DAILY DISCIPLINE #26
By Colleen Donahue
"But the fearful, and unbelieving...shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone." Revelations 21:8
That is the verdict God pronounces over this sin. Why are the unbelievers struck by such a severe judgment? Why are unbelief and discouragement such serious sins? Because, through their behavior, they mistrust God. If a father loves his child and sacrifices everything to take care of him, can the child hurt him more than by being mistrustful and thinking, "My father doesn't intend to do anything good for me"? Jesus condemns such mistrust in the parable of the talents by replying to the servant who said, "Master, I knew you to be a hard man." (Matthew 25:24) He said, "Cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth" (Matthew 25:30).
So, it is not a harmless sin to be discouraged and to open the door to unbelief and then to persist in it. It will have terrible consequences. The Kingdom of Heaven will be closed to us and the door to the kingdom of darkness will open to take us in. Then it will be of no use to try to excuse our unbelief, as we perhaps try to do now, by saying that it is hard for us to believe or even pitying ourselves for "not being able to ". No, as surely as Jesus exhorts us to believe, "Have faith in God" (Mark 11:22), we can believe. If we do not believe, it is sin. It is our pride.
Pride and arrogance cause us to criticize God, by saying, "Jesus cannot help me after all. Jesus cannot forgive me! No one, not even God Himself, can help me out of my need, my hopeless situation, my temptations, and sins because they are too strong." When we see such things, we think we know better than God's Word which says, "Call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you" (Psalm 50:15), "I will never fail you nor forsake you" (Hebrews 13:5), "I, I am He who blots out your transgressions" (Isaiah 43:25). (The above message is by Basilea Schlink)
It is one kind of unbelief to not believe in God or in His Son Jesus Christ. Yet, I have come to see only too vividly in my own life that perhaps the worst kind of unbelief comes from God's own children. We profess to believe in our dear Father and yet we continue to live as though everything depended on us. We do not walk with light hearts knowing that God will supply our every need. We panic when we aren't sure of the next step and sink into defeat when adversity strikes. We read our Bibles that say "I will never leave thee nor forsake thee," and yet in our present trial we wonder where God is. Can there be any doubt at the sadness God must feel when He looks into our hearts and sees.....
Day 1- Jesus says when the Holy Spirit comes, He will convict the world of sin. Which sin in particular?
Day 2 -Many that would even call themselves Christians and claim to know God, actually walk in unbelief of who God is and what he can do. What is the symptom that proves we don't really believe in a sovereign, almighty Lord?
Day 3- Paul uses strong language here to convey how useless a man or woman that walks in unbelief is to God.
WHERE DOES UNBELIEF COME FROM? HOW DOES IT CREEP INTO OUR LIVES?
Day 4 -What three kinds of hearts does unbelief come from?
Mark 16:14 / Luke 24:25 / Acts 19:9 / Hebrews 3:12
Day 5 -Unbelief and hardness come when there is a general disinclination to believe the truth.
What does this tell us?
Day 6 -If we refuse to believe even after we have touched God in some way ourselves then it becomes impossible to believe. Some of the Jews were prime examples of this. Read
Day 7 -Unbelief comes when we are not really Christ's sheep. We run our own lives and do not see Christ as our Lord.
Day 8- The devil or "god of this age" can keep one who doesn't know God so blind that they cannot see the light which God is in this world.
2 Corinthians 4:4
Day 9- The devil hates it when we read the Bible. At any opportunity, he's sure to snatch away the truth we have received if we let him.
Day 10- Unbelief can creep in when we're seeking our honor from men rather than from God.
HOW DOES UNBELIEF EXHIBIT ITSELF?
Day 11- Christ is rejected.
Reread: John 12:37 / John 16:9
Day 12- If we do not believe in Jesus as God's Son, then essentially what are we calling God?
I John 5:10
Day 13- In rejection of God's Word.
Day 14- We turn away from God
Day 15 -We begin to question the power of God.
2 Kings 7:2 / Psalms 78:19-20
Day 16 -We simply don't believe that God can work on our behalf despite all that He has done for us in the past.
Day 17 -We stagger at the promises of God -- quite opposite of Abraham's example.
Day 18- What has Jesus done (in the past as well as today) to enable us to believe that He is the Son of God?
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE CONSEQUENCES FOR THOSE GUILTY OF UNBELIEF?
Day 19- God's Word will have little meaning to us.
Day 20- We cannot please God.
Day 21- We can cause others to doubt.
Day 22- We continue to persevere in unbelief even though God has proven Himself over and over.
Day 23- We become "stiff-necked".
II Kings 17:14
Day 24 -We stand condemned.
Mark 16:16 / John 3:18 / John 3:36 / 2 Thessalonians 2:12
Day 25- We shall not be established. (i.e. There will be a lack of stability and certainty in life.)
Isaiah 7:9b / James 1:6-8
Day 26- We will actually die in our sin of unbelief -- certainly, spiritual death will pervade our lives.
Day 27- Unbelief will keep us from entering into the kind of rest our lives are meant to have.
Day 28- We will be destroyed.
Jude 5 / Revelation 21:8
Day 29- The Bible warns us to be on guard against unbelief.
Hebrews 3:12 / Hebrews 4:7
Day 30- In times past and today God sends us messengers -- anointed voices to help direct us and lead us to the truth. If we don't believe these messengers then it's really the same as not believing God.
Day 31- When we really believe God and live like it, what becomes possible for us?
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