Rom 5:1-2  Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,  2  through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

By Faith we are Justified, and because of this we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. And by Faith we have obtained introduction and access into grace through our Lord Jesus Christ, the grace that we are standing in.

The word faith is mentioned in 229 verses in the Bible 227 of them are in the new testament.

In the New Testament we see a couple of major strands of teaching regarding faith:

The 1st is faith for salvation.  The majority of the teaching in the New Testament on Faith is about Faith rather than works for Salvation.

The 2nd is Faith to endure… or enduring faith.

The 3rd is faith for miracles…and while it is  mentioned regularly… in reality miracles are a by product in the lives of those who have saving and enduring faith…

THROUGH OUR LORD JESUS

Through our Lord Jesus… we have justification, we have peace with God, we have introduction(access) into grace, we have access to the Father(Eph 2:18), we have boldness(Eph 3:12), we have received the reconciliation(Rom 5:11), we are sons of God (Gal 3:26),  we are set free from sin & death(Rom 7:24-25) we have the victory (1 Cor 15:57) we will reign in life(Rom 5:17), and we receive eternal life (Rom 5:21) … Jesus called Himself the door & the way.

FAITH GIVES ACCESS INTO GRACE

Often times we will begin our journey into something we feel that the Lord has called us to, sensing the grace of God upon it.  After a season the initial buzz of doing something exciting wears off and the inevitable challenges come.  Many times when we begin to go through challenges we will customarily say something like, “ I don’t have the grace for this or the grace is lifting.” When the challenges and trials come we believe that we don’t have grace to stand through the challenge because we don’t feel the grace.

I have referred to grace as an inner resolve to accomplish what it is that God has called us to do. And so we might assume when the inner resolve is gone, so is the grace.  That may be true, but what is also in question is whether or not the Lord still wants you to continue doing what it is he has asked you to do.

I propose that just because we don’t feel the “grace” to do something that the Lord has asked us to do, that doesn’t mean that we are to abandon it.  It likely means that we are to keep moving forward faithfully obeying what it is the Lord has called us to do, believing Him for the necessary divine enablement to make it through the challenges that we are going to experience.

Acts 14:22 “ Strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.”

When we move in faith, then the grace to divinely enable us to see it through will accompany us.  Grace to Stand, to Serve, to Give, to Bless those who curse us.  I will accompany us as we make the decision to faithfully obey the word.

I guarantee that most of the time when you are given the opportunity to bless those who curse you, you are not going to feel like it.

STATE OF GRACE

Why doesn’t God leave us in a state of being controlled by supernatural grace… couldn’t we do more for God if we were under a great experience of grace at all times….?  God is not after “me doing more for Him” He is interested in me being conformed to the image of His Son.

FAITH IS AUTHORED & OFFERED BY JESUS

Faith is authored by Jesus – (Heb 12:2) This stuff that is the substance of what we hope for, the evidence in our heart of what we don’t see… its faith, Jesus is the one who creates it. He is the one who offers it… faith can be accepted by which we believe or it can be rejected, overthrown, strayed away from, resisted … (1 Tim 1:19)

Process of Faith

The process of faith goes like this.  Truth is revealed to an individual. A believer or unbeliever… once truth is revealed, the opportunity to believe that truth or reject that truth is also made available.

If a person says yes to the truth and begins to live according to that truth, that is faith.

If a person says no the truth and lives in opposition to that truth that is unbelief.  (in this case the individual has to cast off or resist the truth, the ultimately refuse to believe)

If a person says yes to the truth and does not live according to that truth that is unfaithfulness, also unbelief.

FAITH IS A FIGHT

Faith is a fight – (1 Tim 6:12) at times it is a fight to believe God over our circumstances and what we see in our lives.  Everything will shout at us that the word is not true and that God is unfaithful.

Consider Abraham

Rom 4:18-21  In hope against hope he believed, so that he might become a father of many nations according to that which had been spoken, “SO SHALL YOUR DESCENDANTS BE.”  19  Without becoming weak in faith he contemplated his own body, now as good as dead since he was about a hundred years old, and the deadness of Sarah’s womb;  20  yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God,  21  and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform.

FAITH CAN BE SEEN OR IDENTIFIED… James tells us how… James 2:17-18 faith without works is dead… I will show you my faith by my works.

Ultimately Faith is staying obedient to God through trials and suffering… your works of obedience identify the truth of your faith

FAITH IS PERFECTED BY JESUS

Faith is finished or perfected by Jesus – (Heb 12:2) How does Jesus bring us to perfect our faith… through sufferings (Heb 2:10), and we cooperate correspondingly through our obedience to God through the sufferings (Heb 5:8-9)

Heb 12:1-3  Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,  2  looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  3  For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.

Heb 5:8-9  though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered.  9  And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him,

Heb 2:10-11  For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.  11  For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren,

1Pe 5:10  After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.

James 2:22 – James says that Abraham’s faith was made perfect by Abraham walking out the offering of His own son.

OH TO OBTAIN THIS TESTIMONY!!

1Pe 1:3-9  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,  4  to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,  5  who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.  6  In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials,  7  that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,  8  whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see  Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,  9  receiving the end of your faith–the salvation of your souls.

2Ti 4:7-8  I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.  8  Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.

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