Summary: But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and, that he is a rewarder, of them that diligently seek him..
Faith That Pleases God…..
The parable six blind men and an elephant
◦They came up on a man riding an elephant.
◦They wanted to go back and tell the other villagers what an elephant looked like. ◦All the blind men touched and stroked the elephant. ◦They returned to their village to report their experience. ◦The first man, who had felt the animals' side, said, "An elephant is like a great thick wall." ◦The second man, who had felt the elephant's tusk. "He is rather short, round, and smooth, but very sharp. I would compare an elephant not with a wall but with a spear!" ◦The third man, who had touched the ear, differed with both of his friends and said, "It is nothing at all like a wall or a spear. It is like a gigantic leaf made of thick wool carpet. It moves when you touch it." ◦The fourth man, who had handled the trunk. "I can tell you that an elephant is like a giant snake." ◦Then, the fifth man shouted his objection. He had touched one of the elephant's legs and concluded, "An elephant is round and thick, like a tree." ◦The sixth man had been allowed to ride on the elephant's back, and he protested, "Can none of you accurately describe an elephant? Clearly he is like a gigantic moving mountain!" ◦The parable ends by saying that, to this day, the six men continue to argue, and no one in the village has any idea what an elephant looks like.
Like these men, most people struggle, to define “concepts” that are bigger than we are. We grope around in the dark in our attempts to explain things, that are our five senses do not allow us to perceive. One such concept is 'Faith'.
Since we cannot please God without faith,
it is vital, that we as believers, have an accurate understanding, of what faith is.
I. Some Misconceptions About Faith,
A. Some people mistakenly define faith as
some kind of magical potion or power.
1. They would have us believe that if we could just muster up enough of this substance or feeling,
2. We could do anything for personal gain. (Jet/no gas)
3. We could, faith, our way through life, with no trials, tests, tribulation or responsibility. (Cancer free cigs)
4. We could perform all sorts of amazing
“feats of wonder” in “order to be famous” (miracles)
5. But that isn't faith! That’s Selfishness & Pride.
B. Other's think of faith, as positive thinking.
1. If I just think good, positive thoughts, I could
change the world. (Faith/ bring peace/middle east)
2. It is all in the mind! Mind over matter.
3. But, that isn't faith either! That’s ignorance.
C. All of these attempts at defining FAITH, fall
far short of an accurate definition. PS 37:4…
Give what YOU desire, Give you what TO desire.
Hebrews 11:1-6 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 2 For by it the elders obtained a good report. 3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. 4 By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it, he being dead, yet speaketh.
5 By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation, he had this testimony, that he pleased God. 6 But without faith, it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder
of them that diligently seek him.
II. Faith Is...Believing When You Don't See It.
A. Real faith anticipates. 1. It visualizes the future in the present. 2. It sees in advance...so it is being sure, even of what you don't, yet see. B. The example of Noah. Heb 11:7. This verse reminds us that Noah embraced this aspect of faith. 2. Remember, he was warned about an impending flood. 3. He had never even seen rain before, much less enough water to flood the world, but he was so sure of this future event,
that in faith, He built the ark just as God instructed.
(450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet high)(by hand)
True faith does not SEE and then BELIEVE ....
True faith “BELIEVES and then it SEES.”
C. How is it possible for us to have this much faith?
1. The answer lies, in the object of our faith.
2. When it comes to genuine faith, it is not quantity that counts. 3. Jesus said you only need have the faith of a tiny mustard seed....so quantity is not that significant. 4. It is the QUALITY of faith that is important and the quality of faith comes, from that