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Faith Toward God (9)


In our last broadcast, we saw that when a person invites the Lord Jesus into his life and affairs, he can rest assured that all will be well with him. However, certain events occur, which call to question or even completely erode that confidence. When such events occur, we can expect to hear the Lord Jesus say to us, Be not afraid, only believe! This was the remark the Lord made to Jairus, indicating to him to hold on to the confidence he had when he came to ask Jesus to come and heal his sick daughter. This is because, once the Lord comes to handle our affairs, He does not abandon His task. However, our unbelief can be a hindrance; hence, the Lord did not want Jairus to lose the confidence which he had when he came to invite Him. So that when the Lord said to Jairus, Be not afraid, only believe, He was telling Jairus to rest assured that even though, his daughter was dead, His (the Lords) assignment was not finishedthat His assignment had now only been modified, from healing a sick girl, to raising a dead girl back to life! You see, the Lord always accomplishes everything He begins to do. He came to the earth to die so that the sins of mankind can be taken away, and even though He was tempted by the devil, through seemingly juicy offers to abandon His task, He remained resolute until He accomplished all that the Father sent Him into the world to accomplish! Unfortunately, when people go to God, for say, the salvation of a loved one, and then they hear that that loved one is now in police custody for a crime he committed, the confidence which they earlier showed about the persons salvation, is shattered, and unbelief sets in. This is because, their confidence was all about the salvation of a loved one who is not in police custody; so, the moment there is a change in the circumstance, and in this case, the fellow being in police custody, their confidence (which in reality was limited to a beloved one not in police custody), is shattered. To Jairus and his sympathizers, the death of his daughter was beyond redemption. Jairus confidence held sway as long as his daughter was alive, but once he heard that she had died, his thoughts would have shifted to a burial; thus, letting go of the confidence he earlier had. But the bible tells us not to cast away our confidence which we have in God (Hebrews 10:35), for when we cast off our confidence in God, discouragement, dejection, helplessness, hopelessness, and so on hold sway, and eventually, unbelief resurfaces. Such acts of unbelief reveal our half-hearted conviction about the Person and power of the Lord Jesus.

Today, unbelief, resulting from a half-hearted or lacklustre conviction about the Person and power of the Lord Jesus, has permeated the church of God. People in church today, see the Lord Jesus, not as God, but as someone who is less than God. This is much the same as Jesus towns men, who saw Him as a carpenters son, without theological training, and so, they were offended at Him (that is, they found it difficult to accept Him and His teachings). There are people in church today, who believe that if you want the Lord Jesus to do anything for you, you have to go through Mary, His earthly mother, or even a man of God! What they fail to realize is that apart from the story of the wedding at Cana, nowhere else is it written that Mary made a request of Jesus. Indeed, in the story of Jairus, and even the woman with the issue of blood, we dont find Jairus going to ask Mary to ask Jesus to come and heal his daughter; nor do we read that the woman with the issue of blood solicited Marys help on how to obtain her healing; in fact, Mary was nowhere mentioned in the story! Furthermore, you dont need to go to a man of God, before you can ask God for something. Brethren, when we pray, we pray to God, in the name of Jesus; and that is thatyou dont need another intermediary!

Then, there are those people in church today, who see the Lord Jesus Christ as a man, a prophet, a healer, a miracle worker, and so on; but not God. These people believe that the Lord Jesus may be able to work some miracles, but not tougher miracles. They see the Lord as someone who may be able to heal some diseases and sicknesses, but not all diseases and sicknesses. They see Him as one who may be able to solve some problems, but not all problems. Such lacklustre conviction, which really is unbelief, has resulted in people believing that the Lord Jesus can only save people who are already attending church, or who are trying to be good; so, people are encouraged to attend church in order to be saved. A lot of church people simply, dont believe that Jesus can save those who are extremely badthose who wont go near churchlike drug addicts, prostitutes, cult members, leaders in the occult, witches, and so on. They fail to realize that the Lord Jesus can save people who are deep in the belly of sin. So, we hold Crusades and invite people to those Crusades, saying that when they hear the preacher speak they will be saved. Many Christians dont know or even believe that they can preach and lead people to receive the salvation of God through Jesus Christ, outside a church meeting or Crusade. Our Crusades have essentially become jamborees, with no real impact in the lives of attendees, because all people come to Crusade grounds for, is to solve a problem; not to meet with the Lord. So, if on the Crusade ground their needs are met, they dont see the need to continue in the doctrines of Christ. Church people will pray to God to solve a problem in their own understanding; for example, if they think that they need money to solve a problem, they pray for moneythey dont pray to God to solve the problem, but ask for money so that they can solve the problem themselves. Church people will pray to God to come and turn around a marriage that is shaky, but that has not yet collapsedthat is, a marriage where the husband has not re-married, or not yet taken a second wife. But once they hear that the recalcitrant husband has gone to take another wife, church people change their prayerthey ask God to give the woman the grace to accommodate the new wife, to withstand the shame, or some other request that will suggest that the matter has gone beyond what God can do. In other words, these people believe that there is a limit to the power of the Lord Jesus Christ, and by extension, the power of God! In our last broadcast, we thus noted that when a person is not fully convinced that the Lord Jesus Christ is God, with limitless power, his unbelief will remain.

Continuing with that thought, in this broadcast, we make bold to say that the rise of unbelief in the church of God is because many people, including, many so-called ministers of the gospel, are not convinced about Who the word of God says the Lord Jesus Christ is. Many people in church think that the Lords power or ability is limited; they believe that although there are things that the Lord can do, yet, there are very many other things that can overwhelm Him. This, my dear friend, is unbelief! And it derives from mans thinking and reasoning as to what is, and what is not, possible. This unbelief is heightened whenever there is a delay in what we are expecting from God. You see, many Christians have in mind, a time frame within which certain things in life can be done; so, when that time frame has expired, they reason that God can no longer make the thing they are expecting, to happen. As far as these people are concerned, the longer an issue, a matter, a problem, a challenge, or difficulty, lingers; the progressively less able the Lord Jesus is, to resolve it. Put differently, they believe that if certain things do not happen within a particular time-frame, then God is unable to do anything about itever! What these people fail to realize is that the Lord Jesus Christ is not bound by our own limited understanding of time and events. The Easy-to-Read Bible translation of Ecclesiastes 3:11, states, God gave us the ability to think about his world, but we can never completely understand everything he does. And yet, he does everything at just the right time. Beloved, it is true that God gave us the ability to reason, but we cannot figure Him out. Indeed, there is no limitation to what, when, where, and how God will bring a thing to passHe does everything at just the right time! Friend, God is never late; He is always right on time!

Unfortunately, there are people in church who are not convinced about the veracity of the gospel message of salvation and eternal life, because they believe that Jesus return is taking too long for it to be true any longer! So, people in church have now barrelled down to living fully on earth for themselves and no longer for Godwhat unbelief! There are people, for example, who are concerned that they may never be able to have children because they are advancing in age. These people have chosen to believe science, which tells them, that beyond a particular age, they will not be able to have children; and so, rather than wait on God, some of them have gone to native doctors or juju men to help them out; some others get married to just anybody and are soon divorced; some others still, adopt a child, and then, blame the biological parents of the child (who they dont know) for everything they perceive is wrong with the child; and yet, there are some others, who go as far as to engage in medical procedures, like In Vitro Fertilization (or IVF), which is contrary to Gods way of having children. The things that Christians are engaged in today, because they think that time is passing them by, are really acts of unbelief, which damage, destroy, and even kill their faith toward God. Isaiah 28:16 reads, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste. God is here, speaking of a proven, precious, and guaranteed foundation, which is the Lord Jesus Christ, and upon which everything will rest; and those who put their confidence in Him shall not be impatient, discouraged, disappointed, or ashamed.

The faith or confidence of many, in the Lord Jesus, has been eroded, because of their ignorance of Who He truly is. In Luke 18:8, the Lord asked, when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? This question raises a vital issue: is there faith on the earth? Is there faith in the church? Do we believe or are we convinced about what the bible says of the Lord Jesus? For if we do not believe or are not convinced that what the bible says about the Lord Jesus Christ is true, then we have no faith toward God, and are unbelievingeven if what we believe seems more plausible to the human mind than what the bible says!

So, Who does the bible say that Jesus Christ really is? In Matthew 16:16, the bible tells us that He is the Christ, that is, the One appointed to save mankind from their sin; and, the Son of the living God. In John 14:6, the Lord Jesus said of Himself, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. In other words He is the access way to God the Father; He does not just tell the truth, He is the truth; and, He just doesnt give any life, it is His life that He gives. In other words, if you dont have Him in you, you are not living, even though you may be breathing. We are talking of the life of Godthat is, what makes God, God. In John 1:1-5, the bible says, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. These verses speak about the Lord Jesus Christ, and tell us that He is the Word of Godthe spokesperson of the Godhead; the One Who spoke creation into being; and most importantly, He is God! He made all things, and without Him was nothing made. Friend, since the Lord Jesus made all things, and is God, it goes without saying that He can do all things; and that nothing is impossible for Him. And even though He took on human form, He still had the power and attributes which God the Father had, but limited Himself while on earth to doing the will of the Father. This He did to show us that what is crucial to the Father, is that we do His will; not brag about possessing healing or miracle working power, or some other spiritual gift! These verses also tell us that the life that makes those who are in Christ to shine as light, which the devil and sin, symbolized by darkness, cannot over power, is in Him! Hence, if you in Christ, you shall not be overcome by sin or the devil!

So when the Lord Jesus said to Jairus, Be not afraid, only believe, He was saying, Jairus, dont be overwhelmed by this news about your daughter. Since you came to call me because you believed I can heal your daughter, continue to believe in Me and she will be raised back to life. The Lord was saying, Jairus, your daughters condition may have changed for the worse, but I have not changed. Believe in Me, the unchanging One; dont give way to the changing condition. Brethren, let your confidence remain in the Lord Jesus, God Incarnate, Who can do all things, regardless of changes in circumstances: this, my friend, is your faithyour unswerving, resolute, convictiontoward God!

Let us pray!