Author Finisher, Founder and Perfecter of your faith
No faith, no God. Oh, God is still there, but He doesn’t connect with the unfaithful. Faith is the bedrock of Christianity:
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Heb. 11:1 NASB
When Jesus began preaching, He lamented over the lack of faith in the Jews regarding His message:
Unless you see signs and miracles happen, you [people] will never believe (trust, have faith) at all. Jn 4:8 AMP
Jesus was approached by a nobleman who urged Him to come to his home and heal his dying son. That’s what prompted His aforementioned utterance. Yet, He pours His compassion forth and says:
“Go your way; your son lives.” So the man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him, and he went his way. Jn. 4:50 NKJV
The son was healed before the man got home! Why? It’s because the nobleman had placed his faith in Jesus’ words.
Shortly thereafter, Jesus returned to Nazareth and began to preach in a synagogue. He starts by laying out His entire purpose for coming to this world by quoting Is. 61, 62:
“The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.” Lk. 4:18, 19. NKJV
The ‘acceptable year of the Lord’ is alluding to the ‘year of the Jubilee,’ which was a specified year when all debtors and slaves were set free in Israel. Jesus is saying that He came to set them free from spiritual darkness and the consequences it brings.
All eyes are on Jesus when He delivers the clincher:
“Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” Lk. 4:21 NKJV
How did the people of Nazareth respond? They scoffed at Him because they were blinded by their familiarity with Him due to the fact that He grew up in that town. They had no faith. Guess what? Neither did they receive any miracles.
Even Satan and his demons have faith in Jesus. When Jesus was preaching in another synagogue in Capernaum, the devil entered into a man who stood up and said:
Now there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit. And he cried out saying, “Let us alone! What have we to do with You, Jesus of Nazareth? Did you come to destroy us? I know who you are – the Holy One of God!” Mk. 1:23, 24. NKJV
The people in that town had faith and brought all of their sick and demon-possessed to Jesus for miracle cures, and He healed them all!
While still in Galilee, Jesus was approached by a leper who entreated Him:
“If you are willing, You can make me clean.” Mk. 1:40 NKJV
He brought his faith. He got his miracle. Indeed, many times that Jesus performed miracles, He stated that His ability to do so was facilitated by the recipient’s faith. (Lk. 7:50, 18:42; Mt. 9:22; Mk. 2:5.)
Let’s look at one more. Jesus went into the apostle Peter’s house to preach. Because the house was crammed to capacity, friends of a paralyzed man took the roof off the house and lowered their paralyzed friend to Jesus:
And when He saw their faith, He said to him, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.” Lk. 5:16 NKJV
There were scribes and Pharisees in the audience who went apoplectic with rage over Jesus’ claim to be able to forgive sins. Jesus read their minds and rebuked them, saying that in order to prove He had that power, He was going to heal the paralytic as well – which He did.
Christ has the power to overcome sin. Notice that He cleansed the man of his sins before He healed him. Consider too that it was the faith of the man’s friends that provided the atmosphere for Jesus’ healing power to manifest.
Faith is at the center of everything:
“And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.” Mt. 21:22 ESV
“All things are possible to him who believes.” Mk. 9:23 NASB
Faith bonds all of God’s children as one. (Eph. 4;4 – 6.) Having faith is the only way to please God. (Heb. 11:6) We are justified and sanctified by it. (Rm. 3:28) It brings us divine strength (Ps. 125:1) and protection. (Ps. 31:23, 56:4, 71:5, 6.) Faith even wards off the devil himself. (1 Pt. 5:8, 9; Eph. 6:16.) Our happiness is based upon faith, our revelation, (Jm. 1:5, 6.) healing, (Jm. 5:15) as well as all the rest of God’s blessings.(Pr. 28:20; Lk. 1:45.)
So, where do we get this faith?
…God has allotted to each a measure of faith. Rm. 12:3 NASB
But the fruit of the Spirit is…faithfulness. Gal. 5:22 ESV
It comes from God Himself! He’s helping you do the believing. In fact, we can’t even understand the gospel message until that faith is activated. (2 Cor. 4:3, 4.) We must have the gift of God’s grace to be able to know Christ and have Him reside within us.
We continue to strengthen that faith by continually immersing ourselves in the hearing of our newfound understanding:
So faith comes by hearing [what is told], and what is heard comes by the preaching [of the message that came from the lips of Christ] (the Messiah Himself). Rm. 10;17 AMP
By faith you touch God, not by works. By faith you accept that Jesus has done everything – making us totally acceptable to God. In that faith, we act on the word of God, to live by it at all times. And what lies at the crux of that work? Your faith:
“This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.” Jn. 6:29 NKJV
Your salvation in a nutshell…
So what’s left?
…let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith… Heb. 12:1, 2. ESV
Looking to Jesus, making that contact…
Goodnight and God bless.