Joy and Peace in Believing

Romans 15:13 ESV

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”

Is your ability to hope being stifled by fears? Is your mind being cluttered with all sorts of thoughts of “what if”? Is your faith weak? Are you having difficulty trusting the Lord in this one area? If so, why? Can God be trusted? Is he faithful? Hasn’t he proven himself faithful in your life over and over again? Now I am speaking to those here who are in true relationship with Jesus Christ. Is there ever any reason for us to be afraid? No!

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing. And what does this word “believing” mean? Well, the word means to be persuaded. And since Jesus Christ is the author and the perfecter of our faith, and our faith is gifted to us by God, and it is not of our own doing, and since we can’t even come to faith in Jesus Christ unless God the Father first draws us to Christ, then who is doing the persuading? God is.

[Hebrews 12:1-2; Ephesians 2:8-10; John 6:44]

So, what is a holy and righteous God going to persuade us to do? He persuades us first of all of his holiness and righteousness, and then of our own sinfulness, and then of our need to repent of (turn from) our sins to follow Jesus Christ in obedience to his commands (New Covenant), and in walks of holiness and in righteousness, to the glory and praise of God. For Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live to his righteousness.

[1 Peter 2:24; Romans 6:1-23; Romans 8:1-14; Ephesians 4:17-24]

But faith doesn’t end when we first believe in Jesus. Faith is something which must be exercised as a daily practice in our Christian lives. For we don’t just believe, past tense. For it is whoever is believing (current and active) in Jesus Christ who will not perish but who will have eternal life with God (John 3:16). We have to believe Jesus every day for the air to breathe and for food in our stomachs and for him to work miracles in our lives.

We have to trust our Lord in every situation and in every trial and in every setback (or seeming setback). And we can’t let the enemy of our souls put doubts and fears in our minds. For if God says it he will do it, and we have to believe that he is fully sovereign over our lives, that he is in control, that he knows what he is doing, and that he has a plan and a purpose for it all.

But when we are actively believing in Jesus Christ in all things and for all things we will be filled with joy and peace. For faith drives out fear, and there is no peace and no joy in fear. For fear is the opposite of faith. For fear doubts God, but faith trusts the Lord even when we can’t see what lies ahead of us. We step out in faith, we trust the Lord, we commit our ways to him, and we do what he says not knowing what is going to happen.

For “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1). So, if we have to see it happen before we believe it, then it isn’t really faith, is it? It doesn’t take much faith to believe something that already exists that you can see right before your eyes. It is when we hope for what we cannot see that faith is at work. And I have seen the Lord work miracle after miracle in my life in such cases.

So, back to Romans 15:13. So, if the God of hope fills us with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit we may abound in hope, what does that mean exactly? Well, first of all it is God who is filling us with this joy and peace in believing, so this is not of our own flesh. This comes from God, which our faith does come from God and not from ourselves. So this is going to be supernatural faith.

So, the faith to believe comes from God and not of ourselves. Then it is also by the Holy Spirit that we are able to abound (overflow, be rich in) in hope. So if we are being fearful that would mean that we are not trusting in the faith which comes from God but we are relying on our own flesh and our own reasoning and thinking. For if the faith is from God there would never be any reason to fear. But if it is fleshly faith, that is subject to fail us.

[Eph 2:8-10; Heb 12:1-2; Jn 6:44; 1 Co 10:1-22; Heb 3:1-19; Heb 4:1-13; Acts 5:32; Tit 2:11-14; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; Eph 4:17-32; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Lu 9:23-26; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:19-20; 2 Co 5:15,21; Matt 7:21-23]

Why Are You Afraid?

An Original Work / December 5, 2013
Based off Various Scriptures

Do not be afraid.
Your Lord is always by your side.
Serve the Lord in righteousness
Before Him all your days.

Those who hate the light
Will not come to the Lord.
They fear their deeds
Might be noticed.
So, they hate the light,
And they embrace the night.

Do not be afraid,
Although your enemy attacks.
Dare to share your testimony
Of God’s saving grace.

Do not fear their threats,
But honor Christ, your Lord.
Be prepared to give an answer
For the hope you have,
With gentleness; respect.

Why are you afraid?
For all that’s hidden will be shown.
What I tell you, speak in daylight.
Let the truth be known.

Do not be afraid
Of those who’ll take your life.
Fear the Lord with understanding.
Trust Him with your life,
And give not up to strife.

Do not be afraid.
Take courage, it is I, your Lord.
Bow before Me; now adore Me.
Oh, why do you doubt?

Listen to the Lord.
Get up and bear His name!
Run and tell the world He loves them.
Jesus came to save.
Give Him your all today.

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