This morning as I was driving my son to school the Lord dropped a whopper on me. What has he had on my heart for weeks now? Faith. We talked yesterday about the fact that the Lord doesn't use hedging/partial or weak statements in the bible. He uses authoritative, definite, concrete, expansive words. This in itself is proof that the author of the bible is GOD ALMIGHTY. What need does he have to hedge his statements? If he says it, its fact.
Statements like "pray that you may be counted worthy to escape ALL of whats about to happen.." The word used there is "all." Not some, not a portion, ALL. Ok so what's the whopper He laid on me this morning?
Romans 14:23 But the person who has doubts is condemned if he eats, because he does not act in faith; and anything that is not done in faith is sin.
Let that statement settle in your mind until you really really "get it." ANYTHING that is not done in faith...is sin. Do you realize what that means? It means you can be what the world considers a really "good" person. Maybe even your "church" thinks you are a saint, but you have a little secret they don't know.....you have lost your faith or close to it, your faith "bank account" has a copper or two left in it, basically nothings there.
How does any other man know how much real faith you have? They don't, but be sure of this, both Jesus and the enemy know. Our real faith DOES MOVE MOUNTAINS. But when's the last time you saw a mountain moved? If mountains have not been moved that means there's not even faith the size of a mustard seed within you because thats all it takes...faith the size of a mustard seed to move mountains.
This gets us back around to the question of: why will so few be saved (Matt 7:14-28)? When we consider the fact that ANYTHING you do that's not done in faith is sin, then you can begin to understand how utterly LOADED down with sin most people are, even the apparently "good." Why did Jesus get all over the disciples time and time again about their lack of faith? Because its impossible to please our God without faith.
... Now without faith it is impossible to please God, for whoever comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who diligently search for him.
Most people view faith as something that's just some auxilliary topic among many to be preached by some hired hand spiritual employee (pastor) but our God sees faith MUCH differently than most people do. It's impossible to please him without faith. Anything not done by faith is sin. With true faith so lacking in this world, in the eyes of our Lord sin is stacked from the ground up through the heavens. Why did Jesus ask if when he came back would he find faith on earth? He could have wondered about other things with that question but he specifically wonders aloud to us WILL HE FIND FAITH ON EARTH?
How "boring" that we're have not moved off this topic of faith now for weeks huh? The Lord apparently has something to say to mankind today about faith. Lots of people are looking forward to the rapture of the church but have they checked their faith lately?
The bible shows us clearly time and time again that the Lord lays out both the reward and punishment for what we do (or don't do). I am convinced that our Lord is not playing some game of "gotcha" where you sell out to him to him completely, make a de-cision for him every day that you wake up then he tells you "uhhhh sorry dude, your violation of chapter 5 subsection F , subparagraph A of 3 John makes you ineligible!!!! GOTCHA!!" He wants all of you and when he gets all of you, when you "abide in him" you have nothing to worry about. You have to be found "in Christ" at the end. You have to FINISH what you started...what's so hard for people to understand about that? In a world that rarely finishes what they start of committ to, staying with anything for life is a tall order. People want a guarantee that they can committ today, then forget their committment tomorrow and do whatever they want for the rest of their life and still get the victor's crown.
Apparently the Lord has a message for me and you today and that is, regardless of where we are on the world's timeline, you need to check your faith. When is the last time you laid your faith on the line in this cosmic battle for the souls of men?
Do you remember the movie Top Gun with Tom Cruise? Remember the part at the end where "maverick" was still so shaken from losing his friend that the other guys he was flying with were locked in heated battle and "maverick" was on a pleasure cruise somewhere else? All the while the guys in combat were screaming "MAVERICK WHERE THE HELL ARE YOU? ENGAGE DAMMIT ENGAGE!!!!!"
The message is clear. We engage with our faith so....engage.
grace and peace