‘Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.’ Mark 9:23
Suggested Further Reading: Romans 4:13–22
Faith studies what the promise is—an emanation of divine grace, an overflowing of the great heart of God; and faith says, ‘My God could not have given this promise, except from love and grace; therefore it is quite certain that this promise will be fulfilled.’ Then faith thinks, ‘Who gave this promise?’ She considers not so much its greatness, as ‘Who is the author of it?’ She remembers that it is God that cannot lie, God omnipotent, God immutable; and therefore she concludes that the promise must be fulfilled; and forward she goes in this firm conviction. Then she remembers, also, why the promise was given, namely, for God’s glory, and she feels perfectly sure that God’s glory is safe, that he will never stain his own character, nor mar the lustre of his own crown; and therefore she concludes that the promise must and will stand. Then faith also considers the amazing work of Christ as being a clear proof of the Father’s intention to fulfil his word. ‘He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?’ Then faith looks back upon the past, for her battles have strengthened her, and her victories have given her courage. She remembers that God never has failed her, that he never did once fail any of his children. She recollects times of great peril, when deliverance came, hours of awful need, when as her day her strength was; and she says, ‘No; I never will be led to think that he can now forswear himself, and change his character, and leave his servant.’ Faith, moreover, feels that she cannot believe a hard thing of her dear God. Is it wrong to use that expression? I must use it, for he is dear to me.
For meditation: The faith of the early Christians was widely spoken about (Romans 1:8; Ephesians 1:15; Colossians 1:4; 1 Thessalonians 1:8; 3:6; Philemon 5). What message does your faith convey to you about God, and to others about your relationship with him?
Sermon no. 474
13 October (Preached 12 October 1862)