A Faith That Endures

A Faith That Endures

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth.
–Revelation 3:15-16

No matter how strong our faith is, rarely does our faith conquer problems once and for all. It is a miracle when God conquers a problem and removes it from our lives. Those miracles are wonderful, but they are exceptions to the rule. Most of us do not experience once-for-all conquering of problems. So what good is faith? Faith allows you to endure problems.

Hebrews 11:35 says, “Women received back their dead by resurrection; and others were tortured, not accepting their release, so that they might obtain a better resurrection.” The Greek word for “tortured” is “tumpanizo,” from which we get “timpani.” In the first century, one method by which people were tortured was by being stretched out over a large, drumlike instrument and then beaten to death with clubs. Verse 36 continues, “Others experienced mockings and scourgings, yes, also chains and imprisonment.” And the writer went to list more of the ways these people suffered. But they, too, died faithful.

When you look at the experiences of men and women of faith who went on ahead of us, you have to ask, “Do I have the kind of faith that is willing to obey God in spite of my circumstances? Will I obey God even when it does not mean deliverance from my problems?”

Let’s be honest: most of us are not willing to suffer any discomfort or inconvenience to follow God.

God wants me to give 10 percent of my income to His work? No, that is too much. I will not be able to maintain the lifestyle I have now or save up for that big purchase.

God is telling me to stay in this unhappy marriage? No, I am sure God wants me to be happy. He is more concerned with my happiness than my faithfulness.

God is calling me to serve in a place of ministry in the church? No, I do not want to tie up my weekends. I want to be free to travel and do with my time what I want to do.

God had a word to say about that kind of lukewarm commitment. In Revelation 3:15-16, He told the church at Laodicea, “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth.” God hates lukewarm commitment. The kind of faith that pleases Him is a faith that endures in spite of circumstances–not just when the miracles happen.

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Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Against All Odds” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2020.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org