Summary: When you have faith, then add these things.
ADD THESE THINGS TO FAITH
There was a tightrope walker, who did incredible aerial feats. All over Paris, he would do tightrope acts at tremendously scary heights. Then he had succeeding acts; he would do it blindfolded, then he would go across the tightrope, blindfolded, pushing a wheelbarrow. An American promoter read about this in the papers and wrote a letter to the tightrope walker, saying, “Tightrope, I don’t believe you can do it, but I’m willing to make you an offer. For a very substantial sum of money, besides all your transportation fees, I would like to challenge you to do your act over Niagara Falls.”
Now, Tightrope wrote back, “Sir, although I’ve never been to America and seen the Falls, I’d love to come.”
Well, after a lot of promotion and setting the whole thing up, many people came to see the event. Tightrope was to start on the Canadian side and come to the American side. Drums roll, and he comes across the rope which is suspended over the treacherous part of the falls—blindfolded!! And he makes it across easily. The crowds go wild, and he comes to the promoter and says, “Well, Mr. Promoter, now do you believe I can do it?”
“Well of course I do. I mean, I just saw you do it.”
“No,” said Tightrope, “do you really believe I can do it?”
“Well of course I do, you just did it.”
“No, no, no,” said Tightrope, “do you believe I can do it?”
“Yes,” said Mr. Promoter, “I believe you can do it.”
“Good,” said Tightrope, “then you get in the wheelbarrow.”
The word believe, in Greek means “to live by.” This is a nice story …makes you ask, how often do we say that we believe Christ can do it, but refuse to get in the wheelbarrow?
Since you have faith…add…
1. VIRTUE---Moral Excellence.
A. Since you have a relationship with God…be a person of character.
“Your ideal is what you wish you were.
Your reputation is what people say you are.
Your character is what you really are.”
B. In the truest sense of the word, the word “Virtue” in the Greek actually deals with the thought life.
A. There are several levels to the meaning of this word.
1. General intelligence
Police in Wichita, Kansas, arrested a 22-year-old man at an airport hotel after he tried to pass two (counterfeit) $16 bills.
2. General Knowledge of Religion
3. An understanding of things lawful and unlawful for a Christian
4. An understanding of the deeper things of Christianity
5. Moral wisdom which is seen in right living.
B. Hosea 4:6 says “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge”
Do you want to add knowledge to your faith? Sunday School and Wednesday evening services are the most important times in the ministry of FBC for adding knowledge to faith.
A. Strong’s Dictionary says that temperance is “self-control (the virtue of one who masters his desires and passions, esp. his sensual appetites)”
B. We have bought into the lies of Satan where self-control is concerned.
1. I just can’t help my self
2. Everyone else is doing it so I might as well
3. God wants me to be happy—God doesn’t care if you are happy—not by those standards…..He wants you to be filled with joy…He wants you to be righteous….He knows you will be much happier when you are living according to His guidelines.
A. in the NT this is the characteristic of a person who is not swerved from his/her deliberate purpose and his/her loyalty to faith and piety by even the greatest trials and sufferings
Charlie Brown is at bat. STRIKE THREE. He has struck out again and slumps over to the bench. "Rats! I’ll never be a big-league player. I just don’t have it! All my life I’ve dreamed of playing in the big leagues, but I know I’ll never make it." Lucy turns to console him. "Charlie Brown, you’re thinking too far ahead. What you need to do is set yourself more immediate goals." He looks up. "Immediate goals?" Lucy says, "Yes. Start with this next inning when you go out to pitch. See if you can walk out on the mound without falling down!"
B. Persevere…Hang in there….tie a knot in the end of your rope and hold on…..TAKE THE HAND OF GOD AS A LITTLE CHILD TAKES THE HAND OF HIS/HER FATHER.
A. Godliness is a spirit of reverence and respect to God in all matters. It understands that He is a Holy God.
B. We must add Holiness to our faith. Not outward compliance to certain rules, but inward purity of heart.
6. BROTHERLY KINDNESS AND CHARITY
A. I have combined these last two because they are so inter-related.