Monday, August 19, 2019

By Grace through Faith: The Faith That Takes

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 
Ephesians 2:8 NKJV

16 Therefore it is of faith that it might be by Grace Romans 4:16a KJV

 Over the last few weeks, we've been in an ongoing study of Faith. What is it? How does it come? How do we grow and develop Faith? We've seen the answer to these questions and many more in previous articles. If you missed any you can locate them on the bottom right of this blog site under the archive banner.

 Today, I sense the leading to closely examine how to have a more victorious prayer life. How to triumphantly lay hold of all that God procured for us in the Finished Work of Christ. How to manifest abundant living in Christ. 

You may be thinking that sounds great, or maybe even that sounds too good to be true, so how is this accomplished? I can tell you it is not by having a passive, whatever will be will be, passionless kind of faith. It is by having the God kind of Faith, the Faith that takes!

 24 Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you will receive them, and you will have them. Mark 11:24 MEV

Jesus here gives us insight into what the prayer of Faith is. The prayer of Faith is not the prayer that waits for change to believe it receives. It is not the prayer that believes it receives it when it appears different. It is not the prayer that believes it receives when it feels like something happened. The prayer of Faith believes it receives it when it prayed. 

 Going back to Hebrews 11:1 this defines Faith for us. It is the confident hope that what God said is ours, is presently ours even when we can't see it. It is being fully persuaded that what God purchased for us is already ours even though the senses cannot yet perceive it. 

 To walk in the triumphant, victorious, overcoming Christian life we need to have the Faith that takes, not the faith that is moved by feelings and experience and is stifled by low expectation. The believer who knows who he is in Christ and what God promises Him in the Word but never acts on this truth, will not be an overcomer. You must lay hold of the truth to walk in the fullness of it. 

The Faith that Takes

Let's examine this further to gain a better understanding. The believer who first and foremost possesses little to no knowledge of His great Grace, Christ's perfect redemption, and who Christ made them can't walk in full triumphant Christian living. Secondly, the believer who has heard the Good News but doesn't lay claim on these awesome promises for themselves, cannot walk victoriously in this life. 

 What do I mean by claiming these promises? As a Christian, we've been made a New Creation in Christ. We've been made accepted by God. We've been made the Righteousness of God in Christ. We've been forgiven of all our sins, once for all time, all this occurred the moment we believed. Now as true as this is if one doesn't act on these truths they will not be a living reality in their life. 

 God declared you accepted, but if you don't receive that truth of redemption, you will go around through your daily life feeling alone, isolated, and that you don't fit in. So your senses, your emotions, your thinking, will make this seem a reality in your life, all the while Christ has already made you accepted. You just have to believe it, to claim it for yourself. 

 In your daily life, you may experience the sensation that you aren't so accepted, or forgiven or loved. The enemy loves to bring people across your path that don't speak life over you but the negative. You may even hear preaching that says God's mad at you. You may sense the enemy trying to heap guilt and shame and condemning accusations on you. What do you do? Do you just hope these feelings pass?

 No, bless God, you rise up and reject those thoughts. By Faith, you lay claim to what Jesus already did. Your words agree with what God said. You lay claim for yourself what Jesus did for you. Instead of accepting shame or guilt, you deny it and proclaim who Jesus said you are. That's reaching out and taking what He provided. 

 Some have the faith that just sits around and waits, passively hoping for their situation to change. Then others have the Faith that takes and they reach out and take the fullness of the redemption Christ procured. They don't wait around, just wishing and hoping things get better. They claim all Christ provided for themselves. 

 Christ said we who believe are world overcomers. Reach out with the Faith that takes and receive that for yourself. He declared we haven't been given a spirit of fear, but of power and love and a sound mind. So by Faith lay claim on that and refuse to accept fear. Christ made us Righteous, lay hold on that by Faith and refuse guilt and condemnation. Christ bore all the curse on the Cross for us, lay claim to wholeness in every area of life by Faith and resist and refuse the work of the enemy. 

 Now religious tradition comes unglued, so to speak when we begin talking about living victoriously. When you wish to have an overcoming life they will be quick to say it's all about God's sovereignty and whatever will be must be because God preordained it. 

 I even heard one of the biggest proponents of this sovereignty, (see my study on this for further clarity), teaching actually try to teach having Faith in prayer was unnecessary. He tried to use the account of Peter's imprisonment and subsequent deliverance to illustrate this. The idea that the Church prayed for Peter, and when he was delivered, he came to see some Christians and they couldn't believe he was free. See, they obviously didn't have Faith and Peter was rescued, so it must be all God's doing not our believing. 

 You can accept this absurd point of view, but you will not walk in victory, you will be sitting around a long time awaiting change or victory in your life. Look, this passage did say the Church prayed, it doesn't say what they prayed for, what mattered is what Peter himself believed. He was asleep in the cell, he was already in Faith trusting in God. And also, the unbelief of a few doesn't undo the Faith of the many. Now sometimes if the doubting believer has some influence in the life of one being prayed for it might be necessary to get the doubting influence out of the room so to speak, but praying in Faith is essential to walk in victory. 

 In summation, you can walk in triumphant victory in your life. It's up to you. You can lay hold of all God has done for you and put a demand on it for your life. You can agree with God and receive all He has for you. You don't have to wait for anything, just reach out with the Faith that takes and lay claim to all that's yours in Christ. Christ Finished the Work, all He's asking you to do is to believe it and receive it for your own life by reaching out by Faith and taking it. Grace makes, and Faith takes!
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