Thursday, May 30, 2013

Living by Faith and not by Sight

For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.  –Romans 1:17 (KJV)

I watched a taped sermon recently by a pastor in my area named Phil Hoskins.  Brother Phil told the story of when they were seeking to raise over 6 million dollars for the construction of the church’s new sanctuary.  A church trustee approached him one day and said “Pastor, how are we going to raise all this money?” Phil replied, “We are going to trust God.” The trustee answered, “Has it come to that?”

This story demonstrates the human tendency to trust God as a last resort.  My friends, trusting God is our first option, not our last resort.  So often, after we have exhausted every human effort to get a job done, and then seeing our efforts are failing –  perhaps miserably, we then are willing to trust the Lord.  Recall what God’s Word says about righteousness from God revealed from faith to faith; “the just shall live by faith.” In every situation we are called to trust God rather than ourselves.  Every new challenge presents an opportunity for increased faith and personal growth.  Faith to faith implies an ongoing pattern of trusting the Lord, which involves lifting our eyes from ourselves and looking to God’s power.

How many times have we examined a situation and deemed to too hard, too expensive, too time-consuming, and too complicated?  Consider when a young shepherd boy named David faced a giant named Goliath (I Samuel 17).  David did not linger on what type of stones he should use or whether or not he ought to form a committee to investigate his chances of defeating a giant.  From a purely human standpoint, his odds of killing Goliath were nil.  Instead, David followed God’s leading in his life, which was a standard course of trusting God in every new challenge.  David had killed lions and bears that had attacked his sheep.  Therefore, he knew the Lord has been preparing him all along for this newest test.  He had been living by faith all along, so any new situation was a continuation of this faith principle.  David understood about the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith.

Each day we must make a decision; will we walk by faith or by sight?  Know that our eyes can play tricks on us making obstacles appear larger and more formidable than they actually are.  What looks to be impossible for us is possible in God’s power.  Perhaps your challenge today is simply finding the strength to rise up and face the day.  By faith, God will empower you.  The challenges you will confront might include depression, anxiety, marital problems, conflicts at work, or a rebellious child.  Meet them head-on in God’s strength and with the mind of Christ.

The righteous will live by faith, not by sight.  Do not despair and do not give up.  Trust the Lord today and do not be afraid.