Summary: Faith is taking God at His Word! When you believe what God says is true you behave how God tells you. When we live as like God is telling the truth not one fiery dart of the devil can find its mark! We are protected by our faith and trust in Jesus!
Intro: A preacher an evangelist and a priest went out in a boat fishing on the lake. The preacher needed to go to the bathroom so he got up got out of the boat walked on the water to shore and walked back the same way. The evangelist also had to go relieve himself got up out of the boat and walked on the water to the shore used the outdoor restroom and walked back the same way.
The priest was getting uncomfortable because he needed to use the restroom as well. He finally decided he had as much faith as the other two got up stepped out of the boat and quickly sank beneath the water.
The preacher looked at the evangelist and said, “Do you think we should have told him where the rocks are?”
With all the misunderstanding about faith today I want you to realize what faith is and what it isn’t. Some see faith as positive thinking that can change things through powerful positive thoughts. Some see faith as a leap in the dark. Others see faith as a blind force that can be used to make God do what we want. What you will discover is that faith is Jesus telling you where the rocks are!
Faith is a walk in the light of Jesus Christ. Faith is not based on blind belief it is based on a personal savior and Lord. Faith is not positive thinking it is a personal trust in a person!!
Faith is tied directly to the truth and faithfulness of God.
In the first half of Paul’s letter he is speaking to us about a principled faith. If you daily feed your faith with God’s word and spend time with Him your faith will be able to resist the fiery darts of the devil.
In the second half of this letter Paul tells us about a practical faith. A faith that works.
Paus says we are to take up the shield of faith. This verb is in the active voice in the Greek which makes clear that it is our choice to do this. So what exactly are we taking up?
Faith is believing what God says is true. If you honestly read the Old and New Testament you will find that faith is always tied to your feet.
Proverbs 18:10 “The name of Yahweh is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are protected.”
Proverbs 30:5 “Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him.”
Psalms 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”
Ephesians 2:10 We are to walk in good works
Romans 13:13 “Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy.” ESV
Genesis 6:9 “These are the family records of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among his contemporaries; Noah walked with God.”
What we discover from these passages is that faith is acting like God is telling the truth!! The roman shield was approximately 3 to 4 foot tall and at least 2.5 to 3 foot wide. It was designed to fully cover a soldier if they were kneeling behind it. It could also be linked to other shields to protect an entire group of soldiers. It only worked if they acted on its ability to protect!
I. Faith is acting on God’s word in spite of what you face
Have you ever discovered that fiery darts the devil shoots at us are designed to hide God’s gracious face from us? The tools of the devil are designed to get us to look away from the faithfulness and truthfulness of God. Do you remember what the Devil said about Job?!
Job 1:9-11 God if you will take his stuff away He will turn from you and curse you!
Job 2:4-5 attack his health and he will curse you!
Twice the devil said God if you make him face something hard and hurtful he will not trust you. Church our trust in God should not be dependent on what we face. The devil seeks to get you to think God doesn’t love you because times are hard and people are hurtful. Listen to me God is faithful even if all hell breaks loose around you. Whatever we face faith is acting like God is telling the truth.
The devils fiery darts are doubt and fear. What do we learn from David?
1 Samuel 17:33 We see the Worlds point of view you can’t fight this Philistine Saul says he’s been a warrior from his youth. Faith isn’t about what we face but what God says!
1 Samuel 17:34-37, 45-47 David saw Goliath not as a problem too big to face. David saw Him as a problem to be faced in God’s power.