• Matt Beaney

#397 - BY FAITH WE UNDERSTAND - (20/7/21)



During this LEARNING TO HEAR series I’m taking a different approach to these devotionals. I want to us work harder at searching the scriptures for ourselves. We will use the ‘Come to Jesus Daily’ method below to help us with this. It’s well worth the hard work involved!


TODAY’S TEXT

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.’ (Hebrews 11:1-3)

I’ve included my reflections on today’s text below. However, I encourage you to pray and spend time reflecting (writing can be helpful) using the 5 questions below before reading my thoughts.


i. †GOSPEL - 'Gaze on the cross'- What does this text reveal about salvation through Jesus?

ii. UP – What does this text say about God – His worth, character, attributes, will, promises…?

iii. IN – What does this say about me, the church and how we are to relate? Is there a promise to believe, command to do, attitude to have, something to avoid, is there forgiveness to seek or give?

iv. OUT – What does this say about my community and mission?

v. DO - This has two components. Firstly, list as many possible ways that you can think of that one might apply the text (actions or attitudes). Secondly, hear - Pray about how the Holy Spirit is leading you, specifically, to respond.


MY REFLECTIONS


1. †GOSPEL

By faith we enter into new creation in Christ. God loves to see faith in us. He loves to see us putting faith in His Son. He wants us to have full confidence of acceptance and future hope by faith in Jesus. Paradoxically, our new creation, like that of the universe, is a gift of God,

For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.’ (2 Corinthians 4:6)
“Father, by faith I see that as you made the universe out of nothing, so you worked new creation in me by your great power. I thank you for you work in me and your people.”


2. UP

Faith transform worship. By faith we see and love God.

'Though we do not see you we love you and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy and’ (1 Peter 1:1:8-9).

Though He is unseen, by the Spirit, we see Him with the eyes of faith.

Faith transforms our expectations. We see that He made the universe out of nothing by His command! The vastness of the seen and unseen realms are created by and for Him.


3. IN

When we look at creation, we are to be assured of His great ability. The Lord wants us to know -and be certain of- what we ‘hope for’. Specifically, He wants us to be confident of our new creation right now and certain of our future re-creation at the end of history.


4. OUT

Our friends can only be saved by faith. Faith in the gospel saves. Faith sees the cross. Faith receives forgiveness through the cross. If I have true faith, I will share the gospel message. Faith acts. Like these heroes of faith that are listed in this text, may we also, by faith, share the gospel message as He lead us.

“Father, You are at work to perform your great will. You are able. My faith sees this. By faith, lead me to co-work with you in the great works that you want to do through me and your church.”


5. DO? - Here are a few examples of application that I’ve come up with:

‘By faith we understand’ An application could be to realise that faith is built on God’s word, and is strengthened through the application of God’s word. Are we hearing with faith and then doing acts of faith?

It seems of highest importance to prayerfully reflect on our lives - Are we doing works of faith?

Faith, in particular, sees the future recreation of the universe (11:40). An application could be to study and reflect on this hope.

An application could be to study and pray out of Hebrews 11.

It seems that contemplating the universe and its creation out of nothing is a good way to strengthen our faith. How could you do this?…

HEAR - Pray about how the Holy Spirit might want you to respond.

COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY



During this LEARNING TO HEAR series we are going to take a different approach to learning from the Bible together. We will use the ‘Come to Jesus Daily Method’ together (Gospel, Up, In, Out, Do) - you will have to do all the work!


1. Icebreaker - How has God spoken to you from the Bible this week? (During this LEARNING TO HEAR series, we are seeking to develop a culture of listening to God out of His word)


2. Select a text of scripture. (You could use the text from Sunday’s message or something of your choice.)


3. Read and recall. (Read the text and ask each person in the group to put it into their own words.)


4. Please go through these questions together:

i. †GOSPEL - 'Gaze on the cross'- What does this text reveal about salvation through Jesus?

ii. UP – What does this text say about God – His worth, character, attributes, will, promises…?

iii. IN – What does this say about me, the church and how we are to relate? Is there a promise to believe, command to do, attitude to have, something to avoid, is there forgiveness to seek or give?

iv. OUT – What does this say about my community and mission?

v. DO - This has two components. Firstly, list as many possible ways that you can think of that one might apply the text (actions or attitudes). Secondly, hear - Pray and share (if it’s appropriate) about how the Holy Spirit is leading you, specifically, to respond.


5. SIV - Finally, it would be helpful to talk and pray about how we are doing in regard to Serve, Invest and Invite. Do you have any encouraging stories or any plans in this regard? How do you want to pray in regard to our mission?





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