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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
Living Stone

Our great peril if we won’t let God answer and remove our doubts!

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Our great peril if we won’t let God answer and remove our doubts!

 

Each of us is choosing to believe God or doubt God, moment by moment, depending on what or who we are looking at, and the thoughts we are allowing to occupy our minds:

 

Matt 14:29 So He (Jesus) said, "Come." And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus.

 

Peter heard with his heart Jesus speak the word of God. God’s words impart faith, the ability to believe. Peter was thus enabled to walk on the water of God’s word, and to do what Jesus called him to do, which otherwise couldn’t have been done - So too with us:

 

v. 30 But when he (Peter) saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, "Lord, save me!"

 

When Peter took his eyes off Jesus and looked full on at his circumstances, and thought about them with his reasoning faculties, faith died and doubt and fear gained control. He started to drown, but, in a last gasp of faith he cried out to Jesus for help, and he was saved:

 

v. 31 And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt?"

 

Everything God does requires our believing His word to us, doubt prevents Him from helping us:

 

James 1:6-7 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;

Heb 10:39 But we are not of those who draw back to perdition (destruction, through doubt), but of those who (continue to) believe to the saving of the soul. Jn 20:27 Jesus, “…Do not doubt, but believe.”

 

We can doubt God, as to whether He exists, or is willing, fair or right. We can also doubt ourselves as to our ability or need to trust and obey God. What or who we look at controls whether our thoughts are of trust or of doubt. All sin causes doubt and doubt leads to fear:

 

Heb 12:2 Looking (with heart faith) unto Jesus (who is the word of God) the author (source) and finisher (increaser) of our faith… KJV

Heb 3:12 Take heed (listen with the intent to obey), brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil (sinful) heart of unbelief (doubt), in departing from the living God. Rev 21:8 …the fearful, and unbelieving…

 

But what about Grace? Grace is God’s word; it can’t work if there isn’t faith to receive it:

 

Rom 4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace... KJV

Acts 20:32 So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.

Heb 13:9 Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines (words or thoughts that contradict God’s words). For it is good that the heart be established by grace (God’s words), not with foods (thoughts and words that feed the heart with doubt and falsehoods) which have not profited those who have been occupied with them.

 

As our hearts think on God’s words, or on Satan’s lies, either faith or doubt is produced:

 

Heb 11:6 But without faith (to receive more grace) it is impossible to please Him...

Rom 5:17 ...Those who receive (by faith) abundance of grace (God’s words) and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.

Jn 10:10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy (our faith).

 

Peter began to doubt, but called on Jesus and was saved, so must we or we’ll go down:

 

Jer 33:3 Call unto Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.'

 

When doubting thoughts come, and they will come because that’s what Satan does. He challenges our faith in God by imparting to us doubting thoughts, questioning thoughts, reasoning thoughts, to get us to waiver in our faith. He did this with Eve saying to her “Did God really say...” (Gen 3:1). Our faith is more precious than gold (1

Pe 1:7), we must not allow doubts to fester and so get a hold on us; we must go immediately to God for help:

 

Phil 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests (questions) be made known to God;

Heb 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace (by hearing more of His words) to help in time of need.

Ps 27:14 Wait on the LORD; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart (with His words that impart faith); Wait, I say, on the LORD!

Rom 10:17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing of the word of God.

 

God says those who have let Him make and keep them righteous, live by faith (Heb 10:38) and involve Him and trust Him in all their ways. Doubting thoughts will inevitably come, but most will be quickly overcome by those Christians who receive their daily bread of God’s words and hence keep on growing in faith. Disobedience to God will always give rise to doubt. If doubts can’t be overcome it is imperative for any Christian to quickly eliminate sin, if any, and seek God. For God alone is the source and increaser of our faith (Heb 12:2). God will always be found by every Christian who seeks Him with a pure heart (Jer 29:13, Matt 5:8) and He will give them the exact words that always restore their faith.

 

But if Christians allow doubts to continue unabated, they will now be given even more doubting thoughts by their merciless adversary, Satan. Doubt will spread like a cancer with its goal of ruining a Christian’s faith in God and the consequential loss of their soul.

 

Faith is the victory! This overcoming faith comes when we hear God speak with our hearts, not with our heads:

 

Rom 8:7 Because the carnal mind (the human intellect, including that of Christians) is an enemy of God; for it is not subject to the law (or rule) of God...

Rom 8:6 Now the mind of the flesh. which is sense and reason without the Holy AMP Spirit, is death, death that comprises all the miseries arising from sin...

Rom 10:10 For with the heart (which is the spirit) a person believes... AMP

 

The words God speaks to us are spirit (John 6:63), they are intended to be received by us first in our spirits not the mind of our flesh; to which our spirits will then communicate them:

 

Prov 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding (your natural ability to reason and doubt, based on what you see); In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.

 

Our faith comes from the words God speaks to our hearts, and works by our love for God:

 

Gal 5:6 For if we are in Christ Jesus, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith...working through love. AMP

Luke 7:47 (Jesus) ...Her sins which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is (thought to have been) forgiven, the same loves little.

 

Our love for God is increased the same way our faith is, as our hearts receive His words:

 

1 John 2:5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him...

2 Thes 3:5 Now may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God...(into His word) Jn 1:1 …the word was (is) God…

 

We Christians are not saved by our works, but we are saved for works! We can easily say we have faith but if our actions don’t correspond to it, we are deluded:

 

Jam 2:14 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works (that reflect that faith)? Can faith save him?

Jam 2:17 Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works (to evidence it), is dead.

 

True faith, “God’s faith”, which is the nature of Christ, always desires to obey His Father:

 

Heb 10:7 (Jesus) …I have come to do your will, O God…, So can you and I if, …I live by the faith of the Son of God… Gal 2:20 KJV

Rm 1:5 Through him we received grace and apostleship to call all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith for his name's sake.

 

Abraham believed God. Jesus says to us “Have faith in God” it’s the #1 thing in Christianity:

 

Rom 4:18-21 When everything was hopeless, Abraham believed anyway, deciding to live not on the basis of what he saw he couldn't do but on what God said he would do...He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief (doubt) but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform. MSGE/NKJV

Mark 11:22 Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God”.

John 6:29 Jesus replied, This is the work (the service) that God asks of you: that you believe in the One Whom He has sent, that you cleave to, trust, rely on, and have faith in His Messenger, (and the words He speaks to you) AMP

 

To be free from ruining doubts we must live in Christ and Christ must increasingly live in us:

 

To grow in confidence, or faith, toward God requires constant daily fellowship with Him, in the Spirit. And, an ever deepening knowledge of Him through His word as revealed to our spirits by the Holy Spirit. This alone will overcome any doubts about God’s existence or His character that arise, either due to the widespread false doctrines in the Church or due to the often initially perplexing turn of events, or behavior of some people, in everyday life.

 

John 6:56 (Jesus) He who eats My flesh (continues to receive My words - Jer 15:16) and NKJV drinks My blood (obeys My Spirit 1 Cor 12:13) abides (lives) in Me, and I in him.

Eph 3:12 In whom (that is, when we live in Christ) we have boldness and access with confidence (and without doubts) by the faith of Him. KJV

 

God has made provision in every way to build us up in our most holy faith, so let’s cry out to our Father, “I believe; help my unbelief!” Let’s feed and keep on feeding on His Faithfulness! Amen

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3 hours ago, Living Stone said:

Our great peril if we won’t let God answer and remove our doubts!

Excellent topic, Living Stone. I know of a man who was being sporadically evangelised by various people at various times and places but was plagued by troubling doubts and unable to come to Christ. He was persuaded to attend a function where a message on getting rid of doubts was preached with the result that he accepted Christ and went on to set up a house where he and his wife took care of at risk children as servants of Christ.

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