Participants: Pastor Stephen Bohr
Series Code: CGC
Program Code: CGC000041
01:12 Shall we bow our heads for prayer?
01:15 Father in heaven, we thank you for the awesome
01:18 privilege of being in Your house of worship.
01:22 We thank you for Your Word
01:25 which is a sure compass
01:27 in a world of confusion and rebellion.
01:31 We ask that as we study about Unshakeable
01:35 and Unbreakable Faith -
01:37 the Biblical meaning of faith -
01:40 that You will not only help us to understand the meaning of
01:44 faith but that You will help us grasp and experience it
01:49 in our lives because we know that it's
01:52 the only thing that's going to keep us firm and strong
01:55 in these last days.
01:57 So be with us and teach us
02:00 we pray in the precious name of Jesus, Your beloved Son,
02:07 In the book of Hebrews chapter 11
02:11 we find in the first 22 verses
02:16 a list of heroes that are first mentioned
02:20 in the book of Genesis.
02:24 Now these individuals that are mentioned in Hebrews 11
02:28 are great heroes of faith.
02:33 And our subject for today is Unshakeable and Unbreakable
02:41 Basically we're going to study
02:42 the meaning of faith
02:44 in holy scripture.
02:47 Let's begin then at Hebrews
02:49 chapter 11 and I would like to
02:52 read verse 1
02:55 where we find the definition of faith.
02:58 Hebrews chapter 11 and verse 1.
03:03 It says here in this very well-known verse:
03:19 Now the word substance could better be translated
03:23 the assurance. "Faith is the assurance
03:28 of things hoped for... " And the word evidence
03:33 could better be translated proof.
03:36 "the proof of things that you cannot see. "
03:41 And so faith gives us assurance
03:44 of the things that have not taken place yet.
03:47 Assurance of things we hope for.
03:50 And faith is the proof of things that we cannot see
03:56 as of now with our physical eyes.
03:59 So obviously, faith helps us look into the future.
04:04 Faith helps us see what is invisible to the naked eye.
04:11 Now we want to begin discussing faith - the meaning of faith -
04:16 in Hebrews chapter 11 and verse 3.
04:21 We've defined the meaning of faith.
04:23 Now we want to take a look at Hebrews 11:3.
04:28 It's the first event that is described where we need faith
04:32 in order to grasp it.
04:34 It says there:
04:51 Basically, this text is telling us that God made the visible
04:57 universe from that which could not be seen.
05:00 In other words, He created the universe out of nothing.
05:06 Now you try making something out of nothing.
05:09 We use pre-existent matter to create things.
05:14 But Hebrews 11 and verse 3 is telling us that God created
05:20 the worlds from nothing.
05:22 He spoke... and it came into existence
05:26 according to Psalm 33:9.
05:31 Now how do we know that God created this world
05:35 by the word of His mouth?
05:37 That He spoke and it came into existence?
05:40 How do we know that for sure?
05:43 Hebrews 11 and verse 3 says that we understand that
05:47 by faith.
05:51 In other words, we know it happened because God
05:53 said so in His Holy Word.
05:57 Now it's interesting to notice in the creation story
06:01 that Adam and Eve did not see God create anything.
06:06 They weren't around the first day, the second day,
06:09 the third day, the fourth day, the fifth day.
06:12 The sixth day God made the animals...
06:14 they still weren't around.
06:16 And then God made Adam.
06:18 Obviously Adam did not see God create him.
06:21 He just suddenly appeared on the scene.
06:23 And then when God made Eve He put Adam to sleep
06:27 and made Eve, so Adam did not see the creation of Eve.
06:31 And Eve did not see the creation of Adam.
06:35 In other words, Adam and Eve also had to believe in creation
06:39 by faith. The only proof - if you can speak of proof
06:44 that they had - that God was the Creator of everything
06:48 is because God said that He was the Creator.
06:52 In other words, faith in God's word was proof of creation.
06:57 Was evidence of creation.
07:00 Was the assurance of creation even though they had not seen it
07:04 with their eyes, they had not experienced it.
07:08 After all, there could be other explanations
07:11 for the origin of the universe.
07:13 You could believe, for example, in spontaneous generation
07:18 like for many years individuals believed.
07:22 You could believe that this world came into existence
07:25 by a Big Bang. That's a possible explanation.
07:29 You could believe that this world came into existence
07:32 by progressive creation.
07:34 That is, that God intervened at certain critical points
07:37 in the history of this world
07:40 to advance the process of evolution.
07:43 In other words, God used evolution as His method
07:46 of creation according to progressive creationism.
07:49 But we don't believe in any of those explanations
07:52 or theories.
07:54 We believe that God spoke things into existence.
07:58 We believe that God created this world in six literal days
08:02 and He rested on the seventh literal day.
08:05 Now how do we know that God did that?
08:08 Simply because God says so
08:11 and we believe what God speaks.
08:16 In other words, faith is faith in what God says.
08:19 It's trusting in what He speaks
08:23 because we know Him and because we trust Him
08:26 as a person. Now there are many heroes in Hebrews 11
08:31 that are mentioned after creation.
08:34 I want us to examine these heroes that are mentioned
08:37 in the book of Genesis
08:39 and I want to show you how they manifested their faith
08:43 in God's word.
08:45 Notice Hebrews chapter 11 and verse 4.
08:50 Hebrews chapter 11 and verse 4.
08:53 This is the first hero who is mentioned in Hebrews
08:57 and by the way he's also mentioned in Genesis.
09:01 It says here:
09:22 We're told here that by faith Abel
09:26 offered a more excellent sacrifice than Cain.
09:30 Now what was involved in this sacrifice that made it more
09:33 excellent? How did Abel have to manifest faith
09:38 when he offered this sacrifice?
09:40 The answer is very simple.
09:42 If you read the story in Genesis
09:45 you'll discover that it tells us that Abel brought
09:49 the firstlings of his flock and their fat.
09:54 Now why would he bring the firstborn and why would he bring
09:58 the fat? Simply because later on in the sacrificial
10:02 service of Israel the firstborn of the flocks
10:06 were brought and their fat was burned on the altar
10:10 because the fat represented sin.
10:13 And of course the firstborn of the flock represented
10:17 Jesus... the firstborn of Mary according to scripture...
10:23 who was brought and presented before the Lord.
10:25 What I'm saying is that Abel offered a more excellent
10:29 sacrifice because he believed that in the future God was going
10:34 to send Jesus the Messiah.
10:37 He believed God's word that that sacrifice
10:39 represented the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.
10:43 By faith as he observed that sacrifice
10:47 he was allowed to look into the future to what that sacrifice
10:51 represented. His sacrifice was more excellent
10:55 than the sacrifice of Cain because it was a sacrifice
10:58 of blood. And without the shedding of blood
11:01 there is no remission of sin.
11:04 In other words Abel had faith... As he looked at that sacrifice
11:10 he had faith that God was going to send Jesus Christ
11:14 to the world to die for our sins.
11:17 Something which at that moment could not be seen.
11:20 Something at that moment which had to be grasped
11:23 by faith in God's promise: the promise of Genesis 3:15.
11:28 So once again we find the idea of Abel
11:32 trusting the word of God that God would send
11:36 in the future Jesus Christ to die for sin.
11:40 And then of course we have the next hero:
11:42 Hebrews chapter 11 and verse 5.
11:46 This individual is not mentioned very frequently in scripture.
11:50 In fact, he's mentioned in Genesis 5;
11:53 he's mentioned in Hebrews 11;
11:55 and in Jude 14 and 15.
11:58 Notice Hebrews chapter 11 and verse 5:
12:25 Now what faith did Enoch have?
12:28 Where was his faith focused?
12:32 If you read for example
12:34 the description in the book
12:35 Patriarchs and Prophets
12:37 you'll discover that as Enoch lived his life
12:40 day after day year after year
12:44 his mind was focused less and less on earth
12:49 and more and more on heaven.
12:53 His eyes were focused on that which he could not see
12:57 but on that which God had promised.
13:00 Because we're told in Hebrews 11 that these heroes
13:03 looked forward to a city whose builder and maker
13:07 is God. In other words, they knew that there was a city
13:10 coming that God was going to come and inhabit forever
13:14 with His people. And Enoch by faith
13:17 looked to heaven and he longed for that day to come
13:21 even thought it had not taken place yet.
13:23 And his mind become so closely identified with the mind of God
13:29 that eventually he was totally disconnected from this world,
13:35 from the things of this world.
13:37 And God said to Enoch: "Enoch, your mind is totally
13:41 in heaven, you're totally heavenly minded,
13:43 there's no reason for you to stay on earth.
13:46 If your mind is here in the city with Me,
13:50 you walk down there day by day spiritually by faith in Me... "
13:55 God says "Enoch, I'm going to have you come up here
13:59 and you no longer will have to walk by faith.
14:02 You can now walk by sight.
14:04 We'll walk the street of gold together in the Holy City
14:08 towards which you are looking. "
14:10 And so Enoch was allowed to see the Holy City by faith
14:15 and was taken there.
14:16 Abel was allowed to see the future sacrifice of Jesus
14:20 because God had promised it like He promised the Holy City.
14:25 Now the next hero that we find in the book of Hebrews
14:29 which is also mentioned in Genesis is Noah.
14:34 Notice Hebrews chapter 11 and verse 7.
14:59 Now let's take a look at the story of Noah.
15:02 By the way, faith is very simple.
15:06 Faith means that God speaks.
15:09 You trust what God says
15:12 and you act upon what He says.
15:16 That's what faith is.
15:18 It always is linked with the word of God.
15:20 God speaks or gives a command or a promise.
15:24 We trust and believe God's promise
15:27 and we trust it enough to act upon it.
15:32 So God says to Noah: "Noah, I am going to send
15:35 a flood to the world.
15:37 I'm going to cause water to come from heaven
15:40 and I'm going to cause the fountains of the great deep
15:43 to be broken up. I'm going to fill the planet with water. "
15:47 That was God's word.
15:49 Let me ask you: did Noah believe God's word?
15:53 Of course he did.
15:55 Was the word of God apparently absurd, illogical, unreasonable?
16:02 See, faith many times acts upon God's word
16:05 when God's word appears to be ridiculous.
16:08 But that which is impossible to man with faith
16:12 is possible... because with faith ALL THINGS are possible
16:16 according to Jesus Himself.
16:18 And so when God said to Noah: "There's going to be a flood;
16:21 there's going to be rain from heaven"
16:23 Noah says: "I've known You long enough to know that
16:26 when You say things it's going to happen. I trust You. "
16:30 And so what does Noah do?
16:32 He goes and he gets the saws and he gets the hammers
16:37 and he gets the nails and he says:
16:39 "Let's act upon God's word; let's do something about it. "
16:44 And so notice: God speaks, Noah believes what God spoke,
16:49 and his belief is shown by his actions.
16:53 In other words, he builds a boat.
16:55 No matter how ridiculous it might appear,
16:58 no matter how illogical what God is asking for,
17:01 no matter how impossible it is
17:04 Noah says: "God has spoken. I can trust what God says
17:08 and I am going to do it. "
17:11 And so he builds this boat... this ark.
17:15 And of course, when the flood came
17:18 it became evident that Noah was right
17:22 in trusting the word of God
17:24 and building that boat or building that ark.
17:29 Now the next example that we find in the book of Hebrews
17:34 chapter 11 is the case of Abraham.
17:38 And there's several episodes here about Abraham.
17:41 Notice chapter 11 and verse 8.
18:00 Would that take faith?
18:03 Imagine, God says to Abraham:
18:06 "Abraham, I want you to leave. "
18:10 Abraham says: "Yes, Lord. Where am I going? "
18:14 "I'll tell you later. "
18:16 I mean, at this time he was established in Heron.
18:19 He'd left Ur of the Chaldees with Terah his father.
18:22 He was in Heron. And God says: "I'm going to
18:24 take you somewhere. Just pick everything up
18:27 and move. "
18:30 And what did Abraham do?
18:33 He said: "God has spoken. God's word is clear.
18:37 I'm supposed to get up, pack, and move. "
18:43 And so the Bible tells us that Abraham - even though
18:46 he didn't know where they were going -
18:48 he had Sarah and his servants pack everything up
18:52 and who knows how much later they began their journey
18:56 to Canaan without knowing where they were going.
19:00 Once again we have this idea
19:03 that faith means listening to God's word,
19:06 trusting God's word because we trust Him,
19:10 trusting His word enough to do what God tells us to do
19:15 in His word. Faith means believing God's word
19:20 because we trust God and acting upon what He says
19:25 because we know that God is going to come through.
19:30 By the way, Abraham didn't always have this kind of faith.
19:33 Sometimes he walked by sight not by faith.
19:38 Do you remember for example when he went down into Egypt
19:41 and his wife was very beautiful. He says: "Pharaoh
19:43 is going to look at my wife and he's going to see she's
19:46 very beautiful. He's going to kill me and take her. "
19:49 So he said to Sarah: "Just tell him that you're my sister.
19:53 Don't tell him the whole truth. "
19:55 Lack of faith, because God could have protected Sarah.
19:58 He did the same thing when he
19:59 went to visit Abimelech.
20:02 It happened twice according to
20:03 scripture. And then when God
20:05 promised him a son and the years went by
20:08 and Sarah says: "Abraham, now do you really believe that
20:11 the word of the Lord is going to be fulfilled the way He said?
20:14 Maybe we need to help God just a little bit.
20:18 So don't you think it'd be a good idea to take this
20:20 servant girl Hagar? And maybe that's the way
20:25 that God's promise... God's word will be fulfilled. "
20:27 And Abraham showed a lack of faith.
20:29 He listened to Sarah, and we're still suffering the
20:32 effects of this in the Middle East today
20:35 as the result of Abraham's lack of faith.
20:39 You see, God wanted these heroes to walk by faith
20:42 not by sight. Even though they couldn't see things...
20:45 even though things had not transpired or happened yet
20:49 God wanted them to believe in His word, to trust in Him
20:52 and leave things in God's hands.
20:55 And then, of course, you have Sarah mentioned
20:59 in Hebrews 11. Let's go there to Hebrews
21:01 chapter 11 and let's notice verses 11 and 12.
21:06 Hebrews 11 and verses 11 and 12.
21:10 It says here in verse 11:
21:47 By the way, at first Sarah kind of chuckled
21:51 at this promise of God.
21:54 In Genesis 18 verses 11 through 14
21:57 God says to her: "You were laughing, weren't you? "
21:59 "No, no... I wasn't... I wasn't laughing. "
22:01 You know, she was adding lying to laughing
22:06 incidentally because she HAD laughed.
22:08 She was saying: "How can an old woman like myself
22:11 have a child? "
22:14 Did you notice it says here that Abraham was as good as dead?
22:19 Some way to describe your husband.
22:23 "My husband is as good as dead. " Imagine that!
22:27 And yet it appears that in the course of time
22:31 Sarah decided that she would trust God
22:38 according to Hebrews 11, even though at first she disbelieved.
22:42 And finally when she is 89
22:45 and Abraham is 99
22:49 Abraham says to Sarah:
22:51 "Sarah, don't you think it might be a good idea for us
22:54 to have marital relations? "
22:59 By the way, they did have to act on God's word.
23:01 Hello? It was not going to happen by osmosis.
23:07 And so Sarah said: "Abraham, have you looked at me
23:12 in the mirror?
23:16 Can you believe that an 89-year-old woman
23:19 is going to have a baby? " And Abraham said:
23:22 "God promised! "
23:25 And when God promises we can take it to the bank.
23:28 And I guess Sarah said: "Hey, you know you're probably
23:32 right. " And so they decided to have marital relations.
23:36 And when they did - when they acted upon God's word -
23:40 God intervened and He did that which is humanly and
23:44 biologically what? Impossible!
23:47 You see, faith makes the impossible possible.
23:52 It makes the impossible true.
23:55 It fulfills that which God says.
23:59 And then, of course, you have the experience of Abraham
24:02 when God asked him to offer Isaac.
24:05 That's the next event in Hebrews 11.
24:07 All of these are Genesis heroes, by the way, illustrating faith.
24:12 God says to Abraham: "Abraham, I want you to take
24:15 that son that you had in your old age
24:17 and I want you to take him to Mount Moriah
24:22 and sacrifice him on one of the mountains that are in the
24:26 region of Moriah. "
24:29 That was God's word.
24:32 Did Abraham trust God?
24:36 Did he? You know what Abraham could have done?
24:40 Abraham could have said:
24:43 "I just can't bring myself to do that.
24:46 It'll be too painful.
24:48 I mean, sacrificing my own son?
24:50 My emotions and my feelings say I can't do this. "
24:54 But Abraham did not live by emotions and feelings.
24:58 He could have used logic.
25:00 "Oh well, God said 'Thou shalt not kill'
25:02 so this can't be God's voice. "
25:05 He could have waked up his wife to give him some moral support
25:12 'cause he knew that she would say "No way...
25:17 you're not taking him to sacrifice him. "
25:20 But he left Sarah sleeping purposely because he knew
25:25 what she was going to say.
25:27 Abraham could have followed
25:30 many different sources of authority.
25:33 But when God spoke the Bible says that Abraham
25:37 trusted God. He trusted God's word
25:41 because he knew God.
25:43 And he says: "If God says it, I believe it
25:47 and I'm going to do it. "
25:48 And so he got up real early before Sarah was awake
25:51 and he traveled three days to Mount Moriah.
25:56 And we all know the story
25:58 how he raised the knife to plunge it into his own son,
26:02 obeying the word of God.
26:06 Acting upon God's word by faith
26:10 because he trusted God.
26:13 Now notice Hebrews chapter 11 and how it describes this event.
26:18 Hebrews 11, and let's begin reading... Let's see here...
26:23 let's begin reading at verse 17.
26:25 It says here:
27:03 So Abraham says: "I can't understand this.
27:05 This is a child of the promise.
27:07 There's supposed to be a multitude that comes from him
27:10 and ultimately the Messiah.
27:11 I can't understand why God is asking me to do this
27:14 but God has spoken. I will do it and God will take
27:17 care of the consequences. I believe that if necessary
27:20 He can resurrect him from the dead. "
27:23 So once again, God speaks.
27:27 Abraham trusts in God and what God says
27:32 and he acts upon what God says.
27:35 And then, of course in Hebrews 11 we also have
27:38 the story of Jacob and Esau.
27:41 I'll just mention this. In Hebrews chapter 11
27:43 and verse 20 we find Isaac
27:49 blessing Jacob and Esau.
27:52 And the things that he says he could have never known
27:55 that the descendants of Jacob and Esau would have
27:58 those characteristics.
27:59 In other words, Isaac is
28:01 looking into the future
28:03 prophetically because God has
28:05 shown him what's going to happen
28:06 with Jacob and what's going to happen with Esau.
28:08 And he's simply repeating what God has said
28:11 because he believes it.
28:13 He utters it with his voice.
28:16 And then, of course, in Hebrews 11 verse 22
28:18 we have the last Genesis hero that is mentioned in the book
28:21 of Hebrews... and that's Joseph.
28:24 Notice Hebrews 11 and verse 22.
28:28 Hebrews 11 and verse 22.
28:31 Here Joseph is mentioned.
28:33 And it says here in this verse:
28:50 Did you notice this?
28:52 What did Joseph do?
28:54 He spoke about the release of the children of Israel
28:58 and he spoke about them not leaving his bones in Egypt.
29:04 How could Joseph be sure that Israel was going to be
29:09 delivered from Egypt?
29:10 This wasn't going to happen for several hundred years more.
29:16 And yet Joseph is saying: "When you leave Egypt for Canaan
29:21 make sure you take my bones with you. "
29:25 On what basis could he say that?
29:27 You see, in Genesis 15 God had given a promise.
29:31 He'd said that after 400 years He was going to intervene
29:36 and He was going to deliver God's people from Egypt
29:40 and He was going to take them to Canaan.
29:42 And Joseph believed what God said.
29:44 He spoke about the deliverance before it happened.
29:48 And he also said: "Make sure
29:51 you take my bones with you as well. "
29:56 And so basically, when God speaks His word
29:59 you can take it to the bank.
30:01 You can trust His word because you can trust God.
30:04 His word never returns unto Him void.
30:07 Notice what we find in Isaiah 55...
30:10 Isaiah 55 and let's read verses 10 and 11.
30:14 Isaiah 55:10-11.
30:17 Notice the power of God's holy word.
30:19 It says here:
30:58 Does the word of God ever return empty?
31:00 Or does it accomplish what God says it is going to accomplish?
31:04 You can take it to the bank, folks.
31:07 That's why we need to learn to trust in the promises of God.
31:10 It doesn't mean that God is going to do it immediately.
31:14 We need to be patient sometimes. But it means
31:17 that God when He makes a promise, when He speaks His word
31:20 we can trust what He says because we can trust Him.
31:23 You can take it to the bank.
31:25 The Bible says in Hebrews... actually, the book of Romans
31:28 chapter 10 and verse 17.
31:31 Romans 10 verse 17:
31:40 How does faith come? Faith comes by hearing.
31:44 By hearing what? By hearing the Word of God.
31:49 And let me explain how the process is.
31:51 God speaks His word; you believe His word
31:57 because you believe in Him;
32:00 because you know Him;
32:03 because you've spent time with Him.
32:07 Let me go over that again.
32:09 God speaks His word;
32:11 you believe His word
32:14 because you believe in Him;
32:18 because you have come to know Him
32:22 and because you have spent time with Him.
32:25 Because you need to spend time with someone if you're going to
32:27 know them. So you spend time with God;
32:30 you come to know God;
32:31 and therefore you trust God when God speaks
32:35 because you know that God is trustworthy.
32:40 That means that the more time we spend with God
32:43 the more powerful our faith is going to be
32:46 because the more we will have experienced what it means
32:49 to trust in God... to trust in someone.
32:52 Because faith is not trusting in something;
32:55 faith is trusting in someone
32:57 because we know that someone, because we've spent time
33:00 with someone, and we're willing to do what that someone told us
33:04 because we know them.
33:07 Let me illustrate what I mean.
33:10 Supposing that you'd never seen me before
33:12 and I meet you on the street
33:16 and I say to you: "Would you please lend me $1,000?
33:22 I promise to pay you next week. "
33:26 Do you think anybody would lend me the money?
33:29 Of course not.
33:32 If I'm walking down the street and nobody's ever seen me,
33:35 even if I have a suit on - especially, probably
33:37 if I have a suit on - they'd say "What guarantee
33:41 do I have that you're going to pay me back next week? "
33:44 "Trust me. "
33:47 "I'm promising it. "
33:50 "I give you my word. "
33:52 Is that going to do any good?
33:53 Absolutely not.
33:55 Why won't they lend me that money?
33:58 Because they don't know me.
34:01 They haven't spent time with me and they don't know if what I
34:04 say is trustworthy.
34:06 But now let's suppose that I talk with Elaine.
34:11 And I say: "You know, Elaine, I'm in a tough situation here.
34:15 You know I don't have enough money to pay for my mortgage
34:19 this month. Would you please lend me $1,000?
34:23 I promise to pay you back next week. "
34:26 What would Elaine say?
34:28 She said: "You've got it, Pastor! "
34:30 I'll talk to you after the service today.
34:34 Why would Elaine lend me the money?
34:38 Because she knows me.
34:40 She knows that my word is trustworthy
34:44 because she's become acquainted with me.
34:46 Is that true also in the realm of faith?
34:52 Why do we do what God says even if it appears to be
34:55 ridiculous? Because by previous experience
34:59 we have formed a relationship with God.
35:02 We know Him to be trustworthy
35:05 because of what He says in His Holy Word.
35:07 And in the Bible we have a plethora of examples of faith.
35:13 You remember the miraculous fishing expedition
35:16 where the disciples had been - this is in Luke chapter 5-
35:19 the disciples had been on the lake all night
35:22 and they had not fished one single fish.
35:27 They were kind of discouraged. The next day Jesus got into the
35:31 boat and they launched out into the deep.
35:33 It was daytime.
35:35 And Jesus said to Peter that he was supposed to do the absurd.
35:39 I mean, Peter was a fisherman; Jesus was a carpenter.
35:42 And so Jesus said to Peter: "Peter, throw out your nets. "
35:45 You don't throw out your nets in the daytime.
35:47 The fish can see the nets
35:49 because the water of the Sea of Galilee is clear.
35:52 You don't fish in the daytime with nets.
35:54 It's that simple.
35:56 And yet Peter says to Jesus:
36:10 "Because I know that Your word can do something special. "
36:13 And so because Jesus spoke the word
36:17 and Peter trusted Jesus in spite of the fact that he knew
36:20 that they weren't going to fish anything humanly speaking
36:24 he cast down the nets.
36:27 And the Bible says that the nets had so many fish
36:30 that they were breaking. So they had to call their
36:32 companion fishermen and they filled both boats
36:37 because Peter acted upon the word of Jesus.
36:41 Because he trusted the word of Jesus.
36:43 Because he trusted Jesus because he had spent time with Jesus.
36:46 How about it? You know, you have an interesting story
36:50 that's found in John chapter 4 verses 46 through 54.
36:55 I'm going to tell you the story.
36:56 We're not going to read the verses
36:58 but I'm going to read a couple of statements from the
37:00 Spirit of Prophecy on this.
37:02 Jesus was in Cana of Galilee.
37:05 There was a man who was visiting there from Capernaeum
37:08 and he comes to Jesus and he says
37:10 "My son is at home
37:12 in Capernaum; he's dying.
37:14 Could you please come and heal him? "
37:19 Now what does Jesus do?
37:23 Let's notice... I'll read just one verse.
37:26 Verse 50 of John 4.
37:29 John 4 verse 50. I want you to notice this.
37:32 It's very, very significant.
37:34 John 4 and verse 50. It says here:
37:43 "Jesus said to him:
37:47 'Go your way. Your son lives. ' "
37:52 Is that what Jesus said?
37:54 He said: 'I don't have to go.
37:56 Just go your way. Your son lives. "
37:59 And now notice: "So the man... " What?
38:04 By the way, that word believed is the word pisteuo in Greek
38:08 and faith is pistis.
38:11 We would never know in English that the word believed
38:13 and the word faith are the same Greek word.
38:16 So you could translate this: "So the man trusted
38:21 or had faith in the word that Jesus spoke to him.
38:26 And he went his way. " Now listen up:
38:30 Capernaum was close enough to Cana for that man
38:35 to have rushed home to see whether his son really had been
38:38 healed. But do you know what's interesting?
38:42 He had no sense of urgency after Jesus spoke the word.
38:47 No sense of urgency at all.
38:52 In fact, he decided to take the scenic route
38:54 and to smell the flowers the next day. By the way,
39:00 this healing had taken place at 1 o'clock in the afternoon.
39:05 "At the seventh hour" the Bible says.
39:07 That's 1 o'clock in the afternoon.
39:09 So he could have made it home before sundown if he rushed.
39:14 "I wonder whether my son is healed or not? " He didn't.
39:16 He waited till the next day and then he took the scenic route.
39:19 He smelled the flowers.
39:21 And when he gets home he asks some of the servants:
39:25 "How's my son doing? "
39:27 They said: "He's healed. "
39:29 He says: "When was he healed? "
39:31 "Yesterday... at the seventh hour. "
39:36 Now allow me to read you a statement here from
39:38 Desire of Ages page 200.
39:42 This is marvelous.
39:43 Talk about trusting God's word.
39:46 See, he didn't even have to see the healing.
39:48 When Jesus spoke the word he said: "That's it!
39:51 He's healed. " It says:
40:52 Hello? Even before we receive it
40:56 because He speaks and He is
40:59 And it says:
41:15 By the way, do you know how Jesus healed this man who was...
41:19 this young man who was over in Capernaum
41:22 when He actually pronounced the word in Cana?
41:24 I'll give you a little inkling.
41:26 The Bible tells us that the angels are ministering spirits
41:31 that perform the will of God all over the earth.
41:37 In fact, we find in Desire of Ages page 143
41:41 that all of the miracles of Christ were performed by
41:44 the power of God through the ministration of the angels.
41:47 Do you remember the story of the centurion who came to Jesus
41:50 and said: "My son is sick... he's deathly sick.
41:53 Could You please heal him? "
41:55 Jesus says: "OK, I'll go. "
41:57 He says: "No, You don't need to come. Just speak the word. "
42:01 "I trust Your word. Just speak the word and he'll be well. "
42:04 He says: "Because I'm also a man of authority. "
42:07 He says: "I tell this soldier 'Go here' and I tell this
42:10 servant 'Do that over there' and they do it. "
42:13 He says: "So just speak the word and it will be done. "
42:16 Do you know... when Jesus spoke the word
42:18 the angels actually went and healed the centurion's son.
42:24 The angels actually were the ones who spooked the fish
42:27 to come to the side of the boat.
42:30 The angels were really the ones that went to Capernaum
42:33 and implemented the word of Jesus
42:37 because the miracles of Jesus were performed by the power
42:40 of God through the ministration of angels.
42:42 There are millions and millions of angels all over the world
42:44 just waiting to execute God's will.
42:48 We have a lot of helpers in this world.
42:51 Praise the Lord!
42:54 And then we have the experience of Jesus...
42:57 the greatest illustration of faith in the whole Bible.
43:02 Imagine Jesus on the cross of Calvary.
43:06 It's about the ninth hour
43:08 and Jesus cries out with a loud voice and He says:
43:20 Let me ask you: did Jesus feel forsaken by His Father?
43:24 Did He feel forsaken by His Father?
43:27 Yes He did.
43:29 He says: "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me? "
43:32 He felt forsaken by His Father.
43:36 But did Jesus know that He
43:38 wasn't forsaken by the Father?
43:41 Yes He did.
43:43 Now you say: "This is strange. "
43:45 You say: "He knew that He wasn't forsaken by the Father
43:47 but He felt forsaken by the Father.
43:50 Now how do you explain that? "
43:52 It simply teaches us, folks, that we are not to go by
43:54 feelings. We are to go by what God says!
44:00 Had God the Father said to Jesus that if He was faithful to Him
44:06 that He would not forsake Him? That He would resurrect Him
44:09 the third day? Had the Father promised that to Jesus?
44:12 Yes! Now Jesus on the cross could not feel the presence
44:16 of His Father. He felt forsaken by His Father
44:19 but He relied upon the promise of His Father.
44:22 His Father had said: "If You go through with this,
44:25 if You are victorious, I guarantee that I will come
44:28 and resurrect You from the tomb. You can take it to the bank. "
44:31 And so even though Jesus on the cross felt forsaken
44:35 by His Father, by faith in the promises of His Father
44:39 which He had received previously
44:41 He knew that death was not the end.
44:45 In fact, we clearly grasp that because immediately after
44:49 Jesus says: "My God, My God, why has Thou forsaken Me? "
44:54 He then says:
45:00 Evidently He wasn't forsaken
45:03 or else He wouldn't have asked His Father
45:04 to take care of His spirit.
45:07 And by the way, those of you who have studied with me before
45:10 know that the word spirit indicates much more than
45:12 the breath. It's actually the record of the life.
45:15 It's actually the character of the individual.
45:18 The self-identity. In other words, Jesus is saying
45:21 "Preserve who I am in Your books... "
45:25 Not in conscious state but in Your records...
45:28 "because You have promised that on the third day You are
45:31 going to return to Me who I am
45:34 by resurrecting Me from the dead. "
45:37 And of course, we know that on the third day the Father
45:39 fulfilled His promise. And He says: "I preserved Your
45:43 spirit, I preserved Your character.
45:45 Now I've come to give it back. "
45:47 "Oh thou Son of God come forth! "
45:49 And Jesus came forth.
45:51 So you have these mixed feelings on the cross of Calvary.
45:54 Jesus feeling forsaken but saying: "Father,
45:57 into Your hands I commend My spirit.
45:59 I feel forsaken but I know I'm not
46:01 because You told Me that I'm not. "
46:04 Are you understanding what I'm saying?
46:06 Allow me to read a statement from Desire of Ages
46:10 page 756 about how Jesus overcame on the cross.
46:17 Here Ellen White says:
47:36 He trusted His Father because He knew His Father
47:42 from previous experience.
47:44 He had received the word of His Father;
47:47 believed the word of His Father;
47:49 lived the word of His Father before.
47:52 And He knew that His Father was going to raise Him from the dead
47:55 not because He felt it but because God said so.
47:59 In fact, Ellen White says that Jesus could not see beyond
48:02 the portals of the tomb.
48:03 He felt that sin was so offensive to God
48:07 that the separation would be everlasting.
48:09 That's how Jesus felt!
48:11 But Jesus did not go by feelings and emotions.
48:14 Jesus trusted the word of God. Amen!
48:20 One time I had a young lady come to me. She said:
48:22 "Pastor, I don't feel that God has forgiven me. "
48:27 I said: "Well that's interesting. "
48:29 I said: "Why not? " She said: "Because I've committed
48:31 this sin several times. I'm positive that the Lord
48:35 has not forgiven me. "
48:37 I said: "Well, have you repented of that sin? "
48:39 She says: "Yes I have. "
48:41 I said: "Have you confessed that sin? "
48:42 She says: "Yes, I've confessed it also. "
48:45 I said: "Then you're forgiven! "
48:49 Because in I John 1:9 it says:
48:58 If you fulfill the conditions, if you have repented,
49:01 if you've confessed your sin,
49:03 believe it... not because you feel it but because God says it.
49:07 We trust our feelings too much!
49:10 We say: "Well I don't feel that God has forgiven me. "
49:13 Feelings have nothing to do with this.
49:15 If God says it and you've fulfilled the conditions,
49:19 you can take it to the bank.
49:22 Are you understanding what I'm saying?
49:24 Faith means trusting what God says because we know God
49:29 and because we've spent time with God...
49:32 quality time with God. We've come to know Him.
49:35 You remember the experience of the three young men who were
49:38 thrown in the fiery furnace?
49:40 Do you know that they claimed a promise from scripture
49:45 that had been written before this experience?
49:48 Notice Isaiah 43...
49:50 Isaiah 43 and verse 2.
49:55 Isaiah 43 and verse 2.
50:23 They claimed that promise.
50:26 They knew their God and therefore they remained firm.
50:30 And by the way, this experience is going to take place again.
50:34 This experience in Daniel 3 was historical but also
50:39 a prophetic experience.
50:41 Because in Daniel 3 you have Nebuchadnezzar who for a while
50:44 lived as a beast. He raised an image.
50:47 He commanded everyone to worship the image that he had raised up,
50:50 and he was going to have everybody killed who did not
50:53 worship the image that he had raised.
50:55 Is that the scenario in Revelation chapter 13?
50:58 It most certainly is.
51:00 And as those three young men had to face the fiery furnace
51:03 we will have to face the period of the seven last plagues
51:08 when the wrath of God is poured out without mixture
51:10 in this world.
51:12 The fullness of God's wrath is poured out.
51:14 And yet like those 3 young men
51:16 the plagues will be falling on one side and on the other
51:19 but the plagues will not touch
51:21 God's people
51:22 because they have learned
51:24 to trust in God.
51:26 This is what Revelation 13:10
51:28 means when it says: "Here is the patience of the saints. "
51:32 Here is the patience and the perseverance and the faith
51:35 of the saints. In other words, we're going to need
51:37 perseverance, we're going to need faith
51:40 because we're going to lose everything that we have.
51:43 Our freedom.
51:46 Some people in the little time of trouble are even going to
51:48 lose their lives. And if we trust in our feelings,
51:52 our emotions, and our things and in what other people say
51:56 we're going to fall in an instant, folks.
51:58 We have to learn to trust in God.
52:01 We have to get into the Word.
52:03 We have to get to know God personally.
52:06 And we need to claim the promises and act upon
52:09 those promises of God.
52:11 Allow me to say this as we near the close:
52:15 Do you know that one of the great deceptions of Satan
52:18 in the end time is going to be to disguise himself -
52:22 along with his evil angels -
52:23 as departed relatives?
52:26 And don't you be surprised if there's a John Paul II
52:30 appearing some place all over the earth.
52:34 And don't you be surprised if the supposed Virgin Mary
52:38 is appearing in different parts of the earth.
52:42 That's, of course, already happened!
52:46 You say: "Ah, I would never believe that.
52:48 The dead don't know anything. "
52:50 Listen, Ellen White says that this will be an almost
52:55 overmastering delusion.
52:59 Notice what she says in Great Controversy page 552.
53:03 Speaking about Satan's power: "He has power to bring before
53:07 men the appearance of their departed friends.
53:10 The counterfeit is perfect. "
53:13 Did you catch that? The counterfeit is what?
53:19 "The familiar look, the words, the tone
53:22 are reproduced with marvelous distinctness.
53:27 Many are comforted with the assurance that their loved ones
53:30 are enjoying the bliss of heaven
53:32 and without suspicion of danger they are giving ear to seducing
53:37 spirits and doctrine of devils. "
53:41 Listen folks, have we reached the point in our experience
53:45 where we are so saturated with the Word of God
53:48 that we will ignore what our eyes, our ears,
53:52 our touch, our smell, our feelings,
53:55 our reasonings, the words of others?
53:58 Ignore all of these things
54:01 and to just trust the naked Word of God?
54:06 Though someone appear disguised as a relative
54:09 or as a friend or one of the great heroes
54:12 of the Christian church?
54:15 And they look the same, they talk the same,
54:18 they make us feel good.
54:21 They speak about peace and love and kindness.
54:25 Are we going to be willing to say: "I hear you,
54:29 I see you, I feel you
54:33 but the Bible says: "The living know that they shall die
54:37 but the dead know nothing. "
54:42 Will I live by faith in God's Word
54:45 and only in God's Word
54:48 and not on the basis of my reasonings and my emotions
54:52 and what other people say?
54:53 You know, most of the world is going to be deluded.
54:56 Listen - and this is a supposition but I think it's
55:00 a very possible thing -
55:03 if John Paul should appear in different parts of the world
55:07 speaking to the living how many people in the world
55:10 would be deceived? How many Christians would be
55:12 deceived by that?
55:14 The majority of the Christian world including Protestants
55:20 will be deceived by that
55:22 if the funeral of John Paul II has anything to say.
55:26 But Adventists will not be deceived.
55:28 Some of them will according to Ellen White
55:30 because they go by their feelings and emotions.
55:33 They don't follow what the Word of God says.
55:35 They haven't learned to trust God.
55:37 Do you know that the devil is even going to counterfeit
55:39 the second coming of Jesus?
55:41 In Great Controversy you find the description
55:44 as well as in II Thessalonians chapter 2.
55:47 Wow! She says that Satan will appear in different parts
55:51 of the earth. His appearance will be like
55:54 Christ in Revelation chapter 1
55:56 with his face shining as the sun.
55:59 He's going to speak some beautiful words of peace
56:02 and love and kindness like people love to hear
56:04 in church today. And then he's going to perform miracles!
56:09 Undeniable miracles!
56:11 And she says that this is the almost overmastering delusion.
56:14 People who trust their feelings and their emotions
56:17 and what their preachers say and what their reason says
56:20 and what their senses say. Immediately they will say:
56:23 "This is Christ who has returned! "
56:26 Of course it doesn't help that most Christians believe
56:29 that when Jesus comes again He's going to set up His
56:31 millennial kingdom on earth.
56:33 They're leaving themselves wide open
56:35 to the acceptance of the false Christ
56:37 when he walks upon the earth.
56:39 But we know... And by the way, and then she says
56:41 that the devil is going to say that he is Christ
56:45 and that he is being greatly offended because
56:48 Sunday is not being kept.
56:50 God's people will not be deceived
56:53 because first of all they know that the Bible says
56:56 that Jesus will not come all the way down to the earth.
57:00 Number two: Jesus is not coming to set up His millennial kingdom
57:03 here. And furthermore, the teaching that we're supposed to
57:07 keep the first day of the week does not square with a
57:10 "thus saith the Lord. "
57:13 Ellen White says that our only safeguard
57:15 will be in following the Bible.
57:18 How about it? Get into the Word; study the Word;
57:21 and obey the Word is my prayer.