Posts Tagged ‘Faith’

“When Jesus returned to Capernaum, a Roman officer came and pleaded with him, “Lord, my young servant lies in bed, paralyzed and in terrible pain.” Jesus said, “I will come and heal him.”  But the officer said, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come into my home.  Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed.  I know this because I am under the authority of my superior officers, and I have authority over my soldiers.  I only need to say, ‘Go,’ and they go, or ‘Come,’ and they come.  And if I say to my slaves, ‘Do this,’ they do it.”  When Jesus heard this, he was amazed.  Turning to those who were following him, he said, “I tell you the truth, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel!  And I tell you this, that many Gentiles will come from all over the world-from east and west-and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob at the feast in the Kingdom of Heaven. But many Israelites-those for whom the Kingdom was prepared-will be thrown into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”  Then Jesus said to the Roman officer, ‘Go back home.  Because you believed, it has happened.”  And the young servant was healed that same hour.” (Matthew 8:5-13)

“Jesus traveled through all the towns and villages of that area, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom.  And he healed every kind of disease and illness.  When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.  He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few.  So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.” (Matthew 9:35-38)

Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for.  Keep on seeking, and you will find.  Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks, receives.  Everyone who seeks, finds.  And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Matthew 7:7-8)

“If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them wanders away, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others on the hills and go out to search for the one that is lost?  And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he will rejoice over it more than over the ninety-nine that didn’t wander away! In the same way, it is not my heavenly Father’s will that even one of these little ones should perish.” (Matthew 18:12-14).

According to research done by The Joshua Project, there are over 6,550 people groups on earth who have not heard the Good News about eternal life through our Savior and Messiah Jesus Christ.  Want to know who they are and where they are?  Click here (But first count the cost of having access to this knowledge, as you will instantly realize your responsibility to intercede for these people through continuous prayer): http://public.imb.org/globalresearch/Pages/ResearchData.aspx

Let us pray to the Lord of the harvest to send workers to his fields to share the truth of eternal life through Jesus Christ to the remaining people who have never even heard of Him.  Like the Roman officer, let our faith put events into motion in the heavens.  When we pray for the Lord to send workers into these fields, we must understand the power behind our prayers.  We know the will of God on this issue (that ALL would hear), so we know our prayers match His will.  And we know that our prayers are the vehicles through which He accomplishes his purposes on earth.  We are called upon by the Most High God to use our voice on behalf of the lost, to lift them up in faith, that God would reveal himself to them so that they may be saved.

Scrolling through the list of the unreached, we see that many of these people groups have less than 100 people; they are completely remote and tribal.  They live on remote islands, at the top of unchartered mountains, in unexplored parts of jungles, and wild habitats.  God loves them all and wants them in His family.

These are our future brothers and sisters; our future family.  We cannot let them down by failing to pray for them while they are lost.  We see that hundreds of thousands of these people are lost because they are physically deaf and cannot hear the Word of God.  Most are also illiterate, so how can they be reached?  God will reach them through our prayers.  In response to our prayers, God will say ‘Go,’ and His workers will GO!  God will say ‘Do this,’ and his servants will do it.  The Roman officer in God’s Word understood very clearly how it works.  Do we?

Here is an example of how we can pray for them:

Dear Father in Heaven, thank you for the gift of life and for saving me and bringing me into your family through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior.  Somehow you made sure that I heard about Christ and you prepared my heart to believe in Him.  Lord, I know that it is your will that all would hear of the free gift you offer through your royal Son Jesus Christ and that none would perish.  In response to your love and for saving me, I long for all to experience what I have with you.  Today I lift up these unreached people groups [HERE, SPECIFICALLY NAME PEOPLE GROUPS IN THE LIST], that you would send your workers into their fields to proclaim the Good News about the Kingdom and Jesus Christ to them.  I pray for their salvation, that they may live in the House of the Lord forever.  May they praise your Holy Name and bring your Name great honor and glory through their praise and by living holy lives in honor of Christ Jesus.  May they acknowledge their sins, confess them to you, repent of them wholeheartedly, and follow Christ Jesus’s example in every way.  May they fellowship with each other to grow in their faith, pray for each other, and may they have access to the Word of God.  Lord, I also ask for your protection over them as they grow with you, that the enemy cannot come to kill, steal, and destroy the relationship they have with you.  Give their hearts good soil which receives your Word and causes it to grow deep roots that can never be uprooted by any force contrary to your will.  May your Holy Spirit do His work in their lives wherever they are and may your Kingdom come!

And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all peoples will hear it, and then the end will come.” (Matthew 24:14)

Jesus told them, ‘Don’t let anyone mislead you, for many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah.’ They will deceive many.  And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic.  Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately.  Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.  There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world.  But all of this is only the first of the birth pains, with more come.  Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed.  You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers.  And many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other.  And many false prophets will appear and will deceive many people.  Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold.  But the one who endures to the end will be saved.  And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.” (Matthew 24:4-14)

“The day is coming when you will see what Daniel the prophet spoke about–the sacrilegious object that causes desecration standing in the Holy Place.” (Reader, pay attention!) Then those in Judea must flee to the hills.  A person out on the deck of a roof must not go down into the house to pack.  A person out in the field must not return even to get a coat.  How terrible it will be for pregnant women and for nursing mothers in those days.  And pray that your flight will not be in the winter or on the Sabbath.  For there will be greater anguish than at any time since the world began.  And it will never be so great again.  In fact, unless that time of calamity is shortened, not a single person will survive.  But it will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen ones.”  (Matthew 24:15-22)

“Watch out! Don’t let your hearts be dulled by carousing and drunkenness, and by the worries of this life.  Don’t let that day catch you unaware, like a trap.  For that day will come upon everyone living on the earth.  Keep alert at all times.  And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man.”  (Luke 21:34-36)

“However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself.  Only the Father knows.  And since you don’t know when that time will come, be on guard! Stay alert!” (Mark 13:32-33)

“Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires.  They will say, ‘What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again? From before the times of our ancestors, everything has remained the same since the world was first created.'” (2 Peter 3:3-4)

The subject of the “End Times” is so important in Scripture that it can be found in almost every book of the Bible.  So many books have been written about it that entire libraries can be dedicated to this subject alone.  All events taking place in the world are leading to this point of culmination, and no matter where we turn, what we see and hear are increasingly perilous and seemingly hopeless.

Spirits of fear, worry and hatred blanket the planet and everyone living on earth is affected by them as evidenced by wars, threats of wars, skyrocketing violence and apathy towards it, the moral corruption of the world’s leaders and the moral rot in our individual societies, record-breaking natural disasters, man-made disasters, devastating financial disasters and the effects of these events on the worldwide populace.  Because of technology, the world’s inhabitants quickly know what is happening anywhere on Earth, and more and more, what we hear about is turmoil.

As Christians, we know that life will get increasing harder for us on this planet.  We are not welcome here and the world is hostile toward us. Those who don’t enjoy the freedoms that the western world currently provides face death every single moment of their lives just because they love Jesus Christ.  Jesus specifically said not to panic.  He commanded us to “watch out!”, to “stay alert” and to “pray”.  We are to continue our work in spreading the Good News to all nations and people while there is still time to do so.  We’ve been told what the end looks like and we know that it will be worse than anything the world has ever known.  This is scary knowledge to have and it can be distracting and even paralyzing if not understood from the proper perspective; the perspective of a soldier.

Soldiers are fully aware that their training and purpose is for the battlefield, the place where their lives can end or where they can be victorious. They don’t know when the battle cry will sound and their number will be called.  They are expected to be ready at all times.  And so are we.

Things will get worse.  Persecution will get worse.  Christians will continue to disappear from cities across the world, just as recently happened in Mosul, Iraq, where no Christians are left.  The world will quake and groan more and more violently under the spirit of evil that has taken hold, just as the Scriptures say.  Everything is NOT the same as it ever was, though many scoff that it is.

Christians are to be prepared, watch, pray and diligently continue on with the Great Commission of Christ.  Worry, panic and fear are not part of our equation.  Worry, panic and fear are not from God.  Our hope is in Christ and He is all we need. Our brothers and sisters all over the world face the end of their lives every day and if we are called to suffer as well, so be it. We are commanded to be bold in Christ.

Whether the End of Times occurs in our lifetime or not, none of us know when we will die, only that it’s sure to happen.  Let us live as if each day truly is a gift from God and use our day to glorify His Great Name.

No one can serve two masters.  For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other.  You cannot serve both God and money.  That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life–whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear.  Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing?  Look at the birds.  They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them.  And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?  Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?  And why worry about your clothing?  Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow.  They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are.  And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you.  Why do you have so little faith?  So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat?  What will we drink?  What will we wear?’  These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.  Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.  So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries.  Today’s trouble is enough for today.”  (Matthew 6:24-34)

Jesus does not mince words when He describes how the Father takes care of those who live in His Kingdom.  When we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior and the Lord of our life, He becomes our King.  We live in His Kingdom.  We are His subjects; His servants.  We belong to Him.  The responsibility is His to provide for our needs and He very clearly states that He will give us everything we need each day.  This truth is so important for Christ’s followers to know that Jesus even made sure it was part of our template for prayer, saying “Give us today our daily bread.” (Matthew 6:11)

Jesus is not announcing the so-called “prosperity gospel”, telling us to hold our hands out and claim that “money cometh!”, as several popular wolves in sheep’s clothing tell their flocks to do.  That twisting of our Savior’s words is the classic subtle perversion of truth, the trademark stamp of Satan.

However, it is a righteous act to expect our needs to be provided for. We act in faith when we greet each day thanking God for His provision and go about our daily activities confidently knowing He will meet our needs.

Approaching the day (and life) this way separates Christ’s followers from the world.  The world’s kingdom is money and those who belong to the world worry about whether they have enough money to meet their needs.  They place their trust in their money or lack thereof.  They fret, scheme, plot, and strategize how they will get more money and the result is that money becomes their king and master.

But the world’s economy does not affect God’s economy and what a relief it is to know that.  Those who live in the Kingdom of Heaven have the Most High God as their Master; their Provider.  Putting God’s Purpose first and living righteously shows that we live in His Kingdom and His response is a promise to take care of us.

So it is not fitting at all for believing Christians to worry about our needs.  We set ourselves apart from the world and its master when we approach each day in confident, even childlike, expectation and thankfulness that our needs are met by our Father in Heaven.  This is praise by behavior and it greatly pleases our God Almighty.

“No one can serve two masters.  For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other.  You cannot serve both God and money.  That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life — whether you have enough food or drink, or enough clothes to wear.  Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing?  Look at the birds.  They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them.  And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?” Matthew 6: 24-27

“You fathers — if your children ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead?  Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion instead? Of course not!  So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.” Luke 11:11-13

The Holy Scriptures say that God already knows exactly we need even before we ask him (Matthew 6:8) and they warn us to check our heart and motives before approaching the Most High God with a request for something (James 4:3).

There are storehouses of treasures in God’s Kingdom of Heaven that make the luxuries of earth look like little plastic children’s trinkets; worthless.  “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9   When we view our temporary lives in this temporary world from God’s viewpoint, things change. Priorities change.  We yearn for treasures from the storehouses of Heaven and those treasures are eternal and holy.  When we possess those treasures, no one can take them away from us (Matthew 6:20).

The most precious treasure of heaven is the Holy Spirit.

When God gives the Holy Spirit to us, any need we have is met according to God’s will.  Ask in Jesus’ name and we will be given the gifts of the Spirit.  To name only a few: we can ask for and receive healing, faith, wisdom and discernment, forgiveness, guidance and counsel, clarity and an understanding heart, mercy, knowledge of His will in our lives, love, holiness and righteousness, fellowship with other Christians, joy, peace, contentment in life, whatever our circumstance, and victory over our struggles.

In the spiritual war, when we’re exhausted and don’t think we can go on, we can call out to our mighty God and He Himself will fight for us.  “The Lord himself will fight for you.  Just stay calm.”  Exodus 14:14