Greetings and good morning brothers and sisters. This is Dr. James Perry continuing with our series where we seek to explore the deeper meanings of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the years, the heavenly Father has revealed many revelations of spiritual truth to me, and I want to share them with you. This morning we will ponder our lives as we seek to understand how to conquer the mind and soul through faith.
And now, sit back and listen to today's message.
The Conquest of Faith
"For by grace are you saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: It is the gift of God."
Ephesians, Chapter 2, Verse 8.
Faith is a gift of God given to the soul in response to our desire for salvation and spiritual help. Faith is that urge in the soul that inspires us to hope rather than despair, to look to the future for better times. Faith must grow: the more faith we use in our everyday experiences, the more faith we develop.
Faith can be used for many purposes, but its true purpose is to allow the soul to know God. Faith
never says believe this or that. It says only believe. It requires revelation and experience to know the truth. Faith is the acceptance of truth in the present that cannot be experienced until the future.
We start out by having faith in our parents. Later, we develop faith in ourselves. In time, we find ourselves trapped and tangled in a web of moral problems that are beyond our capacity to solve. We begin to look for superhuman help. We are told that God can help us. But since God is spirit we are faced with the supreme test: how to believe in a being that we cannot see, touch, or hear? We can only experience God in our souls and perceive Him through spiritual eyes. How do we become conscious of a personality that is a spirit?
Faith is essential to becoming conscious of God, for it is the spiritual tool that allows us to see God as the result of seeking to know him. Faith influences us to pray and worship. The tension that is built up in our souls as a result of being hungry for truth and thirsty for righteousness causes a consciousness of God to be created in our souls and minds. Even this tension is motivated by faith.
The consciousness of God is a slow growth process, almost imperceptible from day to day. It is the supreme achievement in our inner life and therefore requires supreme dedication and desire to do the will of the Father in heaven. The unselfish and unseen spiritual Father can never be perceived by a selfish person; thus the possibility of the consciousness of the Father is directly proportionally to the degree of unselfishness in any individual. The Father has commanded "be you perfect, even as I am perfect." We attain this perfection through living faith and unselfish loving service.
Prayer teaches us how to recognize and do the Father's will while true worship allows us to identify with the one who is worshiped. The one who is worshiped gives all of Himself to His children. The love of the Father is always trying to flow through us to our brothers and sisters. The Father's love cannot be locked within our hearts. It can only become real as we allow it to flow through us in loving service to those in need.
While we carry out this loving service, there are certain faith attitudes that are very helpful in realizing the spiritual consciousness of God.
The first faith attitude is one that believes God is a loving Father who is all powerful, all wise, infinite, eternal, and only wants what is best for us.
The second faith attitude consists in declaring in every hardship that nothing of true value is ever lost.
The third faith attitude consists in consciously subjecting every desire of our human wills to the desire of the Father's will. The faith attitude states "not my will but your will be done."
The fourth faith attitude consists in maintaining the truth that we are sons and daughters of the heavenly Father and as such already have attained eternal life.
The fifth faith attitude consists in maintaining a living connection through prayer and worship which is evident through the fruits of the spirit which are demonstrated in our outer life: love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, faith, meekness and temperance. These spiritual qualities are essential if we are to maintain our dedication to the Father' will through loving service.
The sixth faith attitude is to regard these same spiritual fruits--that is, the degree to which they appear in our life--as a direct measurement of our consciousness of God. The more spiritual fruit we bear, the more conscious of God we are. Conversely the less spiritual fruit we display, the less our souls are conscious of God.
Maintaining these faith attitudes requires that we trust God. Always will we know Him because we trust Him.
For by grace are you saved through faith. This concludes today's message on the conquest of faith. We hope you find something in this message to ponder and pray about as you go about your day. Until next time, this is Dr. James Perry.