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Faith… Overcoming of Faith

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The Lord has overcome the world and even its faith so that our faith will meet with no resistance from the world.  Unfortunately, in the two millenniums, our own lack of faith in the Lord has allowed the world to recover, and so like the Lord, we now face the reality that we have to overcome the faith of the world, and not only the faith of the world, but the faith of church that prefers to listen to the recommendations of men rather than of Jesus.

Does this surprise you?  It should not.  For from the beginning, the disciples of Jesus had always shown a tendency to listen to men rather than to Jesus, and believe what they say rather than what Jesus said.

Where is the proof?  We do not know who suggested that they should get out of the boat after Jesus made them get into the boat, and wait instead of going immediately to Bethsaida.  Someone must have and the others chose to agree.  Likewise, someone must have suggested that they go to Capernaum and the others agreed.  From there on, the tradition of listening to men rather than to Jesus was born.

If you will not listen to Jesus, you will not listen to the Holy Spirit either, for the Holy Spirit is here to remind us of what Jesus has said.  But how can you be reminded of what Jesus has said if you have never listened to Jesus?  And if you have read the words of Jesus from the four gospels and yet prefer to continue in practices that go against His teachings, and worse still teach that to others because it is the tradition, then why should the Holy Spirit remind you?  No, He will only convict you with regards to sin because of your refusal to believe in Jesus.  That is one reason why those who openly teach and practise disobedience to the words of Jesus preach so much on brimstone, hell fire and condemnation, for that is all the conviction they receive from the Holy Spirit Himself.  You can always tell what the Holy Spirit is convicting a preacher of by what he is preaching, for a man can only give what he has received.  When you are in disbelief of Jesus and are doing things that are in the mind of men and not of God, the Holy Spirit can only convict you as He would Satan and sinners who do not believe.  So what comes out of you is a constant flow of judgement, condemnation and guilt of sin.  When you are practising what you have heard from Jesus, then the conviction is one of righteousness, that is, the overflow from the preacher’s heart to his mouth is about doing the right thing for Jesus and His Father.

So, what we face is 2,000 Gregorian years of resurgence of the faith of the world and 2,000 years of unfaithfulness from the church in terms of disobedience and disloyalty to Jesus.

First, the faith has to be rebuilt from within… the belief, the obedience and the loyalty.

The process of knowing what God said and what we are to listen to, with the restoration of the Father’s command, restores the correct type of believing faith.  That is, we began to believe in the correct things and Person again.

The process of practising His word restored to us the correct obedience of our faith so that we learnt not to listen to or obey men, but to listen to and obey Jesus first.  In that process, our connection with the Holy Spirit was restored so that not only can He now remind us of what Jesus said and guide us into all truth, but tell us what He has heard, what is yet to come and what the eleven could not bear to hear from Jesus.  Initially, He has been telling us what He has heard from the Father and Jesus, but now He is also telling us what anyone else is saying, so that, like Elisha, we know every move of the enemies of Christ even as they are being discussed.

Finally, for some, He is now able to develop the faith that is loyalty.  When you are loyal because your master has always blessed you, even pagans can do that.  The extra mile of loyalty is when you are forsaken and yet you will not deny the Lord and you finish the work He gave you.  Job was the champion of God when it came to loyalty before Christ, and Jesus Himself demonstrated His loyalty on the cross when He finished the work even though He had been forsaken.  We have, through the Lord, His loyalty to the Father, but we who seek to do as He has done will also seek to have our loyalty tested.

The martyred saints may have been given incorrect teachings so that they were believing and practising amiss.  But their refusal to deny what they knew and believed of Jesus, even to the point of death, earned for them the approval of their faithfulness because of the loyalty.

To the elect of the Holy Spirit, who and what to believe in have been restored to you, what to practise has been restored to you, and on whom your loyalty must rest has been made known to you.  As such, we have no excuse.

And this is our confidence also, for we know the fullness of faith, and though the world believes, it is not prone to obey and certainly not known for loyalty.

The battle of faith is then won first on loyalty, second on obedience, and third on believing.  It is our loyalty and obedience to the Holy Spirit that will see the restoration of what Jesus achieved – a world and its faith overcome.

Hr. Ed, manager of the Holy Spirit’s Workshop

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