Wednesday, March 24, 2010

HELP THOU MY UNBELIEF!

When the Apostles could not cast out the demon from the possessed boy, the father approaches our Lord and beseeches His help. When Jesus says, "All things are possible to him that believes," the father replies, "Lord, I believe; help Thou my unbelief!"

Isn't this how it is for all of us? On a superficial level, we sincerely do believe, but when push comes to shove, our so-called faith proves to be weak indeed. The Holy Apostle Peter believed he could walk on water because Jesus told him to, but suddenly aware of the tumult of the waves, he began to sink.

In times of peace, it is easy to believe, because there is no cost attached. But when a time of persecution arises and our faith is put to the test by the threat of martyrdom, we shall find how deep and enduring our faith really is. The fact is, true faith is always a gift of God's grace, never an accomplishment for which we can take credit ourselves. So we must possess the humility of the father in the Gospel and pray, "Help Thou my unbelief!" or cry like Peter, "Lord, save me!"

Truly whoever dares trust in his own faith and spiritual accomplishments in times of trial will be lost. Nevertheless, God normally requires an effort on our part before He bestows a gift of grace. When the Apostles asked Him why they could not cast out the demon, Jesus replied, "This kind comes out by naught but prayer and fasting." It is true that we are saved by faith alone, yet (as the Holy Apostle affirms) "faith without works is dead." And these works include, among other things, the disciplines of an ascetic life.

The Kingdom of God is taken by violence, which is to say, we must force ourselves to do that which is contrary to our fallen human nature, ever striving for every virtue and the purification of our hearts. Only then can God give to us a deep and abiding faith that will withstand every storm and tribulation of this life. In these final days of the Great Fast, then, may we redouble our efforts to pray and fast, to deny ourselves the sinful impulses of the passions, and in every way to prepare ourselves to be made worthy to behold our Lord's glorious Resurrection.

1 comment:

  1. CAN MEN, TODAY, BE SAVED LIKE ENOCH? BY STEVE FINNELL

    Did you ever notice that the hydrophobic believers in Jesus want to be saved like the thief on the cross? Their argument is the thief was not baptized in water, and was still saved. Thief proponents fail to mention that the thief was also saved without being born of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit of promise had not been given at that time. So the logical conclusion would be that men, today, can be saved without being born of water and the Spirit. (John 3:5 Jesus answered and said to him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.")

    The question is why do men, today, not petition to be saved like Enoch?

    Genesis 5:24 Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

    1.Enoch did not believe Jesus was the Son of God. Was Enoch saved? YES.
    2. Enoch did not confess that God raised Jesus from the dead. Was Enoch saved? YES.
    3. Enoch was not baptized in water. He was not immersed for the forgiveness of sins. Was Enoch saved? YES.
    4. Enoch did not believe that Jesus shed His blood on the cross so he could have his sins washed away. Was Enoch saved? YES.
    5. Was Enoch born of the Spirit? No. The Holy Spirit of promise was not given until the Day of Pentecost. Was Enoch saved? YES.

    WAS ENOCH SAVED? YES.

    Can men, today, be saved like Enoch? ABSOLUTELY NOT.
    Men, today, can only be saved by meeting the terms for pardon under the New Covenant; also known as the New Testament, the New Will, the New Agreement, the New Promise.

    THE THIEF ON THE CROSS

    Luke 23:39-43...And He said to him, :Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise."

    1. The thief believed Jesus was the Christ. Was the thief saved?YES.
    2. The thief repented. (He turn from sin and turned toward God). Was the thief saved? YES.
    3. The thief did not confess that God had raised Jesus from the dead. Was the thief saved? YES.
    4. The thief was not immersed in water for the forgiveness of his sins. Was the thief saved? YES.
    5. The thief was not born of the Spirit? The thief did not receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Was the thief saved? YES.

    WAS THE THIEF SAVED? YES.

    Can men, today, be saved like the thief on the cross?ABSOLUTELY NOT. Men, today, can only be saved by meeting the terms of pardon under the New Covenant.

    The New Covenant came into effect after the death of Jesus, on the Day of Pentecost.

    Hebrews 9:16-17 For where a covenant is, there must of necessity be the death of the one who made it. 17 For a covenant is valid only when men are dead, for it is never in force while the one who made it lives.

    MEN,TODAY, CANNOT BE SAVED LIKE ENOCH NOR SAVED LIKE THE THIEF ON THE CROSS. ENOCH AND THE THIEF WERE NOT SAVED UNDER THE NEW COVENANT.

    Note: The book of Acts contains several conversions that took place under the New Covenant. There is no record of anyone saying.
    A. I do not have to believe that Jesus is the Son of God.
    B. I do not have to be born of water and the Spirit.
    C. I do not have to confess that Jesus was resurrected from the grave by God in order to be saved.
    D. I do not have to be immersed in water in order to be saved.
    E. I do not have to repent, (Turn from sin and turn to God), in order to be saved.

    IN ORDER TO BE SAVED UNDER THE NEW COVENANT; WHICH STARTED ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST. YOU NEED TO MEET THE TERMS FOR PARDON.

    FAITH: John 3:16
    REPENTANCE: Acts 2:38
    CONFESSION: Romans 10:9-10
    BAPTISM: Acts 2:38, 1 Peter 3:21, Mark 16:16

    YOU CANNOT BE SAVED LIKE ENOCH!

    (All Scripture quotes from:NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE)

    YOU ARE INVITED TO FOLLOW MY BLOG. http://steve-finnell.blogspot.com

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