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1 …sing Thy praises, to fellowship with Thee, O God, to minister to Thee according to our worshipping, we pray that it has been acceptable in Thy sight Lord, has not been in vain. We have not been here Lord, to be seen of men, that we have been here for the one purpose, Lord God, to worship in Thee.
Now we ask You Father, this important part of the service that Thy Spirit shall be manifest by anointing us Lord, to proclaim the Word exactly as It is, and It might be heard exactly as It is given. Pray also, my God, that Your Spirit shall not only quicken It to us for this moment but for all time until that Word becomes such a part of us that we Lord, will be a living Word manifested unto all people. We commit ourselves to You, My God, for every Word that is spoken, the Spirit in which it is given, Lord Jesus, we commit ourselves wholly unto You tonight, believing, O God, that Thou hast not only heard us already but have answered and immeasurable good shall be done to us from this time on in Jesus’ Name we pray, Amen.
2Now this morning we discovered the importance of faith because the most important thing that anybody can do as a Christian is to please God. If we’re truly born again we want to please Him and the Bible says, “Without faith you can’t please Him.” And we found out that when God spoke of pleasing… being pleasing unto Him, the Scripture says, “That without faith it is impossible to please God, for he that cometh to God must believe that God is and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” So the end of our faith is the reward of God. So therefore, we have found out that God is not pleased with people unless He is constantly rewarding them. That God must be able to provide and protect His own people and that is what is wrong with us today and has been through all the ages; that God’s people have never learned to let Him sufficiently be the Absolute Protector and Provider.
3Now if you will read the life of George Muller, you will find that George Muller learned what it was for God and God alone to provide one hundred percent. Read his diary and you’ll be apprised of that fact. Also read the life of Hudson Taylor…[Tape skips.] even to the place where his boss owed him money for the week and forgot to give it to him. And Taylor said, “I will not ask him for it, because when I go on the foreign field I will have no one to depend upon but God. And God will make that man to bring me the money or someone else will supply my need.”
And around nine o’clock that night, sure enough as Bro. Taylor was walking the streets. I forget, it was London, or where it was—see, my memory’s so poor, as to who comes from where—but I know the story behind the story so to speak, the real intriguing and beautiful part. God made that boss of him come to him and give him that money and said, “Why didn’t you tell me that I owed you that money? I’d forgotten.”
And he said, “Sir, I couldn’t do it because when I go on the foreign field I’ll have no one to talk to but God.” You see, you love that, where we all love the romance of depending upon God. Then we get sort of shaken when it comes down to the time to do it. Don’t be fooled. Don’t be misled.
4There is no effort that you will expend in your life that will please God such as the effort of bowing your will to His so that He may reward you. You may labor all you want and at the end of the trail, remember, He says, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” The good servant is the faithful servant. And God is very displeased today because we are so material minded that you’ll even hear preachers say you can win souls for twenty cents. Now if I could win souls for twenty cents; I’d rob a bank. You say, “Now, Bro. Vayle, noooo.” I’m honest and sincere because if I could rob the bank even to get money to win souls at twenty cents, I’d be doing a good thing.
You see, how ridiculous and spiritually stupid you can be if you don’t know that Word? You can’t win souls for twenty cents. You can’t win them by a program. It must be in the Spirit of God by faith. God wants to reward us. And God is not pleased with us, especially this Laodicean age. All He can do is pronounce, well, an anathema upon this generation because they’re increased in goods. They lack nothing. They don’t need God. What a tragic situation for the church nominal, corporate to find itself in, that it doesn’t need God. And God stands outside the door and knocking and begging individuals to come a part that He might be able to bless them, because He is the faithful God.
5You know that that is one of the first revelations you find about God. I believe the very first place in Scripture where the word ‘God’ is mentioned; the Spirit of God, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” I believe that word from the Hebrew signifies that ‘God is the Strong One bound by an oath’. Bound to keep His Word; that’s why He is the faithful God. And God wants to be all in all to us. It’s not enough to say that, either He is Lord of all or He is not Lord at all. That can be a cliché. I’m not much for clichés, and you know, little bright things. I want the Word. And in the Word, He says, “You don’t please Me, unless I am doing something for you.”
And I say tonight, as I said this morning, when has God done something for you last? You know a tremendous joy in this life is to know that God has done something for us. Of course, the greatest joy is to know that God indwells us and is in us. But to know that God is on your side doing for you, my, what confidence that is. You can be like a lamb led to the slaughter, but God is doing something wonderful and blessed for you.
6Then we also found out that of all the weapons of our warfare; it says, ‘above all’ taking the shield of faith. We found out that didn’t mean that the shield of faith was the most important, although axiomatically it is, but it means that nothing works without it. The Word of God doesn’t work without it. The breastplate of righteousness doesn’t work without it. You got to believe that you have the righteousness of God or you will never begin to communicate that out into the world. You’ve got to believe in the preparation that God gave you or you can be an absolute flop.
Do you realize, brother/sister, I think most of you do realize that in the psychology of salesmanship, you have made the sale before you have even knocked on that door. Before you climbed the steps and knocked on that door, your sale was either won or lost. You see? What am I driving at? I’m driving at the fact that you may have all the techniques worked down to perfection. You may understand everything about sales and the economy of sales, but unless you have a dynamic faith you will never be a salesman. You can’t do it. Your sale is not made when you are speaking; it is made before you even open your mouth. You ask anybody that understands salesmanship and they’ll tell you that’s the truth because it is the truth. And that’s what we’re talking about here in faith. You can be the best prepared person in all this world and who is better prepared than a Christian because he is identified with Christ, and yet how many can put Him across? Pardon that expression, but how many are living it? There’s no faith in it. You see?
7What about the girdle of truth? What about the Word of God Itself? This Word, do you realize that the One who spoke this Word is the same One who spoke the same Word and created all the worlds as we know them today? And that same Word upholds the worlds as we know them today. And yet that same Word is of none effect unless It’s mixed with faith. So we’re in a very, very important subject. We walk by faith. We live by faith. We overcome by faith. And in fact you don’t make a move without faith. Because if you do it is sin, for whatsoever is not of faith, to him it is sin. You can’t even actually eat or drink without faith. Because the Scripture says, “If you eat or drink without faith it becomes sinful to you.”
In other words, brother/sister, we are locked up to faith in God. Did you hear what I said? There’s certain things I want you to remember as I repeat them. We are locked up in faith toward God. You have no access to God except by faith. There is no outworking of God’s grace in our lives except by faith. God does not move except on the grounds of faith. So our subject becomes very, very, very important as we understand just the importance of faith at all.
8Now, if you were to have studied faith as I have studied it, you will come across something which is very, very startling. And that is you will be startled to find out that it is wrong according to Scripture to pray for faith. Because you see, you don’t pray for what you’ve already got. Because if you pray for what you’ve got, ignoring what you have then you are acting as though God gave it not and you make God a liar. You are saying, “Lord, give me faith,” When God says, “You already have faith.” You say, “Now, Lord, look here, I ought to know better.”
God says, “Well, just don’t talk back to me.” You see, there’s too much talking back to God and God does not like it.
Does any parent like his child talking back? “Don’t you dare talk back to me!” Lippy kids are the bane of civilization. Nothing burns me up more than to have somebody talk back, a little child talk back. I know when you get to be grandpa; you’re supposed to be all sweet and sugar. But you ask my granddaughter if I take it. She’ll tell you grandpa does not take it. She’s only five years old. She knows that talking back is not one thing to be endured. Don’t talk back to God. Talk to God, yes. But don’t talk back. We’ll talk about that some time, maybe it’s a whole message.
9Now, you don’t pray for faith, because you’ve already got it. Now listen to me. In the Bible there are two kinds of faith mentioned. One is normal human faith with which we are all born and one is the supernatural gift of God. Now, everybody is born with human faith. The best example of human faith is found in the Book of Acts, chapter 26 or 27 it’s somewhere in that vicinity, 26th chapter, beginning at verse 27 and it says: Paul is speaking and he said,
(27) King Agrippa, believest thou the prophets? I know that thou believest.
Now this was not a man using discernment. Paul knew Agrippa. And if you know your history you will know that Agrippa was one of the foremost historians of his day and perhaps the foremost student of religion in the Roman Empire amongst the Romans. He had already come to the conclusion that the only religion that was sensible, and therefore no doubt true, was the monotheistic religion of the Hebrews. And Paul said, “I know that you believe.” And he did believe, but his believing was simply human. You will notice that Paul continued.
(28) …Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.
(29) And Paul said, I would to God, that not only thou, but also all that hear me this day, were both almost, and altogether such as I am, except (for) these bonds.
10Here is an example of a man who believes. He’s a good example, because he’s in the Bible. You know there isn’t one of us who doesn’t have the same kind of faith that Agrippa had. It is normal human faith. But it’s not the faith that you need to bring you into a vital relationship to Almighty God, because this is the kind of faith that makes mistakes. It’s the kind of faith that will swindle you and there isn’t one of you here tonight that’s over sixteen and maybe younger than sixteen who hasn’t been swindled, because you believe when you shouldn’t believe. I believe …?... I’m out a lot of money tonight. I have no hopes of getting it, unless God does something nice for me. But I believe and I was taken.
Many a woman lost her life literally by the fact that she believed a man who lied to her and left her shamed and disgraced. And many a man has, perhaps, believed just as wrongly and his life was shamed and disgraced. I’m not talking about human faith tonight. I’m talking about another kind of faith which is in the Word of God.
11Over in the Word of God in 2 Th 3:2 it says here,
(2) …that all men have not faith.
There must be, therefore, some faith in the Word of God, something that some men have and some men don’t have. The Scripture says, that all men don’t have a certain kind of faith that evidently all should have if they’re going to be vital as Christians.
12Now, over in the Book of Romans, the 12th chapter, and in verse 3, it says, at the last place…verse 3.
(3) …(that) God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
In one place Paul said, “All men do not have faith.” Another place he says, “All men do have faith.” This is not a contradiction in the Word of God but in Thessalonians, it says, “Wicked and unreasonable men do not have faith.” But in the Book of Romans, it says, “My brethren.” He’s talking to the brethren; so therefore, every single child of God does have a measure of faith which was given to him by God. This is a faith then that you are not born with in the sense of a natural human being. It is a faith that has been given specifically by Almighty God Himself. It says that God hath dealt to every single brother the measure of faith.
13Now to deal in this respect, is like a man dealing out a deck of cards. Four hands at thirteen cards a piece. It is like the soup kitchen where everybody gets a dipperful of soup. Perhaps a dipperful full of beans, and a dipperful of corn, meat or something else. It is I might illustrate tonight, is taking this little tumbler here of water, and if this were full of water, and this water represented faith, every single child of God has the same measure. Peter had the same measure as John, as Paul, as Stephen, as Phillip, as Mary, as Martha, as Dorcas, as every single child of God, as every one of you here tonight. If you are a child of God you have the identical measure of faith that Paul had. That Peter had. Every single child of God. Every single truly born again Christian, every one has the measure of faith. You were dealt it, a literal dole, you could get no more, you could get no less. You were given the identical amount.
14Now when did you get this? You got it previous to being born again because the Scripture says in Ephesians, the 2nd chapter, verses 8 and 9.
(8) For by grace are (you) saved through faith; and that (faith is) not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
(9) Not of works, lest any man should boast.
The faith whereby you were born again is a literal gift of Almighty God, because human faith cannot bring you into the relationship of the Baptism with the Holy Ghost. Your own human faith cannot place you in the body of Jesus Christ. Your own human faith cannot cause the Holy Ghost to come in and fill you. Otherwise, then Agrippa would have been saved when he believed. But he didn’t believe; he had human faith. If human faith could save you, every single person tonight who believes in Jesus Christ would be born again. Because the Bible distinctly tells us that he that believeth Jesus is the Christ is born of God. And I can go to every Protestant church in America and every Catholic church and I can ask ninety-nine percent of the people that are adherents to those various churches and I would say, “Do you believe that Jesus is the Christ?” And they would say, “I, absolutely, positively, do believe it.” And many will die for their faith. But they are no more born again than those pews are born again, because they do not have the faith of Almighty God.
15This is why our churches are filled with goats, and mostly it’s the preachers fault and the Bible school’s fault. I’m against Bible schools for this reason: the Bible school teaches the Word of God apart from the Holy Ghost. I’m not saying the teachers aren’t anointed, but I’m just saying anybody sitting there, hearing It, doesn’t necessarily get It. And our Bible students make a great mistake, in a measure, not always, but in a measure, and most of our personal workers do the same thing, because they think that everybody can get saved. They don’t understand sovereignty. They don’t understand the election of Almighty God. They don’t understand that the Word of God distinctly says that, “Jacob have I loved and Esau have I hated.” “It’s not of him that willeth or him that runneth, but of God who sheweth mercy.” So they’re taught this, they say, now these verses right here, they bring a man to conviction.
They even go over here to the book of Galatians, let me see if I can find it over here, in the 6th chapter, it says over here,
(7) Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.
16Now the personal workers are taught that you use that on a sinner. And they say, “Now look, sinner, if you’re going to sow sin; you’re going to reap death.” Now that’s true, but that’s exactly wrong, because this verse was not written to a sinner; it was written to the born again. But they’re taught in the verses they say now these verses here will bring a man under conviction and so they use all these verses to bring a man under conviction. Such as, “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God. (That’s true.) There is none righteous no not one. They’ve all gone astray,” and so on. We repeat those verses very glibly. Then we say now, the Scripture says that Jesus has the remedy. You see? “Although all we like sheep have gone astray, he laid upon him the iniquity of us all.”
Now that they turn around and they usually say, and they’re instructed to say, “Now look here, my friend, if the iniquity of you was put upon God then where is your iniquity? Where’s your sin?”
“Well, it’s upon God.”
“Well, if that’s the case then you don’t have any sin. That’s right. Well, shake my hand, you’re saved.”
What do we call this? We call it proof-text salvation, what it is. No more saved than a dead horse. You see the preachers and the preacher he says now, “Who…now you don’t want to go to hell.” Look, I don’t only not want to go to hell; I don’t want my finger even burned. Ever get your finger burned? Oh, brother, I’ve had some honey’s. I not only don’t want to go to hell and burn; I don’t want to even get a little scorch down here. In fact, I don’t like fire so well. I don’t even like the smell of smoke, bothers my sinuses. I think they bother God’s sinuses more than mine. He’s against all things that defile the body. But you see…so they say now, “You don’t want to go to hell.” Nobody wants to go to hell. Don’t try to sell a man salvation.
17There’s only one thing that you can do. You can do what the Holy Ghost did through Ananias through Paul. “Go down, and lay hands upon him and tell him the great things he’s going to suffer.” [Acts 9:16] We have a positive gospel. We don’t tell people…don’t you dare tell people that it’s rosy. If they’re not prepared to come and suffer for Christ, they’re not coming prepared to be born again. Don’t you know that salvation is a death? It is. You got to die and you always bear in your body the dying of our Lord Jesus Christ. But the preachers have not preached the gospel. They preach part of the gospel. So you got a part time Christian.
They have not preached the gospel. They preached part of the gospel. So you got a part time Christian. Have you ever seen a baby that’s born with just part there and a part not there? They’re monsters. They’re more people that are part born in and not there. That’s what’s wrong. We’ve got monstrosities today within the land. Like when the sons of God married the daughters of men. They were giants and giants aren’t real normal people. That’s what’s wrong in the church. The people have not known that salvation is of God as Jonah said, “From start to finish.” It’s got to be God because if it’s not God in you, you’re lost. “For he that hath not the Spirit of Christ is none of His.” And there is only one kind of faith that will make you pass from death unto life that can bring Christ in that can make you know that you know that you know that you know and that’s the faith of God Himself, the measure of faith. Because apart from a supernatural faith you cannot know that you have passed from death unto life.
18If we want to have the truth in our midst and we want the fruit that God’s Word says is ours and is available by the Holy Spirit working through the Word in our lives, we’ve got to stick with this Word. And it’s time we stopped our phoney altar call. Why bring an altar in the church when God kicked it out? Who came forward to where at Pentecost? What is the matter with us? You say, “Bro. Vayle, I like the altar.”
I don’t. I had a man come to me one day, I said, “When were you born again?”
He said, “I went to the altar ten years ago.”
I said, “I didn’t ask you when you went to the altar” I said, “When were you born again?”
19I like what Rolf Barner said, “Don’t even come forward lest you should put your faith in one step that you took, rather than awe in the living God who alone is able to save you.” I thank God that nobody asked me to come and get right with God. I thank God that nobody asked me to come to an altar. All I had to do was walk in the building where people had God in their lives and I said, “They’ve got Him and I haven’t got Him. Woe is me, I’m a sinner. What must I do to be saved?” And I knew that I knew that my sins were washed away. It’s got to be God, my brother, my sister, because salvation is of the Lord. “Cursed is man who puts his trust in you or maketh flesh his arm.” Any reed, or any stack that you and I put our hands upon except God’s stack, become a broken reed and will pierce us and destroy us.
20This faith is a measure of a supernatural gift, because it comes from God. And you were given that otherwise you never could’ve been born again. Because by grace are you saved through faith and it can’t be by grace, if it depended upon your faith. It can only be by grace if it’s His faith. Because if you’ve got to use something you’ve got in order to obtain, it is not grace, it is works. Now get it. People want to read this verse, not the way it’s written. They want to read it this way. “By grace he is saved through faith and that grace of course, is not yourself, you get it by faith.” Well, good night, if I came along and I said, “Now, I’m giving you this wristwatch. It’s free. You take it.” And of course, you know that you didn’t do anything about it, it’s all free, I’m giving it to you.
You say, “Boy, that guy is a kook.” Do you think God is a kook? Huh? He’s not saying in here, “By grace you’re saved through faith and I want you to notice the grace is free but the faith your own.” It’s by grace are you saved through faith and the faith is not human faith. It’s the gift of God. And the Bible says God had dealt to every brother the measure of faith.
21Dr. Pink brings out, “That faith is an evidence of being born again.” It is in a way, but I don’t see it that way. I see it this way, because Dr. Pink never saw this. You needed God’s own faith to bring you to the same relationship as Jesus Christ, but the Bible teaches it right here. Here it is. The faith isn’t yours. Did you cause yourself to be born? You had nothing to do with it. Your parents really had nothing to do with it either. It was God’s sovereign purpose that brought your parents together that brought you to life. They thought it was their chemistry. It was God’s chemistry. Don’t worry. “By grace are you saved through faith.” The measure of faith was dealt to you and if you are a child of God tonight you have no more and no less than any saint of God. Paul, Peter, James, John, you name it.
22Now, let’s follow this up closely. Now let us find exactly what saving faith is. Turn to James, the 2nd chapter, and notice in verse 1.
(1) My brethren, (Notice, that James is talking to whom? Brethren. To whom was Paul speaking? Brethren.) My brethren, have not the faith of (…not ‘in’ but ‘of’.)
Did you hear what I said? Not faith ‘in’ but faith ‘of’. Every Word of God has power. Every Word of God is perfect. Don’t you dare change one Word. If it says the faith of God then it’s not faith in God, because you can have faith ‘in’ God and not the faith ‘of’ God. Is that true? Faith is a product ‘of’ God, that which emanates or derives from God, when it’s faith ‘of’. When it’s ‘faith in’ it can even be the faith of the devil, because they also believe and tremble. But no devil has the faith of God, but he has faith in God. And nominal Christianity has faith in God but it doesn’t have the faith of God. And James said, and remember, “In the mouth of two witnesses…” He’s dealing with Paul now, saying what Paul said, by the same Holy Ghost and if we’ve got the Holy Ghost we’ll say what the Word says.
(1) My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, (Notice, notice the language. Faith of our Lord Jesus Christ: all three titles are there. Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, that tells who He is, God very God, one God,) with respect of persons.
What were they doing back there? They had the measure of the faith of Jesus Christ each one of them and yet when some rich man came in they said, “Oh boy, we’ve been wanting to build a church around that corner there on that lot. That’s a very nice lot, of course, it’s a very high price. Now if we just buttered that fellow up; he’ll give us the money.” Now come on, don’t tell me churches don’t do that. I’ve got to the place, thank God, when I hear of money I start to run. I get indigestion and I’m so glad I do. My…sort of that good old human milk kind of curdles, and I’m so glad it does, when I run across rich people, because I don’t want to put my trust in any man for a nickel. I want to believe God for it. That’s what’s wrong with every church and every organization. They don’t put the spiritual men in…the place of leadership. They put the businessmen.
24The saddest thing in all this world to my way of thinking and the proof that we are in the Laodicean age; this is the first time the businessmen of every church have organized to shove the program of God. And believe me, it is a program; it’s not God, because money will do it; souls for twenty cents. Oh, delicious…. Who every heard of such blasphemy? Yet they say a soul for twenty cents. Program. And James said, “Shame on you. How dare you look to men with money when you’ve got the faith of Jesus Christ Himself in men?” Who do we put on our board? Men that are successful in business. And what kind of a church have you got? Overnight it’s a club. You don’t put businessmen on church boards. You put those whom God have ordained. You say, “Bro. Vayle, don’t you believe in trustee boards?” If the government demands it; have a trustee board but make it a trustee board. Keep them out of the other part. James spoke out against it. Right in the first century they didn’t even know what they had. And I can go to almost any church in America and they never heard that they had a measure of this faith. They didn’t even know about it. And when they read their Bibles, they read it this way, “My brethren, have not the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ and not faith in it all.” It’s a faith ‘of’.
25Now, that’s true, but let’s turn to Galatians, the 2nd chapter, and verse 20.
(20) I (have been) crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; (and) yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God,…
Not ‘in’ the Son of God, but the faith ‘of’ the Son of God. Now isn’t Jesus Christ the Son of God. Huh? All right. In the mouth of two witnesses, Paul says he’s got the faith of the Son of God. James says he’s got the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ. He said, “I live by the faith of, not ‘in’ the Son of God.” All right, that’s a good witness. Let’s try for one more witness.
26Let’s go back to Acts, the 3rd chapter, verse 16.
(16) And (Jesus) name through faith in (Jesus’) name hath made this man strong, whom (you) see and know: yea, the faith which is by (or from Jesus) hath given (this man) his perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
Peter said the faith which is from Jesus. Jesus’ own faith is what Peter said he had, was Jesus’ Name that gave this man healing. Three witnesses; Acts 3:16. It’s right there for you, the faith of Jesus Christ.
27This is why Jesus’ Name is not effective. It’s the same as the Word. You’ve got to use it in faith, if every single prayer that every Christian uttered in the Name of Jesus Christ came to fruition; every one would be a prince or a princess in a castle and have a fleet of Cadillac’s. We have reduced the Name of Jesus in prayer to a rabbit’s foot, because we haven’t used faith with it. Peter never said it was Jesus’ Name that made the man whole; he said it was Jesus’ Name plus faith. Jesus’ Name will not work anymore than the Word will work unless you use it in faith. That’s why the Word says, “Thou shalt not bear or take the Name of the Lord thy God in vain.” It doesn’t mean to curse. It means you shall not literally bear His Name and use It in vain and when you use It in vain, you use It apart from faith. That Name must be used with faith or It will not work; it is just as helpless as the Word without faith.
As the Scripture said, “Because the Word was not heard by them that heard it with faith…mixed with faith it did not profit.” It became condemnatory and when you pray without faith, even using Jesus’ Name you can even backslid doing it, because It condemns you. Because you go away saying, “It didn’t work. I wonder if it will work next time.” It will always work if you mix it with faith. Or in plain English, my brother, my sister, and don’t let anybody leave this building, [and] say, “Lee Vayle, doesn’t believe in prayer.” But let me put it this way to make it hard and fast. I would suggest if you’re not prepared to believe God for what you’re asking, don’t you dare pray. And I’ve got Scripture for it which we’ll bring out later on.
28What if I were to ask you tonight: what would you like to have as your relationship to God, what we’re talking about in the realm of prayer? What would you like your relationship to be with God as a creature here who has free course to God and is supposed to be able to reach Him and talk with Him and get answers, what would you like to have in your life? Well, you say, “Bro. Vayle, I’d sure like to be able to just go to God any time and say, ‘Lord, here I am.’”
“Yes, child, yes, I’m listening to you.”
And then give Him my petition with, you know, freedom and boldness and then go away knowing I’ve got it. You know I wish I had that. You got it and don’t even know you got it. You want me to prove it to you? Turn to Ephesians, the 3rd chapter, let’s start at verse 11.
(11) According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:
(12) (Now,) In whom (that’s the Lord Jesus) we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of (Jesus Christ).
29Now listen to me! In the Greek the word ‘boldness’ is parrhesia which means ‘the freedom of speech’. Do you know that you have? You are right in the Holy of Holies, the minute you say, “My God,” and mean it. The minute that you address yourself to God in prayer and mean it, is you are serious, God is all attention. Because, “He liveth to make intercession.” He has only one purpose and that is High Priest to the saints.
Now, it says, “We have boldness and access.” Access? You say, “Bro. Vayle, I just don’t know that I’ve got access to God.” The Bible says you have. It says you got bold access. You like the man who’s going to the boss and hopes he might get a raise in wages and he timidly goes and knocks on the door; timidly comes in and all sort of flustered and all. “Oh, if I could just reach him and just have that…”
“Oh, you got it as a Christian; access to God, literal access to God. And notice it says, with confidence.”
“This is the confidence we have in Him, if we ask anything concerning His Will we know that He hear us and if we know that He hears us, we know that we have the petition that we desired of Him.” That’s exactly what the Holy Spirit said through John, said through Paul. And this is the experience of every single Christian, on what grounds? Because of the measure of faith.
30I said awhile ago, we’re praying for faith and we ought to be ashamed because we already got it. And here we are hurting ourselves, literally destroying ourselves as Christians, because we believe the devil’s lie instead of God’s Word. Because the Bible says tonight, “That because of the faith of Jesus Christ we have boldness and access and confidence. What more could you want? You say that’s exactly what I want as my Christian experience. That’s exactly what we’ve got tonight because of His faith.
You say, “Bro. Vayle, I don’t feel like it.”
I didn’t ask you if you felt like it. I’m showing you what you got. The very thing that you’ve been crying for, hoping for, begging for, and sometimes just because you somehow got there by sweetness and light and a few other little things that you did, you got yourself into the place where “Well, I think I have it now, glory.” But you knew tomorrow you wouldn’t have it. Well, what kind of salvation is that? That to me is pretty low brow. That’s something pretty insignificant. In fact, that’s something very, very discouraging that I might have it today and not have it tomorrow. Or I had it a year ago or I might have it two years from now or I might pray and fast and get it. Hogwash! You got it.
You see this idea of not having it is just as fallacious as a lot of preachers get up and they teach you and they say, “You know something funny when a man backslides. He never ever gets back to where he was.” Did you know that’s a lot of bunk? Because if you got back to where you were, you’d backslide again; God takes you beyond what you were. Certainly, it’s Amen. I know what I’m talking about.
31See, a righteous man can fall seven times, but God will lift him up. God says, “Who art thou, oh man, to judge another man’s servant, unto his own master he standeth or falleth. And yea, God is able to make him stand.”
“He that hath begun a good work in you will perfect it unto the day of the Lord Jesus Christ.”
He said, “And not one will I lose, but I’ll raise him up.” See.
People don’t know that Word and it’s the lack of the Word that destroys the people. “My people perish because of lack of knowledge.” And there’s only one knowledge and that’s the Word of God.
You say, “Bro. Vayle, I heard from God.”
If you didn’t hear from this Word, you didn’t hear from God. Or if the voice you heard wasn’t this Word, you didn’t hear from God.
That’s why women say, “God called me to preach.” God never called any woman to preach. Never has, never will. Because God’s Word’s against it. Well, make up your mind. You say, “Bro. Vayle, I believe in women preachers and I got the Holy Ghost.” You better examine your Holy Ghost, honey, because it’s not the Holy Ghost I got. It’s not the Holy Ghost God put in this Word, because the Spirit and the Word are one. Not two. They’re one, not even in agreement, they go beyond agreement; they are One. See, this glass doesn’t agree with itself. It is a glass. That’s the way the Word and the Spirit is. And the Spirit and the Word said tonight, “In Jesus Christ we have boldness and access with confidence because we’ve got His faith.” You don’t feel like it; we’re not talking about feelings, we’re talking about what God said.
32Let’s go to Gal 2:16.
(16) Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ,…
Now I told you awhile ago if it was your own faith that saved you, you’re under law. There’s the proof. Notice it. “Knowing.” Paul said here’s something we know. We’re not justified by anything that man has of himself, but by the faith of Jesus Christ.
(16) …even we have believed in Jesus, that we might be justified by the faith of (Jesus) Christ, (He says it twice in one verse and each time it’s the faith ‘of’. It’s not the faith ‘in’. It’s the faith ‘of’ Jesus Christ Himself that you have received a measure.)
33In Romans, the 3rd chapter, and in verse 23.
(22) Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ…(not faith ‘in’ Jesus Christ, no sir, not faith ‘in’ but faith ‘of’.)
No place in Scripture does it say that you become righteous by your faith in Him. It’s by the faith of Him that you place in Him because if you placed your own faith in God you’d be lost tonight. See, that’s why the people of God are a virile, powerful people, because they’ve go… all the weapons of their warfare are of God and their very faith is the faith of Almighty God Himself. How much faith do you think God got in His own Word? Huh? Well, how much? Who can describe it? But you’ve got a measure of that faith: the very faith of Almighty God.
34Now, let’s go a step further. According to the Scriptures as found in the 11th chapter of Mark, Jesus Christ prophesied or predicted the availability of this faith of which we are speaking: in the Book of Mark, 11th chapter. Now notice in this chapter of Mark; let’s begin, oh say, about verse 12.
(12) And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, he was hungry.
(13) And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply (or if by chance) he might find (some) thing thereon: and when he came to (the fig tree), he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet. (Jesus knew that.)
(14) …Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee (henceforth) hereafter for ever. And his disciples heard it. (Notice, that little word in there, ‘the disciples heard it’?)
(15) And they (came) to Jerusalem: and Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves;
(16) And would not suffer…any man should carry any vessel through the temple.
(17) And he taught, saying unto them, (It is not written, or…), Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations (a) house of prayer? but (you) have made it a den of thieves.
And they went their way, he taught them saying, my house shall be called a house of all nations a house of prayer, made it a den of thieves.
(18) And the scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy him: for they feared him, because all the people (were) astonished at his doctrine.
(19) And when even was come, he went out of the city.
(20) And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. (Not from the leaves down. See, trees dry from the top down. See, sap goes down. This died in the roots up, very peculiar; dead right to the roots, complete stone dead; dry, dry, dry.) [End of side one of tape]
(21) And (they said), Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away.
(22) And Jesus (said), Have (the) faith (of) God.
Now the Bible here says, “Have faith in God.” But that’s not… You look in your margin, see. See, the poor translators they thought that this would be just too much to put in the Bible so they soften it down. Now you don’t soften down anything God says. Don’t try to soften anything just put it the way it is. Have the faith of God.
35Now listen to me! This was an object lesson that Jesus gave his disciples. You can teach by precept and by example. And he was teaching both precept and example by teaching first of all from example. He wanted to get a precept across to them. A law, a spiritual law if you like, and so he knew the only way to do it would be to curse the fig tree. So he walked over it and said, “Let no man hereafter forever eat fruit of you.”
And they said, “Well, we’ve seen Him still storms, multiply loaves and fishes and make wine from water, but this is the strangest thing, never heard him talk to a tree. Now talking to that storm wasn’t too bad, but talking to a tree. I just wonder what he’s got in mind.”
But, you see, Christ was attracting their attention, in order to show them something. And so He let them go and they went to Jerusalem; they came back and the tree was dead, plumb dry dead, like it had been dead for many, many years. And they said, “Look at that. Look at it. The tree is dead. How was it done?”
And He said, “Simple, it’s done by the faith of God. I’ve got the faith of God, therefore I can do it.”
36Now many people stop right there, and they say well, that’s right. Now to stop there, it’s for Jesus to be saying, “Well, I‘ll tell you boys, how it is. What it is, you see, I’ve got the faith of God, of course, you can’t have it. Now if you had the faith of God you could do it, but ho, ho, ho, you understand, not for you.” Now was that what He was doing? No. Because the Bible says, in Deut 29:29: “The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children…, that we may do all the works of the law.” This was the first time that the faith of God was revealed to mankind and the availability of that same faith was promised to mankind. You say, “How do you know it was promised to mankind?” Because Jesus said, [Mark 11:]
(23) For verily I say unto you, (when he said, Have the faith of God, I say unto you, because of the availability of this faith of God, you shall say to this mountain, whoever has that measure of faith, can) say to this mountain, Be thou removed and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he (said) shall come to pass; he shall have what...ever he (said).
37But listen, human faith can’t do that. You can’t say in human faith, “Mountain be moved. Bless God, it’s got to go.” You say, “Man, I don’t have that kind of power. I don’t have what it takes.” And you don’t have what it takes. He’s talking about the faith of God which is the dynamics of assurance that make you say and know that it’s got to go because you’re not dealing with human faith, you’re dealing with God’s own faith. You’re not a human being any longer. You’re a new creation, whereby you’re literally joined to Almighty God, God creating Himself in mankind. And you’re that mankind, the Bride, the true church and Jesus having revealed the faith of God and the availability and not only the availability but the actual literal future positive possession of that faith that, “Listen to me, that fig tree died because I’ve got the faith of God and I’m going to give it to you.” And that faith not being human faith you don’t ever need to doubt it. It will work. Therefore you’ll be able to say and know when you say it with assurance; it’s going to come to pass. And it will come to pass.
38And notice what he said. Because this is the law of the faith of God because this is how the faith of God works, because it’s real because it is that kind of thing which says it will go and it will go,
(24) Therefore I say…to you, What…soever (things you) desire, when (you) pray, believe that (you have received) them, and (they) shall (be yours).
That’s not putting the burden upon human faith, that’s making you to see once and for all the kind of faith you’ve got in your possession. God hasn’t left the work that He ordained to be wrought upon this earth in the hands of a few men with gifts. He ordained that every single child of God would have a part in the extension of the kingdom. And every brother, every child of God, every sister in Jesus Christ has that measure of faith that makes them absolutely unconquerable or more than conquerors in the realm of faith.
Prayer has become now what John said. “This is the confidence we have in him, if we ask anything concerning His Will we know that He hears us and if we know that He hears, we know that we’ve already got what we’ve asked for.” [1 Jn 5:14-15]
39Jesus said because this is how the faith works, here are the laws laid down concerning its operation, or one of the laws. And that is it positively brings things to pass, even as the Word of God has said it. You know that this is not human faith that I’m talking about. You know that no man is born with this kind of assurance. No man is born with this ability. It just does not exist. And yet this same ability has been found and is found in every single child of God. But they don’t even know they possess it. So therefore how can they use it? They are too much like people who are born with great talent, but have never had a chance to express it. I believe with all my heart that the greatest musicians have never been heard, because they never picked up a violin or sat down to a piano stool or picked up an instrument to play on it. I believe the greatest artist have never produced anything, because they never had a chance to pick up an easel to do something with it. And if you don’t believe that’s true, then how come two boys from Peru were seen in Carnegie Hall recently. Those two boys like were more or less from a head hunter type of people, wild and rugged. They one day traveling in the forest found a guitar that somebody lost and they found it in time before the thing got hurt with the weather and they learned to play it. And I heard them one night and I never heard better music in my life, and they never took one lesson. But they had a talent and they used it.
40That’s what’s wrong with Christians, they got it. They don’t even know they’ve got it, and they’re not even trying to use it. But like James said, “You’re taking ways not to use it, shame on you.” The very thing your heart craves for, the romance; the ‘Apostolic Optimism’ as [John Henry] Jowett called it. Where is it today in the Christian? You talk about believing God; they don’t even know what you’re talking about. Why you can’t even get some people to tithe, let alone do anything else. My God, if they can’t do that, they can’t be born again. Faith goes beyond that, brother/sister. If you’re a child of God tonight, your heart’s got to cry for the romance that is within Christ. I am a sentimentalist and I’m a romanticist from the ground up when it comes to Jesus Christ. I want it, to see it in action. I prayed for years that God would help me to major in faith. That’s why I preach faith today. I got this sermon, by these sermons I preached by fasting, by praying, by studying every book I could get my hand on and calling upon God. But it’s right here and I’m preaching you the truth, and you can’t deny it. Because it’s the Word of God. Hide it under a bushel if you want; it’s still the truth, you got it. You’ve been given a measure of the faith of Jesus Christ Himself.
41Now, what is this faith of God? Because this is the faith of God that Jesus predicted. Have the faith of God. Now Jesus is God which He is, and to have His faith is to have the faith of God. Now, can we learn something vital about this faith? We can. We can actually find it, perhaps in Scripture exposed to us by illustration. Can we find somebody in the Bible that had it? And can we learn how he used it? And therefore by learning how he used it, follow in his footsteps and use it too. The answer is evident. Father Abraham and we are told to follow in the steps of faithful Abraham.
42So turn now to the Book of Romans, the 4th chapter, and we’re sure going to just beat the Book of Romans to pieces, especially chapter 4 from now on. We’re going to milk it dry, as least as dry as we can with the help of the Holy Ghost. Now listen, in the 4th chapter, verses 16 through 22. It says,
(16) Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,
(17) (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, (Notice, that’s just like the book of Hebrews which I quoted that verse, you know. He that cometh to God must believe that He is and so on.) …before him who he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
(18) Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.
(19) And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sara's womb:
(20) He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving (God the) glory…(giving) glory to God;
(21) And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, (or God had promised; God) …was able also to perform.
(22) And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.
Now this portion of Scripture reveals to us certain definitions or characteristics concerning the faith of God and Abraham’s understanding of that faith. That’s why this portion is so very, very important.
43Now, let’s look at it. We’ll read verse 17.
(17) …I have made thee a father of many nations, before him… (before God whom Abraham believed, this) God, who quickens the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
Now, you will notice, that when the Holy Spirit describes Abraham’s faith in God He describes certain qualitative or characteristics in God that makes him the repository or the object of our faith. And it says, “That Abraham believed God who quickens the dead and calleth those things which are not as though they were.” Now, I’m trying to go slowly here to show you something, because this is very vital. Before you can put faith in anything—now listen carefully, not that you aren’t listening, but be sure to get this—before you can put faith in anything, the object of your faith must have resident within it the qualities that make it worthy of your faith.
44Illustrated: I can’t put faith in this microphone to produce hot chocolate, or coffee or tea. It doesn’t have what it takes. If I want a machine to produce hot coffee, chocolate or tea; I’ve got to go to one of those little automats and put my dime in and it will produce the coffee and the tea and the chocolate. See? Because it’s got resident within it the qualities necessary for me to repose my faith in it for a certain faith. Now, this microphone has the qualities resident within it in order for it to produce what I desire in a microphone.
I’ve got a watch. Now in order for me to put faith in this timepiece, this timepiece must have within it the qualities or characteristics which entitle it to be worthy of my faith. Now, if I am going to keep putting my faith in this watch, then this watch must never change those qualities or characteristics, should it never vary.
45Now I want you to apply that to God. If you are going to put faith in God, God must have two dynamic qualities resident in Him that apply to faith in order for you to repose your faith in Him and get results. The first is ability. He must be able to produce. And secondly, immutability. He must never fail to produce. The minute He can’t produce you can’t put faith in Him. The minute He changes, there’s no use trying to put faith in Him. Because today when you may feel you want something He may not feel like giving it. Then you’re out of luck. God must be both able and immutable. He must have ability and immutability. That this is a hundred percent Scriptural is found over in the book of Joel, the 2nd chapter, and verse 11.
(11) And the Lord shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: (Notice!) for he is strong (ability) that executeth his word (immutability): …
The revelation that we have of Almighty God in Gen 1:1, as I have said is the strong One who has bound Himself by an oath. The God of ability Who will never fail to perform His Word and the immutability of God is based upon Word because you don’t know a thing about God outside of His Word.
46Now, let’s bring this back to Romans the 4th chapter, and it says, in that verse 17.
(17) …before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which (are) not as though they were.
The Holy Spirit here is giving us an insight into the attributes of God that are those attributes upon which we base our faith. See. Now notice, by example, the Holy Spirit does not say, even God who created the earth. Does He? Creation of God then hasn’t got a thing to do with your faith. God is Creator doesn’t have a thing to do with your faith, even though He could create for you. That’s not it at all. God who loves everybody and wants to do everybody good, well, that could be helpful, but that isn’t what it says either. God, Who gave the law, took them through the Red Sea, well, that could be good, but that’s not it either. See. A lot of people don’t understand this. This is what the Bible teaches. It says that God’s qualitative factors, these two characteristics of raising the dead and calling things which are not as though they were are the two things which cause you to have your faith active in God. Well, does it? I know it’s a little cloudy right now, but don’t worry, we’ll take away the clouds. Because we’re going to find out from the Word of God what it means to raise the dead and to call things which are not as though they were. All right.
47Let’s find out what it is to raise the dead. Turn to 2 Corinthians, the 1st chapter, beginning at verse 8.
(8) For we would not, brethren, (See, nobody but brethren will understand this. It’s written to Christians.)…we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life: (we knew we were as good as dead and figured we already were. That’s what it says.) …insomuch…we despaired even (of coming out alive.)
(9) But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God (who raises) the dead:
There’s that very same expression and it has to do with faith. And it doesn’t say one thing about Paul saying, “But we didn’t trust in ourselves but in God who made the heaven and earth, hallelujah.” And I’m putting emphasis on this because I want to show you the majority of us don’t even know what we’re talking about when we talk to God or talk about God. Now we may be mixed up but God isn’t. And I know a lot of preachers use a mix master but I’m trying to use an unmixer.
(9) …but in God who raises the dead:
(10) Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us;
48Now according to this Scripture what does it mean to believe in a God who raises the dead? It means that when God gave you the measure of faith which moves mountains that gives you the ability to stand in the face of any eventually and say what God has said, and know it will come to pass. He is saying that God has reserved to Himself the right because of this measure of faith to put you in a position where you’ve got to trust God, and there’s no other recourse but trusting God. And there is where people rebel. They don’t want it. They say, “Lord, I love this measure of faith and, of course, by it I’ll never get into hot water . And I’ll never have it too tough, and it will never be too rough and oh,…”
Shut-up! You haven’t got a leg to stand on. It’s not in the Word. Stop talking, and listen to what God says. God never asked you for any counsel. Yet we’ve got more backsliding, caterwauling, murmuring, fussing, and feuding and everything else, because nobody wants to understand that faith is predicated upon being in a place where it takes God to raise the dead, means somebody’s got to die.
“Oh, Bro. Vayle, raising the dead is just a sweet little quaint expression that means, you know, there’s going to be a resurrection, and oh, he’s just so delightful.”
Now listen that may be all right for the hybrids or for the goats. But it’s not for sheep, because they’re counted as sheep for the slaughter. Somebody’s got to die, if God’s going to raise the dead. Paul said, “We were pressed out of measure.” We didn’t have a chance as far as our own enablements were able to do something for us, it would take God to do it.
49Ever since God hardened Pharaoh’s heart and tried to show Israel that this is the way God works on the grounds of faith, we have always had a people who were perverse and hated to go God’s way. They said, “Lord, let me just maybe go half way dead. Because you see, Lord it would be pretty good if He raised us and we were just half dead. That would be nice. Don’t…let it get too bad, you know.”
How was God going to raise the dead if nobody died? Huh? I’m talking to you tonight. You’re saying and I’ve been saying for years now, “Now you see my faith; I’ve got great faith and of course, you see, it will never happen.”
Oh yes, it will happen. “Now Lord don’t let my business go bankrupt.” God may bankrupt your business.
“Oh, Lord, don’t let my kids get in trouble.” They may get in more trouble and turn out murderers, you don’t know.
“Lord, don’t let my family break up.” Your family may break up.
“Well, if that happens, I’m quitting.” No, that’s the time to start.
50You just look at Jesus. You look at Paul. You read any book on faith you want when the Bible is the best I know, in fact the 11th chapter of Hebrews, they were sawn asunder, but the Scripture also said, the women received their dead back to life. See. When we talk about faith and mountain moving faith (which is God’s own faith) and the exercise of faith, we’ve got to start right here in the Word where it describes the attributes of God in relation to faith. And you don’t say, “Oh, thou great Creator, hallelujah, you do so and so.”
You say, “Oh God who raises the dead. I’m that dead one, Lord, walking right through the valley of the shadow of death. I will fear no evil for thou art with me. I’m the one, Lord, that’s going on the battlefield. I’m the one that takes up Thy Word and Thy Spirit against the odds, though they enfold me like a flood when the waters come they’ll not overflow me. And every tongue that rise in judgment, Thou will condemn, oh God. And I am the sheep, the one upon the altar of sacrifice, I’ve died daily.”
You got some idea tonight that your faith is going to carry you away the exigencies and the tragedies of life, my brother, my sister, you haven’t even begun to become a babe in Jesus Christ. Huh? Oh, this is a new tack on faith, isn’t it? This is what we don’t like to hear. We like the positive gospel kind of thing that says, “Well, everything’s all sweet now, we got you out of hell, going to get you to heaven, beds of roses, honey, you never get sick now.” Is that so? You may die. You could die of cancer tonight and that wouldn’t annul one thing about God’s good Word of grace and how the Lord is able to heal and everything else. Huh? It’s the measure of God’s faith, isn’t it? You got it.
51Let’s just look at some Scriptures about what God leads us into. Let’s go to Psalms, the 46th Psalm. Ps 46:1-3.
(1) God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. (Now don’t stop there and don’t glamorize the next part of it, just take it the way it’s written and live it.)
(2) Therefore (we will not) fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried…to the midst of the sea;
(3) Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. …
Now that’s what the Bible says. Because of God, your relationship to Him on the grounds of faith, you don’t care what happens, let it happen. All the time trying to stop things from happening. If you could do that you’d stop breathing and be dead.
52Turn to Isaiah 54, you could hold your thumb in the Psalms there, if you like, Isaiah 54 and this is the same as what it said in the Psalms, but this time it’s changed a bit for in verse 10, it says,
(10) For the mountains shall depart, (The other verse said, though they be shaken and removed, this says they shall depart.) and the hills (shall) be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace (the rest of faith) be removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy on (you).
Mercy? What do you mean mercy? That’s right. You say, “If God were merciful He wouldn’t let it happen in the first place.”
That’s where you’re wrong and don’t understand God. You’ve got a misconception tonight about God. You say, “God don’t let it happen.”
God’s going to let it happen. God’s going to make it happen. See, He told Moses, “I’m going to harden his heart.” And when Pharaoh’s heart got hardened, Moses said, “Oh God, oh this is terrible. Not only You didn’t deliver, You made it worse.”
And God said, “What are you talking about? I told you I was going to do it. Kept My Word, didn’t I?”
Well, isn’t that the way it was? Read your Bibles. God told Moses what He was going to do and it happened and he didn’t believe it. But isn’t it wonderful, if God said I’m going to give you trouble and it happens, and then if He says, “I’m going to take you out of trouble.” That’s got to happen, too. And He did it. God isn’t going to lie. When He said, “I’m going to press you right to death.” He meant just what He said. And one day He’s going to let us die. If He doesn’t come forth, we’ll die. But thank God He’s going to raise in the Resurrection.
53Let’s go back to Psalms again, this is now Psalm 119, this is verse 87 we’re going to look at. And it says,
(87) They had almost consumed me (notice it)…They had almost consumed me upon earth; (pressed out of measure, almost killed, this is true about David, you know that because Saul tried to kill him.) but I forsook not thy precepts.
I believe God, what You said. See? Ps 118: 17-19.
(17) I shall not die, but live, (pretty close to death, but he didn’t die,) and (shall) declare the works of the LORD.
(18) The LORD hath chastened me sore: but he hath not given me over unto death. (Just near it, but I didn’t die. God gave him over, the Bible says.)
54Let’s turn to the Book of Romans, the 8th chapter, these verses to most of us are merely expressions of sentimentality. They are sob-sister verses. They are. They’re sob-sister verses. They’re not meant to be. They’re meant to be the victorious cry of the adult brother in Christ. Of course, that includes women. But they’re usually sob-sister verses. There’ll little kind of sickly sentimental sheep for the slaughter. Oh, it’s so, so sweet the way he said it. No, it’s a knife across the throat and it is a sheep for the slaughter. No sickly sentiment here. This isn’t a Mother’s Day card. I forgot this was Mother’s Day, “Hi Ma”. That takes care for much…the Mother’s Day. No, this is no Mother’s Day verse. No, this is a battle. This is reality. This is what happens to Christians. Beginning at verse 35.
(35) Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
(36) As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. (Sacrifice, you as an altar. The healthy and the place of the slaughter is what an altar is. You’re counted as a sacrifice for God.)
(37) Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
(38) For I am persuaded, (I got a persuasion and the persuasion is what? The measure of faith…) that neither death, nor life, …
55You know death doesn’t scare a lot of us but life sure does. I’m more in the category I’m scared by life more than death. I’ve never been too anxious to die, in the sense of the word I want to go in five minutes, but I’d be very happy to have gone a year or two ago, or twenty years ago, certainly; been glad to have been gone. It’s life that bugs me. Yeah, just like it gets you, too. It bothers you the fact that we’re here. That’s what bothers you.
(38) …nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, (authorities) nor things present, nor things to come,
(39) Nor height, nor depth, nor any other (creation), shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
These are not sentimental poetic verses. They are real and describe the actual path of the Christian. He is given over to death. He is entirely expendable. He is a sacrifice upon the altar of God. He belongs to God, and God will do with him what He wants. But the faith what we have said, “Lord, you raise the dead, let it come, let it happen.” Let it happen. Don’t fear what’s going to happen, let it happen. You know what we do? We prematurely grey and destroy our lives and kill all the romance of a romance with God, because we’re scared of what’s going to happen. Let it happen! Don’t be worried about it; what if you do go bankrupt? You say, “I’m going to have a nervous breakdown.” What if you do have a nervous breakdown?” You won’t be the first one. You won’t be the last one.
“What if I lose my job?” What if you do lose your job? I haven’t had a job for years. [Congregation laughs.] The hand that feeds the sparrow, feeds me, but I don’t go around picking up corn. No, God sends it in, as one fellow said, “I don’t care… if he said who…how that it comes as long as it comes…” I was just thinking of something else, in fact about he said…, “If God shovels it in I’ve got no problem.” Now God is the one who takes care of me. Always worried. Why worry? You’re not going to escape the trials of life.
56If you’ve got the measure of the faith of Jesus Christ, let it be known that you are going to be pressed out of measure in order to substitute His measure for your measure. You’ve got the faith of Jesus Christ you’re going to be brought right to the wall by the shooting squad as it were. If you’ve got the measure of faith, you’re going to be brought right down where God’s got to raise you up or you won’t be raised up. If you’re willing to accept tonight that you’re a child of God and have that measure of faith, then my brother, my sister, to use that measure of faith you are going to have to accept the fact that the measure of faith is based upon the fact that God raises the dead, and the measure of faith cannot go into operation until God brings you to a place of almost death or pressed out of measure.
“But you’re more than conquerors,” Paul said, “it was okay we had the sentence of death in it.” He said, “We didn’t die.” They left him for dead, but he didn’t die. “Why,” he said, “Let them kill me, it isn’t my time to go, God will raise me up and if it’s my time to go they’re not going to be…no one will raise me up.” But he didn’t die, he just said, “I want to tell you about that trouble we had, but, (he said,) God saved us.”
57Look at the time he was on shipboard. He said, “The ship is going to go down.”
They said, “We can’t swim.”
He said, “That’s okay. You don’t need to, God will take you in.”
Well, that’s terrible, [you’ll] lose the ship.”
“Why,” he said, “It’s okay because God wants to wreck the ship.”
Now maybe God wants to wreck your ship. Well, I’m glad I got the name in; I hope when it comes you’ll stick with it. Yeah, I mean it. I mean it as a compliment; I hope you will, because we need to stick with it. We better stick with it. See, if we didn’t have what it takes, then God would be blameable. You could say, “God, You were wrong in doing it; You shouldn’t have done that.”
God said, “Hold it. I gave you a measure of faith.”
Now look here, brother/sister, when you’ve got a million dollars in the bank you don’t worry much about the bills coming in, because you know you can meet them. That’s why God gave you that measure of faith so you can lick it. You are more than conquerors tonight, because God raises the dead. See?
58Let’s go back here to John, 11th chapter, then I got to let you go. Oh, I didn’t know time had gone so fast. 11th chapter of John, this is the graveside of Lazarus and in verse 21 to 22. It says,
(21) Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother (in that case) had not died. (But he wasn’t there, except in spirit.)
(22) But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it (to You.)
She said, “If you had of been here, he wouldn’t have died, but You weren’t here and he did die, but now that You are here, raise him up.” That’s the measure of faith that you and I’ve got.
Now why was this measure of faith related to Abraham? Why is he called the ‘father of the faithful’ and we’re to follow in his steps? Because Abraham had a son called Isaac that he had gotten through faith and one day God said, “Take now, thy son, thy only son, and take him up Mount Moriah, and there you will offer him as a sacrifice unto Me.” And Abraham took that son. And according to the pictures in Sunday school, we visualized this old patriarch taking his son bound, laying him on the altar and slicing his throat. But we don’t let the truth sink in. Because he wasn’t only going to shed the blood, but he had the wood and the fire, he was going to burn him to a handful of ashes and bones and then say, “God, raise him. Go ahead.” And that’s exactly what he was going to do, because he knew that God would raise him from the dead, after he was reduced to ashes and bones. And that’s the very faith that you and I’ve got tonight.
59Do you realize, brother/sister that this faith I’m speaking of was so understood by the apostles, that they even believed a myth. They did. They even believed a myth, a legend. And if you don’t understand it, read the first volume of the ‘Ante Nicene Fathers’ and whether it was Polycarp, it could have been, I’m not sure, but I think it was, who wrote concerning the phoenix bird. And he said, “The Resurrection of Jesus Christ is as the phoenix bird who was born…who was raised…hatched in Egypt. And he flies into Asia Minor and there he lives his life. And just before he dies as an old bird he goes back to Egypt and there he sits in a nest in which he was born and he dies. And a worm in the phoenix bird eats the phoenix bird, and then the worm grows feathers and becomes the phoenix bird proving the Resurrection.” You see, they had the faith of Abraham. Little misplaced, but they were so anxious to believe God right down the line that they put credit in a legend, and I like that.
60I like men who are so simple and women who believe God. I wish I were not as complex in my understanding as I am, it would be much better for me. Because this is just the simple truth, that God raises the dead and the measure of your faith, which is the faith of God Himself. The measure of the faith of Jesus Christ is your God-given ability to be put into a circumstance, either by your own volition in trusting God, or be forced there by God Himself when you didn’t know He was doing it. And yet having done all to stand, stand with faith raised and say, “God, take me through or if necessary, I’ll die.” You know God doesn’t take very many of us. In the first place we’re not ready to be taken. We don’t learn too easy and He’s got to keep us here long time to teach us. He’s patient and longsuffering. If you’re a real fast learner, he’ll let you get out of this veil of sorrows pretty quick, no doubt. But if you’re slow like me, and I guess the most of us; it will take quite a time. He’s not in the killing business unless He’s got to. He’s in the raising business, the training business, and God has given and we…the measure of faith and when He did…He reserved to Himself the right that you and I must bow to tonight. He has reserved the right to put you and me in any position right to the point of death and we have no right to scream out. We have no right to backtrack. We have no right to question. We have only the right as Paul said, “I’ve got that faith, I was pressed out of measure. But I didn’t despair, not even in life, no, I have no despair there. Tired despair of living, sure, but I have no despair before God, because I know a God who raises the dead.
61Brother/sister, tonight, if you’re going to be strong in faith, if you’re going to use this measure of faith, you’re going to have to accept this first thing we’ve learned tonight. That God has the right and He will use that prerogative to place you and me in conditions which demand the hand of God or it never going to be done. Now if you’re willing to accept that tonight, if you’re willing to accept the trials of life to which we are all heir, some more than others perhaps, and greater dimension, according to our capacity. If you’re willing to accept that, you will be willing to start to use your faith. But until you accept it, the great vast powerful faith that God gave us, until you accept what that great powerful faith encompasses, that great powerful faith will not work. Because you see, this faith goes to a God who raises the dead and somebody’s got to die. You follow me? You follow me?
62You’ve got to have giants against you. You’ve got to be something like a little shepherd in a corner against a giant. You’ve got to be like a David against a Goliath. You’ve got to be like a Daniel against an empire. You’ve got to be like a few Hebrew children against vast armies. You’ve got to be like a little helpless woman who sees her child dying, but God will raise it. You’ve got to see yourself weak without strength, so that God can do it for you. You’ve got to see yourself beaten down without the ability to fight back, so God will fight. Until you can see that, you can’t use your faith, because your faith is based upon those conditions. Don’t you see it? Listen to me. If certain conditions are necessary to make a press, run off a book; then the conditions must be met; is that correct? Huh? Then if certain conditions are requisite to the outworking of your faith, then those conditions must be met. Is that correct? [Tape ends] Death is in the pot tonight, my brother, my sister, that’s right. But smile about it, because you’re more than conquerors. Isn’t that what you’re scared of might happen to you? Don’t be scared. See, that’s the thing, see, there’s death…we’ll talk about the rest of faith; this is where the rest of faith comes in. Well, the Lord bless you, took you as far as I can tonight, tomorrow night we go on and who knows what we’ll go on to. Let’s rise and be dismissed.
Father, we thank You tonight, for the patience of Thy people, their goodness Lord, in listening, their understanding, acceptance of the Word. Now we beseech You Lord by the Holy Ghost to come to each heart tonight, impress the truth, O God, as never before, let them see Lord, there’s nothing to fear, for love casts out fear. And we’re made perfect by love. Lord, let the ship go down. Let the ship be in that most hazardous place in the world. Let it be broken up that the storms engulf. Like Paul, we’ve heard from God, we’re going to make the shore. God grant each one tonight Lord, to enter in to an understanding and an outworking of their faith, I pray this with all sincerity and earnestness for both them and for me, for every one present. That from now on there shall be, O God, a life of faith which has not been hitherto entered into, nor even dreamed of it. Grant it, O God. So we’ll be ready for that great Rapture. Like Enoch who by faith walked with God, was pleasing to God. He was not, because God took him. Lord, we’re walking toward that day. Hallelujah. The Rapture and the Resurrection. Lord we want to walk toward it; we want to walk up to it and then be caught up. We ask this all in the Name of Jesus Christ and for His glory. Amen, God bless you.