Category Archives: Spiritual / Christianity

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6 Part 3 This is part three of a three-part study from my message entitled "A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6. I hope it will be a blessing to you and encourage you with your walk with Jesus our Lord. :0) Let's pick up where we left off last time.

Here is the outline we are working from.

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

 

I) The Description of Pleasing Faith, vs. 1

A) Faith is being confident in the things we hope for, 1a

B) Faith is being convinced of the things we cannot see, vs. 1b

II) The Demonstrations of Pleasing Faith, vs. 2-5

A) The commendation of the saints, vs. 2

B) The creation of the Universe, vs. 3

C) The contribution of Abel, vs. 4

D) The companionship of Enoch, vs. 5

III) The Demands of Pleasing Faith, vs. 6

A) We are to have faith that pleases, Vs. 6a

B) We are to have faith that presumes, vs. 6b

C) We are to have faith that pursues, vs. 6c

 

Let’s review for a moment before moving on to the next floor of our house of pleasing faith: faith that pleases God. We looked at a description of faith where we understood that faith is being confident of the things hoped for and having a conviction of the things we cannot see.

We then climbed the stairs up to another level of truth where we just finished with witnessing four demonstrations of pleasing faith on the main floor. The examples of the commendation of the saints, the creation of the Universe; the contribution of Abel and then the companionship of Enoch. Now let’s see what’s on the third and final floor of our house of faith where we will see the demands of faith. First floor, the description of pleasing faith, secondly, the demonstrations of pleasing faith, and now, thirdly, the demands of a faith that pleases our heavenly Father.

III) The Demands of Pleasing Faith, vs. 6

In the beginning of verse six we discover that we are to have a faith that pleases God. Verse six, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him...” That’s the same word for pleasing God which was used to describe Enoch’s walk with God. We must have faith that pleases God!

I really admired what Hershel Hobbs said about the kind of life that Enoch lived. He stated: “Being able to live a life that is pleasing to God is not something unique to Enoch or any other biblical personality, as far as that goes. Enoch illustrates a general truth: By faith, one is able to please God.” Anyone, any man, any woman, any child of God has the same opportunity as Enoch to live a faith life that is pleasing to Almighty God. This is made possible by the redemptive work of Jesus Christ at the cruel Roman cross of crucifixion. A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him...” We all know this verse like the back of our hands. We see them all the time. Daily, without even thinking about them, we continually see the back of our hands. We know them-just like we know this verse. We know this truth.

And yet we live our Christian lives not by faith, but by sight. We understand that without faith it is impossible, it is impossible, it is impossible to please God! Without faith, there isn’t any way, not even the slightest way that our walk can please God. Most of us do not live as the Apostle Paul admonishes, “For we walk by faith, not by sight” (2nd Cor. 5: 7). Instead, most of our Bibles should read “For we walk (we live our daily lives) by sight, not by faith!”

We must have faith in order to live a life that is pleasing to God. We must have a faith that pleases. We must have a faith that believes Almighty God! And then we are to have a faith that presumes. Look at verse six again, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is....”  We are to have a faith that presumes that God is, God exists, God is real, God is here in our midst, God is listening to our prayers. A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

We are to have a faith that presumes that God hears us when we pray. We must be like Jesus Who thanked God for always hearing Jesus when He prayed (John 11: 41-42). We are to have a faith that presumes that God is. We must have a faith that presumes, that believes that God is! God is what? He is whatever you need Him to be.

Do you need protection? He is Jehovah-Nissi, the LORD our banner. How about believing Him for the protection and ministry of the angels. He is Jehovah Sabaoth, The Lord of Armies or The Lord of Hosts. The Lord reigns over a vast well-ordered host in the heavenlies. God is always there to defend us, fight our battles, and win our wars. There is no enemy he cannot defeat.

Do you feel isolated and alone? He is Jehovah-Rohi, the LORD Who sees me!

Do you need healing? God is Jehovah-Rapha, the LORD Who heals.

Do you have a need? He is Jehovah-Jireh, the LORD Who provides.

How about peace? We could all use some heavenly peace. He is Jehovah-Shalom, the LORD is peace. “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is....”  

Our God is! He is whatever we need Him to be! We must have a faith that presumes His very being, His very existence, His very essence! The demands of faith are that we have faith that pleases God, that presumes that God is. And finally, we are to have a faith that pursues.

Look at verse six again, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (emphasis mine). God hands out rewards. Did you know that? Or better yet, have you received any of them? Have you experienced the rewarding hand of God bestowing good and perfect gifts upon you? He is a rewarder of a certain segment of Christianity.

Don’t misunderstand, God loves and gives to all His children to a degree. But, He is a rewarder to a certain group of believers. He gives more to those who have a faith that pursues Him, His grace and His very being. God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Diligently: ek-zā-te'-ō, to seek out, to seek after God, listen, to seek Him in order to worship Him. A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

 The same word is used by the Apostle Paul in Romans chapter three where he writes, “There is none righteous, no, not one; 11 There is none who understands; There is none who seeks (ekzēteō) after God” (vs. 10-11, added mine).

This verb, this action, this inquiring, this seeking out, this searching for is in a continuing tense. We are to continually seek after God to worship, to honor, to obey Him. John Piper, that great pastor, theologian and founder of the ministry “Desiring God.org” had this to say about seeking God. “Brothers and sisters, we must be more earnest in seeking God in worship. We must be less flippant and less frivolous and thoughtless and casual and disrespectful as we approach the chamber of God in the assembly of the faithful. Have you ever thought through the implications of Jeremiah 29:13 where God says, "You will seek me and find me; when you seek me WITH ALL YOUR HEART." There is only one reason to come to this service – to seek and find GOD! And the Lord God says to you straight from his Word every Sunday, "You will find me when you seek me with ALL YOUR HEART!"5 A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

 God’s children who can expect rewards from Him are those that have a faith that pleases Him, presumes that He is and pursues Him time and time again. We are to seek Him to worship Him. God’s sons and daughters are to be making their requests known to Him over and over again. We are to have a faith that continues to seek after God!

Charles Spurgeon summed it up with these simple words: “Believing is a matter of the will. A man does not believe without being willing to believe.”6 We must will ourselves to please God with a faith that believes Him in what He says and what He does. We must believe what God has done for other churches, He will do for us. What God has done for others, He can and He will do for you!
“There is no power can conquer you while God is on your side
Just take him at his promise, don't run away and hide

It is no secret what God can do, what he's done for others he'll do for you”, Jim Reeves.

We need to believe in God! We need to believe that He will reward us when we diligently pursue Him for revival! We need to believe God for GREAT things to happen in this fellowship-in this church!

Let me close with the teaching from our Lord Jesus concerning having a faith that persistently pursues. Turn to Luke’s gospel, chapter eleven. Let’s read His words from the eleventh chapter of the gospel of Luke. “And He said to them, “Which of you shall have a friend, and go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves; for a friend of mine has come to me on his journey, and I have nothing to set before him’; and he will answer from within and say, ‘Do not trouble me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give to you’? I say to you, though he will not rise and give to him because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will rise and give him as many as he needs.”“So I say to you, ask (---), and it will be given (---)to you; seek (---), and you will (---) find; knock (---), and it will be opened (---) to you. 10 For everyone who asks (---) receives (---), and he who seeks (---) finds (---), and to him who knocks (---) it will be opened (---)” (added and emphasis mine).

Keep Asking, Seeking, Knocking

I need us to notice three things about the words of our Lord and Master-Jesus Christ. The first being that the actions of our prayers to God are in a continuing tense which means for everyone who continues to ask will continue to receive. And to those who continue to seek heaven will continue to find and discover the treasures of Almighty God. Those that keep on keeping on banging at the door of Paradise will continue to have the doors opened for him or her.

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

Gold nugget

The second nugget of truth I need us to admire is found at the beginning of verse ten, “For everyone who asks receives....” Jesus makes sure we understand that everyone who asks in prayer, receives. Everyone! He didn’t say just the preachers and teachers receive. Nor did He say just the deacons and only the ushers receive when they ask. No, no, my brothers and sisters. Beloved, He stated everyone who asks receives from heaven! I am a part of everyone. You are a part of everyone. This should make us want to run into our prayer closet and pray, pray and pray. And when we are not praying, we should pray! Everyone who asks, receives! A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

The third and final alarming fact I want us to notice is the change of nouns and pronouns that Jesus used. He went from everyone to he and him. Everyone prays from time to time. And everyone exercises their faith periodically. However, you see there are only a handful of God’s children who will persistently pursue after God. There are only a handful of God’s children who will diligently seek after Him. They don’t give up and they don’t give in.

They are the warriors, the prayer warriors, who will continue to seek and they will continue to bang on heaven’s doors until they receive from Almighty God, our heavenly Father Who rewards those who diligently seek Him. They do this because they have a belief system that believes God is and He is the Father of lights who rewards His seekers with every good and perfect gift.

Let’s bow our heads and our hearts for prayer.

In Luke’s gospel in chapter 18 eighteen and verse 8 eight, Jesus asks the question, “...when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?”

We need to have a faith that believes God for great things. If we are to have revival we need to have a faith that pleases God, a faith that presumes that God is able, and finally, a faith that pursues after Him, a faith that diligently seeks Almighty God.

When Jesus comes back, will He find faith:

  • on the earth?
A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6 Part 3

  • in Florida?
  • how about Clay county?
  • Harbor Church?

will He find faith in you?

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” MKR

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

 

This has been part three of a series of studies from Hebrews 11:1-6 from my message entitled “A House of Faith That Pleases God.” Please check out my new book entitled, “Letters of Divine Revelation from an Old Man in Prison”. The book is available from Amazon in paperback and in an E-Book form from Amazon Kindle. It is a commentary on the seven churches from chapters two and three from the book of Revelation. I hope you find it inspiring and helpful with your walk with Jesus.

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

Revelation Book Cover Image

Let’s go to church this Sunday. These are certainly troubling and uncertain times that we live in. From the ever growing national debt, to corrupt, lying, greedy politicians, extremist’s terrorists, slipping moralities to God only knows what will be next.

I never in my wildest dreams thought there would be a national debate over sex gender and bathrooms! Whoever came up with the term “gender fluidity”? I don’t remember a time when people had such a low opinion and dismal outlook about our country and where it is headed. Very few people that we come in contact with on a daily basis have a very positive attitude.  

Both born from above and the un-regenerate, very few! This great nation of ours is on a speeding train of moral declination. The train is on a track to degradation and she is picking up steam: fast! Ole Uncle Sam needs a revival. From the president and his administration in the White house right down to the kid behind the counter at Walmart. Our country needs a fresh awakening from the Holy Spirit of God. America needs an outpouring of the Holy Ghost as was experienced by the first century Church.

Come join our pastor, our church and me in praying for revival. Won’t you join me today and start by carrying ourselves and our loved ones to church. I need church, you need church, your family needs the church. All God’s people need the Church! If you are in the Clay county area of North Florida come worship with us at Harbor Baptist church located on the corner of Clay Street (1120) & US Hwy 17, Fleming Island, FL. We are located just to the right of Corky Bell’s Seafood restaurant. Morning worship is at 10:30 and we meet Sunday evening at 6:00 p.m.

Better yet, come join our group for Bible study with the adults. I lead the adult class entitled: “Harbor Haven, for pairs and spares”. (For couples and singles) We meet @ 9:14 in the main room of the education building. This is the building located right next to the church. We would love for you to come and fellowship with us around the Word of God. And feel free to bring a guest. Whether you attend the worship service or choose not to, we hope to see you for Bible study!
We pride ourselves with being a smaller church with the big difference. I don’t believe you will find another fellowship of believers who have a greater love for God and as a result of His love for us, we have love for one another. You’ll find me and my family there, come visit, both you and our church will be glad that you did!

I am happy to speak on behalf of our Lord Jesus Christ in the North Florida area. I am a conservative and evangelical teacher whose doctrinal beliefs align with those of the Southern Baptist Convention. My doctrinal views are listed in the menu section of this site. If your pastor is sick, has a sudden emergency or needs a vacation, I am happy to fill in for him. You can contact me by email at: michaelrosenbarker@gmail.com

 

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6 Part 2

A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6 Part 2

This is part two of a three-part study from my message entitled "A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6. I hope it will be a blessing to you and encourage you with your walk with Jesus our Lord. :0) Let's pick up where we left off last time.

Here is the outline we are working from.

A House of Faith That Pleases God. Heb. 11: 1-6

 

I) The Description of Pleasing Faith, vs. 1

A) Faith is being confident in the things we hope for, 1a

B) Faith is being convinced of the things we cannot see, vs. 1b

II) The Demonstrations of Pleasing Faith, vs. 2-5

A) The commendation of the saints, vs. 2

B) The creation of the Universe, vs. 3

C) The contribution of Abel, vs. 4

D) The companionship of Enoch, vs. 5

III) The Demands of Pleasing Faith, vs. 6

A) We are to have faith that pleases, Vs. 6a

B) We are to have faith that presumes, vs. 6b

C) We are to have faith that pursues, vs. 6c

 

Faith is being confident in the things we hope for and is being convinced of the things we cannot see: the two aspects of the writer’s description of faith that pleases God. The two main materials in the foundation of our house of faith. Now we are going to see what he has to say about the demonstrations of faith in verses two through five. He gives us four demonstrations or examples of the kind of faith that please God!

II) The Demonstrations of Pleasing Faith, vs. 2-5

Let’s climb the stairs to the main floor where we will see firstly, the demonstration of the commendation of the saints. Verse two: “For by it (faith) the elders obtained a good testimony.”

Faith is both practical and beneficial. “For by it the elders obtained a good testimony.” By it, by what? The means of or “though the medium of.” In this case, the medium is faith. The word for elders is presbuteros, used in the New Testament to refer to a person older in years, a person of rank, or to an official leadership role in the church (“bishops” or “pastors”). Others renderings are “men of old” (NASB), “the ancients” (NIV), or “our ancestors” (HCSB).

This is an obvious reference to the past patriarchs and prophets that demonstrated pleasing faith. Beginning in verse 4, the writer will look back in history to God’s faithful people in the Old Testament to provide illustrations of those who exercised or lived out faith as he has just described it. He uses several throughout this chapter.

Great men and women of faith’s past. Giants and heroes of pleasing faith. Images of great giants of the faith displayed on the honorable wall of faith for us to admire and to learn from.

Abel, vs. 4, offered a more excellent sacrifice.

Enoch, vs. 5, lived a life so pleasing to God that he was translated or transferred from this world to the next.

Noah, vs. 7, Prepared a massive ark without ever knowing what a flood looked like.

Abraham, vs. 8, followed God to an unknown country; believed God would provide a family even to the point of offering his promised son as a sacrifice. Here’s what Nehemiah prayed about Abraham. Nehemiah chapter nine in his prayer, he prayed, “You are the Lord God, Who chose Abram, And brought him out of Ur of the Chaldeans, And gave him the name Abraham; 8 You found his heart faithful before You, And made a covenant with him To give the land of the Canaanites, The Hittites, the Amorites, The Perizzites, the Jebusites, And the Girgashites—To give it to his descendants. You have performed Your words, For You are righteous” (Neh. 9: 7-8, emphasis mine). Abraham believed what God said. Abraham had a pleasing faith, a faith that pleased God.

Sarah, vs. 11, believed God for a child to come from her barren womb

Isaac, vs. 20, by faith blessed Jacob and Esau of things to come

Jacob, vs. 21, Blessed Joseph’s sons and worshiped God

Joseph, vs. 22, Believed a teen-aged promise from God and never gave up on returning to his homeland

Moses, vs. 23, forsook the pleasures of Egypt choosing suffering instead of a royal and pleasurable life

Rahab, vs. 31, Received, hid and helped escape the spies from Joshua’s command

And on and on the list goes. Men and women of faith. Men and women, elders of the faith, ancients that exercised a faith that pleased God! Faith that was convinced of things hoped for and faith that believed in things unseen! Faith that received a good report or a good testimony.

Did you know this list is still being made? Oh yeah, God has a pen and is still writing this list for others to learn from. What will our faith say? What will the next generation and the one after that say about the faith of the saints of Harbor Baptist Church? - - - Or still yet, what testimony will your faith have to say? Believe God for GREAT things!

The commendation of the saints. The first demonstration of pleasing faith on the main floor of our house of faith. Now look at verse three where we see that our faith in the creation of the universe is the second demonstration of pleasing faith.

“By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.” By faith we understand, by faith, we know that the universe was created by the Word of God. We weren’t privy to the beginning of our universe.

You and I were not there when “Thus saith the LORD” when He made the heavens and the earth. We know through means of our faith in the Word of God that there was the beginning of our earth made or created when there wasn’t anything in existence for Him to use. There is the historical Latin expression “creatio ex nihilo” means creation out of nothing.

The Trinity were involved in Creation by special design or by intelligence as the scientists refer to it. There is significantly more substantiating truth for Intelligent design than there is for evolution. But that is not the issue here. The point the writer is stating is we Christians believe in a Creator Who created the world and the Universe we see out of nothing. We were not there, we did not see, we did not experience that magnificent week, but we know, we understand, we believe that what we see was made from not things that were visible.

John MacArthur stated: “Demanding sensational proof is not evidence of faith but of doubt. To long for the visible sign, the big miracle, the dramatic proof is nothing but masked unbelief. It is the farthest thing from faith.”
 We believe through the means of our faith in the words: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” And the multiple times in the beginning of the book of Genesis, “Then God said, “Let there be light; Then God said, “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters;” we believe in God’s Word. Eight different times in the first twenty-six verses of the first chapter of the Word of God we read the truthful words: “Then God said....”

“By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.”  “creatio ex nihilo

Demonstrations of pleasing faith. The commendation of the saints or the elders; the creation of the Universe; now look at verse four where we see the third demonstration of pleasing faith is the contribution of Abel. The contribution or sacrifice of Abel was a demonstration of the kind of faith that pleases God. “By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks.”

We all know the story of the first human murder in the Scriptures. Cain and his brother Abel were to bring a sacrifice to God as an act of worship. Cain was a master gardener and brought God some fruit and veggies from his bountiful crops. It is believed Abel killed one of his finest animals and brought the blood sacrifice which was pleasing to God.

The reason being is without the shedding of blood, there is no remission or forgiveness of sin. Cain did not obey God’s wishes for an animal sacrifice and therefor displeased the God and Creator of his parents: Adam and Eve. God was pleased with the animal of Abel; displeased with the crops of Cain. God was displeased with Cain’s faith, his attitude toward God. Cain became steaming angry and jealous red of his brother and killed his brother Abel, spilling his blood in the field.

And yet we have the record of Abel’s faith as a demonstration of the kind of faith that pleases Almighty God. Abel received a “good report” from God Who expressed His approval of Abel’s faith which motivated his obedience in his contribution or gift of sacrifice of the first fruits of his herd.
God Almighty declared that Abel was a righteous man. God the Son, Jesus Christ Himself called Abel a righteous man (Matt. 23: 35). The Apostle John as well declared Abel to be righteous. “For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another, 12 not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother (Abel). And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s (works were) righteous” (1st John 3: 11-12, added and emphasis mine). Abel’s faith is testifying to us still today. Again, I ask you, what will your faith testify to others further down the road of life? Believe God for GREAT things to happen in this church. Let’s have a faith that pleases Almighty God!

The demonstrations of pleasing faith: the commendation or approval of the saints; our faith in the creation of the universe; the contribution of Abel’s sacrifice. Now let’s see the fourth and final material of demonstration of the main floor of our house of pleasing faith he has listed for us in verse five where we see the companionship of Enoch.

“By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found, because God had taken him”; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he (what?) he pleased God” (added mine).

I would that each and every one of us so walked with God that we lived a life of faith that was pleasing to God. I pray that our church will believe God for revival, that we would believe God for great things to happen in our fellowship.

Enoch believed God! Enoch was another elder of the faith who has the esteemed honor to be the only human being to have been walking along one moment and raptured the next.

The verb for “taken away” is from the word metatithēmi which means to transport or to transfer. It is a joint word from a preposition which means after or beyond and a verb with the action of placing or setting someone or thing: to set or place beyond. God placed Enoch beyond death and this old world. Enoch was the first Christian to experience the rapture or to be taken away by the Lord God Almighty.

Why? Because he had the kind of believing faith that walked and talked with a living God! His faith pleased God! He practiced the preaching of James where he stated for us believers to draw near to God and He will draw near to us! Enoch lived so close to God that one day, God couldn’t stand it anymore and wanted Enoch to be with Him in glory!  This account comes from the book of Genesis, chapter five. Enoch pleased God. Let me say it again, Enoch pleased God!

The Greek word for pleased in our text is the word euaresteō which carries the idea of being well pleased with a person and what he or she does. The writer uses the same word in Hebrews chapter thirteen in some of his concluding
remarks where he admonished,
But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased” (euaresteō, same word) vs. 16, emphasis mine.

Enoch lived a life of faith that pleased God. We should commit to do the same. We should live a life of faith that walks and talks with a living God! We need to believe God for great things! We need to believe God will bring revival. We need to believe God for salvation of souls here in our church! Let’s draw near to God and He will, not might, not even maybe, but the Scripture says “He will draw near to you” (James 4: 8). Believe God for GREAT things to happen in this church!

Let’s review for a moment before moving on to the next floor of our house of pleasing faith: faith that pleases God. We looked at a description of faith where we understood that faith is being confident of the things hoped for and having a conviction of the things we cannot see.

We then climbed the stairs up to another level of truth where we just finished with witnessing four demonstrations of pleasing faith on the main floor. The examples of the commendation of the saints, the creation of the Universe; the contribution of Abel and then the companionship of Enoch. Now let’s see what’s on the third and final floor of our house of faith where we will see the demands of faith. First floor, the description of pleasing faith, secondly, the demonstrations of pleasing faith, and now, thirdly, the demands of a faith that pleases our heavenly Father.

 

This has been part two of a series of studies from Hebrews 11:1-6 from my message entitled “A House of Faith That Pleases God.” Please check out my new book entitled, “Letters of Divine Revelation from an Old Man in Prison”. The book is available from Amazon in paperback and in an E-Book form from Amazon Kindle. It is a commentary on the seven churches from chapters two and three from the book of Revelation. I hope you find it inspiring and helpful with your walk with Jesus.

Revelation Book Cover Image

Revelation Book Cover Image

Let’s go to church this Sunday. These are certainly troubling and uncertain times that we live in. From the ever growing national debt, to corrupt, lying, greedy politicians, extremist’s terrorists, slipping moralities to God only knows what will be next.

I never in my wildest dreams thought there would be a national debate over sex gender and bathrooms! Whoever came up with the term “gender fluidity”? I don’t remember a time when people had such a low opinion and dismal outlook about our country and where it is headed. Very few people that we come in contact with on a daily basis have a very positive attitude.  

Both born from above and the un-regenerate, very few! This great nation of ours is on a speeding train of moral declination. The train is on a track to degradation and she is picking up steam: fast! Ole Uncle Sam needs a revival. From the president and his administration in the White house right down to the kid behind the counter at Walmart. Our country needs a fresh awakening from the Holy Spirit of God. America needs an outpouring of the Holy Ghost as was experienced by the first century Church.

Come join our pastor, our church and me in praying for revival. Won’t you join me today and start by carrying ourselves and our loved ones to church. I need church, you need church, your family needs the church. All God’s people need the Church! If you are in the Clay county area of North Florida come worship with us at Harbor Baptist church located on the corner of Clay Street (1120) & US Hwy 17, Fleming Island, FL. We are located just to the right of Corky Bell’s Seafood restaurant. Morning worship is at 10:30 and we meet Sunday evening at 6:00 p.m.

Better yet, come join our group for Bible study with the adults. I lead the adult class entitled: “Harbor Haven, for pairs and spares”. (For couples and singles) We meet @ 9:14 in the main room of the education building. This is the building located right next to the church. We would love for you to come and fellowship with us around the Word of God. And feel free to bring a guest. Whether you attend the worship service or choose not to, we hope to see you for Bible study!
We pride ourselves with being a smaller church with the big difference. I don’t believe you will find another fellowship of believers who have a greater love for God and as a result of His love for us, we have love for one another. You’ll find me and my family there, come visit, both you and our church will be glad that you did!

I am happy to speak on behalf of our Lord Jesus Christ in the North Florida area. I am a conservative and evangelical teacher whose doctrinal beliefs align with those of the Southern Baptist Convention. My doctrinal views are listed in the menu section of this site. If your pastor is sick, has a sudden emergency or needs a vacation, I am happy to fill in for him. You can contact me by email at: michaelrosenbarker@gmail.com

 

A House Faith Pleases God | Hebrews 11:1-6 Part 3

A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6 Part 1

A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6

This is part one of a three-part study from my message entitled "A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6. I hope it will be a blessing to you and encourage you with your walk with Jesus our Lord. :0)

Here is the outline we are working from.

A House of Faith That Pleases God. Heb. 11: 1-6

 

I) The Description of Pleasing Faith, vs. 1

A) Faith is being confident in the things we hope for, 1a

B) Faith is being convinced of the things we cannot see, vs. 1b

II) The Demonstrations of Pleasing Faith, vs. 2-5

A) The commendation of the saints, vs. 2

B) The creation of the Universe, vs. 3

C) The contribution of Abel, vs. 4

D) The companionship of Enoch, vs. 5

III) The Demands of Pleasing Faith, vs. 6

A) We are to have faith that pleases, Vs. 6a

B) We are to have faith that presumes, vs. 6b

C) We are to have faith that pursues, vs. 6c

There is a well-known story concerning J.C. Penny, the founder of the modern-day retail stores named after him. Mr. Penny had a great compassion for the men and women who served in the ministry. Whenever he was traveling about, wherever he was on the Lord’s Day, he would go to the nearest local church.

One Sunday he was in a small country town and after the worship service, the pastor of the little underfunded church asked Mr. Penny for lunch at his home. Mr. Penny could see that the church was in desperate need of funds as it was in disarrayed of sorts. And it was obvious that the pastor’s family was operating on a not so well funded budget.

After eating their meal, the pastor and his well-known guest were fellow-shipping on the porch when Mr. Penny asked the preacher if he believed in biblical tithing. The minister sheepishly acknowledged so but ashamedly stated that he couldn’t afford to tithe on his limited income from the pastorate. Mr. Penny made an offer to the preacher that if he would begin tithing to the Lord and teach his congregation to do the same, that surely, the Lord would provide for their needs. A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6

Tithing! Oh No! That's all those preachers talk about, wanting my money!

Mr. Penny was so positive about tithing that he made a commitment that he, Mr. Penny would provide any necessary funds that the family would be lacking because of tithing their income. After enjoying the afternoon together, they parted ways. About six months later Mr. Penny checked in on the pastor to see how he was doing.

The pastor was hysterical with joy. He was amazed at the miraculous provision that God had supplied both to the church as well as to his family from both his practicing and preaching biblical tithing. After he hung up the phone with Mr. Penny, the pastor went from tears of joy to weeping crocodile tears of sorrow.

His wife asked what was wrong? After weeping tear drops of regret, the pastor told his wife that he was ashamed due to the lack of faith that he had. He told her, “I had the faith to believe Mr. Penny and take him at his word. But I did not have the faith to believe God and take Him at His Word!” He did not have pleasing faith or better yet, a faith that pleases Almighty God. His house of faith needed a complete makeover. Turn in your Bibles to the eleventh chapter of the book of Hebrews. Hebrews, chapter eleven, where we are going to answer the question of what kind of faith pleases our heavenly Father. Let’s read the text.

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 2 For by it the elders obtained a good testimony. 3 By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible. 4 By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks. 5 By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found, because God had taken him”; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God. 6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”1

I) The Description of Pleasing Faith, vs. 1

The eleventh chapter of Hebrews has been called the great faith chapter of the Bible. It is the Cuda gra of the teachings on faith that pleases Almighty God. Hebrews chapter eleven is the Delmonico of the steaks of faith. It is the gold standard amongst the metals of believing faith. A House of Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6

Hebrews chapter eleven could also be considered the foundation for your house and my house of faith. It begins and ends with great teachings about the faith that pleases our Jehovah God and Lord and Savior-Jesus Christ.

Faith is the foundation of the house, the main floor and the upstairs of our house of faith. Our house of faith begins and culminates with the materials of faith that pleases Almighty God. We will be studying the first six verses for our session today. The author of the book, whom many believe to be the Apostle Paul, begins the chapter with a description or a glimpse of what pleasing faith is.

In verse one he states: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (vs. 1).

Just what is faith? What does the word “faith” mean? J. Oswald Chambers stated, “Faith is never defined; it is described, as in Hebrews XI. 1, but never defined.” That great Southern Baptist theologian and biblical scholar Hershel Hobbs states this about the word faith: “The English word faith is the Greek word pistis, which is commonly used in the New Testament. It means “conviction of the truth of anything, generally with the included idea of trust.” Therefore, the degree of faith can vary from believer to believer. Faith can be weak, possessed in differing measures; and faith can grow, being strengthened as it is tested. Faith in general requires an object. For some, the object of faith is self, plans, relationships, resources, or even faith itself. The object of biblical faith is the Lord. Other objects of faith will fail; the Lord never fails. Therefore, faith in God is trusting a certainty, not just a possibility or a wish.” 2

The word faith is found twenty-four different times alone in Hebrews, chapter eleven. The verb form of the word faith or pistis is pisteuo which is translated “to believe”. It is found 241 times in the New Testament and 81 times in the Septuagint which is the Greek transliteration of the Hebrew language of the Old Testament. One of the meanings of pisteuo, the verb “to believe”, is to totally trust oneself to an entity or deity with complete and assuring confidence. A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6

Here in Hebrews eleven and verse one, in the foundation of our house of faith, we see two different aspects of the writer’s description of the kind of faith that pleases God. The first is being confident of the things we hope for. “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for....” The word the writer used for substance is “hü-po'-stä-sēs”. 3

The word means “confidence, firm trust, assurance.” The same word is used in 2Cor. 9: 4 where Paul used it in referring to “confident boasting”.

“This word is from a compound Greek word hypostasis (hupo, “under;” histemi, “standing”). A foundation under a standing structure. In the ancient world, it referred to anything that stood under something else, such as a foundation supporting a building or structure, a contract supporting a business transaction, or even a promise undergirding a personal commitment. Other translations render it “assurance” (NASB, ESV), “confidence” (NIV, NLT), and “reality” (HCSB)”, Hershel Hobbs.

Substance or the reality of things hoped for; we have the assurance of things hoped for and the confidence of the things we have hoped for.  

Abram, whose new name by God became Abraham, hoped for children from an old woman named Sari who was barren. He had faith’s confidence of things hoped for.
He left his family, his farm and his fatherlands to go to a place unseen to him. He hoped for a land that was unseen, yet promised to him. A land flowing with milk and honey. He hoped for a family. He did this by faith. Can you imagine the fun people had when they found out that Abraham, whose name means father of many, didn’t have any children? Think about his patience and persistence believing God for His promises to him.
Abraham agreed with the Psalmist who declared, “And now, Lord, what do I wait for? My hope is in You” (Ps. 39: 7). What do you hope for? What has God promised to you and you have the confidence of them, even though they are not presently realistic?

What do you hope for our church? What about your small group? What about the lost all around you? Do you hope for their salvation? Do you hope to see folks walk these aisles and give their hand to Sam and their heart to the Savior? What do you hope for concerning this church? The first aspect of the description of faith is the confidence of things hoped for. A House of Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6

The second aspect of the descriptive foundation of faith found in verse one is that of faith is being convinced of things we cannot see. “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (vs. 1, emphasis mine). The evidence or the conviction, the certainty or the proof of things we cannot see.

Convinced of those things in which we cannot see. I am reminded that just because something is not visible to the eyes of our understanding does not mean that they do not exist. I am deeply convinced this way about angels.

We know from the writings of God’s Word that angels do in fact exist. We can’t see them, well, most of us anyways :0). We can’t see them with our empirical senses, but we know that they are all around us. Many doubters argue the existence of these beautiful warriors of the LORD, of the armies of heaven. The naysayers believe that the angels, both good and bad, are not a reality because of their stealth ministry and service to God’s people on behalf of His plan and purpose.

I believe this is one of if not the greatest deception that satan has placed over the Church of God. The holy angels, the host of heaven are one of the greatest assets that the LORD has given to His children and yet most believer’s think of them once a year as part of the Christmas story. Listen to me as I YELL this from the tips of my fingers as they land on the keyboard: Angels, both holy and unholy are as real as anything else with the kingdom of God!

My answer to these doubters is quite simple: bacteria. There are millions and millions of various living entities called bacteria that are all around us, on our clothing and skin and inside our bodies. Keep in mind that we can’t see them with the naked eye, but we know from the magnificent work of biologists that these miniscule little germs do in fact exist!

Please remember something very foundational to life: just because something or some “things” are invisible to our natural and physical eyes, does not mean that they are not real and that they don’t exist! There are many things that we understand that they exist but we can’t see them.

TV

TV

 Examples would be:

  • the wind
  • gravity
  • the past or the future
  • communication waves (TV, radio, cellular)

We can’t see any of these things because they are invisible, yet we know they exist! No one denies the existence of any of these, and yet, we can’t physically see them. Faith is like that. Faith believes what God says! Faith believes in the unseen! Faith believes “thus saith the LORD.” A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6

Pleasing faith to Almighty God believes in things not seen! J. Oswald Chambers said “Faith enables the believing soul to treat the future as present and the invisible as seen.”

Noah had this kind of visible pleasing faith. The writer points this out a few verses down in this chapter. Verse seven, “By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith” (emphasis mine). Noah utilized a faith that pleased God! He built an ark without ever witnessing a flood. He didn’t even know what it looked like. Noah’s faith pleased God. Will our faith believe God for great things?

Think about the things that can happen in this church? Not the churches down the street. THIS Church, Harbor Baptist Church! The conviction of things not seen!

The Apostle Paul knew this. He stated, ““For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance” (Ro. 8: 24-25). We hope, we have the conviction, we have the faith for things yet unseen. Folks, can we muster enough faith amongst us to believe God? To believe God for GREAT things to happen in this church? A House of Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6

Faith is being confident in the things we hope for and is being convinced of the things we cannot see: the two aspects of the writer’s description of faith that pleases God. The two main materials in the foundation of our house of faith. Now we are going to see what he has to say about the demonstrations of faith in verses two through five. He gives us four demonstrations or examples of the kind of faith that please God!

This has been part one of a series of studies from Hebrews 11:1-6 from my message entitled “A House of Faith That Pleases God.” Please check out my new book entitled, “Letters of Divine Revelation from an Old Man in Prison”. The book is available from Amazon in paperback and in an E-Book form from Amazon Kindle. It is a commentary on the seven churches from chapters two and three from the book of Revelation. I hope you find it inspiring and helpful with your walk with Jesus.

Revelation Book Cover Image

Revelation Book Cover Image

Let’s go to church this Sunday. These are certainly troubling and uncertain times that we live in. From the ever growing national debt, to corrupt, lying, greedy politicians, extremist’s terrorists, slipping moralities to God only knows what will be next.

I never in my wildest dreams thought there would be a national debate over sex gender and bathrooms! Whoever came up with the term “gender fluidity”? I don’t remember a time when people had such a low opinion and dismal outlook about our country and where it is headed. Very few people that we come in contact with on a daily basis have a very positive attitude.  

Both born from above and the un-regenerate, very few! This great nation of ours is on a speeding train of moral declination. The train is on a track to degradation and she is picking up steam: fast! Ole Uncle Sam needs a revival. From the president and his administration in the White house right down to the kid behind the counter at Walmart. Our country needs a fresh awakening from the Holy Spirit of God. America needs an outpouring of the Holy Ghost as was experienced by the first century Church.

Come join our pastor, our church and me in praying for revival. Won’t you join me today and start by carrying ourselves and our loved ones to church. I need church, you need church, your family needs the church. All God’s people need the Church! If you are in the Clay county area of North Florida come worship with us at Harbor Baptist church located on the corner of Clay Street (1120) & US Hwy 17, Fleming Island, FL. We are located just to the right of Corky Bell’s Seafood restaurant. Morning worship is at 10:30 and we meet Sunday evening at 6:00 p.m.

Better yet, come join our group for Bible study with the adults. I lead the adult class entitled: “Harbor Haven, for pairs and spares”. (For couples and singles) We meet @ 9:14 in the main room of the education building. This is the building located right next to the church. We would love for you to come and fellowship with us around the Word of God. And feel free to bring a guest. Whether you attend the worship service or choose not to, we hope to see you for Bible study!
We pride ourselves with being a smaller church with the big difference. I don’t believe you will find another fellowship of believers who have a greater love for God and as a result of His love for us, we have love for one another. You’ll find me and my family there, come visit, both you and our church will be glad that you did!

I am happy to speak on behalf of our Lord Jesus Christ in the North Florida area. I am a conservative and evangelical teacher whose doctrinal beliefs align with those of the Southern Baptist Convention. My doctrinal views are listed in the menu section of this site. If your pastor is sick, has a sudden emergency or needs a vacation, I am happy to fill in for him. You can contact me by email at: michaelrosenbarker@gmail.com

A House Faith That Pleases God | Hebrews 11: 1-6

 

Leading A Bible Study Group

Care to Convert | James 5: 19-20 part 2

Care to Convert | James 5: 19-20 part 2

Care to Convert - James 5: 19-20 -  Outline

I) A Statement that Presupposes Someone Needing Converting, vs. 19

A) A Statement concerning the carnal Christian, vs. 19a

B) A Statement concerning the caring Christian, vs. 19b

II) A Statement that Promises Something to the Converted. vs. 20

A) The promise of the caring Christian saving a soul from future death, vs. 20a

B) The promise of the caring Christian saving a soul from future deeds, vs. 20b

Care to Convert | James 5: 19-20 part 2

This is the second and final part from my message entitled "Care to Convert." We'll pick up right where we left off last time.

James introduces his thought concerning the carnal Christian. And he then mentions the caring Christian. Look at verse 19 nineteen again. “Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back...” (emphasis mine). That someone is a believer who cared to convert. “someone should bring that person back” (NIV). “someone turns him back” (HCSB).[1] Or “Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him... (KJV). The caring Christian is the one who will take the time, love and effort to convert the carnal Christian and turn him back or bring her back into the fold. Caring to convert.

Turn back or convert: epistréphō, ep-ee-stref'-o: the verb means to turn around, to turn back one who no longer cares. The verb is very intense in the significance of the caring Christian imposing upon the carnal believer to convert, to come back to his love, . . .  to her obedience to God. Care to convert. Care to Convert | James 5: 19-20 part 2
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Leading A Bible Study Group

Care to Convert | James 5: 19-20 part 1

Care to Convert | James 5: 19-20 part 1

Care to Convert - James 5: 19-20 -  Outline

I) A Statement that Presupposes Someone Needing Converting, vs. 19

A) A Statement concerning the carnal Christian, vs. 19a

B) A Statement concerning the caring Christian, vs. 19b

II) A Statement that Promises Something to the Converted. vs. 20

A) The promise of the caring Christian saving a soul from future death, vs. 20a

B) The promise of the caring Christian saving a soul from future deeds, vs. 20b

Care to Convert | James 5: 19-20 part 1

We have come to the end of the lessons from James, the half-brother of our Lord-Jesus Christ. James has taught us many lessons throughout his book, affectionately called religion in shoes. Many bible teachers refer to the book of James this way due to the practicality of his teachings. “James the just” had a practical down to earth view of how to live as a Christian.

He has taught many such lessons to his audience which from verse one we learned was to the scattered Jewish Christians, the diaspora-the dispersion, that he addressed. His teachings were concerning their behavior, or lack thereof in the church. He had to correct their shameless attitudes and their sinful actions throughout his letter. Right out of the gate he has to address their incorrect view of trials and temptations in chapter one. Continue reading

Feeding the hungry

Care to Share | Matthew 25: 34-46 Part 3 of 3

Care to Share | Matthew 25: 34-46 Part 3 of 3

We are currently embarking on a three part study of Jesus' words found in Matthew 25: 34-46 from the message entitled "Care to Share." Below is the outline we are working from. I hope this study has been a blessing to you. Last time we left off with the sub point The Third Reactive Question under main point III

Care to Share Matt. 25: 34-46

I) The Reward for the Righteous, vs. 34

A) The time of the reward, vs. 34a

B) The terms of the reward, vs. 34b

C) The treasure of the reward, vs. 34c

II) The Reason for the Reward, vs. 35-36

A) The caring shared chow with the King, vs. 35a

B) The caring shared cups with the King, vs. 35b

C) The caring shared covering with the King, vs. 35c

D) The caring shared clothing with the King, vs. 36a

E) The caring shared concern with the King, vs. 36b

F) The caring shared compassion with the King, vs. 36a

III) The Reaction from the Righteous, vs. 37-39

A) The first reactive question, vs. 37

B) The second reactive question, vs. 38

C) The third reactive question, vs. 39

IV) The Response from the King, vs. 40

A) The response is an answer, vs. 40a

B) The response is an analogy, vs. 40b

V) The Retribution of the Regardless, vs. 41

A) The regardless are cursed, vs. 41a-b

B) The regardless are condemned, vs. 41c; 46a

VI) The Reason for their Retribution, vs. 42-43

VII) The Reaction of the Regardless, vs. 44

VIII) The Response from the King, Vs 45-46

Care to Share | Matthew 25: 34-46 Part 3 of 3

Care to Share Matt. 25: 34-46

We see next the response from the King in verse 40 forty. “And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, in as much as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ There is His response to the questions of the righteous sheep who cared to share. Who were those in need? Who are the least of these my brethren? Least can indicate size, amount, dignity, authority, importance, and so forth. Here it may denote humility. Continue reading

Feeding the hungry

Care to Share | Matthew 25: 34-46 Part 2 of 3

Care to Share | Matthew 25: 34-46 Part 2 of 3

We are currently embarking on a three part study of Jesus' words found in Matthew 25: 34-46 from the message entitled "Care to Share." Below is the outline we are working from. I hope this study will be a blessing to you. Last time we left off with the sub point The caring shared their cups with the King under main point II

Care to Share Matt. 25: 34-46

I) The Reward for the Righteous, vs. 34

A) The time of the reward, vs. 34a

B) The terms of the reward, vs. 34b

C) The treasure of the reward, vs. 34c

II) The Reason for the Reward, vs. 35-36

A) The caring shared chow with the King, vs. 35a

B) The caring shared cups with the King, vs. 35b

C) The caring shared covering with the King, vs. 35c

D) The caring shared clothing with the King, vs. 36a

E) The caring shared concern with the King, vs. 36b

F) The caring shared compassion with the King, vs. 36a

III) The Reaction from the Righteous, vs. 37-39

A) The first reactive question, vs. 37

B) The second reactive question, vs. 38

C) The third reactive question, vs. 39

IV) The Response from the King, vs. 40

A) The response is an answer, vs. 40a

B) The response is an analogy, vs. 40b

V) The Retribution of the Regardless, vs. 41

A) The regardless are cursed, vs. 41a-b

B) The regardless are condemned, vs. 41c; 46a

VI) The Reason for their Retribution, vs. 42-43

VII) The Reaction of the Regardless, vs. 44

VIII) The Response from the King, Vs 45-46

Care to Share | Matthew 25: 34-46 Part 2 of 3

Care to Share Matt. 25: 34-46

Chow, cups and then notice these righteous sheep also shared their covering or housing with the King. Verse 35 thirty-five: “for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in... (emphasis mine). They cared to share their hospitality with the King. Taking care of the needy has always been on the heart of Almighty God. In response to the meaningless fasting of the rebellious Jews, through the prophet Isaiah, God asks, “Is this not the fast that I have chosen:
To loose the bonds of wickedness,
To undo the heavy burdens,
To let the oppressed go free,
And that you break every yoke?
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry,
And that you bring to your house the poor who are cast out;
When you see the naked, that you cover him,
And not hide yourself from your own flesh” (Is. 58: 6-7)?

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