Have you ever been expecting or needing something from someone who is not reliable? We all know what it feels like to hope this time they will come through. And we all know what it feels like when they don’t… again. Today’s Faith Check message is titled “Reliable Faith”. We’re going to look at the difference between putting our faith in something that’s unreliable verses what is reliable – God. Because He is always reliable.
11 Then the Lord said to me, “Look, Jeremiah! What do you see?”
And I replied, “I see a branch from an almond tree.”
12 And the Lord said, “That’s right, and it means that I am watching, and I will certainly carry out all my plans.”
There is a play on sounds here in the Hebrew text. The word translated almond (shaqēd) has the same root as the word hasten (shōqēd). As the early blossoming almond tree gave promise of the later spring fruit, so God would watch over His word to bring it to fruition.
God will always carry out His plans – God is always reliable.
Todays message is called ‘Reliable Faith.’
Unreliable faith is:
- Unreliable faith is when we place our faith in anything but Jesus. When we establish idols and put our hope and trust there. (Social media, news, other people like family, our job, ….)
- Unreliable faith is actions without relationship. (I’m a good person I volunteer, I serve, I give…. but I don’t know Jesus.)
- Unreliable Faith is a relationship without actions. (I’m saved, but I don’t do anything with it)
21 “Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. 22 On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ 23 But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.’
24 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. 27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”
Reliable faith is only through Jesus.
**Underline or circle all the times YOU or YOUR is mentioned in this scripture…**
10 This is what the Lord says: “You will be in Babylon for seventy years. But then I will come and do for you all the good things I have promised, and I will bring you home again. 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. 12 In those days when you pray, I will listen. 13 If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. 14 I will be found by you,” says the Lord. “I will end your captivity and restore your fortunes. I will gather you out of the nations where I sent you and will bring you home again to your own land.”
Are we keying into the fact that Faith Check is all about “your relationship with Jesus”?
Babylon represents earth…. home is heaven.
When your mind focuses on the future and hope that is Jesus in Heaven – nothing else compares:
- telling people about Jesus
Reliable faith is…
- When you pray He listens
- If you look with your whole heart you will find Jesus
Jesus has to be found by you – just because your grandma prays doesn’t give you an automatic get into heaven card. This is a two-way relationship.
Let’s talk about the coronavirus for a second.
Do a faith check right now… Do you hyper-focus more on the conspiracy theories, the political climate, or even dwell more on what used to be…. Or do you allow the Holy Spirit to speak to you for a second about the uncertainty of this world and realize the urgency for Jesus?
How is your relationship with Jesus? Genuinely asking. Will you be the one that gets to heaven and says Lord Lord, and hear from Jesus? or I don’t know you?
Next Steps: Make this the Sunday that you start, build, or strengthen your relationship with Jesus.
Jesus is Reliable!
But it starts with your reliable faith.