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RCCG Miracle Land Dundalk
Wednesday, October 13 2021

Contributor: Dolapo Olaoye

We have learned so far that faith is rooted in God’s Word (vs. 1–3), and therefore faith worships (v. 4), walks (vs. 5–6), works (v. 7) and waits (v. 8). We learnt that faith is deeply connected to waiting. We always get what God promised, but not according to our schedule as it’s always better managed by God.
Truth is God blesses those who have complete faith with remarkable results (11:32-35).

Some of the things Faith does are:
- Faith enables flawed people to accomplish great things for God.
- Faith enables us to accomplish things that are only explainable/doable by God’s power.
- Faith entitles us to God’s blessing of eternal rewards.

“And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets”

There are some names, in this chapter, which we should hardly have expected to see there, the characters mentioned having been so disfigured by serious faults, and flaws, and failings; but the distinguishing feature of faith was there in every instance, and especially in the case of Samson.
The first five men listed here all had some serious shortcoming but regardless of their flaws, God still honored their faith. (i.e.: Gideon (Judges 6-8) was a coward and had to be sweet-talked in the start to doing what God called him to do or Samson (Judges 13-16) directed the Philistines on many occasions, yet he was tripped up by his lust for women). In spite of all these men’s flaws God used them because they trusted Him in difficult/challenging situations.

In each case, these people listed here were of faith and held on to the conviction that God’s Word was true. They were confident in God, they understood, the covenant promise of the gospel and the kingdom. So, they faced difficulties believing that God would deliver on His promises, some way, and somehow.
Keep in mind that regardless of where you are, faith marches on and therefore our faith can keep us in check. Your environments/surroundings do not alter the truth and neither do they alter God’s character. It is for this reason that you should march on confidently, clinging to God’s word, trusting him every step of the way.

Discussion: Where is the balance between tolerating our shortcomings and yet striving by faith to overcome them?

“who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to fight the armies of the aliens. Women received their dead raised to life again.”

God did these wonderful deeds, but He did so in accordance with the faith of those involved. Doesn’t minus the fact that God is sovereign, but it is equally true that He has freely determined that He will work through means. And faith is a prescribed means.
The point of application that we can draw from these accounts is that, when faced with tough difficulties, faith stands from generation to generation because the Lord does not change. The past faithfulness of God to reward responses of faith should encourage us that He can and will do the same today – unchanging God.

Discussion: Does faith replace planning, preparing and hard work? How can we know if the power is from God or from our planning and effort?

"Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection."

The word “tortured” can be literally translated, “beaten to death.”

So, how does one develop such confidence? By growing in our knowledge of God. Read, study and meditate on the Scripture. Love and get to know God, and as you know God you will love God and will desire to please God, regardless of the cost. Our confidence in Him will grow to the degree that our relationship with Him develops.

Still others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented— of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth.
Here, the writer informs us of those who, like those in v. 35, suffered for their faith apparently without pardon. He tells us that some “had trial of mocking and
scourging, yes, and of chains and of imprisonments.” Thinks of Jeremiah, who was imprisoned for proclaiming God’s Word.
These great individuals were mistreated as they were “afflicted” and “tormented.” Such suffering on the part of faithful saints can be confusing to us all. It can be alarming, but the fact remains that the scripture did not promise a rosery garden to Christian—not yet, anyway. One day, the roses will bloom continuously, and the scent will delight our senses. But in the meantime, we may have our share of affliction, loneliness and even torment.

Discussion: Any reasons why God may not deliver those who trust Him?


"And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, 40God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us."

Here we are encouraged to keep on believing. We are reminded that God has provided something better for us. The writer has told us all along what this “better something” is: a better hope (7:19); a better covenant (7:22; 8:6); better promises (8:6); a better sacrifice (9:23); and a far better country (heavenly country) (11:16)

In conclusion, let’s look back at verse 32 which speaks of those who “through faith” accomplished great things. Yet when you consider men such as Barak (who seemed rather cowardly at one point), Jephthah (who was rough and rash), Samson (who was often characterised by the flesh), David (who broke the Ten Commandments), and Samuel (who failed horribly as a father), you might wonder how they made the list? But thank God they did! Because these believers resemble the likes of us: sinful believers.

Remember the issue is not the quality of our faith or the quantity of our faith but rather the object of our faith - The great news. Bear in mind also that at the end of the day, all the glory goes to the one who makes faith possible: God. Believe in GOD.

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