Faith that Works Part 4 by Pastor Don
Here is a transcript from our Sunday Service. Remember with the transcript that, if there are three dots … it means a pause. What is in [brackets] is what the congregation says. I have slightly edited it to make it more readable. Hope you enjoy and are blessed. Have a Happy Thanksgiving! I am thankful for so many things – my husband, my children, a great pastor, and good Xanga friends.
Faith That Works Part 4.
Amen. Hebrews, Chapter 11.
Let’s pray. Father, we’re teaching on Your Faith. Not the faith of man, but the faith that You have made possible for us to share. Faith! Faith is like electricity in the natural, Lord. It has great power to travel great distances and to accomplish much. And so, Father, we want to be full of faith. We want to have zoe, the God kind of life. And the God kind of life is filled with faith. And so, Father, as you have filled other men and women with great faith, we thank You, Lord, that today You’ll make us assured that we can have this great kind of faith. And we’re not standing on shaky faith, but we’re standing on solid rock faith. In Jesus’ name.
Let’s read it together. Verse 1, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” We have to have a faith that works especially in these last days. In these end times, we need to have a faith that what? [works] A faith that works. A faith that works gives us an attitude and an opportunity to participate and cooperate with God. You see, your faith puts you in position to cooperate with what God is doing.
Now, we’ve been talking about some things. I’m going to just summarize some of these. If you don’t have it please, just send for the tape. If you don’t have the money, we’ll send it to you. I just want you to get the information. I want you to become a giant in your faith. I want you to grow in your faith. I want you to see signs and wonders that are evidence of your faith because the purpose of God is for you to work with Him. And God is always working with faith, therefore you’re going to have to bring something to the table and get on with Him. You’re going to have to, it’s a bring a dish when you come. [laughter] Bring something when you come. And what you should be bringing to the table when you going to sup and meet with God, you should be bringing your faith.
So, what did we talk about in the weeks past? I tried to express to you that a faith that works is not just getting more faith. We misunderstand that. When Jesus said, “Ye of little faith,” He wasn’t saying that to have great faith you need more of faith. You can’t get anymore faith when faith is present…Faith either is or it isn’t, there cannot be, you know more…you don’t get big faith. Cause when faith is present, faith is faith. Faith is: I know. It’s evidence. It is substance. So, therefore, when it is present, it says, I know that this is so. You’re not trying to work it up. You’re not trying to cast a spell on it. You’re not trying to pump it up. Jesus said, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can move a mountain. Well, a mustard seed is small, one of the smallest seeds known to man. Therefore, what He’s saying is, if faith is present, [clap] I know… is what’s being spoken. When He says, I know I’m going to feed 1000’s, He wasn’t, I hope this works. He wasn’t, maybe this works. He wasn’t, if I can get more faith it works. Faith calls it done. Faith calls it finished. Faith calls it accomplished. Faith is the essence. It is the substance. It is the manifestation of what was hoped for.
And faith, itself, is a given reality. When you say, “I am healed.” Then you mean, I am healed. You don’t mean, you are going to be healed. You don’t mean, you’re wishing and hoping you are healed. You’re through hoping. You are now believing that it is a fact of existence. It is real. Romans 4:17 says, that God, one thing He loved about Abraham, Abraham wanted to be like God. And therefore, what Abraham did was, he called those things which be not, as though they were. So, he didn’t look at a little child and say, you know, you’re going to grow up to be a bum. He looked at a child and said, you’re going to grow up to be unbelievably fantastic. [amen] You’re going to be really something special.
We have to recognize that your faith is words, your words are actions, your actions are based upon what you truly believe. And, if you will express it as faith, it has to come into manifestation. Faith is the substance of things hoped for, but it’s evidence of things not seen… Those things that are not seen, become evidence. Now, what are the characteristics of faith? And I tried to get this across to you in the last few weeks.
First of all, there’s future faith. There is faith that looks to the future. That Abraham had to believe for 25 years. At the age of 75, God told him he’s going to be the father of nations. He had to have future faith to believe what was spoken in the future. He had to hold onto that faith. I told you, you have to have historic faith. You have to have faith that looks back at what happened to your forefathers, happened to the parents, happened to the patriarchs of the Bible, and you have to say, it happened in history. I believe that what was told me in the past is true. And, therefore, I also believe what God has spoken in the past concerning me, and I will hold on to it with faith. You must have historic faith. You must look back and apply your faith. You must have periphery faith. You must have faith in the people around you. You must believe in them. But you must also take stock of them because everyone in your little world is not a faith person. And therefore, you have to have sufficient faith to look in the periphery around you. You have to know who has faith, who doesn’t, and who has fed your faith and who doesn’t. So you have to have faith in the periphery.
You have to know that you come to church not to get a nap, but you come to church to get a Word. And you have to look around you and you can see that certain people, when they come to church, why are they sleeping? Not only because sleep demons put them to sleep, but also because they don’t have faith to believe that it’s worth staying awake for, that they’re going to get something good. So if you look around your periphery and you, yourself, are starting to fall asleep, go out and get a glass of water. You know, go out into the lobby and talk to one of the ushers. Come back, and do what? Check your peripheral faith. Is it working for you? Are the things around you, look at your home. If your Bible is in your bathroom, and it’s not on your coffee table or your nightstand, then you need to look in your peripheral faith and say, these peripheral things around me are not feeding my faith.
I’m moving on a little quick, but get the tape. I go into great depth. You need to have examining faith. Examining faith examines the Will of God, and it examines the Faith of God. Once you do that, you then must examine your faith. Just because you come to church, you look nice, you dress nice, you need to examine your faith. What do you believe? What do you really believe? Do you really believe what Pastor Don is saying? Pastor Don is a faith teacher. So you have to ask yourself, do you believe faith at all? Or, are you coming from a position of, I don’t believe any of it? But you know, I like the way he dresses, or something [laughter]. I mean, you need to examine your faith. What do you have difficulty believing? Examine your faith. You should know the areas in which you have faith, and don’t.
Remember, He says, “faith the size of a mustard seed.” In other words, faith occurs not in quantity, but faith is qualitative. Well, how do I mean that? You have, you have faith that exists and faith that does not exist. What is the quality of faith? If faith is present, faith is. If faith is not present, it ain’t. That’s the quality of faith. What’s the quantity of faith? The quantity of faith is not that you have more faith. It’s that you have faith for more things, in more arenas. The disciples saw Jesus feed the sick and heal the crippled, when they got on the water and the waves were going to come over them, he says, “Oh ye of little faith.” They had faith for food. They had faith for cripples. But they didn’t have faith over storms. [amen] Anybody get what I’m saying here? [yes]
So you have to examine yourself. What do you have faith for? Do you have faith for finances? Or do you have faith for failure of finances? You can examine that very simply by listening to what you say. Are you one that’s saying, “I’m not going to get the job.”? “Things don’t work out.” “We’ll always be in lack?” If so, then you have faith for failed finances. But, if you have faith for finances, then it’s like, “The job is mine!” [laughter] “Pfft, I’m taking over the supervisor’s job in three months. He’s out of here, and I’m in here.” Faith, “I’m never going to suffer lack. I’m never going to be in debt. I always have an abundance of what I need. I have so much that I can give to people.” If you’re sitting here today and you are not a tither, don’t tell me you have financial faith. You do not. You’re not a believer, because you won’t even trust God with 10%, to sustain your 90%. You are a bad spiritual investment.
Moving right along, how’s everybody doing? Smile at your neighbor. [laughter] Smile at your neighbor. You see, sometimes we need to admit, I don’t have faith for finances, I love money too much. I cannot trust God for my finances. I don’t believe that God’s going to send my kids to college, so I need to put all my money into my college fund…. Does anybody have any idea what’s happening with college funds now? Moving right along.
Then you need to have the fifth type of faith, and that is revealed faith. Revealed faith is faith that comes from the Holy Spirit, and I showed you in the book of John, I went through all of it. When we read John, chapter 14, 15, 16, and 17, Jesus is giving us His will. He is telling us the last thing He wants us to know before He leaves the earth. And what does He tell His disciples? He tells them He wants them to love the people and love themselves, the way the Father has loved Him… And then He says, and the way to do that is to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. Well, what’s the Holy Spirit do? Most of us think, well the Holy Spirit shows up and does signs and wonders, knocks people down, picks them up, heals them, grows out legs, lights lights, and fights back the devil. And that’s not it.
The Holy Spirit was sent as a Comforter to lead you into Truth… Will those truths make you comfortable? No. Some of you are still reeling under the truth of the last five minutes I’ve been talking. [yeah, laughter] Lord have mercy. But the Holy Spirit leads you into truth. And the Holy Spirit says, “Why don’t you try God?” The Holy Spirit says, “Why don’t you discern what’s going on here?” The Holy Spirit says, “Why would you believe that just because someone said it without testing it? Why don’t you look into these things?” So the Holy Spirit reveals truth. That truth is what your faith is to be based upon. Your faith is not to be based upon the traditions of men. It is to be based upon the truth of God. [hallelujah, amen] I like the way I said that. The truth of God. [hallelujah] I’ll be a preacher when I grow up. Get the tape if you weren’t here for it.
Then the next type of faith that we need to work on and receive is intuitive faith. God has given us a measure of faith. It says, to each one, has been given a measure of faith. There’s some things that we know by faith, that we did not work for. We didn’t develop them. They just came with the package. You know, Brother Chris was ministering the Word today, and he says, “He grew up in a God-fearing home.” He grew up in a home of believers. Therefore there were certain things that intuitively he picked up. They’re not his, he can’t take credit for them, they’re just certain things that stirred inside him from a child, that were not able to be killed. See, because you know, growing up in some of our homes will kill our faith. Come on now, right? [yes] And people around you can kill your faith. But there is intuitive faith, that is given to us by the grace of God. By the favor of God. God favors us, and therefore He gives us faith.
I’ll give you a few examples. Intuitive faith. Moses is looking at the burning bush… He intuitively knew he was seeing a miracle… He just knew that. And that intuitive faith comes up again. He’s standing at the Red Sea, he’s got an army coming behind him… ready to kill and crush and destroy, and he’s got this great body of water in front of him. Do you think for one minute he worked up his faith, and began speaking into existence that when he lifted up his rod, he knew what was going to happen? [no] No. He was just obedient. He intuitively knew God, and he intuitively knew that if he obeyed God, God would take over the situation. So he did what? He just said, “Well, I know God. That’s in here. I don’t know what God’s going to do. Or how God’s going to do it.” But he just went…. and then he did this… is anything happening yet? [laughter] Well, yeah. It says that a wind, a western wind began to blow…did he know that was what….. no, he didn’t know. He had no information based upon it. It wasn’t a test of his faith. It was intuitive faith. It came from the inside. It was more faith than he could access with his mind. There was no way in his mind he could see that. He was probably thinking, “Maybe my rod is going to turn into a gatling gun…. And I’ll mow down Egypt.” He could have been thinking all those things. “Maybe we’re going to fly.” Maybe, it could be all of that. But his main thing was he intuitively knew to obey God and just lifted his hand. Alright? And that’s from the grace of God.
There is a measure of faith that has been given to us. It is called, in 1 Corinthians Chapter 12, it is called, you ready for this? Faith miracles. The working of miracles. Well, how does that faith come? You don’t have it and I don’t have it. I remember a story in the Readers’ Digest of a little 90 pound woman, who had a Lincoln Continental and she was getting the car worked on. And the mechanic crawled under, the jack fell, was crushing his chest. So the 90 pound woman went over, grabbed the front end of the Lincoln Continental, one of the heaviest cars made, 90 pounds. And lifted it up and held it, looked over and said, “Can you get out now?” The guy crawled out and she put the car back down. That wasn’t her faith. That was a measure of faith that was given by God. She just knew she could do something…. Well how did she know? Did she know here? No. It was intuitive faith. It was supernatural faith given by God. And just came along. Everybody alright? [amen] Alright.
Now, then, we go from that the seventh, the seventh type of faith, which is taught faith… Taught faith. Taught faith. Faith comes by….[hearing] and hearing [by the Word of God]. By the Word of God, so we have to learn that, wait a minute, I may not have faith to believe that right now, but I can teach myself faith. How can you teach yourself faith? By what you say and what you do. You can begin to build your faith. You can begin to change by what? Learning faith. Faith can be learned. And the reason that faith can be learned is because, where does faith come from? Faith worketh by love…Do you know that scripture? “Faith worketh by love.” You see, love believes all things. Hopes all things. Love can withstand all things. Love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love. Love is the greatest thing in the universe. And how does love work? Love believes…. all things. In other words, love, since love believes all things, it operates and causes things to happen. Love is what causes things to happen.
Jesus is walking along, Jesus loves. And he goes by, and a funeral is passing. And He sees this widow woman crying. And her only son has died. And it says that He was moved by compassion. Well, what’s that? That’s love. And He went over and said, “rise”. He felt so much love for the woman that he raised from the dead. Why would Jesus come, put on a man suit, and walk the earth, die and be resurrected again. Why would he have the faith over death if it wasn’t because he was motivated by love, to save us all? Gadzooks, if that doesn’t give you a chill, you need to get saved. [laughter] My goodness. “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish but have everlasting life.” That everlasting life, can only be accomplished by faith. Your faith can only fulfill it by love.
Why is marriage held up as such a great institution? Cause marriage is a picture of God’s love. Most people can’t stay married because they don’t understand that love is by faith. I love my wife by faith. Well, what does that mean? I had to be taught to love her… Love at first sight is poppycock. There’s no such thing. There is attraction by first sight…. Can we tell the truth here? You see somebody and you are attracted to them. But you don’t love them until you what? Are taught to love them. You have to be taught to love. Love is not a given, it’s not some magic that just flops out of the sky. If it were so, 50% of the people that get married wouldn’t get divorced. But in the process of time, they don’t teach themselves love. And why not? Because they have not accepted the correct model of love.
The best teacher of love is the Lord Jesus Christ. The best teacher of love is the Father. And it’s the way that the Father loved the Son and the Son loved the Father, and then Jesus loved the disciples. And He said, by the love that you have seen me teach you, go therefore and make disciples. Teaching them what? Everything I have commanded you. And what was the commandment? He says, I give you a new commandment, love one another.
See, my generation, in the 50’s and 60’s, when we grew up, a bad thing happened. You know, a bad thing happened. They romanticized love. They romanticized it to the point that they added something that is not so. You have to be taught love. You have to learn how to love. You have to learn how to treat people. You have to learn how to walk in that love. It just isn’t going to just happen. You know….
You know, Pastor Don, I don’t know how to love you. I have to keep looking at the example of how Jesus loved the disciples. And go, oh, I’ll imitate that. Oh, I’ll do it that way. Oh, I won’t give up on them because Jesus didn’t give up. I can tell them, oh ye of little faith and how stupid are you, but I still have to love them and care for them. I still have to care what happens to them. I have to be concerned about them. I have, I have to do just the way Jesus did. I have to keep Him as a model. He is my model. He is teaching me love. I’m learning to love the way He loved. And that’s faith. Because faith says, that’s going to work out if I do that.
If I bring her flowers, enough flowers. I might have to buy a florist shop, but eventually, I’m going to be what? Teaching her love… I’m going to be teaching her, I love you. See how many flowers I bought you? I bought stock in the country of Columbia, just so I could bring you roses everyday…. Lord have mercy. Would you like that baby? [no] No, ok, thank God! [laughter] Thank you Jesus. Alright. So, that’s taught love. That’s taught faith. Love and faith must be taught. They must then be developed.
Today we’re entering into the last segment of characteristics of faith. Everybody ready? Ok, I want you all to stand up. I have to do a demonstration….amen. You guys ready? Here, put your Bibles down if you have them. I want you to turn to a person. Everybody find somebody to turn to. I don’t care where you’re sitting, find somebody. [laughter] Ok, Mrs. Moore come up here, you can be with me. She’s all alone. She’s all alone. I love her, I’ll be with her. There’s a very simple game that is going to demonstrate what this lesson is about. Now, on the count of three you go, one, two, then you put out either scissors, or you put out paper, or you put out rock. Everybody got that? [got it] Come on, you with me? [yes] huh? [yes] You ready? [yes] ok, alright. So everybody ready? Last time, and then yell out who wins. One, two, three. [yelling out winners] You put out the same thing? [laughter & conversation] OK, you may be seated. Why don’t you open the windows, its getting warm in here. [conversation]
How’s everybody doing? We’re talking about the characteristics of faith. This last type of faith I want to talk to you about is demonstrated in that game. And that there is a reality to that game that has a Biblical application. It is true that rock will break scissors. It is also true that scissors will cut paper. But it is also true that paper can cover a rock. But I want you to understand something. It can only cover it but for a set amount of time… The rock will outlast the paper… The rock will outlast the paper.
Solid rock faith is the culmination of all of these types of faith that we’ve been looking at. Solid rock faith is the culmination of it. It is our destination. It is the type of faith that we want to arrive at. And I want to show it to you in scripture. I want you to turn to Matthew Chapter 7. Faith that works. Future faith, historic faith, peripheral faith, examining faith, revealed truth faith, intuitive faith, taught faith, or developing faith, and now we have this last one. Solid rock faith.
The characteristics of solid rock faith are described by Jesus in the 7th Chapter. And these are the characteristics, the first is, you must – to have solid rock faith, you must refrain from judgment, especially harsh judgment. “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.” “What measure you use, it will be measured back to you.” I’m extremely lenient on judging other people. Because I’m aware that God alone should be the judge. And if I’m courteous and forgiving in my judging of other people, then guess what, God will be that same way with me. I hope men will, but I don’t care about the judgment of men as much as I do the judgment of God. And so he says, with the measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.
“And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, “Let me remove the speck from your eye”; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” So the first thing that we must do if we want to put ourselves in position to have rock solid faith, we must become a person of judgment. We don’t harshly judge others, but we judge ourselves, and once we get that cleared, we’re prepared then to stand in judgment.
You know, I can tell somebody what it’s like. I can look at a young guy who can sing and play, you know, I look at my son, and say, “See, son,” both you guys, both my sons are very talented, they sing and write, you know probably as good or better than I did at the same age. I had a plank in my eye concerning the way the world attracts us. Who’s better qualified to judge them than me? And say, if you take your gifts and your talents to the world, this is what’s going to happen. I’m going to sit in judgment on them. How many of you all agree with me? [amen] Then do it with your own kids. [that’s right] Judge your own kids…
Judge them. But judge them in the areas you have conquered. If you’re still smoking, don’t tell your kids, “Don’t smoke.” If you’re still coming home and running to the, you know, if you got to have a few beers to relax, you know, don’t be telling your kids they can’t drink… You hypocrite… Can I move on? [yeah] Jesus didn’t say don’t judge. He says, don’t be a hypocrite. If you’re struggling in an area, don’t judge somebody who’s also struggling in that area. But if you have conquered that, if you have beat that, then you are in position to make a judgment on them.
If you once were a stingy person, and you’re no longer stingy, you can identify stingy when you see it. And you have the responsibility to go, “You a cheapskate.” [laughter] And they go, “Don’t judge me!” And you say, “Yeah, I can. I used to be cheaper than you.”… Right? So, that’s what Jesus is saying. Who said it? [Jesus] He says, “Hypocrite!” First. He says, “Hypocrite!” What should you do? “First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” First remove your plank. What is it that you mess up on? Get that together, and then you’re free to judge. The Church is called to judge. Somebody better step up and judge America. And if we’ll do it first, God will not have to bring the hammer. But right now, he’s standing the hammer. But we need, somebody needs to make a call here. Somebody needs to say, “What we’ve done is wrong. We know because we, I once was lost…” [yeah] “But now I’m found.”
Pastor Don continues with Rock Solid faith in the next video. Hope this blesses you.
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