Faith That Endures
Faith That Endures
As I spoke briefly about the attack that often comes against the children of God in the area of faith, I want to reinforce that statement a bit more while encouraging you to press into everything God has.
If we believe the Word of God the attacks against the Body of Christ are not going to cease anytime soon. What will happen is that we will not be affected by the attacks and become the Church that stands in the midst of adversity while demonstrating to God and those in the world that we do not have any spot, blemish or any such thing.
This hour a strong prophetic sound is being released in the people of God and is bringing to pass what was spoken through Moses when he said, "He wished that all God's people were prophets.
It's not that we are all going to stand in the office of the prophet, but we will have a prophetic voice that will challenge the forces of darkness while establishing greater parameters for the Kingdom of God.
There's a man in the Old Testament that I believe serves as an example of how the Church in the Last Days is going to look.
In the Bible there are only two references to him but because of his relationship with God and people, I believe it is very significant.
This man is Enoch. The first reference I want to see is in the Book of Jude. What's important here is the fact that Enoch built his relationship with God even though sin and corruption was all around him.
He knew and understood that other people did not dictate how he was supposed to live while going through this earth. He deemed pleasing God of more importance than pleasing man.
While living he lived for God and became a prophetic voice that God have insight into futuristic events that would take place thousands of years later.
14 Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men also, saying, "Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints, 15 to execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.
16 These are grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts; and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage. 17 But you, beloved, remember the words which were spoken before by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ: 18 how they told you that there would be mockers in the last time who would walk according to their own ungodly lusts. 19 These are sensual persons, who cause divisions, not having the Spirit.
To me, this is going to be the state of the Church before Christ comes back. Like Enoch we will be surrounded with all kinds of wickedness and perverseness yet will remain untainted from those things.
We will not be sucked into the fight of the world but will allow God to judge the world while we build His Kingdom.
This is why in verse Jude 7 "¦Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, "The Lord rebuke you!
There are some things that are just not our fight. We need when to fight and when to leave things alone. There are some things that God is going to take care of and will execute His Judgment swiftly.
Often we spend so much time fighting for our own causes that the purpose of Christ is lost in the translation whereas we are commanded to God into all the world and preach the Gospel¦
When referencing preaching the Gospel, I'm always reminded of a statement that the late T.L. Osborne made at a pastors conference I was in years ago when he would say¦ Preach the Gospel¦ Use words only if necessary!
There must be a demonstration of the Spirit and power of God in our midst if we are ever going to impact the generation we live in.
Therefore like Enoch we are going to walk with God while surrounded by sin and wickedness that will inevitably increase during our lifetime.
However, because of this we will also collectively or corporately experience the same fate as Enoch did whereas we will walk with God and as genesis chapter 5 says:
- 24 And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.
We also have a promise that a time is coming when the arch angel Michael will blow the trumpet and the dead in Christ will rise first and those who are left and remain will be caught up together with them in the air and so will forever be with the Lord.
This is a great promise for our future and something we have to look forward to. However before we get there we must learn to be steadfast in the faith and not easily give in to the lusts of the flesh, the promptings of the world or the dictates of the devil.
This is why Paul said we are not to be ignorant concerning the devils devices. Ephesians 6:10
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
Defined these wiles or devices are satans schemes, methods and well thought out plans against us.
He is very methodical and does nothing by accident. He sets up the children of God and because of immaturity and carnality many fall victim to his plan against us.
But God is raising a Church in these last days that are not going to be wimps. We are not going to easily give in when attacks come but will use those attacks as stepping stones into greater things that God has for us.
The Church in this hour will be filled with faith and because we're filled with faith we will be prepared in our spirits to go through any obstacle or trap satan sets up.
When an attack comes, you must not be overwhelmed by it. You must not think that it's the end of your life and you may as well lie down and die.
The trouble will not last always and if we are able to remain in sync with God, you will see that your victory in that area will serve to be the point of deliverance for others that may face a similar situation.
In First Peter 4, you have an eye opening statement from God that allows you to see that trials are to be a cause of rejoicing and that if we did nothing to bring the attack on, we are being reproached [accused or criticized] for the name of Christ.
- 12 Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; 13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. 14 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified. 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or as a busybody in other people's matters. 16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.
- 17 For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 Now "If the righteous one is scarcely saved, where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?
"What does our lives reflect is the question that we must ask and answer favorably.
Are we suffering while we trust that God will bring us out and therefore have no reason to be ashamed? Or are we living in a manner that contradicts the Word of God and therefore are reaping the fruit of our decisions?
Having "Faith That Endures brings you past the suffering and into the glory that shall be revealed in you.
Having Faith that Endures, allows you to settle in your heart that as bad and hurtful as it is "For the JOY set before you, you will endure your own cross-like experience.
The time has been released on the people of God to be wise and prudent in this hour. We must allow God to release on us the same mantle that was on the Sons of Issachar where they "Understood the times and knew what Israel should do.
We must get closer to our brothers and sisters than we have ever been and through that spirit of unity allow God to sustain us during times of inevitable trials.
No matter what comes, God has made a way of escape and it will be through Faith that endures that you will have the perseverance necessary to see God answer you in the way He knows is best.
There's one last example that bears our attention as we prepare our hearts for a greater move of God. This is being equipped for what will be revealed in these Last Days.
- 5 And Jesus, answering them, began to say: "Take heed that no one deceives you. 6 For many will come in My name, saying, ˜I am He,' and will deceive many. 7 But when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be troubled; for such things must happen, but the end is not yet. 8 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be earthquakes in various places, and there will be famines and troubles. These are the beginnings of sorrows.
- 9 "But watch out for yourselves, for they will deliver you up to councils, and you will be beaten in the synagogues. You will be brought before rulers and kings for My sake, for a testimony to them. 10 And the gospel must first be preached to all the nations. 11 But when they arrest you and deliver you up, do not worry beforehand, or premeditate what you will speak. But whatever is given you in that hour, speak that; for it is not you who speak, but the Holy Spirit. 12 Now brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death. 13 And you will be hated by all for My name's sake. But he who endures to the end shall be saved.