Bible Reading: – James 2:14-26; Heb. 11:32-35
Key Verse: “…faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead” Jam 2:17.
Faith means total dependence on God. When Adam sinned, he stepped out of God-dependence into in-dependence, which is unbelief. Faith is the confined assurance that what we hope for is going to happen. It is the certainty that what we are expecting is waiting for us, even though we cannot see it ahead (Heb. 11:1, TLB).
Therefore, in the context of our theme, “Taking Giant Strides” faith is trusting God to reveal His plans for you and taking steps or, making efforts in keeping with the goal or desire, counting on God to make you succeed. Faith is opposed to fear: fear brings anxiety, worries, panics, depression, poor performance and discouragement. FEAR NOT, be courageous and take giant strides.
Faith is indispensable in walking with God because, without such absolute trust in the power and provisions of God, to possess what we want, we cannot please Him (Heb. 11:6), faith makes it possible for a man/woman to achieve what his/her mind conceives and believes. Though faith, men and women have done great exploits: received precious babies, stopped the mouth of lions, won great battles, women received their dead raised to life again. It is true now just as it was then, “..Everything is possible for him that believes” (Mark 9:23).
What can we do that we may demonstrate the same level of God’s manifestations? Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.
- Nature of Faith
- What is faith? Heb. 11:1; Mark 11:23,24.
- Discuss the following characteristics of unproductive faith: weak (Rom 14:1), temporary (Lk 8:13), intellectual or historical (I Jh 5:10-13, Jam 2:19), wavering (Jam 1:6).
- Discuss the following characteristics of faith that works: strong (Rm 4:19), unfeigned (I Tim 1:5), active (Jam 2:18,26), unwavering (Heb 10:23).
- Steps of Faith in Action
Describe the steps of faith in each of the following Bible instances. Bring out the application
of each instance to our lives today:
- The mother and sister of Moses – Exodus 2:1-10
- Rahab, in hospitality to the spies. Joshua 2:9-13
iii. Jonathan, in smiting the Philistines – I Sam 14:6-14.
- David, in facing and smiting Goliath I Samuel 17:36-51.
- Ninevites, in calling prayer and fasting in response to Jonah’s prophesy – Jonah 3:5.
- Healing of a paralyzed man – Luke 5:17-20, 25
vii. The response of the apostles when Jesus called them Luke 5:10-11
viii. Healing of the woman with issue of blood Mark 5:25-29.
- The outreach of the disciples Luke 10:1,17 …/2
- Making your Faith Grow
- Steer clear of hindrances such as, disobedience (Isa 1:19), unbelief (Jam) 1:6-7), hatred (Gal. 5:6, Lk 17:3-5), unfavourable comparisons (Rom 12:3) and faith in man/oneself (Jer 17:5-8).
- Be careful what you hear and how you hear: Rom 10:17, Lk 8:18, Prov. 4:23.
iii. Pray that God will increase your faith. Lk 17:6
- Exercise your faith, put your faith to work and it will keep growing Jam 2:17, I Sam 1:11, I Sam 17:32,37.
Do not just sit there, hoping and wishing, take a step of faith, a giant stride that will prove God’s power.