ADVENT DEVOTIONAL FOR 2017
REIGNING WITH CHRIST
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. . . . And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him. Hebrews 11; 1,2 &6
In science some particles are known to exist, not because they have been observed, but because their effects have been observed. We know that we reign with Christ, not because this truth is visible or measurable, but because those people who so believe live lives that are on a higher plane—are greater in service, in happiness, in joy, and in endurance than most. Such is the effect of faith.
FJ HUEGEL: We have been saying that the Christian does not stand on the ground of condemnation, that he is not under the law, that he has been taken out of the old creation, and freed from the Satanic realm of darkness and oppression. As we turn to the Word of God we find that it is categorically declared that the Christian is before the Father in the Risen Christ enjoying the same favor as the Son whose throne he shares, for he has been made to sit together with his Savior in heavenly places. This and no other is the immeasurably exalted position of the Christian.
But this is a faith position. It is received by faith and held by faith. Faith does not make it real. It is real whether the Christian believes it or not. It is real because God who cannot lie declares it to be so. Whether the Christian accepts it or not is in a sense beside the point. His attitude does not affect the reality. However, to enter into the enjoyment of this glorious position he must believe what God says about it. Faith, as we read in Hebrews 2:1, is the substance of things hoped for. Watchmen Nee in his book. The Normal Christian Life, says a better rendering of the Greek would be: “Faith is the substantiation of things hoped for, things unseen.” Or as Moulton and Milligan put it: “Faith is the confirmation of the title-deed of the things we hope for.” Without faith they cannot be substantiated. The children of Israel did not enter the promised land at Kadesh Barnea as they were commanded to do because of unbelief. Jesus could not do mighty works at Nazareth because of the unbelief of the people.
PRAYER: Dear God, there are many things that I do not understand, about the Bible, about what I should believe, about you, and about myself. My faith is not strong. But I know that you are strong, and I have to believe that your strength and grace will strengthen my faith. I need you, so I need faith. Please meet my need. In Jesus’s name. Amen.