Faithfulness

 

I thank my God at all times for you because of the grace (the favor and spiritual blessing) of God which was bestowed on you in Christ Jesus, [So] that in Him in every respect you were enriched, in full power and readiness of speech [to speak of your faith] and complete knowledge and illumination [to give you full insight into its meaning].  In this way [our] witnessing concerning Christ (the Messiah) was so confirmed and established and made sure in you t hat you are not [consciously] falling behind or lacking in any special spiritual endowment or Christian grace [the reception of which is due to the power of divine grace operating in your souls by the Holy Spirit], while you wait and watch [constantly living in hope] for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and [His] being made visible to all.  And He will establish you to the end [keep you steadfast, give you strength, and guarantee your vindication; He will be your warrant against all accusation or indictment so that you will be] guiltless and irreproachable in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah).  I Corinthians 1:4-8…. The Amplified Version

Now I mean this, that each one of you says, “I am [a disciple] of Paul,” or “I am [a disciple] Apollos, or I belong to Cephas (Peter), or I belong to Christ.  Is Christ (the Messiah) divided into parts? Was Paul crucified on behalf of you? Or were you baptized into the name of Paul?  I thank God that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, Lest anyone should say that I baptized in my own name. [Yes] I did baptize the household of Stephanas also. More than these, I do not remember that I baptized anyone. For Christ (the Messiah) sent me out not to baptize but [to evangelize by] preaching the glad tidings (the Gospel), and that not with verbal eloquence, lest the cross of Christ should be deprived of force and emptied of its power and rendered vain (fruitless, void of value, and of no effect).  I Corinthians 1:12-17….The Amplified Version

For the story and message of the cross is sheer absurdity and folly to those who are perishing and on their way to perdition, but to us who are being saved it is the [manifestation of] the power of God.  I Corinthians 1:18….The Amplified Version

For it is written, I will baffle and render useless and destroy the learning of the learned and the philosophy of the philosophers and the cleverness of the clever and the discernment of the discerning; I will frustrate and nullify [them] and bring [them] to nothing.   I Corinthians 1:19….The Amplified Bible

  • In the fourth verse Paul states that He praises God that the Christians at Corinth are in Christ Jesus, they are saved and walking on the right path. Wow, what a great testimony of a church of believers!
  • In verse five Paul is blessed that the church is set apart or enriched in all utterance and knowledge of the word. Their understanding and testimony in obeying the word is here confirmed.
  • In verse six the testimony of Christ is confirmed in them.
  • All the ministry gifts are in operation in this church and none are lacking. There are ample gifts to go around to all in the church.  There is a work for all and here, all are working.

family devotion

But we are citizens of the state (commonwealth, homeland) which is in heaven, and from it also we ]earnestly and patiently await [the coming of] the Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) [as] Savior.  Philippians 3:20….The Amplified Version

  • God’s confirmation of you is definite. It is a sure thing.  It is obvious to those looking on and that is as it should be.
  • God is faithful and in your calling you have been faithful. Continue to be faithful.
  • In Verses 10-19 the unity of the body is again emphasized. The ministry gifts cannot operate without that unity.

What then is faithfulness?  What would you consider faithfulness?  What margin of error would you allow?

  • 100%
  • 50%
  • 10%
  • If your automobile worked 50% of the time, would you consider it faithful?
  • If your spouse was faithful 75% of the time, would you consider them faithful?
  • If your children only loved you when they needed something, how would you feel?
  • If you only received a pay check or your retirement check half of the time, how would you feel?  Would you keep working or would you be on the phone questioning someone about the missed check?
  • What about your church?  If the doctrine or teachings of our church made a dramatic change from week to week, flip-flopping with the changing wind, would the church be faithful to the Word of God and to you?

Dr.Laura, a call-in talk-show host of sometime back, said this:

“The path to solid, supportive, healthy relationships, self-respect and a quality life starts with the usually painful decision to do the right thing.  Regardless of emotions and temptations, to be fully human and to benefit from life, you must get back to the three C’s –

  • Character
  • Courage
  • Conscience.”

What is faithfulness?  I am so glad you asked!

  • Steadfast in affections, loyal
  • Firm in following the promises made or in doing one’s duty a promised
  • Conscientious
  • True to facts, constant, faithful

Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.  And the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.  So the LORD said, “I will destroy man who I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.”  But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.   Genesis 6:5-8

  • Noah’s day – not much different as today.  People of the day were disobedient, seeking their own way.  They were unfaithful.
  • The children of Israel (God’s chosen people) again and again turned away from God.
  • Is there anything too hard for the Lord?  I am the Lord thy God, I change not.

Faithful is He who called you, who will also do it.  I Thessalonians 5:24

Let us hold fast to the profession of our faith without wavering; for H is faithful that promised.  Hebrews 4:12

  • Do you waffle on your devotion/service to God?
  • There is no variableness, no shadow of turning.  “great is Thy faithfulness.

I am the same, yesterday, today and forever.  Hebrews 8:13

Be doer of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourself.  James 1:22

  • What part of “Thou Shalt Not” did you not understand?
  • God’s love is everlasting.  He is not willing that any should perish.
  • Yet, by our sin, we separate ourselves from God.
  • You say I trust in God.  What is your basis for trust/  Will your faithfulness stand the test?  You know that God will meet your needs, answer your prayers, keep you from harm, heal your body, all because of His past record of faithfulness.  What of your faithfulness to Him?
  • Let me ask you – Which one of your family members will you turn to in times of difficulties?  The one who has been most faithful to your ideals.  The one you can run to, lean on, cry on their shoulder.

Question:  If God was as faithful to you as you are to Him, where would you be today?

praying

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  I John 1:9