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What does it mean to have faith
In the Beginning
- When GOD created man HE provided everything needed to sustain life in a perfect paradise; man was made perfect and the intent was that we live forever...as long as we were obedient (Genesis 1:16,17). There was no disease, no flaws; but HE also gave man free will, the ability to think and reason/rationalize and make decisions.
- As we now know, man rebelled against GOD and defiantly ate of the fruit from the tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, leading GOD to remove them from the perfect garden paradise HE had set them up in and thus denying him access to the life -sustaining fruit from the Tree of Life which by all accounts is what gave man the perfection he possessed and prevented him from dying (Genesis 3:22,23).
- With that loss of access came man's loss of perfection and began his gradual deterioration and eventual death; man was no longer protected from severe injury, sickness, pain and any abnormality(ies) that could and eventually did occur in procreation.
- There was no gene that resulted in a person being insane, tend toward any illnesses, or even become homosexual...no, GOD did not create homosexuals, mental deficiency, or infirmity of mind or body when HE created man. It was the loss of access to the Tree of Life and all of it's life sustaining properties that led to theses things and through time the woes of man. Therefore it is incorrect to say:"GOD made me this way"...HE did not.
- With the passing of time man gradually devolved from the perfect being he once was, using less and less of his original mental capacity, succumbing to varied illnesses, deformities, and emotional abnormalities such as hate, jealousy and greed.We are still devolving and have now become so much less than we were when man was first created.
Did GOD abandon us?
It is the belief of many that once man rebelled GOD abandoned us to our own devices in order to facilitate our own eventual demise, and to suffer the consequences leading up to it; but this is far from being true. In fact at the time of man's rebellion GOD made it clear to man as well as the serpent (Satan) that HE indeed intended to rectify the matter, even foretelling the coming of Jesus(Genesis 3:14-19), or the one that would inflict the "bruise" or death blow to the head of the serpent. As HE says at Isaiah 55;10,11, his will will be done; and GOD's will was for there to be perfect and obedient humans upon the face of the Earth...forever(Psalms 37:29; Ecclesiastes 1:4; Isaiah 45:18)
At the same time, throughout the Bible we are told the many attributes of the creator and among them is justice/fairness. When Eve was deceived (and Adam followed) it was because she was told that if she disobeyed GOD's instruction about the fruit she partook of then she would become like GOD and thus enabled to make decisions; this in effect was a rejection of GOD as instructor and guide and ultimate authority. As we look at the state of mankind there should be no wonder that with the increase of authority women are given the further mankind sinks into chaos. While many will see that as a sexist statement, in truth it is simply stating the facts as set forth in GOD's Word, HE did not and does not approve of women running mankind or men(1 Timothy 2:11,12). HE created man and then the woman as a help-meet/companion.(Genesis 2:18)
Even as man fell further and further into the consequence of the original sin. GOD continued to allow the earth to sustain life and HE as formed a friendship and bloodline to produce salvation for all mankind and the eventual return of man to the state to which he was created(Genesis 12:1-3)...
It is now necessary to clarify that although GOD initially chose Abraham's descendents to become his "chosen" people, that this was solely for the purpose of showing all of mankind the lengths HE would go to to protect, provide for, guide and be in commune with those who were obedient to him; again HE did purpose for man to be obedient to him....all men.
It has always been GOD's intent that ALL of mankind be afforded the opportunity to be obedient to him; being omnipotent, complete and replete...HE is thorough, and has allowed man to see that after they have tried every possible way to run the earth and govern themselves, none have worked and thus we need his guidance and direction and thereby we must be obedient in order to continue to exist without complication.
True to the now warped nature if man, Israel rebelled...repeatedly despite GOD taking into account their imperfect state and exercising patience. So much did they rebel that it became necessary to remove his favor from them; favor they repeatedly took for granted. Still HE did not abandon his plan to send his only begotten Son ransom mankind and provide and means to engage him individually and form our own relationship(s) with him as we worked to show our willingness to be obedient to his will. Unfortunately, due to our ever increasing degeneration mentally, physically and spiritually it has become more and more difficult to be in compliance with GOD's well established morals, principles and requirements...Truth Is...
The State of Mankind
There are in fact many who naturally want to obey GOD and seek him out; this has been throughout time. Sadly, men also are inflicted with greed and the pursuit of power and control as well as a willingness to give in to their most base desires and knowing of the many who realize their need for GOD's direction; under Satan's influence man has taken that inherent need of GOD and used it against all of mankind. Religion is a creation of man, not GOD; GOD's requirements have been passed from generation to generation, culture to culture and the entire world from the original chosen to the point it is widely known worldwide. As the world learned GOD's will Satan and the men he influenced warped GOD's Word by interpreting/translating it to fit their agendas, intentions and beliefs of what is right or wrong...regardless, through thorough and diligent study of GOD's Word his Truth will shine through if the desire for truth is present as opposed to attempting to make it fit what we have become accustomed to or want it to be. That is the problem with mankind and his religious inclinations; they realize the need for GOD but at the same time insist on trying to make him accept their own particular form of obedience and worship; mainly for the purpose of obtaining power, control or riches... Of course this is not acceptable to GOD and HE utterly rejects it (Isaiah 1:11-15). Yes, just because you feel you are worshipping GOD doesn't mean HE accepts it. Being obedient means complying with a certain directive or set thereof, not manipulating them to conform to your desire. Meanwhile mankind falls deeper into chaos and debauchery; Society has blatantly forced homosexuality upon the people and telling them they are intolerant if they do not accept it...even though it is condemned by GOD...Trust me, you are not being judgemental by rejecting what GOD has rejected. Society has also promoted selfishness, greed, pride, and the pursuit of money, influence and pleasure, all of which GOD speaks firmly against in his Word. So why is it that so-called Christians are some of the ones most guilty when it comes to these things?
Modern day "christianity" is the very worst thing to have happened to true Christianity. Today's "christian" boasts of being "blessed and highly favored" even though there are far more people that possess far more than they do that have no respect for GOD at all; remember He allows the sun to shine upon the wicked as well as the righteous. How does one see them self as highly favored when they don;t even know or do what GOD truly requires of them! Accurate knowledge of GOD's Will is at a premium as today;s church has no vested interest in teaching what GOD's Word really contains. The hope held forth in the Bible is for something in the future, yet men insist on being "blessed" now, out of want for financial backing/support, today's clergy are more than willing to give the people what they want as opposed to what GOD requires(2 Timothy 4:3,4) At Seminary, my Bishop literally told me that if I taught what is really in the Bible that my church would be empty...this is exactly why I have repeatedly rejected multiple offers to Pastor churches and have resorted to this very medium; I refuse to compromise. It is far more important to me that everyone that will receive it has the opportunity to learn GOD's Truth and to obtain well-grounded Faith; faith in his purpose and promise.
So What is Faith?
Many of you have heard the definition that"Faith is the assured expectation of things yet to be withheld(seen)...Faith is knowing and believing that GOD is working out salvation for all mankind that choose to be obedient to him; this despite how long it takes, even beyond our lifetime. A perfect example of this type of faith was the First Century congregation of Followers of Jesus: When his friend Lazarus died, Jesus deliberately waited and arrived three full days afterward. It is common knowledge that by then a body has well begun to decompose..I encourage you all to read this entire account at John 11:1-44; in verse 24 Jesus asks Lazarus' sister if she believed in the resurrection and she answered: "I know he will rise in the last day , in reference to Jesus' second coming...Such was their faith that they KNEW GOD's promises would not be fulfilled in their lifetime, in fact for quite some time to come...That is Faith...unlike today;s christian that looks to become prosperous in these the Last Days Jesus spoke of at Matthew 24:14 when things on earth would be so bad that GOD would intervene simply for the sake of the ones HE has chosen. Now if we are living in such a time WHY would GOD want you to be rich and prosperous and have an abundance of things that would soon be done away with! Again we are faced with either accepting what GOD and Jesus said or what man teaches in the church which is thoroughly overridden by Satan's influence and deceptions. It is because of this influence and erroneous teaching(s) that many will not receive/accept the truth while even more won't accept any teaching at all, all of which fall into the Devil's plan to see mankind destroyed.
We claim to have faith but falter when it becomes time to use it. A fine example of this is the woman in Kentucky that is in the news who asserts that her christian beliefs prevent her from issuing marriage licenses to homosexuals...The thing is that is her job, to issue marriage licenses; and now the government has legalized gay marriage, therefore her job requires her to comply. Instead the woman went to jail in defiance of the government's law. Jesus instructed us to obey GOD rather than man, but he also said to obey the government(s). Yes, homosexuality is an abomination to GOD and HE does not approve, but in truth performing her duty as prescribed in her job description is not an affront to GOD; however if indeed in becomes a matter of conscience for her, the right thing to do is to step down from the position. This is where Faith comes in...Hebrews 11:6 says that is not unrighteous to forget what we do for the sake of his name. If in fact she were to step down due to it being a matter of not wanting to participate in actions contrary to GOD's will and principles, a TRUE Christian would confidently know that GOD would provide a new job; surely HE would not abandon us for complying with his will when obedience is what HE seeks from us! We can not evoke, invoke or conjure GOD at our behest but rather we are to obey and wait on his Grace.
This subject is one that must and will be discussed at length and ad nauseum in order to be abundantly clear as to where GOD stands on matters of faith and obedience, as well as proper worship. With that I encourage one and all to continue in fervent prayer during these last days and diligently study GOD's Word on your own with an open mind and heart, confident that in doing so HE WILL direct us...Look for yet another Hub on this matter in the future...