Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The Bethany Bullet - October 20, 2015

Unprecedented Trust – Sola Fide

Hebrews 12:1 reads:  “Faith is being sure of what you hope for and certain of what you cannot see.” 

The older I get the more uncertain I become that you can be certain about anything.  Once upon a time, for a very long time, it was taken for granted that you could get a job with one company and retire with a gold watch and a pension, that America was a Christian nation, that a handshake was enough and that children would do better than their parents.  Is there anything that doesn’t come with a loop hole or an addendum these days?  The fine print and the fast read are the reality of our day.

Can you be sure about the market, your company, the promise of a politician or the information given by the media?   

One of the most generous gifts of God is the gift of certainty.  Faith brings certainty, so says the author of the letter to the Hebrews, and the rest of Scripture heralds this same truth because faith rests not on the act of believing, nor the one doing the believing but rather the One in whom we believe. 

Jesus is the object of our faith, and as such we have a certainty and a surety.  While some folks have faith in themselves or the system, in big government or rugged individualism, in what they know or what they can do, in their goodness or obedience – our faith rests on and in Christ…and Christ Alone. 

Faith as the Scriptures mean it, the Reformers taught it as we embrace it, is a trust that rests SOLEY on and in Jesus.  Jesus is the object of faith!  Thus faith is certain, for it trusts that what Jesus has done He has done for us.  

Thus the gift of faith brings with it the gift of certainty and surety.  Faith is “SURE” that is in Christ we have a:
Security that is
Regardless of
Emotion, Experience or Evidence. 

The prophets and apostles, composers of psalms and songs alike knew emotion, experience and evidence that would seem to challenge faith (trust in the Lord).  Habakkuk declared that surety that comes from faith with these words:  “Though the fig tree withers and the crops fail, though there are no sheep in the pen or cattle in the stall…YET I know God is for me and thus I will rejoice in God my savior.”  (Habakkuk 3:17-18)  The Psalmist paints the picture of sureness with these words, “Though the mountains give way and the earth fall into the heart of the sea…still The Lord Almighty is with us, the God of Jacob our fortress.” (Psalm 46:3&11) Luther in his anthem of the Reformation proclaimed the surety of the Christian thus:  “Were they to take our house, goods, honor, child or spouse…NEVER-THE-LESS (implied) they cannot win the day; the kingdoms ours forever.” (A Mighty Fortress is Our God)  

Faith grants you a security that is unmovable regardless of experience (ever have a “fig tree” die, or your “stalls” emptied?) Yet, through faith, you know that God is for you and your true joy.  Faith grants you a security that is unmovable regardless of emotion (at some point our world turns upside down, maybe as a result of nature or due to a fellow creature our “mountains” give way) STILL we know the Lord Almighty is with us.  Those who don’t have such faith may certainly point to daily evidence that some they believe proves faith vane – (when honor or house, child or spouse are taken) NEVER-THE-LESS we trust that the kingdom’s ours forever!  Because Faith Alone equals nothing less than Christ Alone!

Pastor Kevin Kritzer


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