"For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God." — 2 Cor. 4:15

January 20, 2016

“The tested genuineness of your faith . . .”
1 PETER 1:7

Abraham’s hand was raised to slay his son, when the angel stopped him.

“Now I know that you fear God.”

The genuineness of our faith tested? What’s going on here? The book of Hebrews reminds us of what faith looked like for Abraham.

“By faith, Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, ‘It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.’ Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death” (11:17-19).

The book of James answers the “why” of testing.

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. . . . Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him” (1:2-4, 12).

Be praying for Kenny Clark, as he applies the following passage from 1 Peter to our hearts this Sunday.

“Now, for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith – more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire – may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen Him, you love Him. Though you do not now see Him, you believe in Him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls” (1:6-9).

What does faith like that “sound” and “look” like? Read the following post from Melody Lietzau, and consider how Abraham’s faith can look in 2016.

1 Peter 4:12-13 states:

“Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when His glory is revealed.”

Melody posts:

“I long to see His glory revealed in amazing ways. We have several appointments coming up for our whole family. Noah has a stress test tomorrow at UCLA and then another heart cath and neurology appointment next week. Hannah has cardiology appointments, as do I.

“I don’t want to be surprised by what lies ahead for us. I want to take every single opportunity I can to use it for the Lord. This year, I want more than anything for our family to be a vessel in the hard. This doesn’t mean that we won’t struggle with worry, with joy, with trust. It just means that we surrender to Christ; we don’t waste our suffering; and we cling to the One who is everlasting instead of the temporal things of the world.

“What things are you clinging to this year? What are you putting your hope in?”


Have Faith
Listen Here

In trust, believe! Take hold! Receive!
Be bold! Be strong! Have faith!
Let go of doubt; with hope, step out!
Be bold! Be strong! Have faith!

HAVE FAITH when the test is long;
HAVE FAITH right will conquer wrong;
HAVE FAITH God’s working out His plan.
HAVE FAITH in His sovereignty;
HAVE FAITH though you cannot see;
HAVE FAITH, stay the course, persevere.

HAVE FAITH God will vindicate;
HAVE FAITH through the endless wait;
HAVE FAITH God’s timing is the best.
HAVE FAITH God is very near;
HAVE FAITH; don’t give in to fear;
HAVE FAITH, stay the course, persevere.

Categories: Sermon Prep (LM)


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