They're both found in an oft-quoted Bible verse I memorized many years ago:
"And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him." Hebrews 11:6 (NASB)
The two things are actually one thing: faith in God, that faith being an assurance of the things we hope for and a conviction of things promised that we can't always see with our physical eyes (Hebrews 11:1). But Hebrews 11:6 describes biblical faith in two parts: (1) confidence in God being who He says He is, and (2) confidence in all God's promises being available for those who seek Him. That's all you need when the chips are down and you're not sure how things are going to turn out.
So when you feel like you're struggling keep a good perspective, go ahead and ask yourself,
"Is God still who He says He is?" (The answer is always yes.)
And then also ask,
"Are all God's promises still true?" (The answer to that is also always yes!)
That is the kind of faith that pleases God – the kind that remembers God accurately and lifts our gaze to be encouraged by His promises.
That means it's vital for us to keep a lookout for who God is as we read the Bible and to remember what we've read so that we can look back to it in times of trouble. God's Word tells us all about who God is! Remember these things when you ask yourself if God is still who He says He is...
- God is holy (Psalm 99:3; Rev. 4:8)
- God is good (Psalm 25:8; James 1:17)
- God is loving (Psalm 13:5; John 3:16)
- God is faithful (Psalm 89:5; 1 Thessalonians 5:24)
- God is merciful (Psalm 103:8; Ephesians 2:4)
- God is powerful (Psalm 29:4; Ephesians 6:10)
- God is wise (Psalm 104:24; Romans 11:33)
- God is just (Psalm 37:28; 1 John 1:9)
- God is ever-present (Psalm 139:7-10; Matthew 28:20)
- God is all-knowing (Psalm 147:5; 1 John 3:20)
And we also need to remember the promises of God as we read the Bible so that as we ask our soul if all God's promises are still true, we know what promises this applies to. This isn't complicated stuff! It's just a matter of remembering what we read so that we can remind ourselves in times of need. What has God promised to those who seek Him (which we can only do through Jesus (John 14:6))?
- That we can personally know God (1 John 5:20)
- That we can be filled with and empowered by His Holy Spirit (John 14:16-17)
- Forgiveness (1 John 1:9)
- Abundant life (John 10:10
- Eternal life (1 John 2:25)
- God's abiding presence (Hebrews 13:5)
- God's peace (Philippians 4:7)
- God's joy (Romans 15:13)
- God having a purpose for our life (Ephesians 2:10)
- Answers to our prayers (John 16:24)
So remember! When life is tough, these are the two things you need in your holsters: To believe that God is exactly who He says He is in His Word! And to believe that every promise He's ever made is true and available when we are following Jesus (2 Corinthians 1:20)!
© 2016 by Ken Peters