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Faith or Feelings
Faith or Feelings
The Christian Life Is One of Faith.
- We like the bumper sticker that says, “God said it; I believe it; that settles it.” See Ps 119:128.
- To please God we believe (1) He is and (2) He is a Rewarder of diligent seekers (Heb 11:6).
- Faith is strong confidence in God’s words that gives them substance and evidence (Heb 11:1).
- The elders lived by faith (Heb 11:2). Abraham’s great faith ignored obstacles (Rom 4:19-21).
- Hebrews 11 is very silent about feelings. In fact, I cannot find the word positively in the Bible.
- God gives faith in regeneration, but we use it; it grows by hearing God’s Word (Rom 10:17).
- We receive the Spirit’s blessing of joy upon believing and obeying (John 7:38; Acts 5:32).
- The jailor’s faith and obedience preceeded rejoicing as with the eunuch (Acts 16:27-34; 8:39).
- Did Abraham feel good offering Isaac? Did Israel rejoice before or after crossing the Red Sea?
- Did Paul feel good about his thorn (II Cor 12:7-10)? The apostles being beaten (Acts 5:41)?
- Jesus was very troubled in Gethsemane, but He looked by faith at great future joy (Heb 12:2).
- Should feelings lead prayer? Or should I pray by faith? If you pray by faith, feelings will come.
- True faith is contrary to feelings, for (1) you have nothing good inside and (2) it is for God.
The Modern Life Is One of Feelings
- Feelings are created by the lust of the eyes, lust of the flesh, and the pride of life (I John 2:16).
- Our generation is sensual – touch, taste, sound, sight, and smell – the source of our feelings.
- Forbidden fruit has enormous feelings (Pro 9:17); such feelings vexed Amnon (II Sam 13:1-2).
- You don’t need an Epicurean to teach you to do what feels good – you choose it automatically.
- What feelings do you have about getting out of bed in the morning? Helpful? Tempting?
- Bowels (feelings) exist (I Kgs 3:26); but we put them on or off (Col 3:12; I Jn 3:17; Lu 14:26).
- In two ways they defeat godliness: (1) I don’t feel that is right, and (2) I don’t feel like doing it.
- Feelings are valued so highly by this generation, temperance is not understood. Consider debt.
- An athlete must accept and commit to a tyrannical coach’s plan by faith: he sees the joy far off!
A Christian’s Faith Must Rule His Feelings
- How do you wash dishes? Attack and finish them with joy? Or dread them with complaints?
- How do you approach a high dive? Think about how high it is? Or just jump off by faith?
- Baptism feels “wet,” confession may have “guilt” feelings, and rebuking others feels “hasty.”
- A merry heart is a medicine giving a continual feast is a choice by faith (Prov 15:15; 17:22).
- Joy is a choice by faith (Phil 4:4), and joy follows spiritual obedience (Gal 5:22; Eph 5:18-19).
- For your understanding and profit, apply this sermon to exercising unto godliness and marriage.
- Enduring grief wrongfully is our Christians duty (I Pet 2:18-20). Froward masters require faith.
- Don’t look at the waves. Look at Jesus, Who bids you walk on the water (Matthew 14:28-31).
- Where is your treasure? Where have you been laying up? That is where your heart will be.
- Invest in your spouse, be happily married; invest in the Lord, be filled with joy and godliness.
- You must lose your life to gain it. Losing it must mean going against feelings (Matt 10:39).
- If you do something nice for someone from love for God, you will build bowels for them.
- Marooned on an island: incompatible persons would learn to appreciate each other by giving.
- It is more blessed to give than to receive (Acts 20:35). But you don’t feel it before the giving.
- In marriage, God does not consider the result you get (kindness returned). You must obey Him.
- Contentment is learned conduct (Phil 4:11; Heb 13:5). It is obtained by faith, not feelings.
- How do we count temptations a source of joy (James 1:2)? By faith! Do you believe God?
- First love is restored by doing first works (Rev 2:5), but we stubbornly wait for first feelings.