"THE MEASURE OF FAITH"
Meditation Moments 59:
In Hebrews 10:23 we have these words: "He is faithful that promised." -- And Dr. Edmund says this: "Did you ever cash a bad check for a stranger? I enquired of a manager of a local supermarket, after he had cashed the check of my predecessor at the register. 'No I never did,' he said, 'for I never look at the check, I look at the man. If I can trust the man, I take his check!'"
And I thought, what a lesson in faith! Look at the Maker of the Promises, then there can be no question as to their absolute validity! Who makes the promises in God's Word? -- and there are thousands of them in the Bible -- God does! And His Word says, "Acquaint now thyself with Him and be at peace, thereby good shall come upon thee." (Job 22:21)
To know God is to be sure that he keeps every promise made! As David Livingstone said, "The Bible is the Word of a Gentleman." -- Abraham knew God and "staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strong in faith." I love this verse! This is one of the verses that the Lord gave me when He so marvelously healed me when I was such a total invalid, and God stooped down and touched me and instantly healed me.
"Abraham staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strong in faith, being fully persuaded that what He had promised He was also able to perform." (Rm. 4:20-21) Sarah received her Isaac because she "judged him faithful who had promised." -- Then James 1:6,
"Let him ask in faith, nothing wavering" -- that's the insistence of Scripture -- "for a double-minded man is unstable in all his ways." A personal acquaintance with the Almighty, with our Father God, a close fellowship with the Faithful One, will certainly encourage us to trust His trustworthiness!
When skies are brass
And though we pray, no answer comes,
And when our day is filled
With pain and grief and care,
Sometimes we wonder,
Is God there?
And does He hear us?
Does He know the pangs we suffer?
And if so,
Because He is Omnipotent
And we so weak
And our small strength spent,
Why not reach down His mighty hand to help?
-- Could we but understand His ways with us! Could we but know what God is doing for us now! Oh child of His, why should we know?
He's the potter,
We the dust,
Shaped by His hand,
Can't we just trust?
Trust enough that He,
the perfect One,
Will finish what He has begun?
The Master Artist's Own design
Worked out in lives
Like yours and mine.
The Shepherd knoweth
What is best
For that small lamb
Upon His breast,
And tenderly the Father feeds
And nourishes the child He leads.
Some day we shall raise our voices in praise, in swelling symphonies of praise, because we could not bear it yet to know what God is doing for us now! In Romans 12:3 we find the words, "God hath dealt to every man a measure of faith."
Don't say you don't have any faith, for God's Word says you do! Every man has a measure of faith! Many people don't use their faith, and if you don't use it, just like the muscles of your arms, when you don't use them, they become flabby.
Faith is a very simple thing, but you've got to keep on exercising it and then it will grow. Some people think of faith as something very mysterious and far beyond their reach. Others think of faith as a peculiar gift that you're born with, and you have it to a great degree but others don't have it!
Someone said, "some people are born with such faith, but though I struggle and struggle to have it, I don't think I'll ever attain to it!" -- That's a strange conception of the nature of faith!
The principle of faith and the operation of it is so simple that even a child can grasp it! It's not through scholarly analysis that the deepest secrets of God are ever revealed! Not to the wise and prudent! It is to the simple soul. As Jesus said, you become as a little child.
It's to those that just dare to take God at His Word! Do you dare? Just dare to take God at His Word. It's often some little nonentity, or even, as I say, a child, who pushes right through all the arguing and doubting, and puts the great intellectuals to shame as he reaches out and takes from God the fulfillment of some promise that the intellectual doesn't seem to be able to grasp.
These humble little people who just take God at His Word with such an utter dependence on the veracity of the Lord, just seem to be saying with their very soul, "Amen!" to everything that God says. -- You know, faith is not some wonderful sensation, a glorious feeling! It's an entirely different realm from sight or sound!
God has given us five senses: feeling, seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling. When we taste something sweet we have the evidence it's so because our taste is given us as evidence. No matter what anyone else says, we know it's sweet, we have the evidence. This is true regarding all of our senses.
In the spiritual life, God gives us faith to witness to us of spiritual things, in the spiritual life, just as our five senses bring evidence of temporal things. We accept what our five senses tell us, just so we accept faith as the evidence, and it brings it to pass and makes real to us all that we take by faith! Matthew 8:13 says, "As thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee."
Faith is the evidence that we have the thing that we ask for! Now you know in the social world that faith is the principle that binds families; it cements friendships in the business world: faith is the foundation of the commercial confidence in business! Is it strange then that this same principle applies in the spiritual Kingdom?
Just as an unseen force of attraction holds the material world together and the unseen principle of confidence holds the financial world together, just so the unseen law of faith is the underlying force which holds the spiritual world together.
Just recently I saw such a wonderful answer to prayer when faith was exercised! A little woman had come to the door of our cottage selling something, I don't remember what it was. But just at the same time she came, the Rev. Gardner, a friend, came to call upon me.
He had just come in through the front door when the pastor of the little church around the corner knocked on the back door, and here we were, four people brought together: I didn't know the woman who had come to the front door, and she was suddenly stricken very very ill.
I asked the two men, both ministers of God, to pray with me for her, and so we prayed earnestly, and one of the pastors put his hand over her head, and suddenly she looked up with the strangest look after we had ceased praying, and she said,
"You know, this is a miracle! The most wonderful thing has happened!" She said, "I got suddenly so very ill and dizzy, I felt I was going to faint. I've had awful headaches. I've always had them, and I was having the most terrible headache, and I haven't been able to move my head to the right side!
"Now see how I can move my head? And my headache's gone!" -- And that woman has never had a headache since then; she's never had any of that stiffness in her neck since then!
Now, it isn't so much that wonderful healing that I want to mention, and how instantly God took care in that case, as the fact that God in His mercy brought these people all together! The two ministers came unexpectedly, they didn't know each other. I didn't know the woman: but God had it planned for us to come together, just like that.
I was telling that to a group one afternoon, and there was a scientist in the group, and he said with some disgust, "You don't mean to tell me that you really believe that God stoops down to a little group of people like that?
"That God was so interested that He'd bring one pastor in one door and another in the other, and then bring this woman in there -- and that He was that much interested in one human being? I don't think that woman was that important to God!"
I said, "well I believe it! And I'm just as important to God as that one little sparrow that Jesus talked about, that 'not one sparrow falls but the Heavenly Father knows it'! Do you know that even the hairs of your head are numbered and the Lord knows what the number is?" Then I continued:
"You are talking about the atom being an active creative force in the Universe! Well, faith is in the spiritual world as an active creative force which produces effects and brings mighty things to pass just the same.
"Mix together three things: sincere prayer, simple faith and the power of God, and you've got a mightier force than the atom! Just because faith isn't in the natural realm or in the realm of sense, it isn't any the less really active in the Universe." -- I don't think he was convinced at all, but I want to tell you that I'm convinced, beloved.
The law of faith is just as real, just as practical, as any of God's other laws! Take this verse and believe it, won't you? Just take it into your heart. God's Word says in Romans 8:2,
"The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus makes me free from the law of sin and death." -- The law of sin working in your soul, the law of death: sickness working in your body.
You can be free by this law if you only believe! Won't you trust Him? Won't you take hold of His promises and honestly thank God from the bottom of your heart that He's heard you? By faith accept His promise. You can be sure that your faith is sufficient for Him to work in your behalf.
God bless you and help you to reach up and really believe Him and really trust Him for the need of your heart. He's still on the Throne, and prayer will change things!
I was raised in the Hegewisch neighborhood on the southeast side of Chicago, Illinois, served in the USAF from 1970 to 1974, and became a full-time missionary for Christ living 40 years in Japan, 3.5 years in Russia, and a few months in other countries such as Finland, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, South Korea, Taiwan and mainland China where I also served the King of Kings, Jesus, as an Ambassador for His Kingdom.
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