What we believe by faith is sometimes contrasted by the reality we face. The reality almost nullifies faith. Some in facing reality have given up on God. Should christians abandon reality and stick to faith?
Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead —since he was about a hundred years old —and that Sarah’s womb was also dead.
Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God,
being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.
Romans chapter four is concerned about how Abraham was considered faithful by God. Apostle Paul writes to convince us that Abraham was counted faithful by God, not because of what he did but because God was good to him. Then Apostle Paul tells us in our text today about Abraham’s faith in God. God promised Abraham a child but Abraham grew very old without a child yet he kept trusting that God will keep His promise.
The Text today tells us that Abraham faced the reality that his body in old age was as good as dead. Abraham also faced the reality that his wife Sarah was equally too old and was as good as dead. That was the reality. The scientific reality. The practical reality. The tangible reality. The facts on the ground were that Abraham and his wife Sarah were too old and were as good as dead.
Our text today also tells us that Abraham believed in God. Abraham believed that God had the power to override the old age that he and Sarah had. Abraham had faith that God could still provide a child to them even though it was no longer humanly possible. The reality Abraham had was that it was humanly impossible to have a child. The faith Abraham had was that God was and remains ever able to do that which is humanly possible. Abraham faced reality and acknowledged it, but he also maintained faith. Reality and faith dwelt in the mind and heart of Abraham. Never separate reality and faith!
Abraham faced the reality that he was humanly incapable of having a child. Abraham also maintained faith that God was still able to provide a child. The two contrasts were the driving factors in Abraham’s life. Abraham never separated reality and faith. Never separate reality and faith!
Reality is the human limitation. Reality is what we can’t go beyond. Reality is our weakness. We must face and appreciate reality as Abraham did. But we must also have faith in a God who is not limited to reality. Our link to God’s infinite power over reality is faith. We need to be aware of reality but we should not neglect faith. Never separate reality and faith!
The reality was that Jericho’s walls were too thick. The reality was that just walking around for seven days was a waste of time and madness at best that would not even cause a tiny crack on the walls. Faith was that the God who ordered the marching around Jericho was able to bring down the walls. Israelites needed reality and faith. Never separate reality and faith!
The reality is that David and Goliath fighting was a suicidal act for David. Faith was that God could make David the obvious loser to be a winner. David carried stones, a stick, and experience in killing lions and bears. But above all else, David carried faith in God as he approached Goliath. Never separate reality and faith!
The reality was Peter and others knowing you can’t walk on water. Faith is actually walking on water at the command of Jesus. God works best in us when we face reality and maintain faith. Never separate reality and faith!
The reality is that your income is too small to meet your basic needs. Faith is going ahead to return tithes and offerings from that small income, knowing that God is able to multiply the amount that remains. Never separate reality and faith!
The reality is that you are consistently unwell and some people have received help from witches. Faith is trusting God to heal you without visiting witches. The reality is that you need a good relationship and the normal thing is to engage in sexual immorality hoping it will evolve into a good relationship. Faith is doing what God says, refusing to engage in premarital and extramarital sex and trusting God to come through. Never separate reality and faith!
There is the reality of marriage and parenting. The reality is the opposite of dating and courtship fantasies. That reality should not be left alone, add to it faith in God who makes all things beautiful in His time. Never separate reality and faith!
Face reality and live by faith. Do not deny the reality but operate by your faith in God. When you face reality and live by faith, when success comes, the glory goes to God. It becomes natural to praise God. When you live by faith while facing reality you will never give up on God, because only God can counter your reality. Never separate reality and faith!
What is our reality today? What is impossible according to reality today? What is as good as lost today? What sad and painful reality are we dealing with today? Add to that reality faith. Faith that nothing is impossible with God. Faith that God is able to even reverse lost time. Faith that God can revenge. Faith that God can restore. Faith that God is able to change the reality that doesn’t seem like it can change. God gave Abraham a child in old age because God was able to defy reality. As we face reality today, let us add faith in God to it. Never separate reality and faith!
Dear God, our reality is many times sad and scary. It doesn’t seem like anything is getting better. Help us to add faith in a God who knows no failure. Give us faith that will be accompanying our reality. May we like Abraham face reality but live by faith in God and may that faith in You yield unprecedented fruits in every aspect of our life, in Jesus’ name, Amen!
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