Understanding Faith and Grace

by Rick

Today we continue our series entitled “Destiny’s Child – You Are Not a Mistake!”  We looked at Jeremiah chapter one for a while.  I trust you learned a few things from that passage.  This morning we will look at a few things the Apostle Paul said in the New Testament.  Let’s get into the Word.

(Ephesians 2:8-10 ERV)

8 I mean that you have been saved by grace because you believed. You did not save yourselves; it was a gift from God. 

9 You are not saved by the things you have done, so there is nothing to boast about. 

10 God has made us what we are. In Christ Jesus, God made us new people so that we would spend our lives doing the good things he had already planned for us to do.

So what does this mean for you today?  Just a few things.  We will come back to this passage again tomorrow.

1.  Your perspective of faith changes when you realize God made plans for you before you were born.

When I first gave my life to Christ, I was taught a great deal about faith.  However, looking back, I now see that the initial teaching I received about faith and how it works had too much humanity in it.  There was too much of “me” in the teaching.  It was about me, what I needed to openly say, forcefully decree, and petition of God.  What I was basically taught (in a nutshell), is that I needed to provide faith for this and faith for that and that if I did, God would respond by giving me what I released my faith for.  This also meant that if I did not receive what I petitioned God for, then I did not have enough faith.  This teaching may not have been completely incorrect, but it was certainly incomplete.

— It’s hard to truly understand your requirement to live by faith if you do not understand God’s grace.  Under the New Covenant, God does all He does for us by grace.  Grace is unearned, unmerited, and (in most cases) flat-out undeserved.  God does not bless us because we are good.  God blesses us because He is good and because He made plans to do so before we were born.

— My Spiritual Father, Pastor Tony Brazelton, said the following a few years ago while he was teaching on God’s finished work:

All your prayers and fasting cannot move God. God already moved while you were yet a sinner. The purpose of your prayers and fasting is to discover what God has already done. Once you discover what God has already done, your part is to then MOVE OUT in His finished work!  When you base your life on the revelation you received it is called FAITH!

— Faith is not about you trying to get God to move.  Faith is about you discovering how God already moved and then making a human alignment with that.

— Faith is not about you trying to get God to say “YES” to your plans.  Faith is what happens when you say “YES” to HIS!

— Faith is not about you trying to convince God.  Faith is what happens to you when God convinces you of what He already decided.

— When you get a revelation of something, and you can see it in the spirit, you get convinced of it.  At that point, you live your life based on THAT reality, and you are not moved by anything you see with your natural eyes.  This is what Paul meant when He said, “We walk by faith and not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). 

2.  To live by faith, you must walk with God and develop a true relationship with Him

It is critically important that you have a relationship with the Father.  The purpose of reading the Bible (what God said) is so you can hear God’s voice (what God is saying).  In Ephesians 2:10, the Bible says, “God has made us what we are. In Christ Jesus, God made us new people so that we would spend our lives doing the good things he had already planned for us to do.”

— God is not looking for ritual, routine, or religion.  God is looking for an intimate relationship with you.  He is always speaking.  He wants you to get to the point where you can clearly hear His voice and interact with Him directly.

— The more clearly you can hear God’s voice and see what He reveals to you in the spirit, the stronger you will feel a PULL from the Holy Spirit.  It will be like God is PULLING you into your destiny.  You will live your life with a spiritual reality that will always be stronger than any present-day challenges.  No matter what you are facing in the natural, the PULL you sense in the spirit will propel you towards your destiny.  This is the life of faith.

That’s enough for today.

Declaration of Faith

Father, this is a season of LEVELING UP for me!  I LEVEL UP because my life is no longer about me.  My life is all about You and the plans You made for me before the world began.  You gave me Your Spirit.  You communicate with me, spirit-to-spirit, every day.  Like Adam did in the Garden of Eden, and like Jesus did every day of His life, I am led by Your Spirit.  I walk with You, and You walk with me.  You speak to me daily and throughout the day.  You reveal Your plans to me, and I believe them.  I receive them in my heart.  I see myself accomplishing them before I ever take one step.  I then launch out to do what You already planned, even in the face of opposition.  I live by every Word You speak to me.  My faith receives what Your grace has already provided.  Therefore, GREATER IS COMING FOR ME!  I declare this by faith.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen.

This is Today’s Word!  Apply it and Prosper.

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