Faith that Saves
The Most Important Question Ever Asked
The Jailor had one question for Paul, undoubtedly the most important question that was ever asked or that will ever be asked; a question that every single one of us need an answer for before life expires. We find that question in Acts 16:29-30
..Sirs, what must I do to be saved?
On that question hinges the future and destiny of every single person. It presupposes three things:
- That I am lost
- That I can become saved, and
- That there is something that I have to do to be saved.
In a few short verses the bible supplies the answer:
31. And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.
The chapter closes with the Jailor and his family being baptized and enjoying fellowship with the saints.
32. And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house.
33. And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed [their] stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.
34. And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house.
The Belief of Faith
What it means to Believe
a: To accept something as true, genuine, or real for example a belief in the existence of God
b: To have a firm conviction as to the goodness, efficacy, or ability of something, for example, believing in the power, love, justice and mercies of God.
c: To have religious faith;You might have heard someone say that he or she is a believer. We generally don't ask "believer in what? We usually just assume that they have accepted the the gift of salvation, and is joined to a body of like believers.
d: To consider likely."to accept as true", but for a likely event "The weather forecast for today was that it should be a high of 45 and a low of 36"
Devils also believe but they're not saved
It's not just any belief that saves. "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble" (James 2:19). It is only the belief of faith that saves
The belief of faith that saves
The savior was treated to a special feast by Simon, whom he had cleansed from leprosy. Suddenly everyone's attention was drawn to a uniquely powerful fragrance coming from the savior. They noticed the empty alabaster box that contained spikenard, a very costly ointment. At Yeshua's feet was a woman who everyone recognized. It was Mary, the prostitute, or former prostitute, to be more correct. Curiosity and amazement turned to indignation as some considered the cost of the ointment that was "wasted" on Yeshua's feet, while others considered the past of the woman now washing the Savior's feet with her tears, and drying them with her long hair.
After rebuking the lady's adversaries Yeshua said unto the woman "Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace" (Luke 7:36-50). While everyone around Yeshua was scrambling for positions of honor, and mis-reading scriptures so they would match up with Jewish desires for a prosperous nation, only this woman noted the Messiah's word about His sacrificial death: "Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified" (Matthew 26:2). She had been saving this ointment from quite a while "against the day of my burying hath she kept this." "For in that she hath poured this ointment on my body, she did it for my burial" (Matthew 26:12; John 12:7).
While Peter rebuked the savior for talking about His death, this woman was preparing for that event.
While James and John were campaigning for position in the new Kingdom that they expect the Messiah to establish, this woman was shopping for the best ointment to prepare Yeshua for His impending death.
While Simon enjoyed the honor of hosting the future king of Israel, the Jewish leaders were planning the Savior's death - and only this woman believed the words of the savior - enough to save up her wages for a full year for this moment. In two days the King of the Jews, would become the King on the cross, and only one person recognized the grand event that was looming ahead. She had a faith that saved, and Christ said "Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her". The faith that saves is one that believes Christ's words despite the looks of things, that accepts the revealed purposes of God, even when it does not seem favorable, and that prepares for what seems unlikely to occur.
Speaking of preparing for the inconceivable; Let's drop in a statement about the man who spent 120 years preparing for an event never seen upon the earth before. Hebrews 11:7 sums it up this way:
"By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith"
What Is Faith
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good report.
Faith is understanding that all that we see were created
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.
Faith is honoring Yahweh by giving to Him That Which He Commanded
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.
Faith is seeking always to Please God
5 By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.
Faith is Believing that there is a God, and that if you seek Him He will reward you
6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
God told Noah that there was going to be a flood. Noah showed that he believed God by building an ark
7 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.
God said to Abraham "Go". Abraham left all that he had and went
8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.
9 By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:
10 For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
Sara believed God's promise when things seemed impossible
11 Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised.
12 Therefore sprang there even of one, and him as good as dead, so many as the stars of the sky in multitude, and as the sand which is by the sea shore innumerable.
Faith is receiving God's promises, seeing them afar off, being persuaded of them, embracing them, and telling others about them.
13 These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
14 For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country.
15 And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned.
16 But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.
Faith is giving up that which is most dear to you in obedience to God.
17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,
18 Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called:
19 Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.
Faith is blessing your children
20 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come.
21 By faith Jacob, when he was a dying, blessed both the sons of Joseph; and worshipped, leaning upon the top of his staff.
22 By faith Joseph, when he died, made mention of the departing of the children of Israel; and gave commandment concerning his bones.
Faith is risking all for that which is most precious
23 By faith Moses, when he was born, was hid three months of his parents, because they saw he was a proper child; and they were not afraid of the king's commandment.
Faith is choosing temporary hardship over temporary pleasure knowing that God will more than compensate for your suffering.
24 By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter;
25 Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;
26 Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.
Faith is forsaking "Egypt" Whatever that may be, and going where God leads.
27 By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.
Faith is accepting Christ's blood as a covering for your sin.
28 Through faith he kept the passover, and the sprinkling of blood, lest he that destroyed the firstborn should touch them.
29 By faith they passed through the Red sea as by dry land: which the Egyptians assaying to do were drowned.
30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they were compassed about seven days.
Faith is knowing that this corrupt world is going to be destroyed, and escaping to safety with your family.
31 By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace.
Faith is fighting courageously against wrong, blessing God's people when others wants you to curse them, standing up against the enemies of God, answering God's call.
32 And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets:
33 Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions.
34 Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.
35 Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection:
Faith is enduring hardship, mockeries, beatings, imprisonment, stoning, torture, death for that which you believe.
36 And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:
37 They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented;
38 (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.
39 And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise:
40 God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.
Faith is believing that God is who He claims to be;, that he has done what He claims to have done; that He will do what He said He'll do - and having believed that, take actions accordingly.
Do you have faith, or do you simply believe as does the devil.
And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.
17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.