Dr Norm's Mid-Week Faith Booster

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Faith Is!

Posted By at Wednesday, July 31, 2013

 

Hebrews 11:1 AMP Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses].

I really like the way this verse reads in the Amplified version.  Faith is the assurance, the title deed of the things we hope for.

If I was a Real Estate dealer I know that once you hold the title deed, it is yours!  No one can take it away from you unless you give and sign it over to them!

So if you hope for your children to come to the Lord and to serve Him, or if you hope for the finances to get you out of debt, or if you hope for healing for your body, do you also have the faith to fill the hope?  Do we have divine assurance that this will happen? Are you confident in God's ability to make it happen? You cannot generate faith by yourself.  It must come from God.  It is a God given gift a divine gift.

Rom 12:3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.

There is a difference between belief and faith.  You may say you believe something, but the devil also believes.  Belief is something you choose on your own usually based on previous experience.  But faith is a gift.  Human belief is merely having confidence.

Faith is a God given assurance in something that hasn’t happened yet.  Belief is based in the past.  Faith is based in the future.

Eph 2:8-9 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,  9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.

When someone says they have faith that their car won’t break down, that is simply belief that their car won’t break down.  From repeated past experiences they believe it will function properly on that day and that it won’t break down.

Faith is a gift by the Spirit and is divine assurance.  So when a Christian says they have faith that their car won’t break down, it could very well be that they have divine assurance that their car will not break down based on their knowledge of God’s divine care and protection over His children.  They have received the faith for the promise ahead.

Evaluate your faith today.  Do you use the word Faith when you really mean you believe?

Is your belief based on repeat experience and knowledge, or do you really have faith based on divine assurance from God's unshakable Word?

Norman 

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You Can Be Carefree

Posted By at Wednesday, July 24, 2013

 

There are many people who appear to be carefree but really have anxieties only God understands: money problems, employment issues, health challenges and marital concerns.

So God says in 1 Peter 5.7 Transfer all your anxieties to me.

When you walk by faith you get answers to prayer that challenge human reasoning. And looking back you realise you couldn't have come up with a better solution yourself.

Psalm 55:22 Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you. He will never let the righteous fall.

Put your troubles where you have put your sins. You have put your sins onto Jesus so put your troubles there also!

As soon as the trouble comes, tell it to your Father in heaven! Remember, the longer you take telling your trouble to God, the longer you will have to wait for peace. The longer the frost lasts, the more likely the ponds will be frozen over.

Matthew 11:28 Jesus said: Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

Putting your burden upon the Lord is the way to soothe sorrow. If you are troubled, don’t dishonor your faith by always wearing a frown of concern, put your burden upon the Lord today, let Him carry it, He 's the burden bearer.

You are probably staggering underneath a weight that He would not even feel.

What seems to you a crushing burden would be nothing but a speck of dust to Him.

Life should be a joy and not a burden. We should live victoriously, ever master of our experiences, and not tossed by them like a leaf on the dashing waves. Every earnest Christian wants to live a truly beautiful life, whatever the circumstances may be.

Everything in the Word of God is a light and a blessing to me when I came to Matthew 6:25 Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?
I learned from a footnote that the Greek reads, Do not be anxious about tomorrow.
Cross-references point out that God says, Do not worry.
So if you are worrying today why not roll it over unto Him and become carefree.

Norman   

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God Can Do Great Things With You

Posted By at Wednesday, July 17, 2013

 

Philippians 4:13 I can do everything through Him who gives me the strength.

What does it mean for someone to live for something greater than themselves in our day and time?
I read of a man called Jeremiah Lanphier who was a businessman in New York City, in 1857. He asked God to do something in his life.

In a small and darkened room, in the back of one of New York City's lesser churches, Lanphier prayed alone. His request of God was simple, but earth shattering: Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do?

He was a man approaching midlife without a wife or family, but he had financial means. He made a decision to reject the success syndrome that drove the city's businessmen and bankers.

God used this businessman to turn New York City's commercial empire on its head. He began a businessman's prayer meeting on September 23, 1857.

The meetings began slowly at first, but within a few months, 20 noonday meetings were convening daily throughout the city. The New York Tribune and the New York Herald issued articles of revival. It had become the city's biggest news. Then, as a fully-fledged revival it moved outside New York.

By spring of 1858, 2,000 met daily in Chicago's Metropolitan Theatre, and in Philadelphia the meetings mushroomed into a four-month long tent meeting. Meetings were held in Baltimore, Washington, Cincinnati, Chicago, New Orleans, and Mobile.

Thousands met to pray because one man stepped out to be used by God.

Annus Mirabilis, the year of national revival, had begun. This was an extraordinary move of God through one man. It was unique because the movement was led by a businessmen, a group long considered the least prone to any form of evangelical fervour, and it had started on Wall Street, the most unlikely of all places to begin.

Could God do something extraordinary through you? You may well be the key to revival in your area. Take a step. Ask God to do mighty things through you.

Norman   

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Deal With Your Doubt

Posted By at Wednesday, July 10, 2013

 

No one is immune to doubt. It can and does happen to any of us. You've just got to know how to handle it when it comes. Even the greatest men and women of God recorded in the Bible had to deal with doubt. Jesus said of John the Baptist.

Matt 11:11 Verily I say unto you, among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist.

That means John was greater in the sight of Jesus than Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David, or any Old Testament character you can name. Yet John doubted the most important thing of all by questioning whether Jesus was really the Christ.

Many people have Bibles lying around gathering dust. Some even carry a bible but never look at it. But when they're struggling with unbelief, they don't want a scripture; they want something tangible, something emotional that they can feel. They would rather have Jesus just put His arm around them and say something about how everything will be all right. That would make them feel better. But overcoming doubt isn't just about feeling better; it's about getting back into faith that only comes from the Word of God as Rom. 10:17 tells us.

The Christian life is like a journey. All along the way you make discoveries. You continue to learn and grow. The person who does not grow always ends up defeated. Many of the greatest discoveries about the Christian life have come to me, as I've had to deal with my own questioning. You must learn to identify the source of any doubt. The deepest part of mankind is the spirit of man. You will not doubt on that level because Rom. 8:16 His Spirit bears witness with my spirit that I am a child of God.

In other words, in the deepest part of your being you know that you are a child of God because the Holy Spirit lives in the very deepest part of your heart. He continually tells you that you are God's child, that the blood of Christ is sufficient provision to cleanse you of all your sins all the time.

This isn't merely positional theology, but its practical reality. Hallelujah! God's Spirit dwells deep within and continually tells me that I belong to Jesus and He belongs to me!

I am IN HIM and He is IN ME. I just know that I know that I know. It's deep down in my heart, and I just know it. It's not simply some kind of intellectual knowledge or an emotional feeling. It's spiritual revelation knowledge. It's His presence in my life.

Then, what about the doubts? Where do they come from? Even though you have that deep assurance that Jesus is yours, you still have to deal with surface doubts. Those doubts come from areas of your life such as the intellectual and the emotional.

For instance, if you disobey God, it always leaves an intellectual or emotional scar on your inner being. Then you may begin to question whether you are truly God's child. Even though you know in the deepest part of your heart that Christ's death on the cross is sufficient for your forgiveness, your reasoning often becomes scarred. You may begin to doubt mentally that you are a child of God. Or you may feel emotionally defeated and thus doubt whether you truly have eternal life. Once the sin has been confessed and you have truly repented, then you can again rest in the confidence of Christ's salvation. The doubts were only surface. Thus, they were also temporary. Intellectual doubts normally stem from an incorrect view of God, while emotional doubts often come from wrong actions and attitudes. Rather than believing what the Bible says about God and us, we often believe what our culture teaches us about Him. Consequently, we become defeated.

Every victory you experience in Christ emanates from faith. Faith is the foundation upon which victory is built in the Christian's life. But the faith foundation can't be built upon anything but the truth of God's Word. You must stand on the promises of the Bible if you are to practically experience victory over the doubts. Intellectual doubts flow from lack knowledge of God's Word, but emotional doubts are often caused by disobedience to the Word of God. By faith in Christ, you enter into that relationship with God. You are His very own child. However, when you allow sin into your life, your link with Him is broken. You no longer experience the depth, width, breadth, and height of His love. But His love for you hasn't changed. You are still His child, but your fellowship with Him has been broken. That fellowship can only be restored when you confess and repent of your sins. It's only when travelling down the highway of holiness that you can have intimacy with God who is absolute holiness.

When you believe what God says about you and live and act upon those great truths, you will experientially know that you really are His child. Doubts will disappear. Faith will grow and victory will be your battle cry. You will know what means to be victorious over doubt.

Norman  

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We Should Be Walking By Faith

Posted By at Wednesday, July 03, 2013

 

Colossians 2:6-7 As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught abounding in it with thanksgiving.

Many Christians generally associate faith with their salvation experience, and rightly so because that is true. By believing in Christ, we enter into a relationship with Him. But that’s not the end, there's much more; afterwards comes a lifetime of walking with Him.

Since Paul uses the word walk to describe behaviour and conduct, we may mistakenly conclude that after salvation, the Christian life is all about performance. But these verses clearly state that we walk with Christ in the same way we received Him—by faith.

This means we place our trust in Him for every circumstance of life. To help us understand this, Paul uses some phrases which describe how confidence in God grows:

"Having been firmly rooted"—At the moment of salvation, believers are planted in Christ. Our roots grow deep as we anchor ourselves in the Lord, drawing our spiritual nourishment from Him.

"Being built up in Him"—The believer’s life is built on the foundation of the Saviour through obedience. God wants us to choose precious and valuable building materials that will last into eternity.

1 Cor 3:10-15 10 According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it.
11 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw,
13 each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is.
14 If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward.
15 If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.

Then Paul says in Colossians 2:

“Established in your faith”—In time, as we begin to understand more about the Lord and how He operates, our trust in Him increases, and we experience stability even when the winds of adversity are blowing.

In our goal-oriented society, it’s easy to forget that walking in Christ is a process. While on earth, we never arrive but are slowly transformed along the way. As someone said, "I may not have arrived yet but I have already left."

As we trust the Lord, our hearts will overflow with gratitude for all His blessings and the stability He offers in every circumstance as we walk in faith in Christ.

Norman