Living In the Consciousness of God's Faithfulness
By Pastor Michael Olawore
New Wine Church, London
Foundation Scripture: Joshua 21:43-45, Lamentations 3:22-23
Sunday 5th July 2015
As Christians, we are cognisant of the truth that God is faithful, especially when life is running smoothly according to our expectations – when bills are paid promptly, when our health is vibrant and sound, when our marriage is full of bliss and happiness, and a promotion at work is offered without seeking for it – when are lives are full of testimonies and cheerful stories, it is so easy to declare that God is faithful.
However, when dreams are delayed and the promises of God seem to be lingering to the point where we begin to wonder if the horizons that God assured us of will ever come within our sight, subconsciously our hearts begin to quietly question if God’s words will ever come to pass.
Our foundation scripture in Joshua 21:43-45 highlights the faithfulness of God to the nation of Israel, a culmination of the words He had spoken to their forefathers, long before then: ‘So the Lord gave to Israel all the land of which He had sworn to give to their fathers, and they took possession of it and dwelt in it. The Lord gave them rest all around, according to all that He had sworn to their fathers. And not a man of all their enemies stood against them; the Lord delivered all their enemies into their hand. Not a word failed of any good thing which the Lord had spoken to the house of Israel. All came to pass’. Prophet Jeremiah underscored God’s faithfulness in Lamentations 3:22-23, which reads: ‘Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness’.
Over the course of the last few weeks, as a church we’ve have spent time in prayers, supplication, intercession, worship and prophetic declarations. Without doubt, some of us may have received a specific ‘rhema’ word for our circumstances. Now the question to ask is this: ‘How should we respond and what should we do after these days of seeking God’s face?’ The answer lies in our foundation scriptures – the God who promised and fulfilled His word to the Israelites, is still faithful and the outcome will be glorious. Whatever God has promised, we can be rest assured that He will bring it to pass. Declare this with me: ‘The word of God over my life will never fail’.
The faithfulness of God is the basis upon which He watches over and upholds His words to bring them to pass. On occasions when our faithfulness could be questioned, He remains faithful. His faithfulness is not defined by our faithfulness or faithlessness. Hence, we have substantial reasons to live in the consciousness of God’s faithfulness. When the wind of adversity and the challenges of life arise, we have the responsibility to anchor our souls to God’s faithfulness. We cannot afford to be moved by what we can see, feel and hear physically. Beyond singing songs about God’s faithfulness, we must now embrace another dimension of living in the consciousness of His faithfulness.
Our trust in God is rooted in His faithfulness. If we are rest assured that God will always deliver on His promises, regardless of the circumstances around us, then we can wholeheartedly trust Him to fulfill His words. The enemy’s plan and His endless work is centred around introducing doubt into our hearts about God’s faithfulness. Knowing that God is faithful and being established in this truth gives the strength to overcome any obstacle in life.
There are several scriptures that allude to God’s faithfulness. Here are a few of these verses. 1 Corinthians 1:9 reads: ‘God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord’. Deuteronomy 7:9 reads: “Therefore know that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments’. Psalm 119:89-90 reads: ‘Forever, O Lord, Your word is settled in heaven. Your faithfulness endures to all generations; You established the earth, and it abides’. 2 Timothy 2:13 reads: If we are unfaithful, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny who he is’ (NLT). Numbers 23:19 reads: “God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good? Matthew 24:35 reads: ‘Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away’. God faithfulness can be defined as God doing all what He says He will do, when He said He will do it, irrespective of situations or circumstances. He is the same, He never changes. He doesn’t waiver or falter. He does not forget. It is always certain that He will fulfill His promises.
Having stated that God is faithful, what confidence do we have to hold on to His reliability? Unless we know and we are certain of God’s faithfulness, it becomes impossible to hold on, in the face of challenges. Here are five attributes of God that point unequivocally to His faithfulness, namely: (a) God is Omniscient: He knows everything that needs to be known about each of us. He knows our past, present and future. He knows our weaknesses and strengths. He knows our needs, wants and desires - verbalised or not. Hence, He qualifies to reach out to us during our challenges, always. ‘He reveals deep and secret things; He knows what is in the darkness, and light dwells with Him’ (Daniel 2:22). (b) God is Omnipotent: God is all powerful. He can handle every situation and every circumstance that comes our way. He can handle and make all things happen. There is nothing that He cannot do. Luke 1:37 reads: “For with God nothing will be impossible.” Mark 10:27 reads: ‘But Jesus looked at them and said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.” Isaiah 40:25-26 reads: “To whom then will you liken Me, or to whom shall I be equal?” says the Holy One. Lift up your eyes on high, and see who has created these things, who brings out their host by number; He calls them all by name, By the greatness of His might and the strength of His power; Not one is missing’. (c) God is omnipresent: God is always with us, and we are always within His reach. He’s not far from us, especially during our challenges; He’s always with us to guide us and fulfil His promises. Psalm 139:7-8 reads: ‘Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there’. We cannot hide from Him, God is everywhere. (d) God is truthful: In every circumstance, He is always truthful. Titus 1:1-2 reads: ‘Paul, a bondservant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect and the acknowledgment of the truth which accords with godliness, in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began.’ The very character, capacity and nature of God ensures that He cannot lie, just like a man cannot give birth to a child. Every word He speaks is true. So, whatever God has promised you, without doubt, He will bring to pass. God is consistent. Whatever He says to you is true. His very nature is such that He cannot prove to be unfaithful, untruthful, inadequate or mistaken. And lastly (e) God is Immutable: He is the same, yesterday, today and forever. His word is settled forever in Heaven. Malachi 3:6 reads: “For I am the Lord, I do not change; therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob". If God could change His promises, then we have no assurance about our destiny. Psalm 89:34 reads: ‘My covenant I will not break, nor alter the word that has gone out of My lips’.
Our foundation scripture in Joshua 21:43-45 gives us a conclusion of what God had promised Abram in Genesis 12. Here is an excerpt: ‘Now the Lord had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” So Abram departed as the Lord had spoken to him, and Lot went with him. And Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. Then Abram took Sarai his wife and Lot his brother’s son, and all their possessions that they had gathered, and the people whom they had acquired in Haran, and they departed to go to the land of Canaan. So they came to the land of Canaan. Abram passed through the land to the place of Shechem, as far as the terebinth tree of Moreh. And the Canaanites were then in the land. Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, “To your descendants I will give this land.” And there he built an altar to the Lord, who had appeared to him' (Genesis 12:1-7). It does not matter how long or how late it seems, God’s words will not fail. A promise God gave to the 75-year old Abram was eventually fulfilled in the lifetime of Joshua and the all twelve tribes of Israel.
Here is a short biography: The promise God gave to Abram, who eventually was renamed Abraham was a word regarding the inheritance of the land of Canaan. Famine arose in the land and Abraham had to move to Egypt for a while. Sarai, (who later was renamed Sarah) his wife, had no child and they had to wait for several years of marriage for the fulfilment of God’s promise. Eventually, when they lost hope and felt they had waited enough, Hagar, Sarah’s maid gave birth to Ishmael. Isaac, the promised child arrived some years after this, as God fulfilled His promise.
Isaac grew up, established a home and moved to the land of Gerar. Famine arose, but God prevailed on him to stay in the land. His obedience led to a hundred-fold yield harvest. God blessed him and He became prosperous. Jacob, his son migrated to Egypt with his twelve sons as a result of famine. In Egypt, God multiplied and blessed the descendants, even though they became slaves to the Egyptians. When it was time for God to intervene and bring the nation back to Canaan, the Promised Land, He raised up Moses to stand as His representative to speak to Pharaoh. Despite all the threats and opposition from Pharaoh, God eventually delivered the Israelites – even going as far as parting the Red Sea, just to uphold His unfailing word.
God guided the Israelites through the wilderness – a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night, He provided shelter, clothing, warmth, food, drink and security for them. His promise to drive out the inhabitants of Canaan is recorded in Joshua 3:9-10: ‘And Joshua said, “By this you shall know that the living God is among you, and that He will without fail drive out from before you the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Hivites and the Perizzites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Jebusites’. Despite God’s promises and assurances, the Israelites did not trust God’s word. However, as God’s word cannot fail, He raised up another generation of Israelites who eventually entered the Promised Land.
Just like God spoke to Joshua as the Israelites stood at the edge of River Jordan, and commanded the priests to step into the Jordan as instructed by God, today I stand as God’s priest and declare that your issues cease from today and you see them no more in Jesus name (Amen). Hold on to God who has promised you – He is omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, truth and immutable. Every word He has promised will be fulfilled in your life in Jesus name (Amen).
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