is your faith?
by it (faith) the elders obtained a good testimony
By faith the saints of old testament endured sufferings, accomplished the will of God and obtained a good testimony. They did not live for the present but was hoping for a greater reward in eternity. Some were rewarded in this earth but others were not. How strong is your faith today? is it just a word uttered often without any meaning? Or can it stand the test of difficult situations. We are now going to see some examples from Bible which depicts the endurance of these saints no matter in what situation they lived.
By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous. God testifying of his gifts, and through it he being dead still speaks (Hebrews 11:4)
First let us see about Abel who sacrificed a greater offering than Cain. Abel sacrificed the first born sheep as he was a shepherd and Cain sacrificed the first reaped fruits and vegetables. God accepted the sacrifice of Abel but rejected the sacrifice of Cain. Why? Is God a partial like humans? No, certainly not, God sees everyones heart and their motives. He does not care about how much you offer to Him but how you offer Him. Do you do it grudgingly or willingly? From now on, learn to offer to God willingly. You shall blessed 100-fold. For those of you, who tithe regularly and willingly, give offerings liberally, here is a reassurance that God does not keep quiet after taking everything from you. He will certainly bless you. You will reap your rewards soon.
Abraham was testified as righteous person due to his faith. He received a son at the age of 100 years. God in order to test him, asked Abraham to sacrifice his son, Isaac. Abraham obeyed the voice of God and attempted to sacrifice his son in the mount of Moriah. When he lifted his knife, the voice of God said "Do not lay your hand on the lad. I know that you fear God" (Genesis 22:12) Abraham did not have any other son at that time, yet by faith, he was willing to sacrifice his only son Isaac. Because of his faith, we also became his descendants.
What sacrifice does God expect from you?
He is expecting you to sacrifice yourselves as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1). Control your body from sinful desires, lavish luxuries and vain pride. Submit yourself to the perfect will of God. Your life will become blessing to others.
He expects you to set aside time to spend with Him through Bible reading and praying. To seek Him enthusiastically (I Chronicles 28:9). How much time do you spend in the presence of God. Has Bible reading become a ritual in your life or do you do it with zeal and fervor? If you want the blessing of God there is no short-cut, you can get it only from the presence of God. God adds no ill fortune to His blessings.
Thirdly, God expects a broken and contrite heart (Psalms 51:17). First, your heart should be broken for the sins you commit. Cleanse yourself everyday and lead a holy life. Next, your heart should be broken for those suffering around you. When you hear misfortunes of others are you able to cry for them in your prayers. Learn to empathize with others for their sufferings and tell them about Christ and His salvation. Do not condemn them and ostracize them. God expects you to cry for others that is why he has saved you and given a blessed life.
Hebrews 11:7 says,"By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith."
Noah displayed an explicit faith. God asked him to build an ark in a dry land. There was no symptom of rain. Yet he obeyed God. He must have been ridiculed by everyone who saw him. They must have thought that Noah was crazy to build ark. All Noah knew was that God was going to destroy the earth and that he has to rescue himself and his family. He preached everyone about the coming doom. Nobody believed him or took heed of him. Finally, rain did come and it destroyed everything on the earth. Noah, his wife, sons and daughters-in-law alone were saved. God is expecting the same kind of faith. Sometimes, God promises of complete healing from incurable diseases, freedom from financial burdens or bring back your wife/husband to you. If He has promised you, He will certainly do it. The circumstances may say something which is totally opposite. Hold on to God, You will see the miracle of God being performed. Noah did not see the wind or the sea or the rain yet he believed on God. If you trust God, His promises to you will be fulfilled this year.
We saw a few examples from Bible, whose faith was reckoned as righteousness to them. Because of their faith, not only their family but their descendants were blessed. If you have the faith of mustard life, you can see yourself, your family, your workplace and also your descendants get blessed.
May the Lord bless you.If you are blessed by this message kindly let us know, that we praise God together at firstname.lastname@example.org