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RCCG Miracle Land Dundalk
Tuesday, July 16 2013

INTRODUCTION: Another interesting teaching awaits us as we continue on our expository into the mystery of Faith. We have, by the grace of God been able to establish the importance of Hope and Faith and how they work together last week. This week, we will build on this knowledge and see how we can activate our faith and make it work for us.  

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”            [Hebrews 11:1]

A modern translation of the above scripture reads,

“Faith is giving substance to things hoped for.”

The Expanded Bible Version of the same scripture reads,

“Faith means being sure [the assurance; or reality; or the sure foundation] of the things we hope for and knowing that something is real even if we do not see it [the conviction/ assurance/ evidence about things not seen].”


We need to first realise and settle the truth about Hope having its own place in the perfection of our Faith walk. We also need to realise that it is our Faith that gives substance to the things we hope for. I love the way the New Living Translation of the Bible expresses the word hope in 1 John 3:3,


“And all who have this eager expectation (hope) will keep themselves pure, just as he is pure” [Emphasis Mine]


It is our faith that gives sub-stance to the things we eagerly or expectantly desire. If we are going to wait until we get something before we believe we have it, then it will be too late and it won’t work.

Instances abound in both the old and new testaments of the Bible, about the many escapades done through people who refuse to wait until something happened before taking the appropriate steps towards realising and accomplishing their goals. For example, in Joshua 6:3-5, the Israelites were given certain instructions to act upon in order to posses Jericho. They were to march around the walls of Jericho once a day for six days, and seven times on the seventh day. In addition, they were to shout when the musical instruments were sounded on the seventh day. These were the instructions required to be carried out by the Israelites in order for them to actualise the victory that God has promised them. They first had to believe they received God’s word to them and then take a further step of acting upon this word. Their acting upon the Word was their faith in action.

It is important to note that the Israelites shouted (acting on their faith) even while the wall was still standing. The lesson here is that faith demonstrates to the eye of the mind, the reality of those things that cannot be discerned by the eye of the body [Matthew Henry’s Commentary]. Put in another word, the things which are not seen are eternal in value compared to the things that can be seen (2 Cor.4:18). Faith transcends the physical realm. It is not controlled or deterred by the physical. The Israelites faith gave substance to God’s word to them and when they acted on their faith, God’s promise became a reality and those walls came down, Hallelujah!


Faith Is Active

Faith is acting upon God’s word. To act means to do something. Many people are waiting for answers to prayers to come to them especially in the area of healing or the infilling of the Holy Spirit. Too often, people just wait for something to happen with a passive faith instead of an active faith. Although God will help you meet your financial obligations, you have a part to play. You can’t just stay idle and expect things to happen or expect something to come to you. You can pray and believe God, but then you must act on your faith by actively looking for a job (for example) and something will happen. Same applies in the spiritual.


New Testament Example of Active Faith

“Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”

Faith is looking at the finished work and not focusing on the present! This is giving substance to things hoped. The finished work is the substance. Whenever Jesus speaks to people, He speaks the end of the situation and not what they are going through. That is giving substance to things hoped for.  A very good illustration of giving substance to things hoped for is in Luke 17:11-19. Notice Jesus didn’t say the man’s thanksgiving has made him whole, but his faith (Discuss). This man saw what the other nine could not see. A man of faith indeed!

Another illustration can be found in Luke 5:18-25. A man sick the palsy was let down from the roof of a house where Jesus was teaching because the room was so packed full. Verse 20, 24 of the same chapter records;

“And when he [Jesus] saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee…..Arise, and take up thy couch, and go into thine house”.

Note the phrase saw their faith. It was not only the faith of the four men who brought the man the palsy that got him healed, the faith of the sick man was included too. This man also demonstrated his faith because how many bedfast (bed ridden) people would endure the pain and discomfort and let someone take them up on top of a house and let them down through? We also know that this man had faith because when Jesus said to him, “Rise up”, he wasn’t any better, just as the leprous man in Luke 17, who as at the time he went back to give thanks, has not yet been made whole. The man with the palsy was just as help-less as he ever was. Nothing has changed physically before the command to rise up was given. Instead of trying to get up, he could have said, “Why Lord, didn’t you see them carrying me in here? I can’t possibly get up. You’ll have to heal me first.” Instead, he began to move (active) and when he did, healing was the result.  If he refused to act on the Word of the Master, he would not have received healing.

There is a real spiritual lesson for us here. Acting on God’s word is called faith. And when we are in faith, we will receive answers to prayers. The ability, through the help of the Holy Spirit, to see the finished work and the end of the matter, empowers us to be able to act on God’s Word in the face of difficult situations and circumstances.

In the early days of Pentecost, a woman evangelist ministered to four people in wheelchairs. All she said, in a very quiet tone was, “Rise and walk in Jesus’ Name” and three of the four people walked. The one who was left sitting there in a wheel chair said, “I can’t walk.” Even though she was reminded that the others couldn’t walk either, but they did, this woman still answered, “I know they did; but I can’t. I haven’t walked in years. I can’t walk”. She was left sitting there.  

[Read out the story of the woman with Arthritis who never believed she could be healed because of doctor’s report – You Can’t Receive from God without Faith]


The Holy Spirit Prompts, But You Must Respond

Too many people think that God’s healing power is just going to move on them and make them do something whether they want to do it or not, or whether they cooperate with His power or not. No, that would not be the Holy Spirit; that would be an evil spirit instead. The Holy Spirit never forces or drives you to do anything. He only urges and prompts you and it’s up to you to respond and do something. It’s up to you whether or not to obey.

Kenneth Hagin laid his hands and prayed for a woman to receive the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost indeed came upon the woman but she would not respond by speaking. This he did again but the result was the same. He mentioned that he knew exactly what was wrong with the woman. She was asked to read the portion of scripture in Acts 2:4 and the emphasis was on "....and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance." . You see, this woman believed she was filled with the Holy Ghost, the main hindrance to her speaking in other tongue as one of the signs of being filled with the Holy Ghost is that she had always believed that it was the Holy Ghost that did the speaking. She was asked to read another scripture in Acts 10:44-46, in order to encourage her faith and she was filled with the Holy Ghost.


Faith Is Cooperating With God

[Read Testimony of a man who had been burned over the lower part of his body and had been unable to walk].

We can only cooperate with God through our belief in His ability. We can understand this better through the principle of buoyancy [explain].

Faith, you see, is acting on God's word; doing what-ever He says to do in the Word or whatever He may say to us to do by the Holy Spirit. God can't help folks who won't cooperate with Him. But we need to get this fact; faith is giving substance to things hoped for. Faith will eventually bring into reality what you hoped for - The Finished Work!

If You Believe, You Will Act

The best definition of faith is this: IF YOU BELIEVE, YOU WILL ACT.

This also relates to God's word. If we believe God's Word, we will act as though it's true.

Act on Your Faith for Healing

Kenneth Hagin said that people want healing for their bodies and that he can tell then just exactly how to get it. The answer is in Acts 14:8-10.

Paul perceived that this impotent man had faith to be healed; yet the man was still sitting there crippled until he acted on his faith. The real truth is, every believer has faith to be healed. Someone said, "If sick folks have faith, they are going to be healed". Oh no, that's wrong, because there's nowhere in the bible where it says, "If you just have faith, you'll be healed". But the moment you begin to act on the faith that you do have, your faith will be work and you will be healed. Yes, the devil will contest you every inch of the way. But if you keep on acting in faith, you will manifest the healing.



If you can't get people to receive and act on God's word, there is no way that you or even God can help them. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Rom. 10:17). you've heard the word. Faith is acting on the Word that you've heard. It is you who must act on the Word, so get ready and act now.

Contributor: Leye Olayiwola

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