unshakeable beliefs without obeying.

Developing steadfast trust takes time. We are born spiritually through simple, childlike faith that receives Jesus as Savior. Convictions are nourished by a growing knowledge of God and a deepening confidence in Him. Experiencing His protection, provision, and power in moments of testing strengthens our beliefs. Daniel is a good example of this. Each time his loyalty was tested, he chose to depend on God. Sometimes the circumstances were thrust upon him—such as whether to eat food sacrificed to idols (Dan. 1:8). At other times, he voluntarily initiated a difficult situation in order to help (Dan. 2:24). In each case, he followed God’s leading.

Hebrews 11 lists other examples of obedience as critical to steadfast faith. Noah, when warned about things not seen, obeyed God and built the ark. And at the Lord’s direction, Abraham left home to go to a place not yet known to him. Then in the New Testament, Paul was planning to arrest Christians when he encountered the Savior. He made a complete turnaround: Despite threats, beatings, and shipwrecks, he obeyed God and preached the gospel.

Knowing and trusting God through His Son, experiencing His presence, and living obediently are the elements needed to develop an unshakeable faith. Jesus Himself said that our work is to believe in Him (John 6:29). With the Holy Spirit’s help, each of us can have unwavering faith.

Gospel of Peace

“How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!” (Isaiah 52:7)

Surprisingly, there are more verses containing the word “peace” in the Old Testament book of Isaiah (King James Version) than in any other book of the Bible. The central occurrence (15 before, 15 after) is in our text, speaking of those whose feet travel with the beautiful gospel (that is, “good tidings,” mentioned twice in this verse) of peace. The one proclaiming this gospel is said to be publishing salvation, announcing the imminent reign of God the Savior over all the earth.

The first mention of “peace” in Isaiah speaks of the coming King and His reign, and so does the final occurrence. First, “the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called . . . The Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6). Then, in Isaiah’s last chapter we read, “For thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will extend peace to [Zion] like a river, and the glory of the Gentiles like a flowing stream” (Isaiah 66:12).

This wonderful gospel of peace is specifically mentioned just twice in the New Testament. The first is a direct quotation from our text. “And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” (Romans 10:15).

The second is in connection with the Christian’s spiritual armor. The “beautiful feet” that are to carry the good tidings are, most appropriately, to be “shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace” (Ephesians 6:15). It is our high privilege to be among those whose feet travel upon the mountains, and across the plains, and over the seas with the beautiful gospel of peace and salvation. HMM

Never man spoke like this man

John 7:40-53

John 7:43

Sermons do not produce the same effect upon all minds. Even when the Lord himself was the preacher some believed and some believed not, and among those who did believe there were several degrees of faith. May God grant that when we hear the word we may be led to embrace it, and feel its power in our inmost souls. One ground of unbelief in our Lord’s day appears to have been ignorance; his hearers knew that the Messiah would be born at Bethlehem, and supposing that Jesus was a native of Galilee, they could not believe in him. Had they taken the trouble to inquire, this stumbling-block would soon have been taken out of their way, for they would have learned that he was of the house and lineage of David, and was born in Bethlehem, according to the word of prophecy. If we remain in unbelief through wilful ignorance, we shall have no one but ourselves to blame.

John 7:44

Yes, even in the Redeemers congregation there were malicious hearts which remained unsoftened by his message of love, and would have repaid his affectionate zeal by making him their prisoner, if fear had not held them in check.

The Lord’s enemies among the rulers now resolved to seize him and put an end to his teaching, and therefore they sent officers to arrest him; but these returned empty-handed to those who sent them.

John 7:46

They had been spell-bound both by his matter and his manner, and the Pharisees were compelled to hear their own servants sing his praises. If we have ever heard the Lord Jesus speaks in our hearts, we shall fully agree with the verdict of the officers. Speak to us now, O Lord, and we shall rejoice with joy unspeakable.

John 7:47, 48

This is an old and foolish objection. Rulers and eminent men are quite as often wrong as right, and human authority is a very doubtful rule.

John 7:49

This again is another stale form of opposition to the truth. The adversaries represent those who believed in Jesus as an ignorant rabble, a contemptible and cursed crew. We may well be content to share the world’s scorn with the despised saints, for it has always been the lot of the godly to be sneered at.

John 7:50, 51

This was well spoken. Nicodemus may have been timid, but when he saw that his help was needed, he spoke out right well and wisely. What a blow was here aimed at the heart of prejudice! Prejudiced persons would do well to answer the question of Nicodemus.

John 8:1

John 8:1

He had no other resort. Sleep was for all except the Saviour: he went to meditation and to prayer. Blessed Lord, what an example dost thou set us by thus resorting to sacred solitude!

 

Never mortal spake like him!

More than man he needs must be,

Sure he is the God supreme,

For I feel his power in me.

 

He hath changed me by his word,

By his charms my soul subdued;

Ever since his voice I heard,

All my nature is renew’d!

 

Blaming Someone Else

And the man said, The woman… gave me of the tree, and I did eat. (Genesis 3:12)

In the earliest day of failure and tragedy in the garden of Eden, Adam came out of hiding, knowing full well his own guilt and shame.

Adam confessed: “We ate from the fruit of the tree that was forbidden—but it was the woman who enticed me!”

When God said to Eve, “What did you do?” she said: “It was the serpent that beguiled me!”

In that brief time our first parents had learned the art of laying the blame on someone else. That is one of the great, betraying evidences of sin—and we have learned it straight from our first parents. We do not accept the guilt of our sin and iniquity. We blame someone else.

If you are not the man you ought to be, you are likely to blame your wife or your ancestors. If you are not the young person you ought to be, you can always blame your parents. If you are not the wife you ought to be, you may blame your husband or perhaps the children.

Sin being what it is, we would rather lay the blame on others. We blame, blame, blame! That is why we are where we are.

 

Full Reliance On God

For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also, and him that hath no helper. Ps. 72:12

The needy cries; what else can he do? His cry is heard of God; what else need he do? Let the needy reader take to crying at once, for this will be his wisdom. Do not cry in the ears of friends, for even if they can help you it is only because the Lord enables them. The nearest way is to go straight to God, and let your cry come up before Him. Straightforward makes the best runner: run to the Lord, and not to secondary causes.

“Alas!” you cry, “I have no friend or helper.” So much the better; you can rely upon God in both capacities — as without supplies and without helpers. Make your double need your double plea. Even for temporal mercies you may wait upon God, for He careth for His children in these temporary concerns. As for spiritual necessities, which are the heaviest of all, the Lord will hear your cry, and will deliver you and supply you.

O poor friend, try your rich God. O helpless one, lean on His help. He has never failed me, and I am sure He will never fail you. Come as a beggar, and God will not refuse you help. Come with no plea but His grace. Jesus is King, will He let you perish of want? What! Did you forget this?

 

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