Summary: Faithfulness is not optional in our relationship with God, but is an integral part of our relationship with Him as it is with a marriage.
Developing Christian Character
The Characteristic of
We have been talking about developing Christian character. We have said that character is what we portray to the world. It’s not what we do in church, but what we do when no-one else is around. The fruit of the spirit are the characteristics of God. It is these characteristics that, while manifested in the flesh, Jesus portrayed. The word Christian as you recall means to be Christ-like, in our actions, thoughts, desires, and attitude. Developing Christian characteristics is growing spiritually and portraying the image and likeness of Christ to this world. Faithfulness is one of the characteristics that God looks for in His children. Everyone in the body of Christ will not have the same abilities, but we all have the obligation to be faithful. Faithfulness is one capacity that each and every servant of the Lord will be judged in. In the book of Matthew the 25th we find the parable of the talents. The 21st verse says: “His lord said unto him, Well done, thy good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many, enter into the joy of the lord.” Faithfulness, like humbleness, is all about obedience. Faithfulness is a requirement that one must have that has been entrusted with the responsibility of feeding and caring for the people of God.
Hebrews the 11th chapter is called the Hall of Faith. It states some of the great cloud of witness that have gone on before us. This great cloud of witness had something in common and that is they all had developed their Christian characteristics. They all had the wisdom to apply to their lives the knowledge they had received. They all were humbled and because of their humbleness the Lord exalted them. They were pleasing to God because they had faith and because of faith became faithful.
We understand that faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen. However faith is the manifestations of the characteristic of faithfulness. We must understand that it is the faithfulness of God which produces faith in man, which in-turn causes us to become faithful, which cause our faith to grow from mustard seed faith to more faith, and finally much faith. Faithfulness is one of the most important characteristics of God. It is because He is faithful that we can trust Him to do what He has said He would do.
Thomas O. Chisholm & William M. Runyan composed the song “Great is Thy Faithfulness” in 1923, they understood that because of the faithfulness of God they have faith which caused them to become faithful themselves.
Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father; There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not; As Thou hast been, Thou forever will be.
Great is Thy faithfulness! Great is Thy faithfulness! Morning by morning new mercies I see. All I have needed Thy hand hath provided; Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!
Summer and winter and springtime and harvest, Sun, moon and stars in their courses above Join with all nature in manifold witness To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.
Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow, Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!
What does it mean to be faithful? Webster’s defines faithfulness as a person who is “firm in adherence to promises or in observance of duty”. It is a person who is “steadfast in affection or allegiance”. Faithfulness means to be trustworthy, true to your word and responsibilities, loyal and consistent.
PONDER THIS: If your car started 4 mornings out of 7 would you call it a faithful car. If your air conditioner cooled your house 3 out of 8 times would you call your air conditioner faithful? If you spouse only came home 2 nights a week, and they’re not a long distance truck driver, would you say they are faithful. If you only come to church, read your Bible, and pray on Sunday, DO YOU THINK GOD CALLS YOU FAITHFUL?
The word "faith" comes from the Greek word “PISTIS” and it means "trustworthiness”. The fruit of the spirit listed in Galatians 5 are aspects of Christ’s character in us, and are manifested in our behavior. Faithfulness, like each of the other fruit of the spirit, is built into our lives as we abide in Christ, and walk in the spirit rather than in the flesh. We live our lives to please God rather than living to please ourselves.
Faithfulness is not optional in our relationship with God, but is an integral part of our relationship with Him as it is with a marriage. In order for you marriage to work there must be faithfulness. Most people will not stay with a person that is not faithful to them. God is looking people who will consistently carry out His will. To be faithful is to be dependable, loyal, and stable.