Proven Faith

  • August 04, 2018
Saturday 04

1 Peter 1:3-9

Faith is a central element in the Christian life because it is the means by which we enter into salvation. But that’s only the beginning. From then onward, our faith­—or lack of it—shapes our lives and determines what happens to us when the winds of adversity blow. Some Christians learn to hold their footing even in hurricane-force gales, but others are toppled by the slightest gust. To understand why this is true, we need to examine the source of our faith.

Inherited faith. If you grew up in a Christian home, you probably adopted some of your parents’ beliefs. This kind of godly foundation is a wonderful gift from the Lord, but eventually, each person must assume responsibility for his or her own beliefs.

Textbook faith. The Bible is the ultimate guide for establishing our beliefs. But that’s not the only source of influence. Books, preachers, teachers, and friends all impact our convictions. Our theology may in fact be sound, but faith is only mental acceptance until it’s put to the test.

Proven faith. Only when we trust in the Lord through the fires of adversity will we have faith that can stand. Then it’s no longer based on what others have told us or what we’ve accepted as true but is built on our firsthand experience of His faithfulness.

To evaluate your faith, consider how you react to difficulties. Do you cling to the Lord or get angry at Him? Is your attitude one of thanksgiving because He’s making you more like His Son, or are you frustrated? No one can escape hardship, but those with proven faith will benefit from it.

Bible in One Year: Isaiah 50-53

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3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

4 to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,

5 who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

6 In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials,

7 so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

8 and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,

9 obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.

1 Thus says the LORD, Where is the certificate of divorce By which I have sent your mother away? Or to whom of My creditors did I sell you? Behold, you were sold for your iniquities, And for your transgressions your mother was sent away.

2 Why was there no man when I came? When I called, why was there none to answer? Is My hand so short that it cannot ransom? Or have I no power to deliver? Behold, I dry up the sea with My rebuke, I make the rivers a wilderness; Their fish stink for lack of water And die of thirst.

3 I clothe the heavens with blackness And make sackcloth their covering."

4 The Lord GOD has given Me the tongue of disciples, That I may know how to sustain the weary one with a word. He awakens Me morning by morning, He awakens My ear to listen as a disciple.

5 The Lord GOD has opened My ear; And I was not disobedient Nor did I turn back.

6 I gave My back to those who strike Me, And My cheeks to those who pluck out the beard; I did not cover My face from humiliation and spitting.

7 For the Lord GOD helps Me, Therefore, I am not disgraced; Therefore, I have set My face like flint, And I know that I will not be ashamed.

8 He who vindicates Me is near; Who will contend with Me? Let us stand up to each other; Who has a case against Me? Let him draw near to Me.

9 Behold, the Lord GOD helps Me; Who is he who condemns Me? Behold, they will all wear out like a garment; The moth will eat them.

10 Who is among you that fears the LORD, That obeys the voice of His servant, That walks in darkness and has no light? Let him trust in the name of the LORD and rely on his God.

11 Behold, all you who kindle a fire, Who encircle yourselves with firebrands, Walk in the light of your fire And among the brands you have set ablaze. This you will have from My hand: You will lie down in torment.

1 Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness, Who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were hewn And to the quarry from which you were dug.

2 Look to Abraham your father And to Sarah who gave birth to you in pain; When he was but one I called him, Then I blessed him and multiplied him."

3 Indeed, the LORD will comfort Zion; He will comfort all her waste places. And her wilderness He will make like Eden, And her desert like the garden of the LORD; Joy and gladness will be found in her, Thanksgiving and sound of a melody.

4 Pay attention to Me, O My people, And give ear to Me, O My nation; For a law will go forth from Me, And I will set My justice for a light of the peoples.

5 My righteousness is near, My salvation has gone forth, And My arms will judge the peoples; The coastlands will wait for Me, And for My arm they will wait expectantly.

6 Lift up your eyes to the sky, Then look to the earth beneath; For the sky will vanish like smoke, And the earth will wear out like a garment And its inhabitants will die in like manner; But My salvation will be forever, And My righteousness will not wane.

7 Listen to Me, you who know righteousness, A people in whose heart is My law; Do not fear the reproach of man, Nor be dismayed at their revilings.

8 For the moth will eat them like a garment, And the grub will eat them like wool. But My righteousness will be forever, And My salvation to all generations."

9 Awake, awake, put on strength, O arm of the LORD; Awake as in the days of old, the generations of long ago. Was it not You who cut Rahab in pieces, Who pierced the dragon?

10 Was it not You who dried up the sea, The waters of the great deep; Who made the depths of the sea a pathway For the redeemed to cross over?

11 So the ransomed of the LORD will return And come with joyful shouting to Zion, And everlasting joy will be on their heads. They will obtain gladness and joy, And sorrow and sighing will flee away.

12 I, even I, am He who comforts you. Who are you that you are afraid of man who dies And of the son of man who is made like grass,

13 That you have forgotten the LORD your Maker, Who stretched out the heavens And laid the foundations of the earth, That you fear continually all day long because of the fury of the oppressor, As he makes ready to destroy? But where is the fury of the oppressor?

14 The exile will soon be set free, and will not die in the dungeon, nor will his bread be lacking.

15 For I am the LORD your God, who stirs up the sea and its waves roar (the LORD of hosts is His name).

16 I have put My words in your mouth and have covered you with the shadow of My hand, to establish the heavens, to found the earth, and to say to Zion, `You are My people.'"

17 Rouse yourself! Rouse yourself! Arise, O Jerusalem, You who have drunk from the LORD'S hand the cup of His anger; The chalice of reeling you have drained to the dregs.

18 There is none to guide her among all the sons she has borne, Nor is there one to take her by the hand among all the sons she has reared.

19 These two things have befallen you; Who will mourn for you? The devastation and destruction, famine and sword; How shall I comfort you?

20 Your sons have fainted, They lie helpless at the head of every street, Like an antelope in a net, Full of the wrath of the LORD, The rebuke of your God.

21 Therefore, please hear this, you afflicted, Who are drunk, but not with wine:

22 Thus says your Lord, the LORD, even your God Who contends for His people, Behold, I have taken out of your hand the cup of reeling, The chalice of My anger; You will never drink it again.

23 I will put it into the hand of your tormentors, Who have said to you, `Lie down that we may walk over you. ' You have even made your back like the ground And like the street for those who walk over it. "

1 Awake, awake, Clothe yourself in your strength, O Zion; Clothe yourself in your beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city; For the uncircumcised and the unclean Will no longer come into you.

2 Shake yourself from the dust, rise up, O captive Jerusalem; Loose yourself from the chains around your neck, O captive daughter of Zion.

3 For thus says the LORD, You were sold for nothing and you will be redeemed without money."

4 For thus says the Lord GOD, My people went down at the first into Egypt to reside there; then the Assyrian oppressed them without cause.

5 Now therefore, what do I have here," declares the LORD, seeing that My people have been taken away without cause?" Again the LORD declares, Those who rule over them howl, and My name is continually blasphemed all day long.

6 Therefore My people shall know My name; therefore in that day I am the one who is speaking, `Here I am.'"

7 How lovely on the mountains Are the feet of him who brings good news, Who announces peace And brings good news of happiness, Who announces salvation, And says to Zion, Your God reigns!"

8 Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices, They shout joyfully together; For they will see with their own eyes When the LORD restores Zion.

9 Break forth, shout joyfully together, You waste places of Jerusalem; For the LORD has comforted His people, He has redeemed Jerusalem.

10 The LORD has bared His holy arm In the sight of all the nations, That all the ends of the earth may see The salvation of our God.

11 Depart, depart, go out from there, Touch nothing unclean; Go out of the midst of her, purify yourselves, You who carry the vessels of the LORD.

12 But you will not go out in haste, Nor will you go as fugitives; For the LORD will go before you, And the God of Israel will be your rear guard.

13 Behold, My servant will prosper, He will be high and lifted up and greatly exalted.

14 Just as many were astonished at you, My people, So His appearance was marred more than any man And His form more than the sons of men.

15 Thus He will sprinkle many nations, Kings will shut their mouths on account of Him; For what had not been told them they will see, And what they had not heard they will understand.

1 Who has believed our message? And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?

2 For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, And like a root out of parched ground; He has no stately form or majesty That we should look upon Him, Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.

3 He was despised and forsaken of men, A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; And like one from whom men hide their face He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.

4 Surely our griefs He Himself bore, And our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, Smitten of God, and afflicted.

5 But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed.

6 All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all To fall on Him.

7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth.

8 By oppression and judgment He was taken away; And as for His generation, who considered That He was cut off out of the land of the living For the transgression of my people, to whom the stroke was due?

9 His grave was assigned with wicked men, Yet He was with a rich man in His death, Because He had done no violence, Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

10 But the LORD was pleased To crush Him, putting Him to grief; If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, And the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand.

11 As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, As He will bear their iniquities.

12 Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great, And He will divide the booty with the strong; Because He poured out Himself to death, And was numbered with the transgressors; Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, And interceded for the transgressors.

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Publish Date March 21, 2019
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