I am reading A Prophet with Hope, the Billy Graham story. One thing is for sure, Billy was not perfect he made a lot of mistakes but he always tried to stay on message.
He understood the gospel Is not about the man who delivers the message, it's all about the God who became a man, and is the message! Jesus Christ.
Billy Graham stayed on message, no matter if he had an audience of 1 or 100,000 he spoke the gospel, to friend and foe, from heads of state to people in the streets.
He was not perfect sometimes he said the wrong things but he would correct that, he is no more a saint than you or I, but he held true and faithful to Christ.
The 1954 London Crusade marked one of the most controversial, yet celebratory moments in the history of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
After a mistake in the wording of a U.S. brochure that promoted prayer and fundraising for the Crusade, Billy Graham was accused of interfering with British politics. Despite admitting the inadvertent mistake and apologizing to Parliament, Mr. Graham’s arrival in England was met with hostility from some.
But instead of ruining the Crusade, the negative publicity appeared to draw larger crowds. Over a period of three months, more than two million heard the Gospel, and more than 38,000 indicated making decisions for Christ.
The reports of the London Crusade so impressed Prime Minister Winston Churchill, that he requested to personally see Mr. Graham on short notice.
For years, the conversation between the two men was kept a secret. Only after Mr. Churchill’s passing did Mr. Graham share details about their time together, recalling that Mr. Churchill began by congratulating him for drawing crowds of such staggering numbers in London.
Churchill joked that he and Marilyn Monroe combined couldn’t attract an audience of such a size. Mr. Graham assured Mr. Churchill that it was all God’s doing.
“I’ll tell you, I have no hope. I see no hope for the world,” Churchill shared. “I am a man without hope. Do you have any real hope?”
“Are you without hope for your own soul’s salvation?” Mr. Graham asked.
“Frankly, I think about that a great deal,” Churchill replied.
In his autobiography, Just as I Am; Billy Graham described the rest of the meeting:
I had my New Testament with me. Knowing that we had but a few minutes left, I immediately explained the way of salvation. I watched carefully for signs of irritation or offense, but he seemed receptive, if not enthusiastic. I also talked about God’s plan for the future, including the return of Christ. His eyes seemed to light up at the prospect.
At precisely 12:30, Mr. Colville [Churchill’s secretary] knocked. “Sir Winston, the Duke of Windsor is here for your luncheon,” he said.
“Let him wait!” Mr. Churchill growled, waving Mr. Colville off and turning back to me. “Go ahead.”
I went on for about another 15 minutes, then asked if I could pray. “Most certainly,” he said, standing up. “I’d appreciate it.”
I prayed for the difficult situations the Prime Minister faced every day and acknowledged that God was the only hope for the world and for us individually.
When Billy Graham did Richard Nixon's funeral he spoke these words.
Years ago, Winston Churchill planned his own funeral. And he did so with the hope of the resurrection and eternal life which he firmly believed in. And he instructed after the benediction that a bugler positioned high in the dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral would play Taps, the universal signal that says the day is over.
But then came a very dramatic moment as Churchill had instructed. Another bugler was placed on the other side of the massive dome, and he played the notes of Reveille, the universal signal that a new day has dawned and it is time to arise.
That was Churchill’s testimony that at the end of history, the last note will not be Taps, it’ll be Reveille.
There is hope beyond the grave because Jesus Christ has opened the door to heaven for us by his death and resurrection.
Billy always stayed on message, he knew it was the gospel of Jesus Christ that changed lives, not him.
God’s word says this:
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, first to the Jew, and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith, just as it is written: The righteous will live by faith.” Romans 1:16-17 CSB
“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God. Give no offense to Jews or Greeks or the church of God, just as I also try to please everyone in everything, not seeking my own benefit, but the benefit of many, so that they may be saved.” 1 Corinthians 10:31-33 CSB
“Imitate me, as I also imitate Christ.”1 Corinthians 11:1 CSB
“Now I want to make clear for you, brothers and sisters, the gospel I preached to you, which you received, on which you have taken your stand and by which you are being saved, if you hold to the message I preached to you — unless you believed in vain. For I passed on to you as most important what I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve. Then he appeared to over five hundred brothers and sisters at one time; most of them are still alive, but some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one born at the wrong time, he also appeared to me. For I am the least of the apostles, not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me. Whether, then, it is I or they, so we proclaim and so you have believed.” 1 Corinthians 15:1-11 CSB
Stories copied from
We must understand Church doesn't exist for us, it exist to bring Glory to God! We gather together to worship God in His Word, in song and in fellowship, the music isn't about us, the preaching isn't about us, and the fellowship isn't about us.
In all we do we should do for the glory of God, and not just on Sunday!
The Church that is the body of Christ, that is you and I exist for 3 reasons
1) the glorification of God, “For we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you. Indeed, everything is for your benefit so that, as grace extends through more and more people, it may cause thanksgiving to increase to the glory of God.” 2 Corinthians 4:14-15
2) the edification of the saints,
“And he himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, equipping the saints for the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ,”Ephesians 4:11-12 CSB
3) the evangelization of the world.
“Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”Matthew 28:18-20 CSB
Let's stop making Church about us as we cruise through life as if on a cruise ship, every Church should be a battleship, the world dangles over hell on spiders web as Jonathan Edwards said and they will not see or hear the word of God from each other but only from the Church, ( you and I) let's stick to the gospel, let's gather to gather and lay aside our agenda, and follow God's word, let's show the world why exist, to do good works and glorify God! ”You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt should lose its taste, how can it be made salty? It’s no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet. “You are the light of the world. A city situated on a hill cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and puts it under a basket, but rather on a lampstand, and it gives light for all who are in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.”Matthew 5:13-16 CSB
Let's stop making Church about us, and realize that it is all about Jesus!
God's Word says this:
“Therefore I, the prisoner in the Lord, urge you to live worthy of the calling you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit — just as you were called to one hope at your calling — one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all. Now grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift. For it says: When he ascended on high, he took the captives captive; he gave gifts to people. But what does “he ascended” mean except that he also descended to the lower parts of the earth? The one who descended is also the one who ascended far above all the heavens, to fill all things. And he himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, equipping the saints for the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ, until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God’s Son, growing into maturity with a stature measured by Christ’s fullness. Then we will no longer be little children, tossed by the waves and blown around by every wind of teaching, by human cunning with cleverness in the techniques of deceit. But speaking the truth in love, let us grow in every way into him who is the head — Christ. From him the whole body, fitted and knit together by every supporting ligament, promotes the growth of the body for building up itself in love by the proper working of each individual part.” Ephesians 4:1-16 CSB
Jesus came to this world not to condemn us, but to save us, condemnation is not from God, conviction of our sin is God’s way of drawing us to Him, condemnation is the devil's way of driving us away from God.
Jesus came so we would see God's way is the only way to God the Father, He wants us to see our sin so we would repent and turn to Him and be saved.
Conviction should bring repentance and show us our need for God and His help, condemnation brings nothing but guilt and shame which turns to fear, hiding, silence and resistance to repenting to God.
Christ took our condemnation on the cross, He sent the Holy Spirit to us to lead us in His righteousness to convict of us our sins against God, to teach us daily how to walk with God, and how to be holy for God is holy.
Our world feels condemned right now, and anger and frustration rule peoples hearts partly because people condemn each other instead of being Christ-like and showing one another the way, the truth and the life, but mostly because they know they are not living right with God and each other, they feel embarrassed, hopeless, fearful, angry and are resisting God, even though He is not condemning them, they fight back so they can justify in their hearts and minds the way they live. It is natural for mankind when we feel condemned to defend our actions even when we know it is wrong. Adam and Eve did this in the garden when they sinned against God.
What would happen if we asked God to convict of us our sin so we would repent, and then ask God to help us walk humbly with Him?
We would impact our world!
Then we could ask God to convict others of their sin, so their hearts and minds would be open to their own repentance and turning to God for their salvation?
Our world will not change with a finger pointed in its face telling them they are wrong, let's not condemn others but rather speak the truth out of love to them, they like us must realize their sin, their need for a Savior.
None of us on our own can stand before God, or even enter into His presence, it is only through Christ Jesus that we are righteous, holy and able to enter into the presence of God. Lets not think to highly of ourselves, let’s humble ourselves and ask the Holy Spirit to lead is in the everlasting way.
God does not call us to condemn others, but to love them, God drew us to Him, God convicted us of our sin, God revealed to us our need for repentance, and our need for a savior. He will do the same for others as He did us.
What makes us think that we can replace the work of God the Holy Spirit with our condemnation of others?
God's Word says this:
“For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Anyone who believes in him is not condemned, but anyone who does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God.” John 3:16-18 CSB
“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up on the last day. It is written in the Prophets: And they will all be taught by God. Everyone who has listened to and learned from the Father comes to me — not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God. He has seen the Father.”John 6:44-46 CSB
“Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery, making her stand in the center. “Teacher,” they said to him, “this woman was caught in the act of committing adultery. In the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” They asked this to trap him, in order that they might have evidence to accuse him. Jesus stooped down and started writing on the ground with his finger. When they persisted in questioning him, he stood up and said to them, “The one without sin among you should be the first to throw a stone at her.” Then he stooped down again and continued writing on the ground. When they heard this, they left one by one, starting with the older men. Only he was left, with the woman in the center. When Jesus stood up, he said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” “No one, Lord,” she answered. “Neither do I condemn you,” said Jesus. “Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.”John 8:3-11 CSB
“Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also. You know the way to where I am going.” “Lord,” Thomas said, “we don’t know where you’re going. How can we know the way?” Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”John 14:1-7 CSB
“As the Father has loved me, I have also loved you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commands you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. “I have told you these things so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete. “This is my command: Love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this: to lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not call you servants anymore, because a servant doesn’t know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything I have heard from my Father. You did not choose me, but I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce fruit and that your fruit should remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he will give you. “This is what I command you: Love one another.
“When the Counselor comes, the one I will send to you from the Father — the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father — he will testify about me. You also will testify, because you have been with me from the beginning.” John 15:9-17, 26-27 CSB
““I have told you these things to keep you from stumbling. They will ban you from the synagogues. In fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering service to God. They will do these things because they haven’t known the Father or me. But I have told you these things so that when their time comes you will remember I told them to you. I didn’t tell you these things from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going away to him who sent me, and not one of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Yet, because I have spoken these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I am telling you the truth. It is for your benefit that I go away, because if I don’t go away the Counselor will not come to you. If I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world about sin, righteousness, and judgment: About sin, because they do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; and about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.” John 16:1-11 CSB
Every person on the earth has Faith in someone, or thing, from the self-proclaimed Atheist to the religious Zealot, what truly matters is who our faith is in.
Who our faith is in determines our actions today, and our future. We can have faith in ourselves and strive to survive, we can believe in others and draw off of them, we can believe in science and take a course of action depending on what science says today, we can believe in a multitude of man made gods or we can believe in the Living God and who He says is, Creator, Lord and Savior.
I have studied the human condition and still do, ( not that i am an expert) this I know the heart will mis-lead us, our emotions will betray us , our pursuit for knowledge can consume us, but living by faith in Christ will sustain us both now and forever,each person must decide, who their faith is in, mine is in Christ Jesus.
How about you?
God will increase our faith when we pursue Him, and ask Him. Is your faith in things, security in possessions, trust in yourself or others? Lay aside everything and ask God to strengthen your faith in Him today!
“The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” Luke 17:5 CSB
God’s word says this:
“Now without faith it is impossible to please God, since the one who draws near to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.”Hebrews 11:6
“A centurion’s servant, who was highly valued by him, was sick and about to die. When the centurion heard about Jesus, he sent some Jewish elders to him, requesting him to come and save the life of his servant. When they reached Jesus, they pleaded with him earnestly, saying, “He is worthy for you to grant this, because he loves our nation and has built us a synagogue.” Jesus went with them, and when he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to tell him, “Lord, don’t trouble yourself, since I am not worthy to have you come under my roof. That is why I didn’t even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I too am a man placed under authority, having soldiers under my command. I say to this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” Jesus heard this and was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, “I tell you, I have not found so great a faith even in Israel.” When those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the servant in good health. Afterward he was on his way to a town called Nain. His disciples and a large crowd were traveling with him. Just as he neared the gate of the town, a dead man was being carried out. He was his mother’s only son, and she was a widow. A large crowd from the city was also with her. When the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her and said, “Don’t weep.” Then he came up and touched the open coffin, and the pallbearers stopped. And he said, “Young man, I tell you, get up!” The dead man sat up and began to speak, and Jesus gave him to his mother. Then fear came over everyone, and they glorified God, saying, “A great prophet has risen among us,” and “God has visited his people.” This report about him went throughout Judea and all the vicinity.”Luke 7:2-17 CSB
“Therefore, since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every hindrance and the sin that so easily ensnares us. Let us run with endurance the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith. For the joy that lay before him, he endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:1-2 CSB
““Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also. You know the way to where I am going.” “Lord,” Thomas said, “we don’t know where you’re going. How can we know the way?” Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”John 14:1-7 CSB
We live in a time of faithless followers of Christ, they identify themselves as Christians, as long as things go their way. It is religion that has created this false flock of followers by cheapening the cost of salvation, the gift of grace, and the call to follow Christ.
Yes, there are many people who can sing the right worship songs, show up to church on Sunday and say the right words, they can even pray and sound authentic, but their lives do not reflect the life Christ has called us to live.
Some of the most frightening words Jesus spoke are these.
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, drive out demons in your name, and do many miracles in your name?’ Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you lawbreakers! ’Matthew 7:21-23
We can pretend all we want, we can judge others all we want, think our sin is not greater than others, or that Jesus is okay with my choices, (you know because I am okay with them) we can fool others, we can fool ourselves but we can never fool God into believing we have put our faith in Him.
I speak these things from my own life, for I once was among them and followed and believed as they do.
Faith in Christ goes far beyond saying I believe, the Bible tells us even the devil believes in God. Belief is an action, belief is a change of heart, belief is faith in action, belief puts the Fruit of the Holy Spirit at work in our life.
You may not agree with me, you may get mad at me for speaking these things, but my fear is that we have a culture of church attendees that believe in God, and Jesus as His son, and that He died and rose again, but it is all just mental exercises for their minds, there is no surrender, no change of heart, it’s still I will live my life as I want.
We cannot live a Christian life, it is impossible, that is we can not live it without Christ, for without Christ, we do not have the Holy Spirit, and without the Holy Spirit we are lost.
All the good deeds, great prayers, charity, church attendance, clean living we can do mean nothing, sure they are great things, and we should strive to live this way, only we should do this to honor Christ, and live as God has directed us, when we’re living our lives counter to what God’s word says we have fooled ourselves and all these things are worthless.
The gospel calls us to die to ourselves, take up our cross and follow Jesus, we cannot pretend to count it all as loss, if we are not willing to lose it all, compared to gaining Christ alone.
We don’t get to ignore God’s word and live as we pick and choose the parts of scripture we want to live and believe, for if we live in the flesh we are in direct opposition to God and His will.
Belief and faith in God go beyond just words and actions, it is total trust that God is who He says is in scripture, and who Jesus says He is in scripture, it is totally believing Him as LORD and Savior over our life and living that out in a world that will reject you for they have rejected Him, faith and belief calls for our total submission to the Holy Spirit every day, it is putting our hands to the plow and never looking back it is a life surrendered to God.
God’s word says this:
“Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it. How narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it. “Be on your guard against false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves. You’ll recognize them by their fruit. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes or figs from thistles? In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, but a bad tree produces bad fruit. A good tree can’t produce bad fruit; neither can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So you’ll recognize them by their fruit. “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, drive out demons in your name, and do many miracles in your name?’ Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you lawbreakers! ’ “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded that house. Yet it didn’t collapse, because its foundation was on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and doesn’t act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell, the rivers rose, the winds blew and pounded that house, and it collapsed. It collapsed with a great crash.”Matthew 7:13-27 CSB
“So Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life in yourselves. The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day, because my flesh is true food and my blood is true drink. The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven; it is not like the manna your ancestors ate — and they died. The one who eats this bread will live forever.” He said these things while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. Therefore, when many of his disciples heard this, they said, “This teaching is hard. Who can accept it?” Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were complaining about this, asked them, “Does this offend you? Then what if you were to observe the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? The Spirit is the one who gives life. The flesh doesn’t help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. But there are some among you who don’t believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning those who did not believe and the one who would betray him.) He said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted to him by the Father.” From that moment many of his disciples turned back and no longer accompanied him. So Jesus said to the Twelve, “You don’t want to go away too, do you?” “Simon Peter answered, “Lord, to whom will we go? You have the words of eternal life.”We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.” Jesus replied to them, “Didn’t I choose you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil.” He was referring to Judas, Simon Iscariot’s son, one of the Twelve, because he was going to betray him.” John 6:53-71 CSB
“I say then, walk by the Spirit and you will certainly not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is against the Spirit, and the Spirit desires what is against the flesh; these are opposed to each other so that you don’t do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, moral impurity, promiscuity, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and anything similar. I am warning you about these things — as I warned you before — that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The law is not against such things. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”
Galatians 5:16-26 CSB
“What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself. But someone may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.” James 2:14-19 NASB
“But everything that was a gain to me, I have considered to be a loss because of Christ. More than that, I also consider everything to be a loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. Because of him I have suffered the loss of all things and consider them as dung, so that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own from the law, but one that is through faith in Christ — the righteousness from God based on faith. My goal is to know him and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his sufferings, being conformed to his death, assuming that I will somehow reach the resurrection from among the dead. Not that I have already reached the goal or am already perfect, but I make every effort to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus. Therefore, let all of us who are mature think this way. And if you think differently about anything, God will reveal this also to you.”Philippians 3:7-15 CSB
At times in our lives we all grow weary, we become drained from the anchors of life as we get pulled in multiple directions we find ourselves weak, tired and fatigued.
It is in these times we need to press in more to the Holy Spirit and let Him renew our spirit, heal us and guide us. In this time we must pray for perseverance along with restoration, we need to do as Jesus taught the disciples to get away and just be in the presence of God.
Never let the powers that surround us, determine our direction, or actions for the power inside us is greater than the power around us.
We should not grow weary from doing good, let's keep our hearts and eyes fixed on Jesus the author and finisher of our faith, so that we may be a light in the darkness, don't let busyness keep us from doing what God has called us to be, a city on a hill, a vessel of hope and honor.
The path before us may seem to be impossible, but not with Christ for with Him nothing is impossible.
Don't get discouraged, or lose your faith, renew your mind and soul by spending time with God in His word daily and following Him always and keep fighting the good fight of faith.
God’s word says:
“The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to him all that they had done and taught. He said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a remote place and rest for a while.” For many people were coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat. So they went away in the boat by themselves to a remote place,” Mark 6:30-32 CSB
“So don’t throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you need endurance, so that after you have done God’s will, you may receive what was promised. For yet in a very little while, the Coming One will come and not delay. But my righteous one will live by faith; and if he draws back, I have no pleasure in him. But we are not those who draw back and are destroyed, but those who have faith and are saved.”
Hebrews 10:35-39 CSB
“Now we have this treasure in clay jars, so that this extraordinary power may be from God and not from us. We are afflicted in every way but not crushed; we are perplexed but not in despair; we are persecuted but not abandoned; we are struck down but not destroyed. We always carry the death of Jesus in our body, so that the life of Jesus may also be displayed in our body. For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’s sake, so that Jesus’s life may also be displayed in our mortal flesh. So then, death is at work in us, but life in you. And since we have the same spirit of faith in keeping with what is written, I believed, therefore I spoke, we also believe, and therefore speak. For we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you. Indeed, everything is for your benefit so that, as grace extends through more and more people, it may cause thanksgiving to increase to the glory of God. Therefore we do not give up. Even though our outer person is being destroyed, our inner person is being renewed day by day. For our momentary light affliction is producing for us an absolutely incomparable eternal weight of glory. So we do not focus on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:7-18 CSB
“Therefore, brothers and sisters, in view of the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your true worship. Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.”Romans 12:1-2 CSB
What will happen today as you turn your worries into prayers?
Here are the top 5 things that will happen as we turn our worries into prayers.
1) God's peace will fill your heart and mind.
2) God's joy will fill your heart and soul.
3) Your fellowship with God will go deeper.
4) Your chains will break and you will walk in freedom
5) Your stress and anxiety will go down as your prayers go up
We should only worry about what we cannot pray about, we are told to pray about everything, by doing this we should worry about nothing.
Worry is our failure to trust God. It’s been said that worry is the advanced interest you pay on troubles that seldom come.
The word worry comes from an old German term that means “to strangle.” That’s exactly what worry does: it strangles you.
Stop letting the worries of life strangle you, God's word says to pray about everything, not something, EVERYTHING and rejoice in Christ, dwell on Him then we will have peace plus so much more! I love how the message puts these verses.
God’s word says this:
“Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”
“Celebrate God all day, every day. I mean, revel in him! Make it as clear as you can to all you meet that you’re on their side, working with them and not against them. Help them see that the Master is about to arrive. He could show up any minute!
Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.”Philippians 4:4-7
God knows how mankind is incapable of living with each other in peace and harmony, He knows our hearts wander and stray because we are foolish, prideful and selfish.
We covet, steal, murder, lie and cheat to get our way, these are not things that just pop up these are conditions of our hearts, hearts that are settled on us, not God.
Self-control and faithfulness are fruits of the Holy Spirit, we can only bear them when we surrender to Him our all.
A person cannot walk in the Spirit and in the flesh at the same time, we must learn to submit to God, our hearts, minds and bodies, mankind is falling further into darkness as God turns over individuals, communities, and Nations to the desire of their hearts, that is themselves to be god, and live as they please.
We can see this when we ask how far has man fallen away from the laws of God, His laws were given to us for our good and His glory.
Jesus said if we would follow just two of these everything else would be taken care of. For all the laws rest on them:
The laws of God are given to us because of God's great love for us, this is why Jesus said He did not come to abolish the law, but to fulfill it, He did this for you and me because we are unable to keep the law on our own.
We must learn to live a surrendered life to Christ, every day in the love of Christ, keeping God first, others second and ourselves last.
God's Word says this:
”Then God spoke all these words:
Do not have other gods besides me. Do not make an idol for yourself, whether in the shape of anything in the heavens above or on the earth below or in the waters under the earth. Do not bow in worship to them, and do not serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the fathers’ iniquity, to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing faithful love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commands. Do not misuse the name of the Lord your God, because the Lord will not leave anyone unpunished who misuses his name.“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy: ”You are to labor six days and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. You must not do any work — you, your son or daughter, your male or female servant, your livestock, or the resident alien who is within your city gates. For the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and everything in them in six days; then he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and declared it holy. Honor your father and your mother so that you may have a long life in the land that the Lord your God is giving you. Do not murder. Do not commit adultery. Do not steal. Do not give false testimony against your neighbor. Do not covet your neighbor’s house. Do not covet your neighbor’s wife, his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” Exodus 20:1, 3-17 CSB
“Don’t think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or one stroke of a letter will pass away from the law until all things areaccomplished. ”Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commands and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever does and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”For I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never get into the kingdom of heaven.”Matthew 5:17-20 CSB
“Teacher, which command in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and most important command. The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands.”Matthew 22:36-40 CSB
“What is the source of wars and fights among you? Don’t they come from your passions that wage war within you? You desire and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and wage war. You do not have because you do not ask. You ask and don’t receive because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures. You adulterous people! Don’t you know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? So whoever wants to be the friend of the world becomes the enemy of God. Or do you think it’s without reason that the Scripture says: The spirit he made to dwell in us envies intensely? But he gives greater grace. Therefore he says: God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Therefore, submit to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”James 4:1-8 CSB
“I say then, walk by the Spirit and you will certainly not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is against the Spirit, and the Spirit desires what is against the flesh; these are opposed to each other, so that you don’t do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, moral impurity, promiscuity, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and anything similar. I am warning you about these things — as I warned you before — that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The law is not against such things. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”
Galatians 5:16-26 CSB
How would we live today if we knew Christ Jesus Himself prayed for us already, and intercedes for us always?
Would we live without fear? Would we still be faint of heart? Would we be deliberate about how we live, what we say, where we go, how we respond to things around us?
In our hearts we may say, If we could only hear Christ praying for us in the next room, we would be strong and not fear our enemies?
Take heart my brothers and sisters, because truthfully the distance makes no difference; Christ is praying for you and me.
Be encouraged, be faithful, walk humbly and boldly with Christ today knowing He is at the throne interesting for each of us now.
The world is watching, the world is broken, if you and I don't live what we believe, how will the unbelieving world know who Christ is?
God”s word says this!
”I pray not only for these, but also for those who believe in me through their word. May they all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us, so that the world may believe you sent me. I have given them the glory you have given me, so that they may be one as we are one. I am in them and you are in me, so that they may be made completely one, that the world may know you have sent me and have loved them as you have loved me. “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, so that they will see my glory, which you have given me because you loved me before the world’s foundation. Righteous Father, the world has not known you. However, I have known you, and they have known that you sent me. I made your name known to them and will continue to make it known, so that the love you have loved me with may be in them and I may be in them.”John 17:20-26
”Who can bring an accusation against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies. Who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is the one who died, but even more, has been raised; he also is at the right hand of God and intercedes for us.”
“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens — Jesus the Son of God — let us hold fast to our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way as we are, yet without sin. Therefore, let us approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in time of need.”
We will never grasp the concept of grace until we realize our need of it.
We try to live in God’s grace without admitting we are lost without Him, take a step back and look at your life, not your whole life just the last 72 hours, have you failed and fallen short of the glory of God?
We lose our temper, say something we didn’t mean, repeat something without knowing if it is true or not, make a promise we don’t keep, tell a little white lie, maybe fall into temptation in an area we struggle in, or covet what someone else has, or compare ourselves to others, maybe struggle with pride or self-righteousness?
We fall under the human condition known as our flesh, and in it we battle Gods Spirit, doing what we do not want to do, and not doing the things we want to do.
We dismiss our sins without repenting, because well there just little stupid things that don’t matter, right? Wrong to God each one matters, and they should matter to us.
This is why I said we will never grasp the concept of grace until we realize our need of it.
Notice I put we, every one of us need to get this, all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, all of us still sin, maybe not as much or our sins have changed and become less apparent or less in activity but we still fall so short of Gods glory, let's not lose the glory of God's grace for us, in us and in those around us, let’s get ahold of grace and learn to live in it, with our hearts and minds fixed on Christ, let’s strive to live and love with a repentant heart and mindful grace to ourselves and others.
We think of others as super Christians, when we read about them, but look at how the Holy Spirit had Paul pen these words.
“For I do not understand what I am doing, because I do not practice what I want to do, but I do what I hate. Now if I do what I do not want to do, I agree with the law that it is good.”Romans 7:15-16 CSB
“This saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” — and I am the worst of them.” 1 Timothy 1:15 CSB
They are all present tense, it’s not that Paul didn’t understand, it’s not that Paul didn’t practice what he did, see it says I do not, this means his struggle is as real as yours and mine. Paul doesn’t say I was, he says I am the worst of sinners.
The things he is writing are not past tense! They are ever present!
Don’t miss this, Paul had to learn the same lessons we learn, God’s grace is sufficient! His grace does not need our help, He gives it to us freely, and we deserve none of it.
Never forget the wages of sin are death, notice God’s word doesn’t say a little sin or a big sin, the penalty is death, but thanks to Jesus the penalty has been paid in full, that is grace.
Death and sin have no hold over us because of Gods grace, now the consequences of sin are still there and there are different consequences for different sins, but the penalty no longer has any power over us.
What we need to do is surrender to the grace of God and live in it daily, by following in the footsteps of Christ, who is the author and finisher of our faith, who has saved us by His grace and daily pours out His grace upon us, may we see others as Christ does and give grace as freely as we receive it.
I try and see the good in people and give grace upon grace, for Christ chose to be the good in me and has given me grace abundantly.
God’s word says this:
“The Word became flesh and dwelt among us. We observed his glory, the glory as the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John testified concerning him and exclaimed, “This was the one of whom I said, ‘The one coming after me ranks ahead of me, because he existed before me.’”) Indeed, we have all received grace upon grace from his fullness, for the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”John 1:14-17 CSB
“For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold as a slave to sin. For I do not understand what I am doing, because I do not practice what I want to do, but I do what I hate. Now if I do what I do not want to do, I agree with the law that it is good. So now I am no longer the one doing it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my flesh. For the desire to do what is good is with me, but there is no ability to do it. For I do not do the good that I want to do, but I practice the evil that I do not want to do. Now if I do what I do not want, I am no longer the one that does it, but it is the sin that lives in me. So I discover this law: When I want to do what is good, evil is present with me. For in my inner self I delight in God’s law, but I see a different law in the parts of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and taking me prisoner to the law of sin in the parts of my body. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with my mind I myself am serving the law of God, but with my flesh, the law of sin.” Romans 7:14-25 CSB
“I give thanks to Christ Jesus our Lord who has strengthened me, because he considered me faithful, appointing me to the ministry — even though I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and an arrogant man. But I received mercy because I acted out of ignorance in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. This saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” — and I am the worst of them. But I received mercy for this reason, so that in me, the worst of them, Christ Jesus might demonstrate his extraordinary patience as an example to those who would believe in him for eternal life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen. Timothy, my son, I am giving you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies previously made about you, so that by recalling them you may fight the good fight, having faith and a good conscience. Some have rejected these and have shipwrecked their faith.”1 Timothy 1:12-19 CSB
“Concerning this, I pleaded with the Lord three times that it would leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is perfected in weakness.” Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me. So I take pleasure in weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and in difficulties, for the sake of Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:8-10 CSB
We fall for the illusion of power, the power of our flesh, the power of the world, the power of the devil, don't get me wrong all three of these are powerful foes, and they have a hold on the world around us, they are stronger than us and on our own they easily defeat us. But in Christ we have overcome them all, their power is limited and fueled by illusions and trickery. The more we seek God, the more He transforms our minds, the more we see this daily.
There is more power in the prayers of one person of faith, praying to God our creator in belief than there is in all the politicians in Washington D.C.
God has put His Spirit in us, the same Spirit that moved over the earth and formed it, that sheltered Israel by day and gave them fire at night in the wilderness.
The same Spirit that descended upon Jesus at His baptism, and rose Him from the grave.
He can help our walk daily, we just need to seek Him and ask Him.
Today learn to seek,ask and obey the Spirit of God and see what He will do in your life, do not fall for the illusion of the enemy, instead see the power of God
God’s word says:
You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you. Romans 8:9-11
“This is the confidence we have before him: If we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears whatever we ask, we know that we have what we have asked of him.” 1st John 5:14-15
“Therefore, I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love, and sound judgment. So don’t be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, or of me his prisoner. Instead, share in suffering for the gospel, relying on the power of God. He has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began. This has now been made evident through the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who has abolished death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.” 2 Timothy 1:6-10 CSB
““Therefore, don’t be afraid of them, since there is nothing covered that won’t be uncovered and nothing hidden that won’t be made known. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the light. What you hear in a whisper, proclaim on the housetops. Don’t fear those who kill the body but are not able to kill the soul; rather, fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Aren’t two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them falls to the ground without your Father’s consent. But even the hairs of your head have all been counted. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”
Matthew 10:26-31 CSB
The world's s perception of religion is a social gospel, not spiritual, it's either a social gospel or the gospel of Christ. It cannot be both.
When people will turn out in multitudes to be entertained, but avoid the gathering of saints to worship God in His word through the message, through worship music, through prayer and fellowship, and not take the gospel message with them and share Christ, they are living a social gospel, not a Christ-centered gospel.
The social gospel is influenced and led by Hollywood or other outside forces, a Christ-centered gospel is spoken to us and we are led by the Holy Spirit. The social gospel changes depending on who has our attention, a Christ-centered gospel never changes.
Christianity goes beyond the realm of religion, for Christianity is Spiritual, it is the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit who seals our souls and enters our lives the very moment we surrender to Christ Jesus and starts working in us.
Everything from this point in our lives is now new, we are not saved to avoid hell alone, we are created, saved and indwelt by God, through God for God to have a relationship with Him, a Spiritual relationship that will last forever, and to share Him with others!
We must surrender to God or the world, if we have not yet surrendered you are missing God at work in you, through you and not completely committed to Him. These are unpleasant truths that we must all deal with, I have and still do, we are to glorify Christ in all we do, you and I can not do this on our own, this is done by the Holy Spirit through us.
We have to change our perspective, we have to ask for His help by confession and repentance of our sins, create in us a clean heart and mind, then ask Him to teach us His word daily as we submit to Him, the scriptures are written by the Holy Spirit, why would we not ask for His help to understand them so we can walk in His ways?
Let's go the next step with God, He has great things in store but we are settling for what we can do, we need to have faith the size of a mustard seed, walk humbly with God, seek Him first, no turning back, looking back and surrender our all to Him and His work in us and watch as God transforms us.
God's word says:
“When the Counselor comes, the one I will send to you from the Father — the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father — he will testify about me. You also will testify, because you have been with me from the beginning.” John 15:26-27 CSB
“I have told you these things to keep you from stumbling. They will ban you from the synagogues. In fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering service to God. They will do these things because they haven’t known the Father or me. But I have told you these things so that when their time comes you will remember I told them to you. I didn’t tell you these things from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going away to him who sent me, and not one of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Yet, because I have spoken these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I am telling you the truth. It is for your benefit that I go away, because if I don’t go away the Counselor will not come to you. If I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world about sin, righteousness, and judgment: About sin, because they do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; and about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged. “I still have many things to tell you, but you can’t bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth. For he will not speak on his own, but he will speak whatever he hears. He will also declare to you what is to come. He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. Everything the Father has is mine. This is why I told you that he takes from what is mine and will declare it to you.” John 16:1-15 CSB
“You adulterous people! Don’t you know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? So whoever wants to be the friend of the world becomes the enemy of God. Or do you think it’s without reason that the Scripture says: The spirit he made to dwell in us envies intensely? But he gives greater grace. Therefore he says: God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Therefore, submit to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” James 4:4-8 CSB
“This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light, and there is absolutely no darkness in him. If we say, “We have fellowship with him,” and yet we walk in darkness, we are lying and are not practicing the truth. If we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say, “We have no sin,” we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say, “We have not sinned,” we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”1st John 1:5-10 CSB
“He made known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure that he purposed in Christ as a plan for the right time — to bring everything together in Christ, both things in heaven and things on earth in him. In him we have also received an inheritance, because we were predestined according to the plan of the one who works out everything in agreement with the purpose of his will, so that we who had already put our hope in Christ might bring praise to his glory. In him you also were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and when you believed. The Holy Spirit is the down payment of our inheritance, until the redemption of the possession, to the praise of his glory.”Ephesians 1:9-14 CSB
“he has inaugurated for us a new and living way through the curtain (that is, through his flesh ) — and since we have a great high priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water. Let us hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, since he who promised is faithful. And let us watch out for one another to provoke love and good works, not neglecting to gather together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day approaching.” Hebrews 10:20-25 CSB
It is easier to please God than man, our lives should be pleasing to Him always, we must live by faith and pray, for prayer and faith change our nature.
Faith in its truest form is our attitude and soul surrendered to God!
Faith is the fruit of a praying person.
And prayer is the root of our faith.
Just as we are in a constant battle against evil, we must remain in a constant state of prayer, and live by faith.
Living by faith and prayer is not a guarantee against sickness, failure, death or anything the world or our enemy can do to us, it is rather putting all of us, all we have, all we will be in the hands of God, and taking the worry away for we will always be safe in the hands of God.
God’s word says this:
“When he entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, pleading with him, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, in terrible agony.” He said to him, “Am I to come and heal him?” “Lord,” the centurion replied, “I am not worthy to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I too am a man under authority, having soldiers under my command. I say to this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this!’ and he does it.” Hearing this, Jesus was amazed and said to those following him, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with so great a faith. I tell you that many will come from east and west to share the banquet with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the sons of the kingdom will be thrown into the outer darkness where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Then Jesus told the centurion, “Go. As you have believed, let it be done for you.” And his servant was healed that very moment.”
Matthew 8:5-13 CSB
“Now faith is the reality of what is hoped for, the proof of what is not seen. For by it our ancestors won God’s approval. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was made from things that are not visible. By faith Abel offered to God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was approved as a righteous man, because God approved his gifts, and even though he is dead, he still speaks through his faith. By faith Enoch was taken away, and so he did not experience death. He was not to be found because God took him away. For before he was taken away, he was approved as one who pleased God. Now without faith it is impossible to please God, since the one who draws near to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. By faith Noah, after he was warned about what was not yet seen and motivated by godly fear, built an ark to deliver his family. By faith he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith. By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed and set out for a place that he was going to receive as an inheritance. He went out, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he stayed as a foreigner in the land of promise, living in tents as did Isaac and Jacob, coheirs of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose architect and builder is God. By faith even Sarah herself, when she was unable to have children, received power to conceive offspring, even though she was past the age, since she considered that the one who had promised was faithful. Therefore, from one man — in fact, from one as good as dead — came offspring as numerous as the stars of the sky and as innumerable as the grains of sand along the seashore. These all died in faith, although they had not received the things that were promised. But they saw them from a distance, greeted them, and confessed that they were foreigners and temporary residents on the earth. Now those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they were thinking about where they came from, they would have had an opportunity to return. But they now desire a better place — a heavenly one. Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac. He received the promises and yet he was offering his one and only son, the one to whom it had been said, Your offspring will be traced through Isaac. He considered God to be able even to raise someone from the dead; therefore, he received him back, figuratively speaking. By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come. By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, and he worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff. By faith Joseph, as he was nearing the end of his life, mentioned the exodus of the Israelites and gave instructions concerning his bones. By faith Moses, after he was born, was hidden by his parents for three months, because they saw that the child was beautiful, and they didn’t fear the king’s edict. By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter and chose to suffer with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasure of sin. For he considered reproach for the sake of Christ to be greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, since he was looking ahead to the reward. By faith he left Egypt behind, not being afraid of the king’s anger, for Moses persevered as one who sees him who is invisible. By faith he instituted the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn might not touch the Israelites. By faith they crossed the Red Sea as though they were on dry land. When the Egyptians attempted to do this, they were drowned. By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after being marched around by the Israelites for seven days. By faith Rahab the prostitute welcomed the spies in peace and didn’t perish with those who disobeyed. And what more can I say? Time is too short for me to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets, who by faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, quenched the raging of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, gained strength in weakness, became mighty in battle, and put foreign armies to flight. Women received their dead, raised to life again. Other people were tortured, not accepting release, so that they might gain a better resurrection. Others experienced mockings and scourgings, as well as bonds and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawed in two, they died by the sword, they wandered about in sheepskins, in goatskins, destitute, afflicted, and mistreated. The world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and on mountains, hiding in caves and holes in the ground. All these were approved through their faith, but they did not receive what was promised, since God had provided something better for us, so that they would not be made perfect without us.”Hebrews 11:1-40 CSB
“Therefore, since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every hindrance and the sin that so easily ensnares us. Let us run with endurance the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith. For the joy that lay before him, he endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him who endured such hostility from sinners against himself, so that you won’t grow weary and give up.” Hebrews 12:1-3 CSB
“Jesus replied to them, “Have faith in God. Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him. Therefore I tell you, everything you pray and ask for — believe that you have received it and it will be yours. And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven will also forgive you your wrongdoing.”Mark 11:22-25 CSB