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Strengthening Faith: Part 2

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Stephen Johns

on 18 March 2018

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Transcript of Strengthening Faith: Part 2

Strengthening Faith
Part 2

Romans 16:25-27
25 Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages

26 but has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith-

27 to the only wise God be glory forevermore through Jesus Christ! Amen.

Now to him who is able to strengthen you
to the only wise God be glory forevermore through Jesus Christ! Amen.
according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ
according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages 26 but has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations
according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith-
Love the saved near and far from you by seeking the strengthening of their faith for the glory of God.
Strengthening Faith as a Major Theme of Romans
Romans 1:11 "For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you."
Justification by faith
Strengthening us in sanctification
Abraham's faith
God's plan of election
God's redemptive plan in history
Liberty and faith
Romans 16:25 "Now to him who is able to strengthen you
Love the saved near and far from you by seeking the strengthening of their faith for the glory of God.
The Need for Strengthened Faith
1. Strengthened / sterizo
1 Thessalonians 3:2
"and we sent Timothy, our brother and God's coworker in the gospel of Christ, to establish and exhort you in your faith"
to support or to fix firmly in place
2. The means of accomplishing their strengthening in Romans 1:11 was through the gifts of Paul in their lives, namely his gift to the church as an Apostle and his spiritual gift of teaching.
3. The means of strengthening here in Romans 16:25-27 all revolve around reminders of truth.
What does weak faith look like?
James 1:5-6
"5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind."
When is weak faith revealed?
What is the cost of weak faith?
What calls us into the lives of those with weak faith?
Fear:
1 Peter 3:6 "as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. And you are her children, if you do good and do not fear anything that is frightening."
Vulnerability:
Ephesians 4:14 "so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes."
Distance:
Disobedience, Fatigue, and Selfishness:
Romans 4:19 "he did not weaken in faith"
Peter running back to fishing and abandoning mission
Seeking God's Glory by Loving Others
Weak Vessels
Peter's weak faith:
Luke 22:31-32 "31 "Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat, 32 but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers."
Peter's strong faith:
Acts 1:12-15a "12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day's journey away. 13 And when they had entered, they went up to the upper room, where they were staying, Peter and John and James and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot and Judas the son of James. 14 All these with one accord were devoting themselves to prayer, together with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and his brothers. 15 In those days Peter stood up among the brothers (the company of persons was in all about 120) . . ."
Peter's faith strengthened:
Luke 24:10-12 "10 Now it was Mary Magdalene and Joanna and Mary the mother of James and the other women with them who told these things to the apostles, 11 but these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them. 12 But Peter rose and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he saw the linen cloths by themselves; and he went home marveling at what had happened."
God's Glory
Romans 4:20

"No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God."
when we are surrounded by failure, like Peter
God is made big by strengthened faith . . .
when others tell us to stop believing, like Job
when we see no hope in the end of the trials, like Joseph
when we refuse to shift the message, like Paul
when we run into the fatigue, failures, and fears of others with truth, like Paul
Where there is weakness of faith:
There may be a questioning of God's love
Mark 4:37-38
There may be a struggle to submit to the Word
Acts 10:13-15
There will be in instability and susceptibility to false teachers
James 1:6-8
Ephesians 4:12-15
Speak the Gospel of Jesus into their Lives
"My gospel and the preaching of Jesus"
How does the Gospel strengthen faith?
How can we imitate this pattern?
My Gospel: The truth entrusted to Paul
Galatians 1:11-12

"11 For I would have you know, brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man's gospel. 12 For I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ."
Preaching of Christ:
The person and work of Christ was the centerpiece, the focus, and the point of Paul's preaching
Romans 5:1-9
1. We have been justified by faith and not by works
2. God's love for us is real, full, and affirmed by the Spirit
3. We are not under God's wrath
4. Even these difficult seasons are for our good, growth, and God's glory
Be wise in your timing:
Proverbs 25:11
"A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver."
Be Gentle in your rebukes:
Be Clear in your communication:
Ephesians 4:15
"Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ"
Mark 4:16-17
"16 And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy. 17 And they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away."
Speak the Redemptive Plan of God
into their Hearts
"Mystery and Disclosure"
How does this strengthen faith?
How can we imitate this pattern?
Romans 11:25

"Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in."
What we see, experience, feel, etc.
Who we anticipate God to be, how He acts, what He plans, etc.
Discouragement
God's redemptive plan has been unfolding for thousands of years, slowly, precisely, carefully, and lovingly
God's plan for us has not been fully revealed but is unfolding precisely, carefully, and lovingly
God's Redemptive Plan . . .
Involves an increasing holy dissatisfaction with here
Involves a trust that God is working where we can't see, in amazing ways that would astound us, often hidden that we may trust and glorify Him
Speak Obedience to God
in their Decisions
"Obedience of Faith"
How does this strengthen faith?
How can we imitate this pattern?
1 John 2:3-4

"3 And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. 4 Whoever says "I know him" but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him."
Matthew 16:24-25

"24 Then Jesus told his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it."
Matthew 14:26-31
Calls to obedience give us the opportunity to see our weaknesses so . . .
we might see, know, and experience the empowering work of the Spirit.
we might know the love of God in being used by Him.
we might give glory to God as our dependence is made more complete on Him and not us.
Call those that are weak in the faith away from their feelings and their emotions.
Call them to the tasks right in front of them.
Call them to faithfulness while trusting God for fruitfulness.
Love the saved near and far from you by seeking the strengthening of their faith for the glory of God.
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