The Value Of Faith: Sermon By Deaconess Jackie Wandia
Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour (three o’clock in the afternoon), [When] a certain man crippled from his birth was being carried along, who was laid each day at that gate of the temple [which is] called Beautiful, so that he might beg for charitable gifts from those who entered the temple. So when he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked them to give him a gift. And Peter directed his gaze intently at him, and so did John, and said, Look at us! And [the man] paid attention to them, expecting that he was going to get something from them.
But Peter said, Silver and gold (money) I do not have; but what I do have, that I give to you: in [the use of] the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk! Then he took hold of the man’s right hand with a firm grip and raised him up. And at once his feet and ankle bones became strong and steady, And leaping forth he stood and began to walk, and he went into the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God.
And all the people saw him walking about and praising God, And they recognized him as the man who usually sat [begging] for alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement (bewilderment, consternation) over what had occurred to him. Now while he [still] firmly clung to Peter and John, all the people in utmost amazement ran together and crowded around them in the covered porch (walk) called Solomon’s. And Peter, seeing it, answered the people, You men of Israel, why are you so surprised and wondering at this? Why do you keep staring at us, as though by our [own individual] power or [active] piety we had made this man [able] to walk? The God of Abraham and of Isaac and of Jacob, the God of our forefathers, has glorified His Servant and Son Jesus [doing Him this honor], Whom you indeed delivered up and denied and rejected and disowned in the presence of Pilate, when he had determined to let Him go.Acts 3:1-13 (AMPC)
For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life.John 3:16 (AMPC)
Value is one’s judgement of what is important or usefulness of something. People have different perspectives of what is valuable.
If you believe in Who God is, you won’t believe in waiting on only what He can do.
You have to know God for you to stand secure.
Scripture Reference: Hebrews 11
Faith is a continual trust and enduring confidence in what God can do and Who He is. Our focus should be on knowing God and that will form the basis of our faith.
In the book of Acts chapter 3, Peter and John shared with the man what they had – faith. The man was introduced to Christ through faith when he was healed.
Without faith we cannot please God. Faith is mandatory in the life of a believer.
But how are people to call upon Him Whom they have not believed [in Whom they have no faith, on Whom they have no reliance]? And how are they to believe in Him [adhere to, trust in, and rely upon Him] of Whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without a preacher?Romans 10:14 (AMPC)
The difference between us and non-believers is that we have believed in Christ. It is the connecting factor in our relationship with God.
We hear and receive answers from God because of our faith in God.
God does not change. As we grow in faith, God teaches us to learn to wait more for the answers to our prayers.
Believing in God is not believing in God for something.
The error we make is that we equate God’s love to what we have, meaning that to us, denial of certain things from God means that God does not love us.
You cannot have faith in God if you do not believe that He loves you.
Brethren, [with all] my heart’s desire and goodwill for [Israel], I long and pray to God that they may be saved. I bear them witness that they have a [certain] zeal and enthusiasm for God, but it is not enlightened and according to [correct and vital] knowledge. For being ignorant of the righteousness that God ascribes [which makes one acceptable to Him in word, thought, and deed] and seeking to establish a righteousness (a means of salvation) of their own, they did not obey or submit themselves to God’s righteousness. For Christ is the end of the Law [the limit at which it ceases to be, for the Law leads up to Him Who is the fulfillment of its types, and in Him the purpose which it was designed to accomplish is fulfilled. That is, the purpose of the Law is fulfilled in Him] as the means of righteousness (right relationship to God) for everyone who trusts in and adheres to and relies on Him.Romans 10:1-4 (AMPC)
In the Kingdom, faith levelled the ground. It freed us from works and no one accesses God through what they have, instead it is through faith.
For the patriarchs in the Bible, it is not the works they did that got them favour with God but it was the faith they had in God to do the works. An example is Noah when he built the ark.
Faith defies logic. It is based on God’s integrity not on our own efforts. We limit God to what we understand, see and hear, yet God is limitless.
Faith is not a one-off thing but a lifestyle. As believers, we are called to walk by faith. There is a measure of faith that we grow in as we journey through life in various seasons.
The enemy is not after you but after your faith and purpose. When you are aware of this, you will be keen to protect your faith.
Hope is birthed in your intimate relationship with God. It is by hope and faith that we access the great and exceedingly great promises of God in our lives.
We cannot have communal faith, which is faith by association, because it lacks conviction. We are to believe God on a personal level.
By virtue of answered prayer, we lose the right to doubt God.
Faith goes hand in hand with patience. We need to wait for the things that the Lord has promised us.
In order that you may not grow disinterested and become [spiritual] sluggards, but imitators, behaving as do those who through faith (by their leaning of the entire personality on God in Christ in absolute trust and confidence in His power, wisdom, and goodness) and by practice of patient endurance and waiting are [now] inheriting the promises.Hebrews 6:12 (AMPC)
Faith is the substance of things hoped for.
Substance here is the attributes of God upon which the answer to our petitions are based on.
The breath of God is the substance of creation that caused Adam to be a living soul.
Having faith in God is predicated on the knowledge of God. If you know God you will have faith.