Summary: Faith is evidenced and strengthened by our obedience to God and His commands.
A Faith That Obeys
Griffith Baptist Church – 11/2/08
Text: Hebrews 11:7 (Gen. 6:1-8)
Key verse: Hebrews 11:7 – By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.
Premise: Faith is evidenced and strengthened by our obedience to God and His commands.
The story of Noah is a tremendous story found in Genesis 6-9. Here, we learn of a man that, despite all odds and what people thought, trusted in His God and succeeded.
"Mr. Shauffler," said the Russian Ambassador to the old-time missionary in Constantinople, "I will say to you frankly that my master, the Czar of all the Russias, will never suffer Christian missions to set their feet in the Turkish Empire." The old missionary looked at him for a moment, and then replied, "Your Excellency, my Master, the Lord Jesus Christ, will never ask the Czar of all the Russias where He may set His feet." And he went on with his mission unintimidated by any agencies working in the dark against him. He was confident that the living God whose he was and whom he served would care for His own work. He was careful to do the will of the Lord no matter what others thought or said.
As we turn to Genesis 6:1-7 we can see the background pressure that Noah was under.
1. Obedient Faith is Evidence of a Holy Life
A. Holiness produces obedience - Genesis 6:8-9 – 8But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD. 9These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.
B. “Holiness does not consist in mystic speculations, enthusiastic fervours, or uncommanded austerities; it consists in thinking as God thinks, and willing as God wills.” John Brown, nineteenth-century Scottish theologian, quoted in J. Bridges, The Pursuit of Holiness, p. 51
i. Gives us a different way of looking at the world – no hope apart from God
ii. Gives us a different way of looking at sin – it disgusts us
iii. Gives us a different way of looking at the future – eternal life versus eternal torment
D. God longs for us to be like Him – 1 Peter 1:15-16 - 15But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; 16Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
E. To be holy, we must agree with God – Amos 3:3 – Can two walk together, except they be agreed?
F. To be holy, we must not be like that which is unholy - 2 Corinthians 6:17 - Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you
2. Obedient Faith Listens
A. We need to hear with our heart, not just our head - Genesis 6:22 – Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.
B. Two men were talking over coffee one day. One said: "I’m concerned about my wife. She talks to herself a lot these days." The other said: "Mine does too, but she doesn’t know it. She thinks I’m listening.” Well, we better listen to God, because when He talks, it’s not to Himself.
C. It is illustrated in our salvation - Romans 10:8-11 – 8But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; 9That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. (Eph. 2:8-9)
D. A listening hearts starts with a love for God - Matthew 22:37 – Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind
E. Listening to God stores up good things to be used later - Matthew 12:35 – A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.
F. Listening means having a spirit that practices what God preaches - Ezekiel 36:26-27 – 26A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh. 27And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. (2nd Cor. 3:3)