It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter. Proverbs 25:2

Archive for February, 2022

The Process of Spiritual Growth III – Truth Tested, Faith Tried

God’s truths are revealed to us by His word and through the life of Jesus. By faith we believe Jesus is the Son of the Most-High God and accept and trust His truths until they are established in our hearts and minds. Then comes the testing of our faith to show if we really and truly believe God’s word, whether to obey it or not.  Truth that is not tested is only a theory, but a truth that is tried and has been tested and proven trust worthy will be established in our hearts and becomes fact. Standing in faith under pressure is like metal being refined with fire, it removes the impurities but leaves a genuineness of faith to the praise and glory of God. 

1 Peter 1:6-7 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, NKJ

This principle of testing and the trying of one’s faith was shownat the beginning in the garden. God’s abundant love for mankind had already been displayed when He gave them ofevery tree in the garden to eat, created them in His image and gave them authority over all the earth. The only exception wasthe tree of knowledge of good and evil and that was the test of their faith and obedience to God. 

Genesis 3:4-5 Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.  For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Their actions attested to all of their lack of faith and tested to their disobedience and rebellion to God’s word. Their decision, actions and choice testified to all the heavenly realm and spiritual principalities that they chose not to believe or trustGod. They became slaves to sin throwing this world into chaos and giving it over to Satan’s death and destruction. The crowning glory of God’s creation had turned against their Creator. But God had a plan, Jesus would come to redeem mankind and destroy Satan’s rein and reestablish God’sauthority on earth making spoil of and losing the grip of all other principalities and powers. 

Ephesians 3:9-10 and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ; to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places,  

Colossians 2: 14-15 having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.  Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.

Satan is constantly trying to kill, destroy and deceive mankind by accusing God of being unkind, unloving and unmerciful to humanity and that God is holding them back from being great or doing what they want. He also accuses mankind before God implying they are selfish and self-centered and only serve God for what they can get from Him and not because they love Him.

Job 1: 8-11 Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?” So Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for nothing?   Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.   But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” NKJ

God is constantly showing His love for humanity through the eternal gift of Christ. It was God receiving glory as He spoke to all the heavens and principalities about the life of Job that he was an honest man of integrity, and he rejects and ignores evil.  God is magnified and glorified when His children endure their trials and temptations with trust, perseverance and triumph. They become a great cloud of witnesses of God’s grace. Job did not understand the reason for his calamities, Satan’s attack, but he knew he could trust the God he served. 

Job 13:15-16 Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him. Even so, I will defend my own ways before Him. He also shall be my salvation, For a hypocrite could not come before Him.

Hebrews 12:1-2 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

When God proclaimed that Jesus was the Son of God, this truthwas tested in the wilderness. Satan came to see if Jesus would trust God to perform His word to make Him King of kings, or if He would take the quick and easy way out by receiving the riches of this world from Satan by obeying him.  Jesus knew He would have to go through the death of the cross but He counted it joy and more rewarding to deliver us from sin and into the family of God. 

It is through difficulties that our true belief, faith and character is revealed. Hard times do not cause us to do wrong things, they only reveal our true character, our integrity and beliefs. It is during struggles we show what we truly believe in our hearts and not just what we say or what comes out of our mouths,without any real commitment. 

After a truth has been revealed to us and we commit to trust God in this truth a time of testing or validating our faith and trust in God will come. Some people will get upset or angry when trials, hardship or testing comes their way, because they want to live this life free from troubles. All who live will experience trouble because we live in a fallen world full of sin. But the trouble we experience can either bring glory to God or bring hate and bitterness to our souls. 

Job 14:1-2 “Man who is born of woman Is of few days and full of trouble. He comes forth like a flower and fades away; He flees like a shadow and does not continue.

James 1:2-3  My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,  knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.

Faith or a belief in something that has not been tested is only an opinion, a thought or an observation. Once God’s truth has been tested and gone through trials, these truths and principles are proven and we then have ownership by faith and those truths are established in our hearts, souls and minds.

The Process of Spiritual Growth II – Truth Trusted and Accepted.

Once the truth of God’s word is revealed to us then a decision will be made whether to trust this truth or reject it.  God’s word is truth regardless if we believe it or not. Our decision does not take away the truth of God’s word. Nonetheless, it is our choice to accept and trust God’s truth or reject it and remain in darkness according to a fallen system. 

Our actions are based on what we accept and trust as truth. Though our words may say one thing, our actions will reveal our true heart.   God tells us His word is truth and we are responsible for what we do with His truth. When we acceptGod’s word as truth then we are to trust and live a life of faith based on His truth. Much of God’s word goes against the grain of what we have experienced in this fallen world system. It takes acceptance and trust in the God’s truth and His love for usto stand, when the whole world is screaming lies and hatredagainst it. 

Isaiah 12:2 Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; ‘For Yah, the Lord, is my strength and song; He also has become my salvation.’ ”NKJ

Jeremiah 17:7-8 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,And whose hope is the Lord.
For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, Which spreads out its roots by the river,
And will not fear when heat comes; But its leaf will be green,And will not be anxious in the year of drought, Nor will cease from yielding fruit. NKJ

The truth of God’s word often sounds so foreign to our minds because it is a different way of living and thinking than what we have been taught or accustomed to. Therefore, we must conscientiously and persistently seek God’s word and decide to change our perspective to accept and trust that He is who He says He is, the Almighty God, that His word is true and He is able to perform all that He has promised. 

Romans 4:20-22 He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.  And therefore “it was accounted to him for righteousness.”

Often times the word of Jesus is a hard saying and not everyone can accept it. That is why we must first decide if we believe Jesus is the Son of God and to acknowledge His words as truth. Only then are we able to trust and accept the sayings of Christeven though we may not fully understand or comprehend the whole context of His word. 

When Jesus told the people that they would have to eat His body and drink His blood, many of his disciples turned from Jesus, this was a hard saying. In their minds Jesus was asking them to do the unthinkable, to become cannibals, which was repulsive to them and many were offended by what He said. 

John 6:53-54 Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you.  Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 

John 6:60-61 Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this, said, “This is a hard saying; who can understand it?” When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples complained about this, He said to them, “Does this offend you? 

Some disciples were offended by Jesus’ words because they refuse to trust His sayings as truth but they leaned unto their own understanding, experiences and teachings. Jesus explained to them that His words were spiritual and yet they refused them. They were still living in their carnal mindset, refusing to transform the way they think or to accept and trust the word of Jesus. 

John 6:63-64a It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you who do not believe.”

Many of Jesus’ disciples turned from Him because they could not understand the spiritual principal Jesus was giving and though they had seen His miracles they rejected His truth because their natural minds could not comprehend or understand His saying.  But the disciples who were close to Jesus knew Him enough to trust His word though they did not understand it. There will be times that we must believe and know that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God and rest in that truth. 

John 60: 66-69 From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more.   Then Jesus said to the twelve, “Do you also want to go away?” But Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

Even though Jesus told the people He was speaking of the spiritual, many left Him. They were using their old mentalityand interpreted the word of God’s truth by it. All they knew was what they had been taught by a fallen system full of lies, where Satan is the father of lies and blinded their eyes to the spiritual truths of Christ teachings. 

There is a spiritual realm that we cannot see and yet we participate in this spiritual realm because we were created with a body, soul and a spirit in the likeness of God that we may commune and fellowship with Him in all three parts of our triune being.  The spirit of mankind died when they sinned in the garden, but Jesus came that our spirits may be renewed by the power of the Holy Spirit and we can understand God’s spiritual truths. 

We should never limit God only to what we know or see. No matter how much knowledge or how many degrees one may have, they can only obtain a certain degree of knowledge. No matter how much or how hard they study it is still a degree of knowledge, they will never have a total knowledge or becomeall-knowing.  There is only one Omniscient and Omnipotent, Jehovah God, that is our Father who sent His Son Jesus to be wisdom for us.  

Isaiah 55:8-9 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts,Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. NKJ 

John 6:63-64a It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.  But there are some of you who do not believe.”  NKJ

The Process of Spiritual Growth in God: Truth Revealed, Trusted and Tested

There is a process to spiritual growth in God’s word, a truth is revealed, a truth is received and accepted and then that truth is tested. God has given us His word and the Holy Spirit to instruct and guide us in all truths.  Then it is a matter of us receiving that information and trusting it as truth and then making applications and walking it out by faith when those truths that we have accepted are tested in our lives. 

God has given the Holy Spirit to lead, guide and to teach ustruth and the ways of His kingdom. With any learning, it is a process of information, instruction and application. Jesus is the truth of God’s word and the Bible was given to us for information that we may know who God is and the purpose of our being, which is to reflect His glory. 

John 13:25-26 “These things I have spoken to you while being present with you.  But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.  

2 Timothy 3:16-17 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Often times the truth of God’s word seems to go against much of what we have known, experienced naturally or have been taught by this fallen world system. This sometimes makes it difficult to release what we have been taught or how we feeland often times it is because of pride and self-importance. When people are wronged it is natural for them to want to get revenge or to hate those who have done them unjustly. God’sword tells us to forgive and to pray for those who have done evil and in doing so we show and reflect His love. 

2 Timothy 3:13-15 But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.  But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

This fallen world refuses to listen to the truth of Jesus because it is tied up in darkness and sin. It was because of Satan that sin came into the world. The false lies of Satan are ingrained in the very fiber of this fallen world system. Humanity has been living in darkness and blinded to the truth of God’s word because of Satan who is the father of lies. Jesus came into the world, that we may know the truth and have a choice to turn from Satan’s deception. 

John 8:44-45 

You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.  But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me.

John 18:37-38 Pilate therefore said to Him, “Are You a king then?” Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.”   Pilate said to Him, “What is truth?” And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews, and said to them, “I find no fault in Him at all.

Pilate asked the same question many people are asking today, “What is truth?”  We have many different philosophies’ that speak on all kinds of subjects with a wide spectrum of thoughtsas to what may be right or wrong or may be true or false. With so much information readily available it is practically impossible to decipher truth from lies and what is accurate from misinformation. For this reason, we must filter everything through the grid of God’s word to see if it lines up with the truth of His word and His way. When we learn and understand the truths in God’s word we are better able to discern lies and false statements, which oftentimes ensnare and trap people into hate, pride and arrogance. 

John 8:31-32, 34-36 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.  And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.  And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever.  Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.

When God reveals a truth to us, we stand between two views and must make a choice to believe that truth or reject it. This is the first step in growing in the knowledge and understanding of God’s word. Just as it was in the garden and as it was with the Israelites as they were to enter into the land God had promised, they had to choose to believe and obey God’s word as truth or reject it. This is always the first step in growing in the wisdom and knowledge of God, when a truth is revealed to us, then we must decide to trust and accept it, or reject it in disbelief. 

Deuteronomy 11:26-28 “Behold, I set before you today a blessing and a curse:   the blessing, if you obey the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you today; and the curse, if you do not obey the commandments of the Lord your God, but turn aside from the way which I command you today, to go after other gods which you have not known. 

Once we decide to receive this word from God as truth, then our spirit by faith, must decide to trust and commit to these truths, which God has revealed to us according to His word.

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