The Mystery Of Faith
The mystery of faith is that Christ lives in the believer through his Holy Spirit. Live an honest life. Living a life of sincerity and honesty is rooted in our commitment to Jesus and the Word of God.
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again my dear radio friend. How in the world are you? Thank God we can be in the world but not of it. That’s the background of that little corny greeting has become part of my audio trademark. How in the world are you? I trust everything’s alright at your house? And as I sometimes say, if you’ve struck a rough day, just look up and say, “Lord Jesus, I don’t like it but see me through this one with victory.” And He will.
“Thanks be unto God which always – not sometimes – always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the fragrance of His knowledge by us in every place.” If you’re under pressure today, remember that perfume comes from pressure on the petals of the flowers that produce it. So if you’re under pressure, let God make you His perfume and give you complete victory. Alright?
We were looking at this idea of conscience, and I was looking in 1Timothy 1:5. “The end of the commandment is love out of a pure heart and a good conscience and faith unfeigned. The secret of a victorious battle with evil is holding faith and a good consciences” says 1Timothy 1:19. And now I’m looking at Chapter 3 of 1Timothy, just momentarily coming down here where in verse 19 he says, “Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience.” Now what is the mystery of the faith? Well the mystery of the faith is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
“Great is the mystery of Godliness, God manifest in the flesh”, and so on. And you read over in Galatians, “The mystery that we preach among the nations which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Galatians 1:27. The mystery of the faith is the fact that God came down to Earth, paid for our sins, and rose again from the dead, and now is representing us in the glory. “He ever liveth to make intercession for them that come unto God by Him” it says in Hebrews. And that by His indwelling Holy Spirit, God dwells in the believer – that’s the mystery of the faith.
You can’t explain it. How do you explain how a person – and some of us are limited aren’t we, in our intelligence, or training, or background, or whatever. We don’t have that many gifts. I have often envied people who have so many gifts. But there you are. How do you explain that God uses people, human beings who otherwise would be candidates for judgment in hell… How do you explain that? Well you don’t. It’s the mystery of the faith. Jesus, by his indwelling Holy Spirit, living within a human being.
As I said to you a day or so ago, it’s God packaged in a human being. That word “manifestation‟, “to manifest‟ –Greek verb phaneroo, which means to package a thing in a human being. That’s the mystery of the faith, where God wraps Himself with you, and walks into a situation in your shoes. Ho, hey, that’s tremendous, isn’t it? Now he says, “Holding faith, the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience.”
You see, God doesn’t change when I step outside of His will – He’s still the same. But my effectiveness is marred thereby. Holding the mystery of the faith. See Christ in you, the hope of glory – that’s still true. The indwelling Holy Spirit is still there, that’s still true. The promises of God are still there, 30,000 of them in the book. All of them ye and amen in Christ, the Bible tells us. They’re all pointed at us in some manner or other, as God never goes back on His Word.
That’s all true isn’t it? Still the same. But if I step out of the will of God, then I am hindering the working of God’s spirit in, in my life, and I am diminishing thereby any usefulness I might have. This passage was written about deacons. The deacons must be grave, not double-tongue, not given to wine, not greedy for money.
Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience. Christ in you – that’s a miracle, that‟s a mystery, that’s something that God alone can do. But the pure conscience part is your job and mine. That means stay right with God so that the fact that Jesus lives in you will be clear, and not muddled and, and, and, and clouded. You follow that?
Well I, I think now of a, a passage in Hebrews… Where is it? Hebrew 13 it ought to be. And let me look at verse 18. “Pray for us,” he said. See all of this grew out, all of this grew out of the, the passage in 1 Thessalonians, where Paul said “Brethren pray for us” remember that? Seems like a long time, doesn’t it? We‟ve been round and round, but it’s been good stuff, I think, at least. He says, “Pray for us for we trust we have a good conscience.” Now that’s what started us on this matter of conscience.
In all things, willing to live honestly. Now when you use the word “to be honest‟ ordinarily you think in terms of what people say. But he’s talking about living this matter of honesty. And there is a distinction there. It’s possible to say things that are accurate, and at the same time be highly dishonest. Man was trying to sell me a car some time ago now – my cars are pretty old, I’m going to have to get some new ones. But I was looking at some cars and just wondering whether I could afford them, back a while. And this man, I said, “Listen, what’s it going to cost?” “Well,” he said, “You don‟t have to worry about that. The payments will only be so-and-so-much a month.” And he wouldn’t give me a figure. Well it developed of course that he had to go and ask his boss. He was perfectly accurate in what he was saying, but he wasn’t quite honest. He wasn’t answering the question – I remember that with a little bit of irritation. Finally I said, “Hey I’m old garage man. I used to buy and sell cars. Don’t kid me. Go ask your boss what the deal is.” And he went away.
You know, junior comes in at 3 in the morning. And the next day at breakfast, father says, “What time did you get in last night, son?” He says “Oh little after 11.” Well, by comparison with eternity it was a little. From 11 until 3 is four hours, and that’s not a long time if you compare to let’s say a day or a week, or whatever. So he was accurate, bet he wasn’t honest. You get the idea? So he says, “In all things, willing to live honestly.”
How do you go about this, have you ever thought about that? I think it boils down to sincerity and the, and the willingness to give up the attempt to manipulate another person. Honesty of life has to be rooted in a sincere commitment to Jesus Christ, and to the Word of God. In other words, I have to decide what’s important. What is more important, my getting out of a situation that may be painful, or being true to what I know is the will of God? What is important in this matter of navigating through life?
Well, there are some things that, that you mustn’t neglect. In investigating a crash of an airplane that happen now months ago, the final report came out and said the flaps were not in takeoff configuration. What happen? Well I don‟t know whether the pilot forgot, or whatever. But in taking off, especially in doubtful conditions, there are some wing flaps that have to be put into position in order to give the plane more lift. That wasn’t done said the report. What’s important? Oh they think this is a good airplane, it’ll fly anyway. I won’t bother with the wing flaps. Is that it? See you translate that to your life. “Ah, I’m getting along all right. This isn’t important. I’ll make it all right.” How often have you said that to yourself, or to others?
See, you have to decide what is important. And that comes down then to sincerity and commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ, and to the Word of God. Does God mean what He says, or doesn’t He? You see that? Now that’s painful for me because I don’t like to deal with my pet sins. I don’t like to deal with my built-in shortcomings, you know. I don’t like that. It’s painful.
But if I’m going to live honestly, I’m going to have to be sincere in my attitude toward that person that is I, the things that characterize me, the areas in my life that need fixing, that need submission to the will of God, that need cleansing by the blood of Christ – I’m going to have to look at that and deal with it as a matter of priority, am I not? Do you follow that line? See, many of us never get beyond saying, “Oh yes I regret that, I… It’s too bad, I’m sorry. Lord forgive me. And we go on, we never change. Why? Because we haven’t really decided that it’s important.
I think so often of a lady, and this goes back I suppose more than 40 years, oh yeah, more than 40 years. But I remember it as though it were yesterday because we, we knew the people very well. This lady went to a physician and said to him, “I wish you’d take a look at me, I‟ve got some lumps here under my arm.” He took one look and he said, “You‟re going right to the hospital, all of that has to be removed. “Oh,” she said, “No indeed. I’m not going to any hospital, I‟ve got a wedding coming up. I have to clean the house, I have to get everything all ready for the wedding. After that, I’ll go to the hospital.” And she went on out of his office.
Well she cleaned the house, and they had the wedding, and shortly thereafter we buried her. Because she had given priority to the wrong thing. You see what I mean? How important, how important is the will of God to you today in specific situations? Oh that gets to me right where I live. And I wince when I think of the fact that I am either going to put God first or my own will, or my own convenience, or my own desires, first. You settle the matter of the priority of the will of God and get sincere about His Word, and get honest with Him, and as a result beloved your life is going to show honesty. It’s going to be the real thing. There will be nothing put on there, there won’t be any veneer, there wont be any sugar coating. It’ll be the real thing.
Dear Father, today make us sincere, make us honest about Your will. In Jesus name I ask, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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