*Foundations of Faith*
*Understand the importance of your faith*
Faith is a common word in the religious world.
But what we want to focus in on is our belief system.
What we want to do in this study is develop your faith, and maximize your potential for productivity.
*Definition of Faith:* Faith is a spiritual principle that taps into the creative power of God made available through man, whereby man can transform conditions, circumstances, and situations in the natural realm over which he has been given authority.
Matt 9:27-30 /27 As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed him, calling out, “Have mercy on us, Son of David!” 28 When he had gone indoors, the blind men came to him, and he asked them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” “Yes, Lord,” they replied.
29 Then he touched their eyes and said, “According to your faith will it be done to you”; 30 and their sight was restored.
Jesus warned them sternly, “See that no one knows about this.” 31 But they went out and spread the news about him all over that region./
The faith that God has imparted to you holds the key to what you receive from God.
What you receive from God is founded on the development of your faith.
It is imperative that we take our faith to a higher level that where we are now.
We must believe in what God says and HAVE FAITH!!!!
You can’t just know the Word.
You must mix in faith to cause a spiritual reaction.
Heb 4:2 says, /“For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.”/
Faith is a physical and spiritual action that you can take based on God’s Word to bring the promises of God to pass in your life.
Faith is a law, or a principle, that does not work by how you feel.
The Word works for those who work the Word.
Rom 3:27 /Where, then, is boasting?
It is excluded.
On what principle?
On that of observing the law?
No, but on that of faith./
*We must be instructed in faith.*
Man is created and in contact with three parts, spirit, soul, and body.
1 Thess 5:23 /May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through.
May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ./
Spirit: contact with the spiritual world, which comes at salvation
Soul: contact with intellectual realm, which means you can be instructed and learn
Body: contact with the physical world, which means you can be instructed and learn
Rom 12:12-2 /Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual(reasonable) act of worship. 2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will./
2 Cor 10:3-5 /For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.
4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world.
On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.
5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ./
Understanding takes study.
Reading God’s Word is not like reading Shakespeare or Mark Twain.
As you study God’s Word, you’ll find that the anointing on the words you read make the Bible fresh and alive in your present situation.
*Why is faith important?*
You must live by it!! Rom 1:17 /For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”/
It is necessary to please God!!! Heb 11:6 /And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him./
It is necessary to overcome the challenges in life!!! Psalm 34:19 /A righteous man may have many troubles, /
/but the Lord delivers him from them all; / The manner of your deliverance is a result of your faith.
How great a victory are you faithing to see? 1 John 5:4 /for everyone born of God overcomes the world.
This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith./
It is critical for the selection of a mentor!!! Heb 6:12 /We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.
/ 13:7 /Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you.
Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith./
People either bring you up or tear you down.
It is critical that you consider who it is that you associate with, even in church.
It is the key to receiving the promises of God!!! Gal 3:13-14 /Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”
14 He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit./
If someone promises something, though you still do not have it, you trust that is will come into being.
The Bible is slam packed with promises, but some people don’t believe that they are for them.
They feel they are below the “promises line”, because they don’t have faith.
God’s will and desires for you won’t come to pass unless you understand and live by faith.
He’s no respecter of persons.
Matt 9:22 tells of the woman with the issue of blood, and Jesus told her her faith has made her whole.
Matt 9:29 was our opening text with Jesus telling the blind men according to your faith, so be it to you.
Their was a time in Jesus ministry that he could do very little because of their unbelief.
Say, it’s according to my faith!!!
*You can be instructed in your faith*
Luke 17:5-6 /5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!”
6 He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you./
The apostle Paul instructed many in his letters to study scripture, to pray, to test every spirit, to take communion, etc. Here, Jesus instructs the disciples on faith…Mark 11:22-25 /“Have faith in God,” Jesus answered.
23 “I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.
24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”/
*Four types of Biblical faith*
Saving faith comes when you hear the Word and the Holy Spirit draws you to God. It’s the first measure.
Eph 2:8-9 /For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
/Rom 12:3 /For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you./
Most holy faith Jude 20 /But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit./
This faith comes as we draw deeper into God’s realm.
The gift of faith, mentioned in 1 Cor 12, talks of a gift God freely gives to accomplish His will through our lives.
The God-kind of faith, which is what we want to focus on, is the faith teaching Jesus taught not only in his words, but in his life.
Walking on water, feeding thousands, healing sick, and casting out demons were teachings we can study, among others.
*Degrees of Faith* We all have differing levels of faith.
One may have faith to heal, another may trust God for provisions, and yet another may have faith to prophecy.
It’s all according to the measure you have, and how you have developed it.
There is little faith… Luke 12:28 /If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith!/
There is no faith… Mark 4:40 (Jesus rebuking the storm after sleeping in the boat) /He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid?
Do you still have no faith?”/
There is great faith… Matt 8:10 (faith of centurion) /When Jesus heard this, he was astonished and said to those following him, “I tell you the truth, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith./
*Seven benefits of faith*
You will overcome the negative situations in life 1 John 5:4 /for everyone born of God overcomes the world.
This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith./
God can use your life to inspire others in their faith-walk (cause to see God is willing to act and do) Heb 6:12 /We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised./
God can define possibilities for others through your faith results (cause to see that God can do it)
You experience a lifestyle of success that only faith can produce (ax head float, water from rock, bills paid)
You can surpass negative statistics that limit productivity (dead raised, sick healed, demons cast out)
You become a living testament of the faithfulness of God ~*~*Isa 28:10 /For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little.”
/Job 36:11/ If they obey and serve Him, They shall spend their days in prosperity, And their years in pleasures./
You get the opportunity to experience the promises of God that others dreamed about
*You must make the choice to increase your faith*
A quality decision will almost make other decisions automatically for you.
If you bring only certain cloths on a trip, then there’s not much thought as to what you’ll wear once you get there.
Make a purposeful decision today to become a student of faith, and take your courses throughout your lifetime.