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Preaching by: John J. Malone, Sr - JABSBG*

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“Now Faith.” - Comments (0)

Printer Friendly Category: Articles,Doctrine
Author: John Malone
Date: 7th August, 2007 @ 10:49:43 AM

To the believer, faith is not now what it once was. That simple truth is so basic – indeed so fundamental – that one wonders how this simple idea has escaped the consideration of so many of God’s people. {An enemy has done this!|Mat 13:25-28} {“Now faith”|Heb 11:1} adjusts our viewpoint. It takes our thoughts from the past to the present. Why are our thoughts in the past? Because when we think of faith, two past time references come to mind.

First, and foremost, we think of the object of our faith, the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. He comes from {eternity past.|Jo 1:1}. The {eyes of our heart (understanding)|Eph 1:18} blur in attempting focus on the abstract notion of “eternity” that is {set in our heart (=”world”) from birth|Ecc 3:11}.¬†Yet they are starkly set aright and clarified when {we see Jesus, Whom God sent to us here on earth for a short while, to suffer and die for our sins, but Who is now alive, and as a man, has been glorified above the angels.|Heb 2:9}

His incarnation, his suffering death, his resurrection, and his subsequent glorification as man above all the angels are all matters of the past for us. Second, our own introduction to the Lord Jesus is in the past. Our new birth, with the attendant revelation of Who Jesus Christ is, {disclosed to us by our Father in heaven,|Mat 16:17} is brought to our mind. We look back, and see the death of Christ in our place, and our grateful heart is warmed all over again.

But when we come to the consideration of what faith IS, it is certainly not what faith once WAS. While we had faith in the past, we do not now have past faith. We have “Now faith.” And, perhaps to our surprise, “now faith” has a different content and viewpoint than our past faith.

When it comes to viewpoint, our past faith looked backward, upon the past events achieved by our Lord Jesus. “Then faith” was the happy realization of what has been done for us.

Faith “Now” does not look back, but forward, in hope. Today, as Hebrews tells us, we do not see with our eyes the subjection of this age to our glorified Lord Jesus, despite his elevation in the heavens above all principality and power. We know, {by faith|Heb 2:6-8}, that God has exalted our Lord Jesus, and placed all things under His feet.

Yet, when we look around, we do not see all things under His feet. we see a pack of jackals running amok all over His earth, opposing Him, {suppressing truth in unrighteousness|Rom 1:18}, and setting Him at naught in emulation of Pilate’s corps of lewd fellows of the baser sort.

So what is the substance of that for which we hope, that our Father’s will be done in the earth as it is in the highest heaven?

Our “now faith” is that substance. Our “now faith” is the only substantive thing on earth today of that age to come tomorrow. {The history of this world, framed by the Word of God|heb 11:3} – the same Word Who became flesh, and dwelt among us, {Whose glory was beheld by the apostles|jo 1:14;2pe 1:17} – is like a movie unfolding frame by frame as today dissolves into tomorrow.

Tomorrow’s frames, just as certain as today’s, are simply less evident. The ONLY evidence of those frames,and what they hold in store, is found in our “now faith:” the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not (yet) seen.

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