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RCCG Miracle Land Dundalk
Wednesday, June 26 2024

Contributor: Alex Kokobili

God’s faithfulness can be expressed in two sides. The first is God’s faithfulness as our Father who is faithful to His word (1 Corinthians 1:9 God is faithful He is reliable, trustworthy, and ever true to His Promise He can be depended on, and through Him, you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord). The other is God’s expectations for Christians to stay faithful to him. God expects us to be faithful to Him to attain His promises. For instance, Abram was ninety-nine years old, when the Lord appeared to him on the need to be faithful to Him, Genesis 17:1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before me faithfully and be blameless”).

Today’s study will dwell on faithfulness which involves the commitment of believers in journeying with God in order to fulfil His divine purpose in our lives. It is also important for us to be informed that God’s presence has a key role in the journey of faithfulness. The discussion will draw on the life of Joseph and then the latter part will engage on the expectation of the church in regards to faithfulness towards God.

1. Faithfulness is always associated with a test which could either be before or after a blessing.

Gen 39: 7 And it came to pass after these things that his master’s wife cast longing eyes on Joseph, and she said, “Lie with me.”

The previous verses 1- 6 told us about God’s favour in the life of Joseph and how he became the manager of Potiphar’s house, and soon after Joseph’s test of faithful resulted from Mrs. Potiphar's immoral sexual desire toward him. Your faithfulness to God will be tested so that He can make you the showpiece of His glory. The test of faithfulness is a test of your love for God and full adherence to the word. There is some test that we cannot pray against but must happen as a way to examine our work with God (Job 2: 3 Then the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited me against him to ruin him without any reason). We must always pray for God’s grace to overcome all forms of tests that might put our faith in God into question (Mathew 6: 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil).

2. Holiness as the bedrock of faithfulness is not a weakness, but a strength and also a defence.

Gen 39: 8 But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Look, my master does not know what is with me in the house, and he has committed all that he has to my hand”.

Joseph feared God and realised that he was God’s regent in Potiphar’s house. Surprisingly, an average Christian today would not think twice before accepting such an offer that Joseph turned down and would even give an excuse of blaming Potiphar’s wife for causing them to sin. Some other Christians will also blame Mr. Potiphar for not always being at home and they would say they were doing Potiphar a favour and that they would later ask God for forgiveness. Unfortunately, so many believers are ashamed to speak about the emphasis on holiness when in regards to things such as lying, fornication and adultery, pride, drunkenness, hatred, selfish ambitions, ingratitude, etc. (See also Gal 5:19-21, Rev 21: 8, 2 Tim 3: 1-5). Our commitment to faithfulness in God as Christians after salvation must be followed by a lifestyle of holiness which is a sign that we fear God (Prov. 8: 13 The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; Pride, and arrogance, and the evil way, And the forward mouth, do I hate. Job 28:28 And to man He said, ‘Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, And to depart from evil is understanding).

Some Christians seem to have an excuse for every action in self-defence by making assertions such as “I still have a struggle and I believe I am a work in progress or I need some therapy”. Sometimes some people even say things like “Nobody is perfect or God understands,” Why are you judging me?” etc. We must realise that trying to validate any actions of unfaithfulness through emotions, theology, philosophy, tradition and culture, personal opinions, or social perceptions does not change the absoluteness of God’s word (Psalm 119:89 Forever, O Lord, thy Word is settled in heaven. God's Word, or Law, is eternal and unchanging - fixed and established forever in the heaven of heavens).

3. Forgetfulness of God’s faithfulness is a betrayal of His trust

Gen 39: 9 There is no one greater in this house than I, nor has he kept back anything from me but you, because you are his wife. How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?

Joseph remembered the goodness of God in his life and how He caused Potiphar to favour him and on that premise, Joseph decided to stay faithful to God. So many people forget how God came through for them including how he used specific people to shape their destiny. Those who forget God’s goodness are unfaithful and cannot withstand the test of time. Have you not wondered how possible it was that Judas forgot all that he saw Jesus Christ do (the miracles and healings) and yet he betrayed his master? The carnal man is always ready with an excuse or a blame game as a defense of embracing something that God forbids.

Rev 21: 8 But people who are cowardly, unfaithful, detestable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars will find themselves in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur.

Israel often forgot God’s goodness when they were confronted with unpleasant situations and in return displayed actions of unfaithfulness towards God. Judges 8: 34 And the children of Israel remembered not the Lord their God who had delivered them out of the hand of all that afflicted them round about. We have to also realize that unfaithfulness is as good as unbelief and instability of purpose in life. Psalm 78: 42
"They refused to listen and failed to remember the wonders You performed among them. They stiffened their necks and appointed a leader to return them to their bondage in Egypt”.

4. The temptation to be unfaithful might continue for a while but we must genuinely God's intervention not to fall into sin.

Genesis 9: 10-12 And though she spoke to Joseph day after day, he refused to go to bed with her or even be with her. One day he went into the house to attend to his duties, and none of the household servants was inside. She caught him by his cloak and said, “Come to bed with me!” But he left his cloak in her hand and ran out of the house.

Longsuffering is a fruit of the spirit that requires that we persevere amid temptation without giving in (Gala 5: 22).
Some people have failed the test of faithfulness because of situations such as business contracts, challenges with their health, marriage, etc. This shows our level of commitment to God

Daniel 3: 16-18 "Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. 17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. 18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up."

We must realize that we need the strength of God to over temptations over and over again 1 Samuel 2: 9 He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness; for by strength shall no man prevail”.

James 1:12 Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

Mathew 5:11-12 Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. 12Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Without the glory of Christ, the church ceases to exist and even if it pretends that it exists, it will only be a building without glory. Ephesians 5: 27 "that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish."

Revelations chapters 2 and 3 describe the state of the end-time church. For instance, out of the seven churches mentioned; five were considered unfaithful to Christ and were described as the Loveless Church, the Compromising Church, the Dead Church, the Corrupt Church, and the Lukewarm Church. The two that stood out and were commended for their faithfulness were the Persecuted Church and the Faithful Church. We will notice that the Persecuted Church was recognized. (Rev 2:10c “Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life”.), and also the Faithful Church (Rev 3: 10 “Because you have kept my command to preserve, I will also keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth).

King Solomon was faithful in building a temple for God so that could worship God and his heart during that period in harmony with God’s presence, and during the dedication of the temple, God’s glory overwhelmed the place (2 Chronicles 7: 1-3). There is no shortcut to holiness when we talk of faithfulness. However, despite Solomon’s magnificent temple, God still required that His people would present themselves before Him in humility and repentance from evil before He hears our prayers or fellowship which we further saw in 2 Chronicles 7:14 that God promised to only hear the people when they faithfully pray to Him).

God is seeking Christians to be fully aligned with His word because we are the church. The church seems to be becoming too apologetic in trying to gain social acceptance. The fear of not offending people might lead us to things that have brought a load of imperfection upon us. We have to stay faithful to God whether it is socially acceptable or not because Christ wants to present the Church to Himself as a perfect bride. We have to understand that as long as we fail to get serious with the business of holiness, the church stands the risk of becoming spiritually disabled with no power to command God’s kingdom on earth (Hebrews 12: 14 Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord), (Mathew 5: 8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God).

There is no shortcut to faithfulness and purity as two important variables in sustaining God’s presence. We need the grace of God to stay faithful to His word and not by our physical ability ( 1 Samuel 2:9 He will keep the feet of his holy ones, but the wicked shall be put to silence in darkness; for by strength shall no man prevail). Holiness is possible, when we genuinely desire perfection and then allow God to fill us with grace for the race (Mathew 5: 6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled). See also
2 Corinthians 4: 17-18 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal”.
Mathew 25: 21 His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness”.

It is God’s presence that guides us to work according to the pattern that He has set for us to follow. Faithfulness is like a mirror that reveals God’s purity in accordance with the Bible which overrides our perception of analyzing good and evil.

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