THE POWER OF THE GOSPEL (21)
Pastor (Mrs) Silvia Lia Leigh preached another sermon in the series called ‘The Power of the Gospel’. Her main text was taken from the Book of Romans: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.” … being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus… What then shall we say that Abraham our father has found according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt. But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness… (as it is written, “I have made you a father of many nations”) in the presence of Him whom he believed—God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did; who, contrary to hope, in hope believed, so that he became the father of many nations, according to what was spoken, “So shall your descendants be.” And not being weak in faith, he did not consider his own body, already dead (since he was about a hundred years old), and the deadness of Sarah’s womb. He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform. And therefore “it was accounted to him for righteousness.” Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed to him, but also for us. It shall be imputed to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification” (Rom 1:16, 17; 3:24; 4:1-8; 4:17-25)
Pastor (Mrs) Silvia Lia Leigh said that the Gospel is not just a doctrine. It works practically. The Gospel is God’s solution for sin and the problems of life. It is a unique ‘solution’. Nobody helps you to be saved and to live successfully as the Gospel of Christ crucified and resurrected. The Gospel addresses all the problems of life, from the lowest (how to die) to the highest (how to go to heaven). Preaching the Gospel challenges man to think for himself, to repent of sin and come to Jesus! In Adam, the thief called King Sin, comes only to steal, kill, and destroy. But Jesus came to bring Life abundantly, eternally! In Christ, Grace is King! Christianity is always victorious! This is the power and the glory of the Gospel! Christianity works thru the Word of God which is truth, and the Holy Spirit! It produces faith, strength, wisdom, peace, and joy! The Gospel is not vague. The Gospel is a spiritual ‘unit’. You need the truth, sound doctrine, to be set free from sin, anxiety, fear, and depression. If a man is in trouble, do not cheer him up first. Point him to Christ crucified and resurrected! Christianity has no help or hope for the unbelievers! They must surrender to Christ first! To be saved you need to come to Jesus, confess that you are a sinner, repent of your sins and surrender your life to Jesus Christ! You do not need all these doctrines. The reason who we preach these doctrines is so that we grow and mature as believers. Praise the Lord!
THE DOCTRINE OF THE PROMISES OR GOD says that God has given many promises to man in His Word and He fulfils them all! These are promises of Grace. God is able and God is faithful! “For as many as are the promises of God, in Christ they are [all answered] “Yes.” So through Him we say our “Amen” to the glory of God” (2Cor 1:20; AMP). What did Abraham discover ‘after the flesh’? He discovered three ‘negative’ things that cannot save or justify: works, the circumcision and the law. But Abraham discovered great ‘positive’ things. The most important revelation he had is that he is saved and justified by Grace thru faith in the God of Grace. Abraham discovered the power of the Word of God, the power of faith and hope in the promises of God. He discovered that “God cannot lie” (Titus 1:2). There are 8810 promises in the Bible. God fulfils them all! God’s promises are supernatural, wonderful, and big. They are not natural promises. These promises are too big for the natural faith. Wishful thinking and common sense cannot assess God’s promises. Try to imagine this: God speaks to a man 100 years married to a woman of 90 that: “I have made you a father of many nations”. Naturally, it is impossible to believe such a mighty promise. That is why the unbelievers laugh at the Gospel. But Abraham believed this promise “In the presence of Him whom he believed”. That is why he was called ‘the friend of God’. Faith is simple and pure. You need to have a child-like attitude to exercise this faith in God. Sin has complicated matters. Doubt and unbelief have made our minds too complicated and confused. For us, doubt is easier to entertain than faith. Doubt is our ‘comfort zone’. We need to rise in the Spirit and trust God again! Trust His Word and promises. Be filled with the Holy Spirit!
FAITH AND HOPE IN GOD’S PROMISES
Abraham discovered the power of faith and hope in God’s promises! He discovered that faith and hope never fail! He will never be put to shame, become disappointed, or regret having faith and hope in God Almighty! That is why God ‘imputed’ righteousness to him! FAITH is defined as a present belief, confidence, and total trust in God. It is also faithfulness. Faith is not on and off; it continues faithfully to the end of life. All the ‘heroes of faith’ in the Bible kept their faith to their last breath. We need to do the same. HOPE is defined as a joyful constant expectation of good in the future. The promises given by God in His Word will one day become manifest visibly. Hope is invisible. Faith sees the invisible hope and carries on until it becomes visible. Hope fulfills faith. That is why hope is stronger than faith. Faith is the foundation of hope. Faith is connected to the hearing of God’s Word. It is the underground bridge leading to hope. True faith and hope in God will never put you to shame! They will never disappoint you! Faith and hope can never become bitterness. These are fruits of the Holy Spirit working in your heart. It is worth it to take ‘risk’ with God! God knows that you are trusting Him and are waiting on Him. “Hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us… Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame” (Romans 5:5; 10:11). Abraham trusted that the God who gave him the promise has the power to perform it. And God did it! Remember this: PROMISE – POWER – PERFORMANCE! (PPP)!!!
The Bible says that “The evildoer (the unbeliever) has no future hope” (PV 24:20). Do not make friends with unbelievers because they will mock your faith and they will damage it. Faith needs healing like a sick body needs healing. A damaged faith in a believer helps him to believe that he is saved. But he cannot exercise faith for the supernatural and the joy of his hope is gone. He still goes to church, but he is weak and sad. We are commanded to have faith in God and to rejoice in our hope. May the Balm of Gilead manifest and heal your spirit, heal your faith, and restore the joy of your hope! Then the miracle will happen! God is alive! Nothing is impossible for God! “Lord, like my father Abraham, I want to look up in the dark night, see the stars and believe Your great and precious promises! Help me Lord Jesus!” Worship the Lord!