preacherman

Monday, December 28, 2009

Thoughts on Faith Part 2!

Do believers confuse faith? Do we think in order to have faith we never struggle, never question, never doubt? I know for me I constantly stuggle in my faith with God. I read his word and often it doesn't make sense or isn't even fair. I struggle in life. I have questions. There are times when doubt consumes my thoughts and life. There are times when I am holding on to faith by a thread. Yet isn't that still faith? Faith that is hanging on by a thread, still faith? What do you think? Do we confuse faith? Do we think we have to be strong all the time? Unquestioning? Undoubting? Is it realistic to place these expectations on other believers? Do we place these expectations of what faith is on other believers? Why? What does it do to believers when we send this type of message? Do you doubt? Does your often find your faith hanging on by a thread?

What do you think?
Share your thoughts.

39 Comments:

OpenID newheights said...

Abraham leaves everything and then tells everyone his wife is his sister. That certainly doesn't show up on the list in Hebrews 11.

Merry Christmas.

12:44 AM  
Blogger Paul G said...

Preacherman;
I really appreciate your honesty about the lack of faith and the struggle of making sense of the Scripture.
Being in Christ for 27 years I have come to know with certainty that every believer in Jesus Christ without exception, has and will continuously be in the struggle of faith just as you have said.

I have tried to hold on with all my strength, till the Lord Jesus told me to let go.
As I let go and was falling towards the Abyss, all the doubts, fear and unbelief flooded my soul and being in utter devastation the Lord Jesus came alongside me and lifted me up with His right hand and whispered into my ears, 'no one shall pluck you out of my hands and I will never let you go'.

Well brother; now I can sing the song with all of my heart, "I'm safe and secure in the arms of Jesus etc.'

Sometimes the Lord Jesus says to me, "O you of little faith, why do you doubt. Did I not tell you that whatsoever you say and do not doubt in your heart, I will do for you".
So then, faith is the substance of the things hoped for and the evidence of the things not seen. (Hebr. 11:1)
Paul

6:41 AM  
Blogger Arlene Kasselman said...

Oh Kinney - I know we have talked about this before, but let me say it again. I believe that Faith and Doubt are travelling partners.

11:56 PM  
Blogger Paul G said...

Arlene Kasselman;
I know you have addressed Kinney and I hope he doesn't mind, me giving you a comment.

If faith and doubt are travelling partners;
Don't you think it's time to throw off one of those travelling partners!
I think you know which one. :-)
Regards
Paul

9:06 AM  
Blogger Kansas Bob said...

For me the kind of faith that didn't doubt was filled with ego and fear.. a humble flavor of faith is filled with humility and peace.

5:05 PM  
Anonymous laymond said...

Kinney, you and your readers might want to join the conversation Paul G and I are having over at his blog "Puritan belief" you might get to know Paul better.

9:14 AM  
Anonymous laymond said...

forgot to leave link to Paul
http://puritanbelief.blogspot.com/

9:18 AM  
Blogger Arlene Kasselman said...

Paul: sorry for the delay in getting back to you on here. I looked at your info and see you are from Brisbane. I was there this summer and loved it!!!!!!!

I am a firm believer that both faith and doubt are necessary in our walk to discipleship. For me personally, it has been the seasons of doubt that have helped me grow. Doubt about how prayer works or if it does, led me to a deeper more intimate contemplative prayer life with the father. Doubt about what "blessing" means helped my theology of that evolve to something far more healthy. Doubt about church governance and structure led me to new understandings.

And so I am thankful for doubt along the way - it is always the catalyst to something significant in my faith journey and ministry.

4:39 PM  
Blogger jeleasure said...

Kinney,
I don't struggle in my faith regarding what occurs in my life, personally affecting me.
You may recall, I have a hypo active thyroid condition. Sometime my thyroid level needs to be adjusted and I do not recognize this. Bad goes to worse as far as my emotions are concerned. I have learned to accept this because, it is physical. God is not ruler over my physical body. I can ask for healing. It does not come. I don't know why but, I am glad that one day I'll be rid of the body and be with the Lord, in His time.
Does the Bible not make sense, to me? It makes perfect sense. To understand the difficult passages, such as God ordering that all in certain lands be killed; those kind of passages require an understanding of God's nature. We have to understand Holiness. It is by God's Holiness we are to exist. That is what he requires. We have been given a choice. That is, to live for the purpose God created us or not. If we choose 'or not' it means we will be destroyed. It must be this way because, we would not fit the Family Image. Why would God bring us into His House if we are not the Family?

6:45 PM  
Blogger jel said...

happy new year!

9:48 PM  
Blogger Paul G said...

Laymond;
Well brother, it is better to know our wonderful Lord and savior Jesus Christ than Paul G. :-)
I also can give you a link to Him; (John 14:6) "No one comes to the Father except through me".



Thanks Arlene;
I'm glad that you liked Brisbane; I hope they have been good to you and treated you kindly.

As to 'faith and doubt';
I think that doubt will always be the enemy of faith.
The two should not be travelling partners since the Lord Jesus delights and rewards only faith and not doubt.
Like He said in Mark 11:22-23; 'If you do NOT doubt, then it will happen'.
Here you can see that we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against such powers as doubt.
Kind regards
Paul

5:02 AM  
Anonymous laymond said...

Paul, how come you talk differently on others comments, than you do on your own blog.
if you believe that Jesus is the Father, how can you believe we reach the father THROUGH Jesus.

12:57 PM  
Blogger Paul G said...

Laymond;
I hope you don't think that you come to the true God through a second God?

A Jehovah Witness gentleman once said to me, "Why go to the Foreman when you can go direct to the Boss".
Meaning; that Jesus is the Foreman!
Of course he did not understand, believe and had faith in Jesus that He (Jesus) is not only the BOSS but the BOSS of BOSSES!

Now, If you have any faith, then you must have faith in the BOSS and not in the Foreman, otherwise your faith is useless and profits you nothing.

How many times in your prayer meetings have you prayed and you felt that your prayer just reached the ceiling and then bounced straight back?
Perhaps it could be that your faith is in the Foreman and not in the BOSS.
But let me tell you that there is no other BOSS next to our wonderful Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Lots of love
Paul

9:03 AM  
Anonymous laymond said...

Paul, it may seem strange to one of your belief, but Christians should not pray to Jesus.

Jn:16:26: At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you:

Jn:16:27: For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God.

I pray to God in Jesus name, showing I have faith in what Jesus said, and that he was sent by his Father/God.

10:19 AM  
Blogger Paul G said...

Laymont;
I really appreciate you and love you heaps!
It seems to me that you are praying to TOM through HARRY, just like the Catholic's who pray to JESUS through MARY.

Because of that reason, most of the so called Christian Churches are as dead as a door nail. They have departed from the Lord who bought them with the price of His precious blood and turned to the god of the Jehovah Witnesses, Mormons, Muslims, Jews and Catholics etc. in their hearts.

Look and open your eyes! Can you see how the Lord strikes them with pestilence, sickness, diseases, cancers of various kinds, aids and mental breakdowns, accidents and calamities! He even strikes their children dead in front of their eyes.
And still they do NOT repent of their wicked ways by breaking the first commandment of the Lord.

But I admonish you as long as today is called today, that you turn with all your heart, with all your mind and with all your strength to the Lord our God Jesus Christ.
Do NOT look to the left or to the right, but let your gaze be fixed and your faith be only in Jesus Christ our Lord and only then the mountains will be moved and your land will be healed.
But if you refuse, all you will have is a DEAD faith and a DEAD Church religion.

Again I'd like to say from my heart, lot's of love in Christ Jesus our Lord and God.
Paul

5:30 AM  
Anonymous laymond said...

Paul, I guess we can leave Preacherman to his work since we are discussing this on both our blogs, and let him get back to work, sorry Kinney for hijacking your comment section.

11:06 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

I want to thank everyone for their toughts and comments on this discussion. Faith is something I find myself stuggling with almost everyday. I often find myself barely hanging on by a thread. Yes there are mountians and vallies. I often wonder if there are more times in the vallies and wilderness for believers. I struggle with difficulties in life. I pray for those I love to get well...It doesn't happen. I pray for things to get easier it doesn't..many times only getting harder and more difficult. I often wonder is it worth it! You would think that those who follow God in this world would have it more easier. Those who minister and serve God to have more blessings and an easier life! I know life isn't fair. I have heard it all of my life. But shouldn't there be an earthly, temperary releif and physical blessings in following God now..I have heard ministers say, "We have difficulties and stuggles now so we can appreciate heaven. Or we have something better to look forward to but what about now!" I am trying. I haven't given up yet! That is faith. I think it nieve to think that it not okay for Christians to doubt, ask questions, and feel frustrated with their beleifs. If you are finding yourself questioning, doubting, frustrated, angry, yet your still hanging on, it is faith. It's okay. Is it not? It is my hope that Christians will stop placing and painting a beautiful picture of what faith and Christianity is. Let's stop placing unrealistic expectations on others that "real faith" "true faith" is undoubting and unquestionable. Let's stop painting a picture of those who have faith has a wonderful life with no problems. Let's start being real. What do you think?

8:29 PM  
Blogger jel said...

preacherman,
just hang on to him and he will get you though,

in my own little world i don't have any problems,:) it's just when I go out into the world then I got problems :(


DON'T GIVE UP!

9:19 PM  
Anonymous laymond said...

Kinney, the book of Job was written just for that purpose. Look at the question Satan asked God. Is Job faithful, because you give him all he has? If as you say God treated Christians better, would we worship out of love, or because we were grateful?

10:26 PM  
Anonymous laymond said...

I meant to add, or just because we wanted more?

10:28 PM  
Blogger Kansas Bob said...

Just wanted to say that I loved your last comment Kinney. I reminds me of how the faith chapter (Hebrews 11) ends:

Others were tortured and refused to be released, so that they might gain a better resurrection. Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. They were stoned; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated— the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground.

These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

7:36 AM  
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5:38 PM  
Blogger Milly said...

It's nto my lack of faith that gets in the way. It's that I doubt the outcome will be what I want.

7:25 PM  
Blogger jeleasure said...

Hi Kinney,
in my previous comment, I was thinking (but phrased it, betraying my thoughts) 'God does not choose to be ruler of my body'.

11:16 PM  
Blogger Paul G said...

Preacherman;
Perhaps you might think that I am one of Jobs bad comforters.
But then again; what kind of a comfort is that, to tell you to hang in there or hang on!
How long do you think you can hang or hold on?
If you are a strong man, you will definitely hang longer then a weak man.

Personally I don't think that hanging in there is FAITH, more likely it is FEAR, because you know exactly what the Bible says about that.

Kinney; you are in a good place, with no way out.
You can not get up and when you let go you will be smashed to pieces.

Desperately YOU NEED a SAVIOR!
And there is NO OTHER NAME given than JESUS whereby you Kinney MUST be saved. And whosoever shall call upon the Name of JESUS shall be saved!

That might be you Kinney!
This is the good news and remember, it is impossible for Jesus to lie.
Lots of love
Paul

5:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

8:18 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

I appreciate everyone's comments, encouragement on this topic. I know many Christians stuggle everyday in point with their relationship with God, faith, the Bible, living in this world in which we live. I hope we can help eachother grow and stretch as we journey along!

11:32 AM  
Blogger Paul G said...

Preacherman;
Another comment if you don't mind.
I'd like to paint faith and Christianity as a beautiful picture.
If it would not be so, then we who believe in our wonderful Lord and God Jesus Christ would be the most miserable creatures on the face of this planet.

If the Lord Jesus would not bless me far above anything I ask or can think of, then certainly I would NOT waste my time to believe in Him.
The world does not bless us; in fact they are against us in every way.
But if the Lord is for us, who can be against us?
If Jesus did not come to give us life and life abundant, we all would perish like the rest of them.

The picture of my life with my wonderful Jesus is the most beautiful picture I never thought that it was possible for me to experience. It is one thing to read it in the Bible and another thing to experience it. (Psa. 34:8) "O taste and see that the Lord is good", important is to TASTE and SEE.
I could go on and on to tell you of the majesty and the power of my wonderful Lord being manifested in my life.

Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart!

All the power is in that verse for you to have the most wonderful and exciting Christian life you never dreamed that it could be possible.
Paul

8:14 AM  
Blogger Keith Brenton said...

"Abraham believed God, and He credited it to him as righteousness."

That was before Abraham lied a second time about Sarah being his sister, took Hagar as a wife at Sarah's insistence, or was asked to sacrifice Isaac. His faith was not perfect. It was not consistent. Yet it was still credited to him.

I take comfort in the desperate man who cried to Jesus: "I believe; help my unbelief!" (Mark 9:24)

Faith is God's gift to us (Ephesians 2:8) which we either keep to ourselves or share with others ... and therefore give back to Him.

10:15 PM  
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