Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Faith and Patience leads us to DO GOD'S WILL

Faith and Patience leads us to DO GOD’S WILL
Heb 11:30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they were compassed about seven days.

I. The Israelites could have been told to march right in to take the city
i. God wanted to test them and their obedience
ii. God wanted to show His power to the enemy by giving a very confusing battle plan
B. There are several methods of testing God uses:
i. Failure
ii. Physical health
iii. Emotional stress
iv. Spiritual battles
v. Stressed relationships
vi. Material or financial hardship or loss

C. The end results are priceless blessings for the believer - James 1:4 - 2My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 3Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
i. We realize, with joy, that trials produce the godly virtue of patience in us
a. It is one of the seven fruits of the Holy Spirit
b. Anything that makes us more like our heavenly Father is fantastic – Psalms 86:15 - But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth.
ii. That we mature with every passing trial we learn from
a. Growth is what the Christian life is designed for, not stagnation
b. 1 Peter 5:10 - But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered .
II. a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.
iii. That we find ourselves more contented and stable in our lives
a. Discontent is a killer (churches, relationships, Christian growth)
b. Philippians 4:11-13 - 11Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. 12I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

3. Patient Faith Waits For the Answer
A. The Israelites did as God had commanded
i. They marched around the city for seven days
ii. They blew the horns and shouted
iii. God followed through on His guarantee that the walls would fall
iv. They went in and conquered the city
B. The timing of God’s answer is always perfect and is worth waiting for
i. It helps us to cope with the prosperity of the wicked, for we will be far better rewarded in the long run - Psalms 37:7 – Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.
ii. We prize the value of our efforts more - Ecclesiastes 7:8 – Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit
iii. It places us in high-class company with those in Hebrews 11, preparing us for all that lies ahead - Hebrews 12:1 – Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Do you grow impatient with God sometimes in your faith?
Do you ever feel like He is not working fast enough or hard enough?
God wants you to have the patience necessary for your faith to be strong.