Faith, glory, strength

duck-248028_640Psalm 84:7: They go from strength to strength; each one appears before God in Zion.

From faith to faith (Romans 1:17), from strength to strength, from glory to glory (2Corinthians 3:16-18), those words in the bible reflect the endless possibility for elevation, transformation, for glorification, and empowerment, that we have as the people of God. That is an endless possibility of more and more in God, through Christ Jesus. God said that he has not called us to seek him in vain; he said you will seek me and find me, if you seek me with all your heart.

Faith to faith

There was a problem with the church in Galatia. Paul said, they begun in the spirit but sought to be perfected in the flesh. He asked them: you received the Spirit, was it by the hearing of faith or the works of the law (Galatians 3:1-3)? It was by the hearing of faith. He therefore reprimanded them for seeking to continue with the flesh, thinking the observance of rules will give them the approval of God (Galatians 2:16).

In Christ it is all about faith. That is so serious that the bible says that whatever is not of faith if sin (Romans 14:23). If it is not faith it is fake at best, it is filth at worst, because faith is the foundation of our righteousness, and without righteousness, without holiness, we cannot experience God.

If we abandon faith, we have resorted to self-righteousness which is described in the bible as filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). If we abandon faith, we lose our connection with God. If not in faith then don’t bring it to God, because them you have something you think you can boast of and God resists the proud.

Both Abel and Cain brought sacrifices to God, but Abel’s sacrifice was accepted while that of Cain was rejected. It was not until the analysis of that event was made by the writer of the book of Hebrews did we learn that Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice because of faith (Genesis 4:1-8, Hebrews 11:4).

Abel had an ingredient of faith in his sacrifice. How did that manifest? I think it is because he “acted on the word of God,” which is a definition of faith. I believe God had instructed the two of them on what he wanted, or they got to know somehow. If not why didn’t Cain complain against God that he did not know the right thing?

But the problem was definitely that Cain had a hard time buying into the idea that he should abide by what God wants and not what he wants. And faith means “doing things on God’s terms.”

The righteousness (order) of God is revealed from faith to faith. There is no revelation of God except on the path of faith, because we deserve nothing, but our all is hinged on the work of Jesus, which we have to daily constantly appropriate in faith, “agreement with the truth.” And that is foundational because righteousness is foundational. If righteousness is the position, faith is the means of transportation to that position.

One of the basic truths mentioned in the book of Hebrews is: repentance from dead works and faith towards God. But many have not learned to marry the two. There may be an over-emphasis on the repentance side; the recognition of what is wrong and is lacking but what about the faith, “dependence on God” side (Hebrews 6:1-2)?

From glory to glory

That phrase describes the transformation we should go through as Christians. Paul said that as we behold the son of God, we are changed into his image, in an ever increasing manner, from glory to glory. If change is what you want then good for you; if not, then it’s a pity. That means you think you are God, because it is only God that cannot have a better version.

There needs to be the constant peeling off of the layers of the flesh on the soul, of the limitations of the soul, and when these happens, the “light of our renewed spirit blazes more and more” and with that we express increasing measures of God’s glory from glory. By being fixated on the Lord, we are changed and can start to “outflow Christ” in us, which is called the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27) – the potential for the expression of increasing levels of heavenly glory/flavour.

Paul prayed for the Philippian church that God will supply their needs according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19). Therefore, the “amount of needs you are meeting” determines the level of glory that is manifested through you.

From strength to strength

In the focus verse, going from strength to strength is attached to being in the presence of God. God is strength personified, therefore, in his presence we can gain his strength and get to express it in our lives and in dealing with others. By taking the time in the morning to be with God before getting occupied in the day-to-day activities, we get to be renewed in strength.

Weaknesses can be expressed in the spirit, soul and body, means we need the strength of God in those three areas.

Spirit

The strength of the spirit is enhanced with the experience of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Jesus did not want the disciples to go and face the hostile world of their time the way they were. They had to be endowed with power from on high (Acts 1:8).

Soul

The light of God blazing in the soul is the strength; that means the direction of God is clear to you and you are able to bear it. The soul needs strength to resist temptation. Jesus said that we need to pray because the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak (Matthew 26:41). The flesh is the weak human nature, and Jesus was recommending prayer as a way of getting strength to resist temptation. And since the words of God are described as bread (Matthew 4:4), it means it is source of strength too, it is also associated with light, with the psalmist saying to God: your word is a light to my path (Psalm 119:105).

Body

The body is the link of the soul and spirit to the physical world. Peter described it as a tabernacle (2Peter 1:13-14). The body is weak in sickness, which is why we need to take the provision of health that we have in Jesus seriously (1Peter 2:24). We cannot be ignorant of the devices of the devil calculated to run down the energy of our body. John prays for a man that he should prosper and be in health as his soul prospers, showing that the prosperity of the soul is reflected in the health of the body (3John 2).

 

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4 thoughts on “Faith, glory, strength

  1. Most excellent message. Going to borrow a few lines for the message I am preparing. It is a great Word…
    God bless you!

    Like

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