Listen v4.35 The Big Picture – Part 17

The Fruition of Our Faith

God does not call us and redeem us for our own glory but for His own. The great drama of all Time is the story (His Story) of God’s own manifold wisdom and exceeding great glory being unfolded before His enemies and all Creation. We are not the central theme of all purpose, we are just in the center, on display as it is, for all to see what God can do with a lump of clay.

This is why you should, you must, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Matt. 5:16. All Creation is looking to see God’s glory revealed in you. Don’t hide it under a bushel. Put it on a hill, not so that the world sees you but so that the world sees the Light in you, even Christ. He is the central and supreme, the beginning and the end of all of God’s best, made known in the flesh.

Here is how it works (in a very simplified explanation). God has chosen certain of His creation before the foundation of the world to represent Him through His Agency, the Life of Christ, in them. In Time these are called out, separated and set apart for special purpose — sanctified and made holy — not like all the others.

By an act of grace operating through faith, you are saved, set apart for this, called and elected. “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” John 1:12. Notice he gave “the power to become”. Become implies a process over time. The power is the ability to accomplish a task. Authority is the position or the right. We are given the position of a child (in Christ) and the power to become a son — complete and fully mature, through the Holy Spirit in us which is the energy or power to accomplish the working out of the Spirit of Christ.

Again be careful not to jump to the conclusion that the power and the ability is the end of the matter. Having the authority and the power do not conclude anything. It is like having the talent and the opportunity to be the best. You must exercise these gifts on the playing field of that particular discipline in order to prove out that you are what you can become. As a child of God you must consistently act (e.g. exercise the power) as a son in order to become a son. There is a series of arenas for the trials that must be overcome in order for your sonship to be proven. And by the way, you don’t get any special tools besides faith (deposited by Him through the Word) which must work in you to believe that you can overcome every trial and temptation that is presented.

Here are your opponents:

1) Satan, the devil, that old serpent.
2) This present world system (in which Satan is in charge).
3) Your Self – Flesh set apart for your own purposes by your own will.

Satan will tell you lies and mess with your thinking and thus trigger your feelings. These thoughts and feelings are always presented to your Self for a judgment as to what to do, an act of your will. But remember the first seems right till another comes along. You must go to the Advocate who stands as Truth against the slanderous attacks and lies of the Accuser. In the end your will decides who you believe by what action you take. Is it your will or His? Do you believe Him or your Self?

Then there is the world system, this manufactured marvel of materialism. We are surrounded by things that appeal to us, that we want to have for reasons of security or just pure selfish pleasure. We covet and lust for them and war to have them. We serve Self as it is attracted to and goads us toward things that sparkle, shine and promise to satisfy all we want.

Finally, there is Self. That part of you that separated from God (in Adam) to perform apart from His authority and will. For me this is where the battle really lives. Satan cannot make us do anything but by lies and deceptions, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32. The world can pull, cajole, tempt and plea for attention, but it is still just things that soon lose their luster and appeal. Again, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.” 1 John 4:4.

Ah, but the flesh of Self, this is the foe of the ages. The battlefield is right between your ears. Your own thinking and reasoning are the things that war against the Spirit of God in you. “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.” Gal. 5:17. You choose too often to believe and accept as true what your Self presents to you and not what God says. There is a whole lot of evidence (so it would appear) for what Self argues for and not so much for what God says. In fact what He says relies pretty much entirely on faith. Faith in what? Faith in Him.

And now the stage is set for the classic showdown a la Job. Here is a son of God who has caught the attention of God. “And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?” Job 1:8. What is God doing, what is He thinking? Is he picking a fight with Satan? You bet ya. He wants to show off one of His sons. So in essence He says, “I challenge you to a duel and the weapon is my servant Job. See if you can cause him to act unrighteously or whether he will trust me and depend upon me. In this will you see My glory, in this way will you be brought to shame by the righteousness of my son. Let’s party.” (Well OK maybe that’s not how it went down but I made my point).

God has His entourage of Giants to fell, Mountains to ascend, Red Seas to cross, His Jezebels to slay, His Philistines to conquer, His Pharisees to expose, His Kings to outwit. So much for a son to do. Of course He does not need our help here, these are all here to help us, to call to the heroic faith in each of us. To cause us to rise up and lay claim to the faith of our fathers, those who have gone before us and felled giants, ascended mountains, crossed their seas, etc.

Just as Job gave God bragging rights in heaven. “There, that one, he is my son. I gave Satan full access to him and he proved his faith and worthiness of sonship and glorified me on earth”. So the Father wants to brag about you.

Oswald Chambers said, “Righteousness must never be made to mean less than a guiltless position in the presence of justice and right. God justifies me by my supernatural faith in Him, but it is my just walk that proves Him just in saving me; if I do not walk in the life of faith, I am a slanderer to God.”

Did you catch that? If you do not walk in the life of faith (e.g. felling giants, ascending mountains, etc.) then you slander God by your unrighteous lack of faith. You are saying that God is not true, that He is not trustworthy.

No, no, a thousand time no. “For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged.” Rom. 3:3-4.

You see, it is our faith that justifies God saving us. He can point to us, the sons of God, and say, “Him (or her) right there, that is what I am talking about. Now Satan shut up. You have no more to say or to accuse my sons, I am justified in redeeming man.”

The sons of God are the fruition of our faith.