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Thursday, March 12, 2015

We Choose What We Believe

Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses]” (Hebrews 11:1, Amplified Bible).
For the last few days we have looked at faith and fear. Verses in 2 Timothy 1:7 have revealed that fear is not from God. His desire is for us to have a sound mind and understand God's power. Verses in James 1:6-8 have shown us that a double-minded man should expect nothing from God, but with an unwavering mindset of faith, he shall receive. Today's verse (Hebrews 11:1) shows that faith is a conviction. Faith is the conviction in something that can't be seen. If faith has the power to bring proof of what we can't see, then fear is a conviction that does just the opposite. It destroys any possibility that faith can make a difference in our life. Faith believes that God will bring our hope into reality. Fear believes that He will never do it.
Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Hebrews 11:6, NIV). This verse says we must believe God exists. We have no problem with that part. It is the next part that presents a problem to so many. We must believe that God rewards those who earnestly seek Him. This is a necessary aspect of faith. If we can't believe that God rewards us when we seek Him with our whole heart, then our lack of faith displeases God. If we ever want to receive from Him, then we must believe Him.

If something rises up that causes fear, then we must ask ourselves an important question. Do we believe in God's faithfulness or so we believe in the enemy's lies? Hebrews 11:6 states that God rewards those who seek Him with their whole being. The enemy says that we are of no worth to God. He says God must punish us by allowing the very thing we fear to happen. When the enemy tells us the concerns of our lives are not important enough for the Lord‒when he tells us that we must take care of ourselves because God is not interested‒when He says that God will never reward our seeking Him‒when the lies keep on coming, they “feel” like they are true.
What we feel is very often what is not true. If anything, Hebrews 11:1 reveals that feelings don't reveal reality. This verse tells us that we must believe God's Word over whatever we feel. If we don't, then the enemy's lies of destruction will destroy our faith, and fear will gain control of our lives. Our choices strengthen whatever we believe. If we choose to believe God's truth, then we choose a life of faith. We have added something positive to define our lives. That choice is strengthened by the power of the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:5-7). If we choose to allow fear to run rampant, we choose a mind that is double-mined and unstable. We allow the enemy access to destroy us (1 Peter 5:8). A lot of Christians don't realize the power of choice. We choose what and whom we will believe. God has great and precious promises for us (2 Peter 1:4). To receive them, we must choose to believe Him.

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