MorningStar Ranch Ministries

Lesson 10

Faith

The righteous shall live by faith. This declaration of the Christian's principle of life is found four times in the bible: Hab. 2:1-5 (OT), Rom. 1:17, Gal. 3:10, 11 and Heb. 10:38. In Habakkuk we see the difference between the lives of the unrighteous and the righteous.  The unrighteous are puffed up and live by their own self-sufficiency. But the righteous live by faith. Their confidence is in God. To them, faith is more than a philosophy of life it is the very principle of life (Acts 16:31); he is kept by faith (1 Pet. 1:5); and he lives by faith (Gal. 2:20). His faith shall be tried many times and in many ways (1 Pet. 1:7), but faith will always be vindicated, because it is more than equal to any occasion. Faith knows how to wait on the Lord (Is. 40:31 OT), and it is always victorious (1 John 5:4).

Faith defies reason; it moves mountains (Matt. 17:14-21).  Faith does not always face facts; it never gives up (Heb. 11:32-39). Faith says, "God is working out His perfect will in my life and I can wait, endure, and suffer". Faith does not make anything easy, but it does make all things possible.

I

What is Faith?

Read: Heb. 11:1-3

"Now faith is the assurance (title deed) of things hoped for..."  Your faith is your title deed to eternal life. Just as a title deed is evidence of real estate, so your faith is evidence of your eternal estate in God (2 Cor. 4:18).

You are not born with this faith.  It comes by hearing the Word of God (Rom. 10:17).  This is why we are commanded to preach the gospel to every creature, that they may hear and believe (Rom. 10:13, 14).

II

The Importance of Faith

Read: Eph. 6:16

The shield of faith is a vital part of the Christian’s armor.  You are to put on the "... full armor of God" (Eph. 6:10-18), because the Christian life is a warfare, a spiritual conflict. As Paul names the different parts of the Christian’s armor, he comes to the shield and emphasizes its importance by saying, "in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith..." (Eph. 6:16). For with the shield of faith, nothing can hurt you; "... in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him" Rom. 8:37).

The importance of faith is seen in that:

Faith is important because it honors God, and God always honors faith!

III

Little Faith

Read: Matt. 14:29-33

At this stage in the spiritual growth of Peter, he was a man of "little faith" However, after Pentecost, he became a spiritual giant. Let us take a good look at his "little faith" and profit from it. Jesus came to His distressed disciples, walking on the water in the midst of a storm. Peter asked to come to Jesus on the water.  He must have thrilled at the thought of doing the impossible.  Jesus said, "Come."

In this lesson, we see the success and failure of "little faith".

Now, let us recap the steps that led to failure. Peter started by faith, and walked on the water. Then he saw the storm, and had a second thought that led to doubt, that produced fear, that caused him to turn back, that brought about the failure.

You need a faith that is bigger than the elements that would drag you down to defeat. You can have big faith by "prayer and fasting" (Matt. 17:20, 21) and by feeding your faith on the word of God (Rom. 10:17).

You can have mountain-moving faith!

 

IV

Three Kinds of Faith

Read: John 11:21-44

In this chapter, we see the faith of Martha in connection with the resurrection of her brother Lazarus. Now Lazarus fell ill, and Martha and he sister Mary sent for Jesus to come and heal him.  Jesus delayed His coming until Lazarus was dead and in the tomb for four days.  Then He came to raise him from the dead, and found the limited, fundamental faith of Martha His only obstacle.

 

Don’t be satisfied with limited, fundamental faith only, when you can have unlimited faith that pleases God and reveals His glory.

V

The Hall of Faith

Read: Heb. 11:32-39

This chapter is often called the "Hall of Faith".  You need to come here often and linger long, that your faith may become strong in the Lord; for in this Scripture we get a view of the history of Israel and the church, as it is written by faith, in the blood of the saints.

By faith they were patient in suffering, courageous in battle, made strong out of weakness, and were victorious in defeat.  They were more than conquerors by faith. It is only by faith in the all-powerful Christ that you can be superior to circumstances, and victorious over all the evil forces that would destroy you. "Fixing your eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith" (Heb. 12:2).  The faith of the saints inspires us, but we look to Jesus as our example of faith.

Now proceed to Lesson 11