We shall look at five areas in life in which God requires your faith. We shall look at some miracles and what the beneficiaries of those miracles had to do to receive them.
Five things for which the Lord requires your faith
1. The Lord requires your faith for salvation
2. He requires your faith for healing
3. He requires your faith to provide for you
4. He requires your faith for persistence in prayer
5. He requires your faith to overcome giants in your life
The miracles of God are like a blank check. The signature is the blood of Jesus and it is up to you to submit the figure and cash it. The Bible says that by his divine power he has given us all things that pertain to life and godliness but it takes faith to access it. (2 Peter 1.3)
1. The Lord requires your faith for salvation
They traveled from Mount Hor along the route to the Red Sea, to go around Edom. But the people grew impatient on the way; they spoke against God and against Moses, and said, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? There is no bread! There is no water! And we detest this miserable food!” Then the Lord sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died. The people came to Moses and said, “We sinned when we spoke against the Lord and against you. Pray that the Lord will take the snakes away from us.” So Moses prayed for the people. The Lord said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.” So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, they lived. (Numbers 21.4-9 NIV)
They were on a journey and came all the way to Mount Hor. There they began to show their human character, condemning God for what they called “miserable” food. When you are tried, be careful of your utterances that you don’t say what you shouldn’t. The Lord brought his punishment on them and they began to die from the bites of the snakes he sent among them.
They asked Moses to plead with God for them. When he did, God directed him on what to do. However, the direction God gave him was not in line with human reasoning. That is one characteristic of faith—it defies human logic. The instruction may not make sense but when it is received in faith, all things are possible
How could a lifeless snake on a pole bring healing? However, those who had a little faith looked at the lifeless snake and had life while others were dying. Exercise gentle faith for the Lord requires your faith to operate with you in this year and beyond.
Jesus said, “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.” (John 3.14-15 NIV) If you will believe in Jesus you will have life and never die. Your salvation is assured and as long as it is so, you will have life.
2. The Lord requires your faith for healing
You may be battling with a type of illness. Your hospital cards may have piled up from frequent visits to different hospitals but it is within God’s power to heal you. He wants you to play your part.
In Mark 2.1-12, Jesus had come to the city and entered a house preaching and teaching. There was a paralyzed man whose friends wanted Jesus to heal him. However, because Jesus was busy teaching, they could not call him out to heal their friend. That was Plan A. Plan B was to go through the crowd to Jesus but that was not tenable because of the thickness of the crowd. Then they moved to Plan C. In this plan, they added a little faith. They decided to remove the roof of the building.
Verse 5 says,
When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” (Mark 2.5 NIV)
It says, “When Jesus saw their faith…” May Jesus see your faith this year. When Jesus saw their faith he addressed the man’s problem. He first forgave the man’s sins before healing him. Our sins are already forgiven so we are candidates for healing.
3. The Lord requires your faith to provide for you
In 2 Kings 4.1-7, there was a widow whose husband was a prophet. Her husband had died leaving a debt. Because of this debt, the creditors gave her an ultimatum that if she did not pay the debt, they would come for her two sons, her only consolation after the death of her husband.
She went to Elisha with this problem but the prophet asked her, “What can I do for you?” That was a statement expressing hopelessness. The prophet asked again, “What do you have?” The widow had a little oil. The prophet told her to go borrow as many jars as she could from her neighbors, shut the door behind her and pour oil. I was struck by the fact that the prophet told her to pour ‘oil’ and not ‘the oil.’ The oil she had was little but oil from on high is inexhaustible. The oil she poured only ceased to flow when she run out of jars.
Your oil is small but what the Lord wants to do with you is more than you can carry.
4. The Lord requires your faith for persistence in prayer
You should pray fervently and never get tired. This period of fourteen days fasting does not mean you have arrived. In Luke 18.1-8 Jesus told a parable to show that we should be persistent in prayer.
Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’ “For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’” And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18.1-8 NIV)
When you are praying and praying to God, don’t think you are disturbing him for he delights in your disturbance. Jesus asked in verse 8, “When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” Don’t say after these fourteen days that you have arrived.
5. The Lord requires your faith to overcome giants in your life
On the cross he said tetelestai—it is finished but you need faith to claim it. There are giants he has dealt with already bot he needs your faith to see what he has done. In the story of David and Goliath, David approached the giant in faith.
David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hands, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.” As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him. Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell facedown on the ground. (1 Samuel 17.45-49 NIV)
The Philistine trusted in his ability but David trusted in the Lord. David was not afraid of the giant’s size or movement but countered his size and movement by running quickly to confront him. He said, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.” He came against him in the name of the Lord.
With the eye of faith, the way and manner in which you begin to see things changes. David was an anointed unprofessional military man. When the unanointed professionals saw Goliath, they saw a giant to run away from. David, the anointed unprofessional, asked, “Who is this uncircumcised Philistine?” When you see with that eye, victory is assured.
Behind the giant is success. Those with the eye of faith will see and grab it. When David heard of the reward for the one who was able to kill the giant, he was motivated to attempt it. Sometimes you see there is the opportunity for great success but there are challenges. Remember the Lord will fight for you but you have to exercise a little faith. The challenges present opportunities.
There is an avalanche of opportunities but the Lord requires your faith.
Numbers 21.4-9, Mark 2.1-12, 2 Kings 4.1-7, Luke 18.1-8, 1 Samuel 17.45-49