Class Notes: 2/3/2016
Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8; The doctrine of witnessing part 45
In our study of the doctrine of witnessing Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8; we are examining the doctrines that undergird the gospel so that we can understand how and why it is God alone who made it possible for our so great salvation exclusively by grace through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone. Eph 2:8-9;
As part of the study we are presently reviewing the content of the Gospel message itself under the category of the "Doctrine of the Gospel that we last studied in 2013." 1Cor 15:1-4; John 3:16; Acts 16:31;
God's Word clearly states that in salvation the object of faith is our Lord Jesus Christ who is the quintessence of merit, Col 2:9; and the source is the immutable Word of God.
When we stopped last time last time we were just starting to review faith perception.
Faith is a non-meritorious system of perception based on the confidence, the authority, and the veracity of another that actually takes precedence over perception that is based on one's own knowledge or reason. 2Pet 1:17; Net note 60
Faith is a non-meritorious system of perception as contrasted with rationalism or empiricism which are meritorious because rationalism and empiricism emphasize the ability of the subject to understand the object. Faith simply believes the object.
Rationalism says that reason is the source of knowledge superior to and independent of observation or a sense of perception.
The Greek philosopher Descartes parlayed empiricism into rationalism when he started with himself rather than with God, with the statement "I think; therefore I exist."
Empiricism is perception by experience and observation rather than from thought. With empiricism all ideas are derived from the use of one's senses.
Both rationalism and empiricism establish the subject as the authority based on one's own capacity to analyze and interpret information and therefore glorifies the subject.
Faith on the other hand makes an authority out of the object by simply believing and trusting thereby glorifying the object.
Rationalism and empiricism work because knowledge can be parlayed into power.
Faith works because it engages the infinite power that God is free to deploy to the believer through His grace. This principle is expressed to Israel regarding their responsibility to pay the taxes they owed under God's system in Mal 3:10;
What God's righteousness demands God's justice executes through God's love that is deployed through God's grace. This is why believers are commanded to live by faith or by means of doctrine. Heb 10:38; 1John 2:5;
In the New Testament the Greek word "pistis" translated faith is used in the active sense, the passive sense and to describe faithfulness as an attribute.
The active meaning of faith is to believe as in salvation is by faith, as taught in Eph 2:8-9; "For by grace you have been saved by faith, and that not from yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works so that no one can boast."
The active meaning of faith also includes faith perception or believing as in the process of doctrinal metabolism.
The active meaning is also used for faith application as in the faith-rest drill, Heb 4:1-3; 1Pet 1:7-9;The faith action of the faith rest drill operates in four stages.
In stage one, you mix your faith with promises of the Word of God by believing them and waiting on God to do what He said He would do. You believe and claim the promises confidently expecting God to honor His Word.
In the second stage, faith claims doctrine. As you begin to grow spiritually under the ministry of God the Holy Spirit, the doctrine you learn forms doctrinal rationales.
These rationales include the Essence of God Rationale, the Escrow Election Rationale, the Logistical Grace Rationale, and the A Fortiori Rationale. You believe and claim the appropriate doctrinal rationale and wait in God to come through for you.
In the third stage, faith draws doctrinal conclusions in order to maintain control of a situation, no matter how disastrous that situation may be. You believe God and wait on Him to come through for you as He has stated in His Word that He would.
In the fourth stage you commit any and all evil that is committed against you to God and Jesus Christ in the supreme court of heaven for adjudication. You believe and trust Him to bring the evildoers to justice based on His complete knowledge of the facts and His Holiness that is comprises of his perfect integrity. Rom 12:19;
You then wait for God to deal with it rather than dealing with it yourself because you understand that His judgment is perfect.
The passive meaning of "pistis" refers to what is believed, the body of belief, or doctrine often referred to as "the faith", as in Gal 1:23; 1Tim 1:19; 1Tim 4:1,6, 1Tim 6:10; 2Tim 2:18; 2Tim 4:7;
The Word of God or "the faith" is secured by the integrity and power of God so it is more real than the physical universe that we can visibly see. Matt 24:35; This passage tells us the faith is more certain than rationalism or empiricism.
In fact it is "His word of power" or "the faith" that holds the universe together. Heb 1:3;
"The faith" or doctrine is acquired by listening to God's Word being communicated and believing it. Rom 10:17;
When a person believes God' s Word they are trusting in the faithfulness, immutability and omnipotence of God. Anyone who believes God's Word is duplicating how Jesus Christ lived in His unglorified humanity Matt 4:4; and as a result becomes the target of God's personal love. Rom 8:28-39;
The faith, the doctrine or the Word reveals God's decree from eternity past and anyone who believes "the faith" is trusting God's decree from eternity and as a result they will always be completely protected because what is in the decree has to happen or God is not God. Isa 26:3-4; NET
This is why prayer works. Mark 11:23-24; Our prayers are heard twice. Once in eternity before the creation Eph 1:4; where they are answered and programmed into the Divine Decree and then again at the time we actually pray to God where God's answer that was already recorded in the Divine Decree in eternity is read out and executed in time.
This is why prayer is so powerful. Very few believers understand how and why prayer works so the don't use it very much. Paul understood the power of prayer so he was constantly asking for prayer support. Col 4:3; 1Thes 5:25; 2Thes 3:1-2;
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