Google+ 05/01/13 Faithful Salvation or Faithless Separation?

Hebrews 11:5-7

 

 It was by faith that Enoch was taken up to heaven without dying—“he disappeared, because God took him.” For before he was taken up, he was known as a person who pleased God.

And it is impossible to please God without faith.

Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists

And that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.

It was by faith that Noah built a large boat to save his family from the flood.

He obeyed God, who warned him about things that had never happened before.

By his faith Noah condemned the rest of the world, and he received the righteousness that comes by faith. 

 

 

As we have discussed previously, Easter is a season.  It is the fifty days following Easter that ends on the Day of Pentecost.  During this Easter season, the Bible teaches us many things, if we will only read and listen.  Today's Scripture deals with two things that we often take for granted, or even choose to ignore.  God requires and insists upon us having faith.  It is not an option, but rather a requirement of being a practicing Christian.  Like Enoch and Noah, there are many things that God has in store for us that we simply don't know about or understand.  I was reminded of this when I recently watched a children's production of the musical "Aladdin."  Twice the lead character looks at Jasmine, right before they are going to have to jump to escape Jafar, and asks if she trusts him.  Then the command is given, after the "yes" is received, to just go ahead and jump!  Enoch and Noah heard God say, "Do you have faith in me?" and then they were instructed to "jump."  God just simply took Enoch to heaven when he was alive!  Noah built a huge boat with no water in sight!  In both cases, the Bible tells us that they pleased God.  Our Scripture today states that it is impossible to please God without faith.  Remember what Jesus said to Thomas?  Jesus acknowledged that Thomas now believed because he had seen.  Jesus told Thomas, "Blessed are those that believe and have not seen!"  Jesus is confirming God's pleasure when we have faith in the Holy Trinity.  The last point is one that we rarely acknowledge, probably because it is really uncomfortable to discuss or think about.  The Bible says that Noah condemned the rest of the faithless in the world by being faithful!  Did you get that?  When we are faithful, which we must be, we have condemned all those that have no faith.  There is no choice in the matter.  There is no gray area.  If you don't believe me, consider this thought.  In the days of Noah, how many were saved of the billions that were living on the earth at the time?  That's right, the correct answer is eight!!!  The statement that we often hear, defending our lack of faith due to the fact that no one else has any either, will find you drowning- to-death soon.  When we are dealing with our behavior with God, He only cares about our INDIVIDUAL behavior.   God will deal with the "corporate" part of His Kingdom, in His own way, in His own time.  Here is some Biblical encouragement for your day.  If you find yourself being alone in your faith, think about Noah and Enoch.  Don't think about their reward.  God will take care of that for you, as He makes good on the promise that "great is your reward in heaven!"  Think about the consequences of being faithless.  God will not raise you up, living or dead, to the place Jesus went to prepare for all of us.  You could be part of a very watery grave!  So, walk in faith, not by sight.  You get to choose,  Faithful Salvation or Faithless Separation!