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Faith Toward God (6)

In our last broadcast, we continued our discussion on faith killers, a subject which we began two broadcasts ago. Faith killers are essentially manifested behaviour, attitudes, and tendencies; and, objects and subjects, which when depended or relied upon, weaken, damage, destroy, or, kill our faith in God. Two broadcasts ago, we saw that depending or putting ones confidence in something or someone apart from God; what we called, alternatives to God, is a faith killer. And in our last broadcast, we saw that unbelief is another faith killer. Unbelief is what happens when a person refuses to believe Gods word, and as a result, neither accepts Gods word, nor does what God says to him to do. We saw that unbelief results in a person finding it difficult to accept as possible, things that are scientifically, medically, traditionally, historically, and humanly speaking, impossible or unattainablethings that have not been scientifically proven; things that have not been known to occur or happen. We cited the example of Sarah, who did not believe that she could have a child at the age of 90; yet God gave her a child by her husband Abraham, who was 99 years old at the time of the conception of the pregnancy. Who could have believed that a frail 90 year old woman would give birth to a child without medical aid or procedure! We also cited the case of Thomas, one of the twelve apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ, who bluntly refused to believe that the Lord had resurrected from the dead, when he was told by the other ten apostles. Thomas statement of, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe. (John 20:25), mirrors similar statements by many Christians today, who will not believe Gods word except they see, touch, or feel something. These Christians fail to realize that faith in God has nothing to do with what we see, touch, or feel; but, what we are told by God, either directly or through His word, both of which always agree. Unbelief usually arises from the fact that what people hear from the word of God does not match or agree with what they can see, handle, feel, and, it does not make sense to them. Faith toward God, which is, reliance or dependence on God, having conviction about, or confidence in God, or trusting God, is based solely and only on what God saidwhich is usually neither logical, nor, rational. In order to eliminate unbelief in your life, therefore, you only need to believe God no matter what; no matter how difficult; no matter how impossible the situation; no matter how unbelievable; and, no matter how highly improbable. Hence, if you are one of those who like to argue the word of God, or believe only what is logical or what makes sense to you, in the bible, you will definitely be unable to believe God. The bible tells us that in spite of the advanced age of Abraham and Sarah, Abraham believed God when God told him that Sarah was going to give birth to a child, after Sarah turned 89, and he was 99this is what the Scriptures referred to as believing in hope against hope; that is, Abraham simply believed that God was able to do what He said, even though it may be biologically, medically, scientifically, traditionally, historically, and humanly speaking, impossible for a couple at their age to have a child! To have faith in God is to trust in the ability of God to deliver on His wordfaith does not depend on environmental, scientific, medical, or, biological parameters. To eliminate unbelief, you simply trust Godwhich includes His character, His attributes, His nature, His ability, His word, and so onagainst all odds, in spite of seemingly contradicting situations starring you in the face, and, the seeming impossibility of the matter at hand. Simply put, eliminating unbelief is to focus on and believe in God, with Whom all things are possible, and for Whom nothing is impossible!

In this broadcast, we shall press on with the matter of eliminating unbelief from our lives, as we look at a story recorded in Mark 5:22-42, And, behold, there cometh one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and when he saw him [that is, the Lord Jesus], he fell at his feet, And besought him greatly, saying, My little daughter lieth at the point of death: I pray thee, come and lay thy hands on her, that she may be healed; and she shall live. And Jesus went with him; and much people followed him, and thronged him. And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years, And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse, When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment. For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole. And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague. And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes? And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me? And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing. But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague. While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue's house certain which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further? As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe. And he suffered no man to follow him, save Peter, and James, and John the brother of James. And he cometh to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and seeth the tumult, and them that wept and wailed greatly. And when he was come in, he saith unto them, Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn. But when he had put them all out, he taketh the father and the mother of the damsel, and them that were with him, and entereth in where the damsel was lying. And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise. And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was of the age of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment.

As the Lord Jesus was going with Jairus, who had come to ask Him to come and heal his daughter who was ill and at the point of death, a woman who had been menstruating non-stop for 12 years, came in among the crowd, and touched the hem of Jesus garment. Once she did that, she was healed, and the Lord knew of it. So, He stopped, looked around, and asked who had touched Him, but His disciples wondered why He would even talk of someone touching the hem of His garment, when there were so many people milling around Him, and obviously coming in contact with the hem of His garment. Eventually, the woman came forward, owned up, and the Lord pronounced wholeness upon her. Now, while all this was taking place; meaning that time was passing by, some people came from the home of Jairus, to tell him that he need not trouble the Lord any longer, as his daughter had just died! But when the Lord heard what they were telling Jairus, he immediately said to him, Be not afraid, only believe. This is actually a two-in-one storythe story of Jairus daughters resurrection, and the story of the woman with the issue of blood.

We shall be looking to learn some lessons from the faith of the woman with the issue of blood in this broadcast, before focusing on Jairus in another broadcast.
The woman with the issue of blood came to touch the hem of the Lord Jesus garment without His prior knowledge, and without His invitation or express permission. However, she believed that if she could just touch the hem of Jesus garment, she would be made whole. Some very significant issues come to light here:
i) Some people think that they need a special invitation to come and touch a mantle or piece of cloth before something can happen for them, or, that they can only be healed when they go to a particular church or attend a particular church programme. Nothing can be further from the truth. The woman with the issue of blood did not wait for an invitation from the Lord, neither did she ask His permission before she touched the hem of His garment; yet she was healed. Her healing was the result of her faith in Jesus healing virtue thy faith hath made thee whole. Please note that what you think is not the same as faith in God. Faith in God is trusting God for Who He says He is, and for what He says He can, and will do; it is not your thought about God!
ii) The woman had heard that the Lord Jesus was the mighty Healer, and she believed, and acted on what she had heard about the Lord, so much so, that the throng that had surrounded the Lord Jesus, could not keep her from touching the hem of His garment. So, she kept saying to herself that if she would just touch the hem of Jesus garment, she would be healed. And she went on and got her healing. To eliminate unbelief, you must keep what God has said about Himself in your memory, and keep on saying it to yourself, even in the face of contrary events. We call this, a confession of faith. Please note that a confession of faith is tied to the word of God, and predicated on the nature of God, to be kind, even to the unkind; and, to be merciful, even to the unmerciful.
iii) It was the hem of the Lord Jesus garment that the woman with the issue of blood was after and touched; not the hem of Peters garment, nor the hem of any of the other disciples garment. This woman had been to many people before now, but instead of getting better, she grew worse. Now, she was willing to prove that Jesus was indeed the mighty Healer! And she proved it to be true. Those who trust in God will never be disappointed. Brethren, we must recognize that it is the Lord Jesus, the Son of the living God, that we are to trust; not a pastor; not a church; not a mantle; not water in a particular bottle; not sand from a particular location; and so on. Unbelief is not about not believing anything at all; rather, unbelief is not believing God! You can believe a man, a Newspaper report, a drug, and so on, but if you dont believe God, you are living in unbelief! If you are attending a particular church, because of a man, and not because God directed you there, you are attending in unbelief! If you go to a man, without God asking you to, your faith is in the man; and you are living in unbelief! It is only when you go to the Lord Jesus that you are truly expressing faith or confidence in God! There are people who cannot attend any other church, or who cannot be blessed except a particular person is preaching or ministeringthis is a clear case of faith in a man, because, if that particular man is not the person ministering, such people cannot receive the word of God. Please note that believing a particular man, but not the word of God is unbelief! Then, there are those who cannot receive a healing except they are given something to take home or rub on their body. Peter and John were involved in healing a lame man at the gate called Beautiful, and in Acts 3:16, the Easy-to-Read Version of the bible, put what they told the people who had gathered thus: This crippled man was healed because we trusted in Jesus. It was Jesus' power that made him well. You can see this man, and you know him. He was made completely well because of faith in Jesus. You all saw it happen! Therefore brethren, it is faith in Jesus which brings a healing or a miracle; not faith in a man or in an object. Now, let us emphasize that when the Lord Jesus heals you, there can be no recurrence of the ailment, unless you go back to living in sin! To eliminate unbelief, it is to the Lord Jesus that you must go, and it is His word that you must heed! Going to a pastor, a prophetess, a bishop, or a church, apart from God, is unbelief; whereas, going to a man because God said to do so, is faith toward God! The bible says, one preacher plants; another waters; but it is God Who gives the increase!

So, are you attending that church because God asked you to attend, or, is it because of the fame of the church, or because of the anointing of the man of God, or, because it is called a solution centre? Beloved, to worship God anywhere or in any form other than as ordained by God, is to be unbelieving; just as it is unbelieving to be in church because of a man, rather than because of God. To eliminate unbelief, you must eliminate confidence in maneven if the man is a mighty man of God. Our confidence must be in God at all times!

Let us pray!