Faith Has a Face
"Faith is having confidence in what we hope for and the assurance of what we do not see." (Hebrews 11:1)
"8 By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. 9 By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. 10 For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God." (Hebrews 11:8-10, ESV)
" Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you. 2 And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing." (Genesis 12:1-2, ESV)
22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. (James 1:22-24, ESV)
23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like."
"How you listen and how you react and how you desire and how you obey the Word reveals the nature of your faith. It is the power of our new life. It is the power of our new birth. Just as the Word brings about the new birth, the Word continually feeds the follower of Christ" ~ John McArthur
Is your life characterized more by faith, or by doubt?
"Without faith it is impossible to please Him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who seek Him." (Hebrews 11:6, ESV)
This week’s message was titled ‘Faith to Works’. We looked at James 1:19-26 about the importance of living a life in alignment with our faith in GOD. This requires a level of intimacy based on knowing, hearing, and obeying the WORD of GOD. Consider the following questions as you prepare to discuss this week’s message:
It is a fundamental belief here at CrossPointe that all believers are called by God for a specific purpose to help build His kingdom. Take a few minutes and let some of the Life Group members discuss his/her calling. What was it like? How did you know for sure that it was God speaking to you? In what ways are you fulfilling that calling?
Getting in the Word: Joshua 3:5-16
Joshua 3:9 is a very interesting verse. How is Joshua able to say the words, “Come here and listen to the words of the Lord your GOD”?
Discuss as a group why, when we feel like we have received direction from GOD, our first response is to doubt and second guess.
Another interesting thread about v9 is that the delivery of the message required that Joshua have confidence in GOD because it was intended for a doubting people. Specifically, that they would have confidence that GOD was with them on the journey. As a group, read the following statement and fill in the blank. “Whether by fasting, tithing, praying, repenting, pursuing righteousness, etc., I see my Pastor exhibiting the same faith, confidence, excitement, and passion toward scripture that he is asking and expecting of me. It is __________ to me that I see my Pastor leading the charge in these works!”
As a group, read v12-13. The people saw one very large obstacle remaining in their journey...a river that needed to be crossed. Then, we see GOD calling for the priests to do something that the human mind could not comprehend. There are multiple reasons why GOD’s instructions would have been terrifying, identify and discuss some of them as a group.
How do their actions in this passage demonstrate that these people have heard and obeyed GOD?
It takes an understanding of GOD’s word and a willingness to apply it to your life to truly see works that come from faith. Remember, our faith does not come from our works--meaning that our faith is not a fruit of our works; rather it is our works that flow from our faith. It is because of a true faith that we can produce works that please GOD.