Faith, Part 7: Four Keys to Faith
Originally published in Issue 55 of Calvary Chapel Magazine
And being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform. Romans 4:21
Four: Abraham Had Confidence in God’s Promises
In the past few articles, we have been looking at God’s promise to Abraham to bear a son. Abraham demonstrated four keys to faith, three of which we have discussed: He did not consider the human difficulty; he didn’t stagger at God’s promise; and his faith prompted him to glorify the Lord. Our fourth and final key to Abraham’s faith is that he had confidence in God’s promises.
So here’s the bottom line: Is God able to do it? The answer depends upon how you view God. If your concept of Him is based upon your own experience and logic, then your concept of God is limited—because you are limited. The things that are hard for you will be hard for the god you create in your own image. We do this by thinking, If I were God, this is what I would do; and this is how I would do it. That’s a pointless way to think, because God’s ways are beyond our own limited understanding.
For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways, says the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9
If, however, you believe in the God who has revealed Himself in the Bible, then any talk of difficulty is absurd because He is the God who created the universe, the heavens, the earth, and everything that is in them.
Ah, Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You. Jeremiah 32:17
God doesn’t measure things in categories of simple, hard, or difficult. He is all-powerful. That’s why it is just as easy for God to help in a major crisis as it is in a minor crisis. It’s just as easy for God to supply a million dollars as it is for Him to deliver five cents.
We don’t see it that way, of course. If I need a quarter, then I’ll go flip open the change boxes in telephone booths (back when we still had such things) and candy machines, hoping to find a coin or two. “I know God can supply. There’s a telephone booth—let’s go see if God supplied,” I might say. That works sometimes for small change. But what if you need a million dollars? Oh, God! That’s tough, we think. But that’s carrying my limitations over to God, Who is unlimited. God has never promised anything that He lacks the ability to fulfill.
Daniel 3 recounts that the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar made a decree that at the sound of certain music, everyone had to bow before the great golden image he had erected in the plain of Dura. He scheduled the day for this new decree to begin, and when the music sounded, everyone bowed—except Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. These three Hebrew boys had been brought as captives from Judah and made governors by Nebuchadnezzar over the provinces of Babylon. Soon, someone reported their disobedience to the Babylonian king. He called them in and said, “I hear you didn’t bow when the music sounded. I’ll give you one more chance, and if you don’t bow, you’re going to be thrown into the furnace. And what god is there who can deliver you from my hand?” (paraphrase of Daniel 3:14-15).
“O Nebuchadnezzar,” they answered, “we have no need to answer you in this matter. … our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace” (Daniel 3:16b-17a). And He did.
You must never measure any problem by your ability to handle it. You must measure it by God’s ability to handle it, for He is the One you trust. God is able to do whatever He has promised to do.
Even If It Takes a Miracle
One day Abraham found himself cradling his little boy in his arms. Holding the child of God’s promise, he looked down and said, “I’m going to call you Laughter (Isaac means laughter) because it makes me laugh to think that you were ever born to Sarah and me.” God kept His Word to Abraham, even though it took a miracle (retelling of Genesis 21:1-7).
You must never measure any problem by your ability to handle it. You must measure it by God’s ability to handle it, for He is the One you trust.
What situations are you facing today? What are your worries? Are there difficulties in your path? Whatever it is, search the Word of God for guidance, wisdom, and comfort. Trust God at His Word, and give Him glory for His ability to do exceedingly abundantly above anything you could ask or think.
In the days to come, may you find great victory in your life as through His ability you begin to stand where you’ve always stumbled. May you watch your needs be supplied through His provision. As you exercise and grow in your faith, you will begin to benefit from the fruit of that faith—all through the grace and mercy of Jesus Christ.
All verses above are quoted from the New King James Version.
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