The Purpose for God’s River in You

To Be A Vessel Fit For the Master’s Use-

“If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” (Gal. 5:25)

 

“This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” (Gal. 5:16)

 

“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

 

As said at the beginning, man has always sought after that superhuman power. Often the desire for such power comes forth from pride or some other carnal desire.

There was a time when the disciples wanted to call fire down from heaven to destroy a town that would not receive them on their journey. Jesus said, “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of.” (Luke 9:54)

The purpose of the power is so that we may be witnesses. Sometimes this may involve miracles, signs, and wonders. But more often than not it involves the demonstration of the power of a changed and holy life.

Jesus told Peter, “When thou art converted (changed), strengthen thy Brethren.” (Luke 22:32) 

Peter, so fearful for his own life that he denied the Lord three times, was changed by the power of the Holy Ghost to the extent that when he was arrested and sentenced to die, he slept so soundly the night before his execution that the angel had to slap him on the side to wake him up before he could be delivered. (Acts 12:7)

The Apostle Peter wrote to the gentile women that had become Christians after already being married to unbelievers, that with their Godly lifestyle they could win their husbands to Christ without preaching to them. (1 Peter 3:2)

The purpose of the power is to change. The purpose for going out into the deepest part of the river of God is so that you will surrender your control completely to the Holy Spirit.

Your feet no longer touch the bottom. You are swept along whithersoever the current of the Spirit of God desires to take you.

John the Baptist said of Jesus, “He must increase but I must decrease.” (John 3:30)

When we cast ourselves out into the deep, we are completely surrendering every part of ourselves to the power of the Holy Spirit. We are holding nothing back.

No sin, no habit, no personal desire, no preconceived notion or idea, nothing. Only when we empty ourselves of ourselves do we become an empty vessel that He can fill for His glory.

“If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work.” (2Tim. 2:21)

 

“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.” (2Cor. 4:7)

 

When we surrender every recess of our being to the power of the Holy Spirit for change, then every act we do in His name will come from a pure heart with pure intentions. Miracles, signs, and wonders will occur when needed and God, not ourselves, will receive the glory; and others, not ourselves will be helped.

How can I receive this total surrender? The same way that the first disciples did, by faith in “the power of the resurrection.”

Next- The Power of the Resurrection

All twelve books in the "How to Walk Christian Series" by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK,  amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

All twelve books in the “How to Walk Christian Series” by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK, amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

Baptism in the River of God

The New Testament Fulfillment of Ezekiel’s River-

“And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.” (Acts 2:1-2)

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“And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” (Acts 2:3-4)

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There are those theologians who will say that at the point of salvation we receive all of the Holy Spirit that there is. That may be true. But if we rightly divide the Word of God, we can see that there are two distinct encounters with the Holy Ghost. There is the point that we receive Him, and there is the point when we are filled with Him.

Those same theologians will say that no second experience with the Holy Spirit is necessary. However, Jesus knew that it was so necessary that he commanded His disciples not to begin their Great Commission until they had received it.

The early Church knew that this power from on high was so necessary that whenever they encountered believers who had not received it, they made sure that they were filled with the Holy Ghost also.

“Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:” (Acts 8:14-15)

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“(For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.” (Acts 8:16-17)

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“He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.” (Acts 19:2)

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“When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.” (Acts 19:5-6)

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These theologians might also say that this experience of being filled with the Holy Ghost was only for the early Church in order that it might be established. They believe that we do not need such signs and wonders today. They base their belief on First Corinthians 13:8-10

“Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.” (1Cor. 13:8)

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“For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.” (1Cor 13:9-10)

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They say that once the Bible was completed, then “that which is perfect” had come and the miraculous signs of the Holy Ghost were no longer needed or given by God. By not rightly dividing the Word of truth, they deny the power thereof.

One look at verse 12 and we realize that the perfection spoken of by the Apostle Paul is referring to the return of Christ when our bodies shall be changed like unto His glorious body, and as the Scripture says, “we shall see Him as He is.” (1 John 3:2)

“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” (1Cor. 13:12)

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As we look at the prophecy of Ezekiel concerning the river, we see that each depth must be reached first before we can go further. We cannot just jump out into the middle and receive the fullness of the river, the fullness of the anointing and power of God.

We must first be drawn by the Spirit, the waters to the ankles. (John 6:44 “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.”)

We must be born again, the waters to the knees. (Romans 10: 9-10 “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”)

We must be filled with the Holy Ghost, the waters to the loins or the waist. (Luke 11:13 “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?”)

If you have not yet asked Him, simply ask the Heavenly Father to fill you with the Holy Ghost and He will do it.

Now we are out in the water to our waist. The current of the river has control of our legs and is pulling us in the right direction. We are being led by the Spirit of God, but we are still standing on our feet.

Before we can have the faith to take the next step and launch out into the waters to swim in, to leap out into the full force of the current and the depth of the power of God, we need to realize the purpose of the river. Why do we need to go out into the deep?

Next- A Vessel Fit for the Master’s Use

All twelve books in the "How to Walk Christian Series" by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK,  amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

All twelve books in the “How to Walk Christian Series” by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK, amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices



What are the Depths of God’s River?

The Rising Waters-

The prophet talked of the river to the ankles. This is the initial touch of the Holy Spirit. This is where the current begins to tug at your ankles and pull you in the direction of the flow.

Jesus said that no man would come to Him unless the Father draw him. (John 6:44) Jesus said, “Ye have not chosen me but I have chosen you.” (John 15:16)

The prophet talked of the water to the knees. After Jesus rose from the grave, He appeared to the disciples, breathed on them, and said, “Receive Ye the Holy Ghost.”  (John 20:22) This is that born again experience that Jesus spoke of in the third chapter of the Gospel of John.

“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3)

 

“Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” (John 3:5)

 

“That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” (John 3:6)

 

This is when Christ comes into your heart through the Holy Spirit. You are not the only one living inside of your body anymore, but now another presence has come inside of you to live also.

“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” (Rev. 3:20)

 

“Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” (John 14:17)

 

He seals you unto the day of redemption, and you now belong unto Christ. Jesus has purchased you with His blood and you are not your own anymore.

“And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.” (Eph. 4:30)

 

“But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” (Rom. 8:9)

 

You are in the water to your knees. The river has half of your legs, and you have the other half. The Holy Spirit is directing you one way, but you have the power to go the other. This is where many Christians find themselves today.

They have been born again and the Holy Spirit has come inside of them. They are like the disciples who Jesus breathed upon and said, “Receive Ye the Holy Spirit.”

The Holy Spirit is directing them to go one way but their common sense and will are directing them another, and sadly the common sense will usually win. This is why Jesus told the disciples to “tarry in Jerusalem.” 

They had already received the Holy Spirit in them, now they needed to be endued with power. They needed to be filled with the Holy Ghost. They needed to come out into the river to the loins.

Next- Waters to the waist

All twelve books in the "How to Walk Christian Series" by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK,  amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

All twelve books in the “How to Walk Christian Series” by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK, amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices


What is the River of God?

There is a River-

“In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.” (John 7:37-38)

 

“(But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)” (John 7:39)

 

After His resurrection, Jesus told His disciples to “tarry” or wait in Jerusalem until they would be endued with power from on high.

“And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.” (Luke 24:49)

Jesus knew that in order for the disciples to do the work that He had called them to do, there had to be a supernatural change take place in their lives.

Until now, they had walked in a similar anointing as did the prophets of old. The Bible teaches us that everything that happened in the Old Testament was a “type” or a “shadow” of better things to come, and that these things happened as an example for us.

The old prophets were a type of Jesus disciples. Just as the anointing of the Holy Ghost would come upon the prophets for a particular job or mission from God and then depart, Jesus had anointed His disciples at various times and sent them forth to do miraculous works.

But the Bible tells us that this occasional anointing of power only caused the prophets to yearn for something permanent and life changing.

“Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:” (1Peter 1:10)

 

“Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.” (1Peter 1:11)

 

In the same way, although Jesus had anointed the disciples to cast out devils and heal the sick, and they had returned rejoicing that the devils were subject to His name, there was still no power to change from within, as evidenced by their abandonment of Jesus at the time of His crucifixion.

In John 7: 38 & 39, Jesus described the Holy Spirit which the disciples would receive as rivers of living waters flowing out from them. This river of the Holy Spirit is prophesied in the Book of Ezekiel in the Old Testament.

“And when the man that had the line in his hand went forth eastward, he measured a thousand cubits, and he brought me through the waters; the waters were to the ankles.” (Eze. 47:3)

 

“Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through the waters; the waters were to the knees. Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through; the waters were to the loins.” (Eze. 47:4)

 

“Afterward he measured a thousand; and it was a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen, waters to swim in, a river that could not be passed over.” (Eze. 47:5)

 

The prophet shows us that the further out into the river we go, the deeper the water gets, until finally the river is so deep that it sweeps us away. We go the way of the river, and not the way of ourselves. Jesus revealed that the river of the prophet is the river of the Holy Spirit.

This progression into the depth of the Holy Spirit is the key to walking in the power of God.

Next- The Rising Waters

All twelve books in the "How to Walk Christian Series" by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK,  amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

All twelve books in the “How to Walk Christian Series” by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK, amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices


What is the Power of God?

The Power of God-

“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”  (Acts 1:8)

 

POWER. From the Greek word dynamos which, according to Strong’s Concordance, means: force (literally or figuratively); specially, miraculous power (usually by implication, a miracle itself)

It is the same root word from which we get the word dynamite. It invokes thoughts of life changing, earth shaking, and explosive power.

It seems that man has always looked for someone with superhuman power. Whether it is the gods of mythology or the stuff of fairy tales, legends, and comic books, men have always conjured up stories of individuals whose abilities went beyond those of mortal man.

A man whose power could change the elements of nature and the course of mankind, who could always vanquish evil and establish good.

However, all dreams of such power are only that: stories birthed in the imagination of man, except for one individual recorded in history. Only one man whose power was unlimited, who had the Spirit of Almighty God without measure.

Only one of whom the Bible says that He is the image of the invisible God, the fullness of the Godhead bodily.

Only one whose miraculous power was witnessed by so many individuals that any court ever assembled would have no recourse but to conclude the reality of His wonderful acts.

That one individual is the only begotten Son of God, Jesus Christ, who fully intended for His disciples, His Church, to walk in that same miracle working power after His resurrection and ascension into Heaven.

“And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;” (Mark 16:15-17)

 

“They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” (Mark 16:18)

 

“So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.” (Mark 16:19-20)

 

The Bible tells us of how the early Church experienced all of these manifestations of the power of God. The Book of Acts records how the first believers would speak with tongues as the Holy Ghost came upon them. The Apostle Paul said, “I speak with tongues more than you all.”

The early disciples cast devils out of soothsayers and fortunetellers. They would lay their hands on sick people and they were healed. The Bible records that there were instances when even the shadow of Peter or handkerchiefs from Paul brought healing to the sick.

We read in the Book of Acts when a poisonous snake bit the Apostle Paul on his hand, but he shook it off and felt no harm. The history of the Church tells us that the Apostle John was poisoned several times in attempts to kill him; however the poison had no effect on him, even to the point that many believed John could not die and would remain until Jesus returned.

Were these signs and miracles only for the Apostles, for the disciples who had been with Jesus, or to help the early Church get established and then they would disappear?

NO! Definitely Not!

“For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” (Acts 2:39)

 

God intended for these signs to follow all that believe.

“And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;” (Mark 16:17)

 

Believe what? Believe that they are able to do such things? Believe that they have some supernatural ability greater than other men? No!

These signs shall follow them that believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. Those who believe in His ability, in Who He really is. Those who truly believe that he is the same yesterday, today, and forever. That He never changes. That the Jesus we believe in today is no less a Jesus than the Jesus who healed the sick, and opened blinded eyes, and raised the dead so long ago.

“Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.” (Heb. 13:8)

 

One might ask, “If Jesus Christ is the same, why don’t we see the miracles today that we read of in the Book of Acts and in the Gospels?”

There was a time in the Old Testament when someone asked almost the identical question.

“And Gideon said unto him, Oh my Lord, if the LORD be with us, why then is all this befallen us? and where be all his miracles which our fathers told us of, saying, Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt? but now the LORD hath forsaken us, and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.” (Jdg. 6:13)

 

We can look at the Church today, and as Gideon, we might say, “Where be all His miracles?”

The 17th Chapter of Matthew tells us of a time when the disciples of Jesus could not cast the devil out of a boy. When they asked Jesus why they were unable to do it, He replied in the 20th verse, “Because of your unbelief…”

The problem today is not that we live in a different time period in which miracles do not exist, but the problem is the same that it has always been. It is a problem of unbelief!

The Bible tells us that there would come a time when the Church would have a form of godliness, but would deny His power.

“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,” (2Ti 3:1-2)

 

“Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” (2Ti 3:3-5)

 

It would seem, as we look about us at the world and the Christian Church today, and if we would be honest with ourselves, that these Scriptures describe the time that we are living in.

However, there is a remnant today that has a desire in their heart for their personal experience with Jesus Christ to be more than a powerless form of godliness.

There are those who are not content to have “church as usual”, but desire to be used of God in the same way that He used the early disciples to manifest His power and glory.

If we are willing to lay aside the vain traditions and opinions of men, If we are willing to believe only the Word of God, If we are willing to have the attitude that if Jesus said it, I believe it and if Jesus wants me to have it, then I want to receive it, then we will begin a journey through the Word of God that will cause our faith to grow and will bring us into the deep and powerful river of the miracle working power of God.

Tomorrow- There is a River

All twelve books in the "How to Walk Christian Series" by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK,  amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

All twelve books in the “How to Walk Christian Series” by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK, amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices


The Simplicity of Faith

What is the Simplicity of Faith?-

Innumerable books and sermons have been written upon the subject of faith. Faith has been dissected, taken apart, examined, and put back together in every way that can be imagined.

But I fear as the Apostle Paul did:

“But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” (2Cor. 11:3)

 

The sum of the matter and the simplicity of the matter is this:

God has given to every believer “the measure of faith.” Every believer has been given the same amount of faith. It is God’s faith, not your own.

It is like a mustard seed and needs to grow. Hearing from God is the only thing that will activate it and make it grow.

Hearing and recognizing the voice of God can only come by the Word of God. By spending time with God in reading, studying, and meditating upon His Word.

By getting to know and understand God intimately, you will hear His voice and know His will in every situation and will be able to take this God kind of faith, this ability to believe and never doubt, and redeposit it back in God and see God manifest His power and perform His will in all His glory.

You will pray and believe according to His will, mountains will be removed, things prayed for will be received, and the glory of the Lord will be your rearward.

In other words, God’s glory will remain when everything else is said and done.

And you will know what it is to walk in the faith of God.

Next- The Power of God

All twelve books in the "How to Walk Christian Series" by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK,  amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

All twelve books in the “How to Walk Christian Series” by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK, amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

The Direction of Faith (revisited)

What is the Direction for Faith?-

“And he said unto them, Where is your faith? And they being afraid wondered, saying one to another, What manner of man is this! for he commandeth even the winds and water, and they obey him.” (Luke 8:25)

 

On that stormy night so long ago, Jesus addressed His disciples on three issues concerning faith. He addressed the problem of “no faith”, He addressed the problem of “little faith”, and now He addresses them concerning what may be the greatest problem of all: “Where is your faith?”

The same question could be asked of Christians today. Where is your faith?

There are those who mistakenly have faith in themselves. They have been told by well-meaning but errant advisors, “God helps those who help themselves.”

They spend their lives dependent upon their own abilities, or wisdom, or knowledge expecting that God will stand by as a faithful servant to bless all of their endeavors whether it be His will or not.

“These things hast thou done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest that I was altogether such a one as thyself: but I will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes.” (Psalm 50:21)

 

Although they may enjoy temporal success in this world, and may on occasion be able to deliver themselves out of precarious circumstances by their own devices, one who is dependent upon himself is headed for spiritual bankruptcy.

“I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

 

“If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.” (John 15:6)

 

Then there are those who put their faith in others. It may be due to the fact that a certain individual possesses great knowledge, or apparent wisdom, power, or even anointing. They lift him or her up more highly than they ought and bestow their faith in a human being.

No matter how well intentioned, that individual will ultimately stumble, and those who have put their faith in that person will fail.

If we have no faith, the adversary of our soul has us in his grasp. If we have little faith, he is not concerned about us because we have no power.

If our faith begins to grow, then he attempts to distract us by causing us to misplace our faith by putting it in a person, whether that person be ourselves or another.

This was the condition of the disciples in the boat, for they said of Jesus, “What manner of man is this?” They had their faith in Jesus for the wrong reason.

Some followed Him for the miracles, some followed Him for the provisions, and some even followed Him hoping that He would restore the glory of Israel.

For whatever reason, by their own statement of “What manner of man is this?” they revealed that they still believed they were following just a man. In their own hearts, they had put their faith in a man.

A very special man. A very anointed man. But still just a man.

It wasn’t until after the resurrection that they came to believe in who He really is.

“And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.” (John 20:28)

 

“Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.” (John 20:29)

 

The last misdirection for faith is the most insidious, for it impersonates itself as the true spiritual direction for faith. This is where much of the church today has been deceived.

This is when we take the faith that God has given us, this ability to believe and not doubt, and we put that faith in our faith.

The world calls it the power of positive thinking. The church spiritualizes it and calls it the power of faith or the power of prayer.

It is believing that by praying hard enough or long enough, it is the prayer itself that changes the situation. Or similarly, it is the idea that believing strong enough for something to happen will cause it to come to pass.

We even have phrases to describe this that sound very spiritual. “Prayer changes things” and “Faith changes things” sound good, but they miss the mark. They may just slightly miss the mark, but they are a miss nonetheless.

We ought to be saying, “God changes things.”

There is only one direction for faith:

“And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.” (Mark 11:22)

 

“For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.” (Mark 11:23)

 

The mountain will be removed when spoken to, the prayer will be answered and the things desired received, but the foundation that must be established before any of this can happen is to have faith in God.

There can be no other direction for faith.

This ability to believe and not doubt, to have this God kind of faith, is a gift given by God for the sole purpose of returning it to Him: to believe and not doubt in Him, to believe and not doubt in His power and ability, to believe and not doubt in His nature, His love, and His faithfulness.

“God hath spoken once; twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God.” (Psalm 62:11)

 

“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.” (Mat. 28:18)

 

“For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Rom. 8:38-39)

 

“To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David. O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.” (Psalm 139:1-4)

 

“How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.” (Psalm 139:17-18)

 

Before Moses came, God revealed Himself to men as the Almighty God. When Moses came, He revealed Himself to the nation of Israel as the Lord. When Jesus came, He revealed God to each individual as the Father.

God is your Heavenly Father. He knows your innermost thoughts and desires. Nothing can separate you from the love that He has for you through Christ Jesus. His thoughts about you are so many that they cannot be numbered.

And when Jesus died on Calvary, the veil that separated God from man was torn by God from the top to the bottom, so that there is nothing that separates you from God. You can get as close to God as you want to.

Nothing can stop you from being as intimate with your Heavenly Father as you want to be, to know Him, and His faith, and the power of His resurrection.

Next- The Simplicity of Faith

All twelve books in the "How to Walk Christian Series" by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK,  amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices

All twelve books in the “How to Walk Christian Series” by Raymond Candy are available now in one collection of two volumes for $6.99 each at bn.com for the NOOK, amazon.com for the KINDLE, on iTunes at the iBookstore for the iPad and iPhone, and at Lulu.com for the PC and all e-reading devices