God's Truth In Love

Fruit or Vegetable Series ~ Part Fourteen – Faithfulness/Faith

In Agape Love, Apostasy, Bible, Biblical Principles, Chrisitan Lifestyle, Christian, Christian Living, Christianity, Devotional, Encouragement, End Times, Exhortation, Fruits of the Holy Spirit, God, God's Voice, Godliness, Holy Spirit, Jesus, Love, Persecution, Prophecy, Prophet, Prophetess, Remnant, Revival, Rhema Words, Spiritual Activism, Spiritual Activists, Spiritual Fruit, Spiritual Remnant, Truth, Uncategorized on March 22, 2014 at 6:51 pm

Saturday, March 22, 2014

This part of the Fruit and Vegetable Series will be the most important part by far. The virtue of faith and/or faithfulness is without a doubt the aspect of the fruit of the Spirit that will impact the life of a Believer the most and leave the most lasting results, either positive or negative upon their life.

As we will look at the virtue of “faithfulness/faith”, what we will examine is godly faithfulness and faith not a worldly concept of dedication and positive thinking. Often the world and religious legalism are dedicated to a project or practice because it makes them look good or feel good about themselves. These practices and projects are not things done out of faithfulness to God and faith in what God has ordained.

Immediately I need to bring clarity to difference between faith and faithfulness and why they cannot be separated spiritually. Faith is about what we believe. Faithfulness is about what we do. What we believe will directly impact what we do. What we do and do not do will directly impact our faith. If we do not believe we will not act and if we do not act our ability to believe will never grow, thus, deeper faith will be allowed to develop. Some people believe what they choose, others believe what they know; the latter is faith. Any aspect of the fruit of the Spirit, along with all faith, originates with God but once originated God allows us to choose what we will do with that faith.

Galatians 5:22–23 (NKJV)

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness [KJV – gentleness], goodness, faithfulness [KJV – faith], 23 gentleness [KJV – Meekness], self-control [KJV – temperance].

As stated previously in earlier writings, the word or term used in the King James Version of the Bible is the word needed in order to look up the exact meaning of said word in the Greek or Hebrew language. When researching biblical words one must always go back through the KJV 1611 Bible. Therefore, whereas the NKJV uses the word faithfulness the KJV uses the word faith in this verse. The definition in the Greek Language for the word “faith” used in Galatians 5:22 is as follows.

“faith”

4102. πίστις pistis, pis´-tis; from 3982; persuasion, i.e. credence; mor. conviction (of relig. truth, or the truthfulness of God or a relig. teacher), espec. reliance upon Christ for salvation; abstr. constancy in such profession; by extension, the system of religious (Gospel) truth itself:— assurance, belief, believe, faith, fidelity.

3982. πείθω pĕithō, pi´-tho; a primary verb; to convince (by argument, true or false); by anal. to pacify or conciliate (by other fair means); refl. or pass. to assent (to evidence or authority), to rely (by inward certainty):— agree, assure, believe, have confidence, be (wax) confident, make friend, obey, persuade, trust, yield.

You cannot separate faith and obedience of which faithfulness is a part. Faith and obedience are kind of like two sides of one coin. Noah believed God and built an ark. Abraham trusted God and went. In order to have such faith one must be willing to grow their faith through faithfulness and the testing of that faith/faithfulness.

In order for a person to walk in faith, they must walk in Divine protection. Authentic godliness rather than religiousness is our best defense against Satan’s seductions and attacks. One’s godliness must be tested if they, or anyone else, are to know the depths of their faith. There is a peace that comes from walking in godliness and faith, and then there is the peace with which Satan seduces people.

Satan’s false peace is a peace that comes not from overcoming in a godly way but instead is produced from the evasion of apathy and deadness into ones faith that leaves them lethargic, numb and sleeping in the light – faith is decaying or all but dead in individuals who experience this form of peace. They are spiritually lifeless people with little or no passion in life, drones living off of the faith of those around them. Again, testing the spirits of people exposes these individuals and the depth of their faith.

I do not know a godly spiritual leader who has not had their faith and faithfulness tested, otherwise they would not have been found ready to be a leader. Testing of one’s faith is a tough and often painful process but absolutely necessary. The Bible is filled with examples of tested faith. Jesus did not sweat blood in the garden because He was breezing through His assignment. He struggled, He sought another path, and then He obeyed. He lost everyone and went to the cross alone. Most of the prophets and apostles struggled alone with their faith and the resulting persecution.

Why alone? Dejected identity – rejection causes people to loss heart – test the depth of someone’s faith by putting them in a position of rejection and see how they respond. This will tell you a great deal about their faith and faithfulness. You will quickly discover who cares enough to fight for what they said they believed in, their desires, their beliefs, their relationships, their godly passions and purpose, etc. or do they fall into self-pity and respond with no action, or even worse, they pull back or turn back. Faith not worth acting on is not much faith. Faithfulness that cannot overcome a few roadblocks is not a characteristic that is rooted very deeply in a person.

There is a Jewish practice, which is also used by Christian Spiritual Leader to test people’s faith and faithfulness before giving them a place of leadership and authority, as the novice Believer should not be a leader. 1 Timothy 3:6 (NKJV) not a novice, lest being puffed up with pride he fall into the same condemnation as the devil. This practice is typically reserved for proselytes and is meant to detect godly faith in Truths verses intellectual ascent to Truths. The practice has its roots in Scripture and was done many times. Essentially the practice is to reject or rebuff a proselyte (new convert) three times, in varying degrees of severity, both to see if he or she is sincere in their faith and faithfulness and to show him or her that it is hard to be a Devoted Follower and live a life of faith and faithfulness to God. How the individual responds tells the Spiritual Leader what they need to know about the person’s preparedness, commitment, faith, and faithfulness.

Here are some examples of how we might express godly faithfulness/faith toward God, self, and others as well as through service? By trusting in God and obeying His directives, we show Him our faith as well as our faithfulness to Him and His purpose for us. We express godly faith/faithfulness toward ourselves when daily, in our private lives, we follow the personal directives we have been given by God based on His priorities for our life. Our faith and faithfulness shows to people as we continue in our commitment to them and our commitment to godly covenants, such as marriage. By being there for people, time after time despite the hardships, we show them our faith and faithfulness through the act of service to them.

Faith in the faithfulness of an Unchanging God is something that is developed to a greater and greater degree as each year passes and you continue in faith and faithfulness. It can grow to the degree that there is almost nothing you do not believe can happen, or you can do, if God tells you it is going to happen or you must get it done. That is a glorious day! That makes for a glorious life!

People complain about never getting a chance in life, yet, they never take any risk in life. The difference between people who make a difference in society, their world, their community, their Christian Fellowship, who stand for something, and who fulfill their godly purpose in life and those who never do hinges greatly on their faith and their faithfulness.

 

Spiritual/Political Disclaimer:

This blog will not be for the faint of heart or the easily offended. It will not be in any way politically correct. It will make every effort to share the truth in love, [Ephesians 4:11-16], to a decaying and dying society and church. I share what I share not to hurt, harm, or offend any person[s] or group; I do it because Christ’s Standard and Truth is not being represented by enough of His Followers and I do it out of love. I love enough to tell His Truth.

Ephesians 4:11-16 NKJV

11And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, 13till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 14that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— 16from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.

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