Summary: A message challenging Christians to move beyond believing faith to "keeping the Faith". This sermon challenges the believer to grow in their Christian Faith.
Where the Battle of Faith is Waged
Pastor Glenn Newton 2-20-00
Text: Hebrews 10:35 - 11:2
“So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.
You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will
receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, "He who is
coming will come and will not delay. But my righteous one will live by faith.
And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him." But we are not of
those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are
saved. Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we
do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for.”
Jim Cymbala, in his book “Fresh Faith” says, “The Battle of the Christian Life has
always been not just to believe, but to Keep On Believing.” He goes on and says, “This is
how we will grow strong in faith and see the actual fulfillment of God’s promises in our
I believe what he says goes hand in hand with what our Scripture speaks to us
about. Two weeks ago I talked about how God wants to add to our life by subtraction,
remember, like the silversmith must heat up the silver so he can remove the impurities, so
God does in our life, he will allow the heat to be turned up so that he can then deal and
with our obedience, he will remove the impurities so that we will be people of Pure Faith,
and Clean Hearts.
This morning I want us to move from the place of becoming people of Faith, to
today’s message of “keeping the Faith”.
Christians we don’t want to be like the Israelites who believed in God for a little
while but then fell away and their disbelief doomed them from ever entering the Promised
Land. And if you will read the story, you will notice that it was not the sin of idolatry, or
immorality, or greed that was the reason for their not entering the Promised Land, but
instead it was the horrible sin of unbelief. Their Chronic Lack of Faith doomed them to
die in the desert.
For whatever reason today in the church we seem to not treat unbelief as a sin, but
we’d much rather call it a weakness. We say, “Well, there just a doubting Thomas” or we
say, “You Know Mrs. Smith, She just has a hard time believing that God will help her.”
That’s the kinds of things we might say, but when I read this passage in Hebrews, and
when I study other passages where examples of disbelief are brought out, God doesn’t
take such a easygoing approach.
The writer describes disbelief as “shrinking back” and says that God is not pleased.
In fact, to reject his promises to us can be far more destructive to us than some of the
other more sensational sins that we often like to talk about. The Bible calls it a “sinful,
unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God.” Heb. 3:12
We have in the last few weeks also talked about how Satan comes to Steal,
destroy and Kill, and he loves nothing more to come and target our Faith, and to break
down our Faith in God. Faith is our lifeline to God.
Have you seen the new show, “Do you want to be a Millionaire?” If you answer
16 questions or so correctly you walk away with a Million dollars, but when you get stuck
with a question you don’t know, you have three lifelines that you can use. One of them,
you can poll the audience, and the audience will answer the question and then you can use
their answer if you wish. The second lifeline you can call a friend, you read to them the
question, and they have 30 seconds to help you come up with the right answer, the third
lifeline is called 50/50 where the computer will take away two of the four answers so you
automatically have a 50/50 chance to get the right answer. Those lifelines are valuable, in
fact I doubt if anyone has been able to make it all the way without using their lifelines.
My friends, Your Faith in God is the Only LifeLine that’s going to get you
through this life and into Heaven. If you allow Satan to cut that lifeline by causing you to
fall into disbelief you will be lost, there is no other lifeline out there!
You can’t work your way in.
You can’t be so nice that God has to allow you in.
You will not be able to Whine your way in and say that life wasn’t fair to you.