Page Two: “Continue In The Faith” 11/11/12
Can you see why it’s so important to learn the truths of the Bible week after week by sitting under the teaching of the Bible? Many, far too many Christians don’t know this. They don’t know what the LORD says about them. And far too many Christians read these things in God’s Word and simply do not believe them.
And it’s all because of a work by God on your behalf called reconciliation; the act of God in which He restores us to full fellowship with Himself at the moment we trust His Son as our Savior and LORD.
Folks, that’s what makes the Christian life so appealing and so wonderful. It simply makes you stand in awe of God.
Now, today, I’d like you to consider with me verse twenty-three and these three things. First, perseverance in spiritual things. Second, grounded in the LORD. And third, the hope of the Gospel.
First, perseverance in spiritual things. Look with me at verse twenty-three and you will find the little English word “if.”
Whenever you find an “if,” you find a condition. This is what we call in English a conditional clause. “If” implies that some will not continue in the faith. It also implies that some will continue in the faith.
With this little word, the Apostle Paul shows us one of the most powerful blessings of being in Christ. And that is this. A Believer continues in the faith.
“Continue” is as normal a word as you will find. We use it quite often in English even today.
And, as you know, I prefer to let the Bible interpret the Bible. Here’s how the LORD uses “continue” in other passages of Scripture.
Here’s the Apostle John using it when the Pharisees continued asking Jesus a question.
John 8:7 “So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.”
And when Peter had been let out of prison by an Angel, he arrived at a friend’s house and knocked at the gate.
Here’s Acts 12:16 “But Peter continued knocking: and when they had opened the door, and saw him, they were astonished.”
“Continued” means “persevered,” “kept at it,” persisted.”
A Believer isn’t one who works for his salvation. Instead, a Believer is a person who rests completely on the work of Someone else. Then, as a child of God, you continue. You persevere. You stick with it. You abide. You don’t throw in the towel when you find something hard in the Christian life.
And, as a matter of fact, the Bible tells us exactly what we are to continue in. For examples, here’s
Acts 13:43 “Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God.”
And here’s a word from Paul to the Church at Rome. Romans 11:22
“…if thou continue in his goodness: …”
Colossians 1:23 “If ye continue in the faith …”
And Paul’s word to Timothy at I Timothy 4:16 “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.
Folks, Paul has laid a solid foundation for your life in Christ alone. And now, he adds this. Those who build on that foundation do so by persistence and perseverance. It’s actually a perseverance in the faith. The word is “continue.”
Now, imagine, if you can, a person comes to the LORD and chooses to bow and receive Jesus as his Savior. Then, over the course of the next seven years of his life, he chooses to live as he pleases with no regard whatsoever to Christ. No obedience. No faith. No walk with the LORD. No persistence. No surrender. No progress whatsoever in spiritual things.