Continual Praise (Psalm 98:4)

Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.

Psalm 98:4 (KJV)

Praise is powerful because it announces that the victory has already been won. When we praise God and rejoice in Him, mountains melt away as we open ourselves more fully to seeing God’s glory manifest in our lives. Let us live in a heart space of continual praise; let us rejoice in Him on the mountaintop and in the valley, for He is infinitely worthy of all praise!

Confident Assurance In God’s Grace (Hebrews 4:16)

Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

Hebrews 4:16 (KJV)

When we approach our heavenly Father, let us do so with boldness and confidence. We are to step before the throne of grace with absolutely certainty that through the finished works of Jesus we have access to everything we need. Let us therefore erase all doubt from our hearts, and remember that God is not withholding anything. Whatever you may need today, whether it be wisdom, restoration, healing or provision, may you live in this confident assurance that God’s grace truly is sufficient.

Weekly Grace: Exercising Our Muscle Of Faith

Scripture tells us that the Gospel reveals the righteousness of God “from faith to faith” and that “the just shall live by faith.” (Romans 1:17) And so it follows then that nothing is of greater importance for us than to exercise and thereby strengthen our spiritual muscle of faith.

Let us examine now for a moment why faith is so crucial in our Christian walk, and how we might go about strengthening it. Notice that “the just shall live by faith.” Faith is not something that we are to resort to every now and then when faced with a particularly challenging situation, but much rather does the Word command us to live by faith.

It is certainly encouraging to know that faith is like a spiritual muscle that can be strengthened and developed. And let us also be very clear that faith, as all things in our walk with the Lord, is a gift from God. (Ephesians 2:8) When we realize that our faith is not our own, but that it has come to us from our heavenly Father as one of the many sweet gifts of His precious love, it takes the pressure off. God has already equipped us and empowered us with all of the faith we will ever need. The Bible says that God has dealt to everyone the measure of faith. (Romans 12:3) If you have received Jesus as Lord, you have received with Him all of the faith you will ever need. And so your task, my friend, is not to try and get more faith, but to simply and consistently develop the faith you already have.

Consider that when you go to the gym for physical exercise your body is not suddenly growing new muscles. You are simply strengthening the muscles you already had all along. The same applies to our spiritual muscle of faith!

And so what does this look like? How do we strengthen our muscle of faith? The answer is found in Romans 10:17: “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” If we want to work out physically, we go to the gym. If we want to work out spiritually, we go to the Word of God.

Each of us are called to continuously immerse ourselves in His Word. One of the greatest lies the devil is attempting to sell Christians on these days is that it is possible to live a victorious Christian life without being regularly filled up with the Word of God. In addition to hearing faith-filled and life-giving sermons where the Word is preached, we must each take responsiblity to renew our minds daily in God’s Word. (Romans 12:2 & Ephesians 4:23) The more that we fill our hearts and minds with the promises of God’s Word, the more will we strengthen our spiritual muscle of faith.

I will oftentimes describe the Word of God as the fuel for our born-again spirit. The more that we feed our spirit with God’s Word, the stronger our spirit becomes. And the stronger our spirit, the more receptive it is to the promptings of the Holy Spirit which ever so gently bears witness with our spirit that we are a precious child of God. (Romans 8:16) “And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ;” (Romans 8:17)

Brothers and sisters, I encourage you today to be diligent in your daily spiritual exercise by immersing yourself in God’s Word. There is a reason why the Word of God is referred to as the sword of the Spirit. (Ephesians 6:17) When we begin to stand firm upon the Word, and use it to counter attacks of fear, doubt, worry, guilt, or any type of insecurity, we will bear witness to the supernatural ability of the Word of cutting straight through the lies and deceptions of the enemy, and awakening within us a revelation of who we are in Christ.

And so let us set time aside every day to consider His Word, and let us meditate on all that our heavenly Father has so freely provided for us. The Word can also be referred to as a spiritual mirror. (see James 1:23-25) The more that we feed our born-again spirit with the Word, the more will we see in the Word a reflection of who we are in Christ as we live the victorious and overcoming lives He has called us to live.

Father, I thank You for Your precious Word. I ask, Lord, that You would awaken in me a continual desire and hunger for Your Word. May it speak to me, and may it remind me of all that You have done for me and all that You are calling me to be. I thank You, Lord, that even now Your Word is working in me to dissolve and eliminate every wrong thought or false perception I may have inherited from the world, and it is shaping in me a heart of righteousness, a heart that is pleasing to You. Thank You that Your Word is casting out all doubt as it brings my every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. I praise You for this, Lord, and I give You all of the glory. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

SCRIPTURES:

Romans 1:17, Ephesians 2:8, Romans 10:17, Romans 12:2-3, Ephesians 4:22-24, Romans 8:16-17, Ephesians 6:17, James 1:23-25, 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

All Things Working Together For Good (Romans 8:28)

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:28 (KJV)

We must know the truth in order to be set free by it. And this is one of the most powerful statements of truth: God is using all things together for our good; the good and the bad, the seasons in which we find ourselves on the mountaintop as well as our times in the valley. God will use it all for good, if we will but accept it in our hearts by faith. And so let us live in a continual positive expectation of seeing God’s goodness in our lives. Regardless of where we find ourselves, let us declare, “Lord, I can’t wait to see the good You have in store for me today!”

Grace Builds Us Up (Acts 20:32)

And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.

Acts 20:32 (KJV)

Grace will always build us up, whereas religion tends to pull people down. While religion is all about what we must do in order to earn favor with God, grace is all about what Jesus has already done for us. Each day our practice therefore must be to remind ourselves, to confess, and to thank God that He has already made available anything we could ever need. As we remember our identity in Christ—that we have been made righteous and every whit whole in Him—we open ourselves to receiving the inheritance grace has already provided.

The World Has Been Overcome (John 16:33)

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

John 16:33 (KJV)

There is a continual peace available to us in Christ. Though the world may be filled with challenges, let us remember that Jesus has already overcome the world. And as we abide in Him, we get to partake in that overcoming. We abide in Him through His Word and through being of good cheer, knowing that regardless of circumstances and conditions, the the victory has already been won. When we live in this faith-filled state of heart, we will have peace and be filled with joy.

The Victory Of Faith (1 John 5:4)

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.

1 John 5:4 (KJV)

The key to living a life of victory is our faith. Faith is a powerful spiritual principle that enables the promises of God to be made manifest in our life. We are called to strengthen our faith by exercising it like a muscle. The more that we exercise our faith, the stronger it becomes. We exercise our faith by setting our hearts and minds upon the promises of God, by meditating on them and confessing them until they become real to us. When we believe in the reality of something before we can perceive it through our physical senses, we are living in the victory of faith.

Union With Christ (Romans 6:5-6)

For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.

Romans 6:5-6 (NKJV)

Having a revelation of who we are in Christ is crucial for us to lay hold of all that Jesus has made available to us. The very heart of salvation is union with Christ, which means that who we once were in the flesh has been crucified with Jesus. The more that we meditate on and confess that we are now a brand new creation, the more will we find ourselves free from all the things that used to hold us in bondage. Let us realize that we have been made completely victorious in Christ, and we are being called to live out of all that is true about us in Him.

Labor To Rest (Hebrews 4:11)

Let us labour therfore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.

Hebrews 4:11 (KJV)

Much of our walk with the Lord is about laboring to enter into rest. This is not speaking of a physical rest, but much rather of a resting of the soul. It is to get to the place where our our mind, our will and our emotions rest confidently in the finished works of Jesus. And so we do not labor in our soul to try and get victory, we labor to get to the place of truly believing that Jesus has already won us the victory. We fill our minds and hearts with the Word of God until God’s promises become so real to us that all unbelief is cast out, and we rest in confident assurance of seeing God’s goodness in our lives.

The Believer’s Authority (Luke 10:19)

Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

Luke 10:19 (KJV)

Every believer has been given authority in the name of Jesus over all of the forces of darkness. When confronted with things coming against us, we are to pray with confidence and to speak boldly to the storms and to the mountains of life. And so let us stand firm in this authority, and let us rest in the quiet assurance that because the One who has already overcome the world now lives on the inside of us, we get to partake in His overcoming and see the fruits of it manifest in our lives.