Hebrews 11:1-2 (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]. For by [faith—trust and holy fervor born of faith] the men of old had divine testimony borne to them and obtained a good report.
Faith is most definitely an adventure. But to have the blessed assurance, confirmation, title deed of the things that we hope for and proof of what we cannot see, it means that we must invest our life in the unseen reality of God and allow our faith to grow its perception and depth according to God’s Kingdom. How much easier would this thing called faith be if we could see Jesus, feel Him, touch His Nail-Scarred Hands? It didn’t work for the disciples and I don’t think we would receive the Lord any differently today. We must become convinced that God is real, Jesus is His Son, His Spirit lives in us and Heaven is our next home. Such a conviction becomes reality only when it is received as a fact even though not revealed to the senses.
A venture is exposure to danger. It is to brave the dangers of something and to dare to do something otherwise unheard of or unknown. It is an expression of one’s conviction despite the criticism and ridicule of others. To embark on a possibly hazardous journey which itself is an adventure. This is faith. It can be dangerous in a world that does not welcome God, His Son or His Spirit. A place that is hostile to good and embraces evil waits to destroy your faith and bankrupt your soul halting the foolishness of your life to accept the reality this world has created. God is real. Jesus is His Son. His Spirit does live on the inside of all who call on the Name of Jesus to be saved. These are faith facts that should be the basis of your life if you desire Eternal life. But how do we embark on such an adventure?
Romans 10:17 (AMP)
So faith comes by hearing [what is told], and what is heard comes by the preaching [of the message that came from the lips] of Christ (the Messiah Himself).
Faith begins with a promise.
Genesis 17:1-5 (NLT)
When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am El-Shaddai—‘God Almighty.’ Serve me faithfully and live a blameless life. I will make a covenant with you, by which I will guarantee to give you countless descendants.” At this, Abram fell face down on the ground. Then God said to him, “This is my covenant with you: I will make you the father of a multitude of nations! What’s more, I am changing your name. It will no longer be Abram. Instead, you will be called Abraham, for you will be the father of many nations.
Abraham is probably the most well-known figure in the Hall of Faith (Hebrews 11). Abraham would be the father of many nations according to God, but the world saw him as a traveler with a barren wife. But Abraham decided to put his faith in God. God required one thing of Abraham which was his faith. God asked Abraham, to “serve me faithfully and live a blameless life.” In this commitment, God entered a covenant with Abram who now would be known as Abraham. The crazy thing was that Abraham was not a crazy kid ready to take a leap of faith with nothing to lose. He was 99 years old. He had one son Ishmael born of a servant so Abraham knew he could produce a child, but his wife, Sarah, could not bear a child. Yet as he would demonstrate with the Lord, Abraham remained faithful to his wife despite her inability. The first step of faith is to serve the Lord faithfully and live a blameless life. God obviously knows our inability and Jesus came to take care of the penalty of sin to allow us to reestablish our covenant relationship with God.
Romans 4:19-21 (NLT)
And Abraham’s faith did not weaken, even though, at about 100 years of age, he figured his body was as good as dead—and so was Sarah’s womb. Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises.
Faith grows as begin to believe that God is able to do whatever He promises. Abraham did just that and God allowed Sarah to conceive and give birth to Isaac. Abraham was not swayed but what the world said about him or the fact that his wife was well past her prime. He just believed in God (Romans 4:3) and His Ability to fulfill His End of the Bargain. God did. Faith obtains the promise every time. (Romans 4:16)
Genesis 22:1-3 (NLT)
Sometime later, God tested Abraham’s faith. “Abraham!” God called. “Yes,” he replied. “Here I am.” “Take your son, your only son—yes, Isaac, whom you love so much—and go to the land of Moriah. Go and sacrifice him as a burnt offering on one of the mountains, which I will show you.”The next morning Abraham got up early. He saddled his donkey and took two of his servants with him, along with his son, Isaac. Then he chopped wood for a fire for a burnt offering and set out for the place God had told him about.
Maintaining genuine faith in God requires testing. God allows trials to come in order that we may evaluate our faith in the Lord and see if our true intentions. This is so very important. It is not fun or anything that we desire, but absolutely necessary. God would ask Abraham to sacrifice his son – Isaac. I do not know if I could march up that Holy Mountain of sacrifice as Abraham did. I would hope that my faith was strong enough but truthfully I am not convinced. “It was by faith that Abraham offered Isaac as a sacrifice when God was testing him. Abraham, who had received God’s promises, was ready to sacrifice his only son, Isaac, even though God had told him, “Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted.” Abraham reasoned that if Isaac died, God was able to bring him back to life again. And in a sense, Abraham did receive his son back from the dead.” (Hebrews 11:17-19) And there Abraham is in the Hall of Faith. How do we endure such tests and remain faithful when God demands a sacrifice of such magnitude? God will provide all that you need. He is faithful even when you are not. He is always good! In order to trust Him, you must believe these core values.
Psalm 100:1-5 (NLT)
Shout with joy to the LORD, all the earth! Worship the LORD with gladness. Come before him, singing with joy. Acknowledge that the LORD is God! He made us, and we are his. We are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving; go into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and his faithfulness continues to each generation.
To join the faith adventure requires that you believe God is GOOD! His unfailing love, faithfulness and goodness are a part of every promise that the Lord has for your life. Do you believe God is good? The Lord is good not only in the sunshine but also in the rain. He is good in the light and even in darkness. God is always good and His Intentions for your life culminate in the fact that He is good! His Mercy is a direct result of this truth. Faith will never mature fully in anyone who does not believe that God is always good and live life celebrating His Goodness.
Psalm 91:1-4 (NLT)
Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the LORD: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him. For he will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
Faith is the “shelter of the Most High”. Those who find rest, peace, joy and love in the Shadow of the Almighty and remain in His Refuge alone will be safe. He is my God. I trust Him. It is a choice. It cannot be forced. For those who do there is a promise, “He will rescue you from every trap and protect you from every deadly disease.” Faith always begins with a promise. He will cover you and shelter you in the midst of every storm. It is your faith that creates armor and protects your life established by the Blood of Jesus Christ. You must have faith to please the Lord. It is daily protection provided by God to help you make it to the end. (I Peter 1:5) Such testing of our faith produces endurance and character that lead to confident hope. God is completing you by removing those things that hinder one’s faith to make room for more of His Promises. (James 1:2-4) He is making you so content and satisfied that this world no longer will have anything to offer you if you choose to live by faith.
Romans 5:1-3 (NLT)
Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory. We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance.
We are made right in God’s Sight by faith. Jesus Christ allows us to enter a covenant relationship with God as we are now at peace. We are put in a place of undeserved privilege. The only thing standing between us and every single thing God has promised us is fear and doubt. As we run into problems and trials that require faith to continue to trust the Lord, we build strength and endurance in our weakness becoming fully reliant on Him. When Peter stepped out of the boat to walk on the water with Jesus, it was only the beginning. Peter would find out in minutes that there were some holes of doubt in his faith as he began to sink into the water. (Matthew 14:27-31) Jesus asked his disciple, “Why do you doubt me?” This goes back to my philosophy that if Jesus were with us today, we would still probably doubt Him and question His Power. We must have faith to be made right with God. (Romans 3:22) Doing the right thing is not enough. (Romans 3:28) Faith is the foundation of our partnership with Jesus Christ and is a requirement. (I Corinthians 1:9) Only faithful people can be God’s Companions. (Psalm 101:6-7) Our life is to be constructed on a foundation of faith. (Colossians 2:7) Every prayer we pray must be faith-based. (Matthew 21:22) Faith allows righteous people to find life and have it abundantly. (Romans 1:16-17) We need the Word of God and its instruction to live by faith. (I Timothy1:5) His Spirit helps us wait through the tests and trials as our faith is prepared to receive our promise. (Galatians 5:5) The Spirit is busy producing the fruit God desires so our wait is never in vain as we develop love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. All attributes of righteousness.
Psalm 119:30-32 (NLT)
I have chosen to be faithful; I have determined to live by your regulations. I cling to your laws. LORD, don’t let me be put to shame! I will pursue your commands, for you expand my understanding.
Faith is a commitment, contract, covenant that requires our life for God’s Way, Will and Word in our life. You will never have faith living half-heartedly for the Lord. It just won’t happen.
Isaiah 54:9-10 (NLT)
“Just as I swore in the time of Noah that I would never again let a flood cover the earth, so now I swear that I will never again be angry and punish you. For the mountains may move and the hills disappear, but even then my faithful love for you will remain. My covenant of blessing will never be broken,” says the LORD, who has mercy on you.”
We are living in the Days of Noah. (Matthew 24:36 NKJV) God promised never to destroy the earth and all its inhabitants again – thank you Lord – or we would be done for. Noah found favor with God for remaining righteous in a world bent on darkness and evil. (Genesis 6:7-9) Noah did exactly what the Lord told Him to do. (Genesis 6:22) (Genesis 7:4-5) When was the last time you did exactly what God told you to do? I am asking myself the same question. Obedience is important. For Noah, it saved his whole family. But it could not have been easy hammering those nails and building a huge vessel all alone. I am sure family and friends mocked him. Some even called him crazy no doubt or maybe delusional. Their opinion probably changed when the rain finally came. In order to receive the promise of God for your life, you must choose to be completely obedient to God’s Word for your life. (Deuteronomy 7:12-13) Faith without works is dead. It has no power at all. (James 2:22-23) Obedience and rebellion – the Lord’s got no time for that! (Hebrews 10:38) Only faith full people make it into the Hall of Faith. “And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him. It was by faith that Noah built a large boat to save his family from the flood. He obeyed God, who warned him about things that had never happened before. By his faith Noah condemned the rest of the world, and he received the righteousness that comes by faith.” (Hebrews 11:6-7)
Hebrews 12:1-2 (NLT)
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.
Why not try this thing called faith? Make a commitment to really do it this time wholeheartedly. Faith always produces a promise because God is ALWAYS good! Abraham and Noah have led the way into the Hall of Faith now its our turn to lead the next generation to Shelter of the Most High! Nothing ventured nothing gained. Are you willing to put your life on the line to be a Friend of God? Strip off the weight that is holding you back and run the race of faith for real this time! You have nothing to lose and everything to gain!
I Corinthians 16:13 (NLT) Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong.