So Jesus came again to Cana of Galilee where He had made the water wine. And there was a certain nobleman whose son was sick at Capernaum. 47 When he heard that Jesus had come out of Judea into Galilee, he went to Him and implored Him to come down and heal his son, for he was at the point of death. 48 Then Jesus said to him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will by no means believe.” 49 The nobleman said to Him, “Sir, come down before my child dies!” 50 Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your son lives.” So the man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him, and he went his way. 51 And as he was now going down, his servants met him and told him, saying, “Your son lives!” 52 Then he inquired of them the hour when he got better. And they said to him, “Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.” 53 So the father knew that it was at the same hour in which Jesus said to him, “Your son lives.” And he himself believed, and his whole household. NKJV
A nobleman is an officer of the state…he must have exhausted all the possibilities for his son’s healing.
- It’s urgent…emergency room urgent.
- His only answer is Jesus.
- Jesus won’t come…the man urges him.
- Jesus gives the nobleman the Word:
- “Go your way, your son lives.”
He begins his journey back home in faith, with no sign that anything changed….
What if he gave up on the way there?
Only to find out his son began to amend when Jesus spoke the previous day.
This is the exact kind of confidence God expects us to have in His written Word.
God has given us amazing promises or as in the New Covenant, precious realities in the Word.
- Beloved you will prosper and live in health even as your soul prospers.
- You can do all things through Christ.
- Hundreds of promises of favor, increase, long life, restoration on and on.
NO GOOD BY THEMSELVES:
As powerful as these promises are, as encouraging and inspiring as they can be, BY THEMSELVES these promises won’t do you any good.
On their own, you won’t see any change other than that they’re nice encouraging words.
You have to add an ingredient that activates the power within these promises; something in you that makes these promises come alive and become what God said. FAITH!
Heb. 4:1-2 NIV
Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. 2 For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.
Heb. 4:2 NKJV
For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.
The children of Israel heard the promises God gave them, that:
- They would overcome the opposition,
- Defeat their enemies victoriously and
- Possess the Promised Land.
- God told them they’d live in houses that they didn’t build. Have vineyards that they didn’t plant.
BUT THE PROMISE ALONE IS NEVER ENOUGH. Just because God promised it doesn’t mean its automatically going to happen.
- God throws the promise out like a seed.
- What kind of ground is it going to fall on?
Example some people hear God’s promise like:
- 30:17 For I will restore health to you and heal you of your wounds,’ says the LORD.
- 107:20 I sent my Word to heal you and make you completely whole.
Instead of mixing that with faith, they think and say:
“That would be really nice. But I’ve been sick too long. I’ve prayed … The medical report hasn’t changed. The pain is still here. I haven’t been healed.”
What’s going on here?
They’re mixing unbelief with the Word and that’s why its not producing results:
- That’s why God’s Word didn‘t profit them.
- That’s why they didn’t overcome the challenges, haven’t seen the changes.
- This is why some didn’t experience the favor, they didn’t experience the healing, the increase never came.
Not because God wasn’t able, not because the promise didn’t have the power.
But because the Word wasn’t mixed with faith.
BACK TO ISRAEL IN THE WILDERNESS
The Spirit of God tells us to study the children of Israel, learn from them and not do like them!
- God brought the Israelites out of slavery by an outstretched arm. He parted the Red Sea for them. Fought with their enemies.
- He brought them all the way to the entrance of the Promised Land.
(You would think that after all the miracles and manifestations they had seen in Egypt; they would be full of faith to take the Promised Land since the God who brought them through in the past would bring them through this time.)
But faith doesn’t come by seeing manifestations.
Moses sent 12 men to spy out the land. They came back:
- Ten of them said we don’t have a chance; the people are too big; we felt like grasshoppers in their sight and in our own sight too.
- That negative report, began to spread throughout the camp like bad false CNN news.
Before long, 2 million people were afraid, complaining that Moses had brought them out there to die.
They said let’s go back to Egypt, let’s go back to being slaves.
All except Joshua and Caleb:
Num. 13:30 “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it.”
He mixed faith with what God had said.
1 Cor. 10:5 But with most of them God was not well pleased, for their bodies were scattered in the wilderness. NKJV
Why wasn’t God pleased with them? Without faith it is impossible to please Him. (Heb. 11:6)
- Their unbelief displeased Him. Unbelief is disgusting to God. It irritates Him.
- They angered Him by their persistent unbelief.
Let’s take a minute to identify that terrible thing called unbelief.
Unbelief as the Israelites had in the wilderness is described by the Hebrew word apathea which means UNPERSUADABLE NESS.
There is another kind of unbelief brought about by lack of knowledge:
- The apostle Paul said that when he persecuted the church: “I did it ignorantly in unbelief.”
- He didn’t know, so he had a kind of unbelief that’s based on a lack of knowledge.
But there are many people who know the Word but choose to be un-persuadable and believe the devil’s lies and circumstances instead.
UNBELIEF IS YOUR GREATEST ENEMY
Why do people go to hell? Is it because they were a thief, and adulterer, a murderer or a conman? No, its because they didn’t believe on the Lord.
(Why did you get saved? Is it because you always did good things? No it’s because you believed on Jesus Christ as Lord.)
Unbelief is your biggest enemy.
Your biggest enemy is not lack of resources, its not lack of capital, its not corona virus, its not cancer, diabetes or aids.
Your biggest enemy is not lack of prayer though prayer is very very important:
- Your biggest enemy is unbelief.
- The greatest enemy of people awakening to God is unbelief.
- The greatest hindrance of the move of God in Ruiru is unbelief.
Jesus Himself could be standing here in this church and unbelief would stop a move of God.
Mark 6:1-6 Then He went out from there and came to His own country, and His disciples followed Him. 2 And when the Sabbath had come, He began to teach in the synagogue. And many hearing Him were astonished, saying, “Where did this Man get these things? And what wisdom is this which is given to Him, that such mighty works are performed by His hands! 3 Is this not the carpenter, the Son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us?” So they were offended at Him. 4 But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house.” 5 Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6 And He marveled because of their unbelief. Then He went about the villages in a circuit, teaching. NKJV
Even today, people sit in church and never take the Word of God seriously.
What hinders Ruiru? Unbelief.
The Bible gives us example after example of unbelief so we can get rid of it in our lives.
JESUS UPBRAIDED THEM:
This is what happened when Jesus was raised from the dead:
Mark 16:9-11 Now when He rose early on the first day of the week, He appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom He had cast seven demons. 10 She went and told those who had been with Him, as they mourned and wept. 11 And when they heard that He was alive and had been seen by her, they did not believe.
Jesus had told them He’d be raised from the dead in three days. But when they heard the report from the women, they did not believe that He was risen.
Mark 16:14-15 Later He appeared to the eleven as they sat at the table; and He rebuked their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they did not believe those who had seen Him after He had risen. NKJV
This shouldn’t have been the scenario. The first reunion after the resurrection was a REBUKE for unbelief.
God expects us to have faith! When we doubt, it irritates Him.
Stop mixing in doubt, fear, self-pity, complaining…
These will never bring about the desired result.
ITS NOT NECESSARILY A LACK OF FAITH
- To be honest, most people have faith. It’s not that they don’t have faith, it’s that they don’t get rid of the unbelief.
- Everyone has the measure of faith to be born again when they make Jesus Christ the Lord of their lives.
But they also have unbelief concerning what else God will do for them.
They had faith to be born again, but they don’t see God bringing them to their Promised Land.
YOU DON’T NEED A LOT OF FAITH.
The good news is even a little faith will do!
Matt 17:19-21 Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” 20 So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. NKJV
With a tiny amount of faith, you can move a mountain.
- A little faith can bring you land and a building like this one.
- A little faith can cure you of a terminal illness.
- It can achieve your dream.
- It can catapult you to anew level.
- It can open new doors.
- It can defeat great enemies.
You have the faith you need to get you to your destiny. Get rid of the unbelief and start mixing faith with the promises.
STAND UP WITH YOUR TITHE AND OFFERING:
Instead of complaining about the year that was lost in your educational, career and business goals, How about a different approach: How about believing and saying things like:
- Thank You Father that when You raised Christ from the dead, you raised me together with Him and you gave me the victory in every realm of life.
- Thank You Lord that you always cause me to triumph in Christ.
- I’m strong in faith and I refuse to doubt
- I believe I receive every need met.
- What you started in my life you will finish.
- You will restore the year that was lost.
- You said that all things work out together for my good.
- Thank You that no weapon formed against me shall prosper.
- You and I together will overtake the setback.
- Thank You that your favor is causing me to move upward and forward.
- Thank You that my business is thriving and flourishing.
- Thank You that I will never lack any good thing.