Summary: Discusses the things that hinder our faith.
Faith Part 7: Hindrances To Your Faith
As we have begun our bible study lesson series on faith, this will be the final sermon on faith in this series at this time – more could come later. During the course of this series, I have shared with you many concepts pertaining to how you can begin to exercise the faith that is already within you. This morning I will conclude this series by reminding you of some of the things that will hinder you from exercising your faith. Paul told Timothy in 1 Timothy 6:12 “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto you are also called and has professed a good profession before many witnesses.” As Paul said to Timothy, I say to you, “Fight the good fight of faith!” You have learned how to exercise your faith, so with that knowledge, you must be fully aware of what will hinder you. Let’s start with what I believe is the most important one: a lack of knowledge of God’s Word.
I. Lack of Knowledge of God’s Word
I shared with you at the beginning of this series what Romans 10:17 says, “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” You know that you cannot fully exercise your faith without having some knowledge of the Word of God and BELIEVING what is recorded in Scripture as being true. If you accept some parts of the Scripture and reject other parts because it does not make sense to your intellect, your faith will be hindered. If you believe that the Bible is not accurate and that what is in it are good stories that we can learn by, your faith will be hindered. Your knowledge and acceptance of the Word of God is crucial to you stepping out in faith believing God that His Word are true and that He will do exactly what He says in His Word. One minister said, “A lack of knowledge will hinder us and hold us in bondage because we cannot act upon God’s Word beyond actual knowledge of God’s Word. Faith will grow with an understanding of God’s Word.” Through our knowledge of God’s Word, we begin to understand our position in Him through Christ and within this world. We begin to understand our righteousness, which is not based on how wonderful we are, but on Christ. Through God’s Word we understand that our lives are so much more than just existing on earth, that we have a bountiful fullness promised through God. We learn what God has done in the past, He will do now. We learn how to trust Him based on His promises. To exercise your faith, you must begin to dig deeper into God’s Word so that you know your struggles are not yours to bear alone. The first hindrance to your faith will be your understanding (or lack thereof) of God’s Word.
II. You Must Be Diligent
“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.”
We are responsible for our success in life. On our jobs, in school, in our relationships, etc, we carry a responsibility to do whatever we can to be successful. Success is not defined by the job you have, but how well you do that job. Dr. Martin L. King said “If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted or Beethoven composed music…He should sweep streets so well that all of the host in heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.” So it is with your faith. It is not about how much you have, it is about what you do with what you have. Paul writes in Hebrews that it is impossible to please God without faith and that God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. The Greek word of diligence carries the meaning of “zealously seeking for something with all of one’s heart, strength and might.” It presents the picture of one who seeks something so passionately and determinedly that he literally exhausts all his power in his search. You must be diligent in your search for God and in the exercising of your faith if you are to please Him once you have found Him. You cannot give up when the battle gets tough or when your faith seems weak. You cannot give up when you get tired of “trying” because it is much easier to give in to the trials of life. Being diligent carries the meaning that you will be consistent. You can be counted on to respond the same way, over and over again when it comes to the exercising of your faith. If you are prone to doubt your efforts, your results and you tire easily, you can declare a change today. Choose to be diligent – seeking to exercise your faith with so much willpower that nothing will stop you from reaching your goal. A lack of being diligence will hinder your faith.