John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
Acts 26:278-28 “’King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you do believe.’ Then Agrippa said to Paul, ‘You almost persuade me to become a Christian.’”
Matthew 12:30 Jesus said, “He who is not with Me is against Me.”
We all get scared. Maybe it’s a terrible weather event. Or, it could be you have lost your job and don’t know what to do. Perhaps, you just found out you have cancer. Then there is the pandemic. The many violent acts of terrorism around the world and here in America are very scary, too.
When Isaiah prophesied, it was a scary time for Israel. Many had forsaken God’s law. There was much injustice in the land. They suffered famine, pestilence, and war. Their future was dark. It is then that Isaiah gave these very encouraging words from the Lord: “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10).
Here’s why we don’t have to be scared!
God is with us. We are not alone.
God is our God. He is on our side. He will fight for us. He will protect us. He loves us. He cares for us.
God will strengthen us. We are scared because the fears we face look very powerful, but God is stronger. He is greater. He will strengthen us in our weakness so that we are able to overcome our fears.
God will help us. Unable to deal with our fears alone, He stands by us to share the burden and help carry the load that would destroy our confidence. So, with God’s help we are able to face our fears with courage.
God will uphold us. Even when we are ready to give up and lay down in defeat, He is there for us to support us. When we are falling, He is powerful to stand us back up again.
Yes, our fears are real, but so is God. So, don’t be scared.
Today, I will… thank God for being there for me and look to Him for the courage to overcome all my fears.
Galatians 5:6 “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.”
There is faith. There is faith working. There is faith working through love. Only the latter can save our souls.
Faith is necessary for our salvation. If we do not believe we cannot be saved (John 8:4). If we truly believe we will trust (2 Corinthians 1:9-10; 3:4; 1 Timothy 4:10; 6:17; Hebrews 2:14) and obey (Acts 5:29, 32; Romans 2:8; 6:16-17; 10:16; Galatians 3:1; Philippians 2:12; 2 Thessalonians 1:8; Hebrews 5:9; 11:6, 8; 1 Peter 4:17).
Faith working is necessary for our salvation. Faith without works cannot save; it is unprofitable (James 2:14-16). Faith by itself is dead (v. 17). Faith is made perfect by works (v. 22). We are justified by works, not by faith alone (v. 24). It is not our own works that save us (Ephesians 2:8-10; Titus 3:3-8) but the work of faith (1 Thessalonians 1:3; 2 Thessalonians 1:11), the obedience of faith (Romans 1:5; 16:26).
Faith working through love is necessary for salvation. We cannot be saved unless we receive the love of the truth (2 Thessalonians 2:10). Salvation is for those who love the Lord (1 Corinthians 2:9; 16:22; James 1:12; 2:5) and the brethren (1 John 3:10, 14). Anyone who does not love does not know God (1 John 4:7-8). If anyone does not love the Lord, he will be accursed (1 Corinthians 16:22). If we leave our love for the Lord, we will lose our place with Him (Revelation 2:4-5).
What kind of faith do you have?
Ben’s wife, Stacie, had a terrible accident while riding her horse causing severe trauma to her brain and leaving her in a coma from which she never recovered. Ben was unable to visit her until just after her surgery and only for a short time. Ben posted an update on Facebook for family and friends. “She’s a fighter, and through God’s power and might she will wake up, if it is God’s will.”
In the morning, Ben was very appreciative of “everyone’s kind words and prayers”. That night there was little change in Stacie’s condition, but Ben wrote, “Thank you for all of the supportive texts and posts! We are so blessed to have so many people praying on our behalf. Philippians 4:6 is helping me get through these times. Please be patient and continue to pray for our dear Stacie.”
Robert Dodson is the Preaching Minister for the Northwest Church of Christ.
6059 Azle Avenue
Fort Worth, TX 76135