Authentic Faith- Day 14

Devotions for Saturday, August 20, 2011

Today is our last day in the Authentic Faith series, and I think it ends on a really cool note!

1 John 5:1-4

1 Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.

Pastor Ben’s Commentary:
So, how do you know that you are saved?  How do you know that your faith is authentic?  Have you ever wondered that?  John is the author of the book that we are reading from today.  In his gospel he wrote, “These are written that you may know that Jesus is the Christ…and that by believing you may have life through His name.”  John thought it was very important that you know about Jesus, believe in Him, and have life through Him.

When we look at today’s verses we see 4 different evidences of whether we are saved:

1. Faith- “Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God”  This word “believeth” has the idea of a continuing acceptance and trust in Christ.
2. Love- ” and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God,”  This speaks of loving God the Father (“him that begat”), love God the Son (Jesus Christ- “him also that is begotten of him”), and our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ (“children of God”).
3. Obedience- “and keep his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.”
4. Victory-  “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.”  World here is not talking about they physical world, nor is it talking about all the people in the world (whom God loves).  It is talking about the world system- influenced by the enemies of God to turn people from God and to themselves.  It is defined in another part of scripture as the system that uses the “lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes” that are “not of the father, but of the world.”  Someone that is in the faith is having victory over sin, and temptation in their life.  They aren’t being defeated by it every time.  It’s not that they are perfect, but that they aren’t always losing.  🙂

Application Questions:
1. Do these 4 evidences get you saved, or do they display your salvation?  Explain-

2. Why is it important to understand who Jesus is?

3.  What does it mean to love God?  What does that look like?  

4.  What does it mean to love “God’s children”?  Who is that talking about?  Why do you think that is important?

5.  What do you think it means when the Bible says, “His commandments are not grevious?”

6.  What do you think “victory” over the world looks like?

Authentic Faith- Day 13

Devotions for Friday, August 19, 2011

1 John 3:21-24

3 Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God. And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight. And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment. And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.

Pastor Ben’s Commentary:
The author is telling us some important things about faith. Faith always leads to action, and the author here tells us a couple of things that faith in God produces. It produces obedience to God’s commands, and love for God’s people. Let’s apply those two ideas

Application:
1. If we have faith in God, then we will do what he says. Faith and works go hand in hand. We aren’t saved by our works, but because we are saved we will do good works. If you have faith in God, then you’ll want to know what He says and you’ll want to do what He says.

2. If we have faith in God, we’ll follow his command and example in loving other people. God loved the world so much that He gave His only Son, Jesus, for us. If we love God, then we’ll love what He loved. He loves others. It’s hard to show EVERYONE love, but it’s possible to show SOMEONE love.

Today, live out your faith in God by obeying Him, and showing someone love..

Authentic Faith- Day 13

Devotions for Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Hebrews 11:4

By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.

Pastor Ben’s Commentary:
So today I am also going to try something new….I’m not going to give any commentary. I want you guys to think through the verse and/or get the info from some tools ( which you can find links to in the sidebar in the “Bible Study Links” section).

I’ll comment to at the end of the day.

Authentic Faith- Day 12

Devotions for Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Hebrews 11:3

3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

Pastor Ben’s Commentary:
Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

No one saw the origin of life- the beginning of our planet.  We know what happened because God revealed what happened to Moses who wrote it down in the first chapter of Genesis.  According to this verse, creation came by the word of God.  This is of course correlates with  Genesis 1.  In fact, go back and read the first chapter of the entire Bible.  Over and over the Bible states, “And God said, …” and then creation came from the Word that he spoke.

Check out this video:

Application:
1. We serve an enormous God, who intelligently designed an incredible universe. This place isn’t about us, it’s about Him. “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament (land)showeth His handiwork.” “The things that are seen (this physical earth) were not made of things which do appear” (natural processes, or people) but by the invisible, all powerful-Creator God.

2. Even though we are small in stature, God loves us and wants us to know Him. The incredible Designer-God who formed this planet, galaxy and universe loved you and I enough to send His Son to pay for our sins.

2. God’s Word is incredible. The Word of God created the world, and is available to us today. It is infintely valuable, and we should treat it that way.

Take a few minutes today to think about our Creator God, and to thank Him for what He has made.