INTRO: From time to time I return - in my thinking - to various subjects which have been areas of concern to so many. Mentally, I try to address those subjects again in ways which may make more sense, or be more logical, or be more acceptable, or more practicable. So, I have given this lesson the title More On Learning To Trust God. It is a subject about which I have talked before ... so, I ask your patience as I come at the subject again.
I I BELIEVE ... I TRUST
A. Here are two statements ... simple, uncluttered
1. for some of us they are perhaps one, and the same
2. for others of us they may represent two different aspects of faith ... perhaps very different
B. The intellectual ... the experiential?
1. my intellect can believe in God, in Jesus, in the Holy Spirit ... even that the Bible is inspired word
2. but bringing my hands, my feet, my choices to move out in trust ... into experience ... is not so easy - this is the problem area, so ...
II. WHAT CAN I DO?
A. Find out about God!
1. one question: has He been dependable?
2. Isa 46:11 I will also bring it to pass
3. the expression it shall come to pass is a challenge to us ... did it?
4. answer? absolutely ... historically, what God spoke was done ... in Gods time
5. note: Ps 89:34 ... Ps 111:5 ... Dan 9:4 - this is the very nature of God
B. Consider Mal 3:10 ... and prove me now ...
1. the Lord challenged ... put my promise to the test
2. it is significant to me that God is very willing to challenge people to trust Him ... because He knows He can keep His promises
3. but doubt and fear have a great impact on us
4. further, years of doubt, fear will grow into skepticism, unbelief, an impotent faith
5. youll never know until you try ... true
III. MOVING FORWARD IN TRUST ...
A. Is no good if not committed to His direction
1. Ps 119:2,10 blessedness comes when we are seeking Gods ways whole heartedly
2. trying to move forward with reservations will lead to disappointment!
B. Is no good if we want quick fixes
1. this may be the reason for faith failure
2. Deut 6:2 all the days of my life - the blessings of trusting God come in time ... this is a quickly conducted experiment!
C. Is no good if we insist on comparing
1. Ps 73:2,3 comparing will create doubt ... even ill feelings toward others, toward God
2. what is going on in mylife with God is very special, unique ... and cannot be compared to others!
D. Permit everything to come under Gods scrutiny
1. from smallest to largest details Gods word must prevail ... search out
2. Ps 139:23,24
E. Remember, immediate consequences of your commitment to move forward in trust ...
1. may not be according to your expectations
2. its the long haul thats important - Rev 2:10 ... an unpleasant contemplation ... but heaven! 2 Cor 4:17-5:1
F. Pray without ceasing! Ps 7:1-3,5
CLOSE: For thou art my hope ... If He is truly our hope, if we are not putting hope elsewhere we can move forward in trust.
Cecil A. Hutson
15 October 2000
You Must Hear the Gospel
You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)
You Must Believe
You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)
You Must Repent
You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)
You Must Confess
You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)
You Must Be Baptized
Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!
You Must Be Faithful Unto Death
Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)