Summary: Discusses our professions of faith.
Profession Of Faith
This morning I want to take a different look at some very familiar Scriptures that focuses on how our communications displays our faith. One thing you must remember and that is your faith is within you. You already know how to use your faith for a negative outcome, but the difference happens when you start “learning” to use your faith for positive outcomes. Remember, faith is faith. It will work for something positive and for something negative. But, let me be clear, when I am speaking of the faith we should have, I am speaking of using our faith for outcomes based on our knowledge of the Word of God. Faith in God cannot result in a negative outcome, even if we do not always receive everything we want, that is not always negative. But lets be certain of two things pertaining to negative outcomes, if you do not have faith, it is hard to believe God for anything positive. Also, if you have faith, but you use it with doubt, you believe for a negative outcome.
Let me give you a few examples of things people say in normal conversations that clearly demonstrate a possibility that they are using their faith for a negative outcome:
• “It’s Monday morning, I hate Mondays. It’s going to be a long day.”
• “I believe I am catching a cold.”
• “Nothing ever works out for me.”
• “I will never get out of debt.”
All of these statements, although somewhat on the negative side, are statements of faith. The difference is that these statements do not hold faith in God, but faith in a negative outcome. My goal with this message is to show you that you are called to walk by faith and the first step you make will start with you changing how you speak. I have already proven to you over the last four weeks that you have been give faith. So not having faith is not the problem, the problem is using it correctly. When you really start believing in your heart the Word of God, you will begin change how you speak. What is in your heart, faith, fear, doubt, etc., will come out through your mouth. Let me give you this example from Romans 10 just to set the stage. Romans 10:8-10 says “But what does it say? The word is near you, in your mouth, and in your heart, that is, the word of faith which we are preaching. That if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.” Did you notice the process? You believe with your heart and you confess with your mouth. So as you start believing, the next step is to start professing (confessing).
I. Faith as a Profession
I told you earlier that we are called to walk by faith. Hebrews 10:23 says, “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; for he is faithful that promised.” I want you to look at the word profession. We know in this verse it is talking about speaking, or confessing. But I want you to consider something else. We have discussed previously that it is impossible to please God without faith, so our lives must be centered on faith. When we look at the word profession, it has two meanings that are applicable for us in our faith walk. Profession is defined as “a professing or declaring; an occupation requiring advanced academic training, as in medicine or law.” Both of these definitions are applicable to what I want to express to you this morning. The second definition is where I want to start. As you know, when someone graduates from high school and chooses to attend college, the first question that is asked of them is “What are you majoring in or what profession are you going into?” As a Christian, we have a profession – it is a life of faith. Now by definition, for us to enter into this profession, we must go through some training. Bible study and our weekly Church services are our school. We also have home work or home schooling when you are actually studying your bibles at home. This is your formalized training that is required for you to operate in your profession - faith.
When an individual goes to medical school or law school, they are known by their profession. When a medical physician graduates from medical school, he or she begins to practice medicine. Their lives are consumed with their profession. When a lawyer graduates from law school, and starts practicing law, it becomes his or her profession. They are known by what they do professionally. When they wake up in the morning they know what they will be doing that day, what they were trained to do. The lawyer does not wake up in the morning and decide to practice medicine that day, neither does the physician wake up and decides to walk into a courtroom and defend a client. No, they wake up expecting to do what they have been trained to do – their professions. Now consider this, if the medical doctor decides not to practice medicine (although fully trained and licensed), and decides to open a hardware store instead, although trained as a physician, he is not operating in his profession. He is trained for the profession, but that is not the profession he is operating in.