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            The perfecting of our faith, as we allow God to work on our heart, is vital and necessary.  The apostle Paul refers to Abraham as an example and finished product from God’s workshop.  The promises that were made to him are the promises God makes to us.  These promises could not be annulled by the law that came 430 years later.  The life of Abraham, and how it relates to both this life and eternal life, is very important.

            The Christian world in general has lost sight of God’s blessings in this life—and they are not in His workshop, so they are not learning how to trust Him in faith.  The average professing Christian thinks that the sacrifice of Christ is so much better than the sacrifice of animals that we can get to Heaven without living an overcoming life of faith in this world, and without being victorious in those things which Jesus purchased for us on the cross.

            Jesus promised that for anything we give up for His sake, we shall Luke 18:29-30 “receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting.”  This lack of faith in God in the world is a tragic mistake, as it results in people going into eternity unprepared—thinking they are ready for His kingdom, but not meeting the requirements of faith and trust on the One He has sent John 6:29.

            The Blood of Christ is more efficacious and effective than the blood of lambs, and it can cleanse our conscience from dead works, so that we can trust God in faith—but if we do not allow the Blood to do that, it can never be effective to take us to Heaven.  Thinking we can get to Heaven without living an overcoming life of faith here on earth, is a deadly delusion that will take people to the lake of fire.

            The apostle says 2 Corinthians 3:14 ”Their minds were blinded.  For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament, because the veil is taken away in Christ.”  Everything God offers His children, in the way of entering His kingdom, has to do with being victorious here in this life—by faith in the Atonement He made for them.

            The message of the Bible is that we must get back to God and obey His Word as it is written—even at the cost of our life.  If we are willing to do that, it will result in our being successful as an overcomer in the faith, and be given an entrance into Heaven.  Anything short of this, the Bible does not promise.

            What it does promise is that the Blood of Christ is effective in giving us the ability to live according to the Word.  The Law could not grant this—and that is the big difference between the blood of animals and the Blood of Jesus.

            If anyone professes to be a child of God, they must live and act like they were.  1 John 2:6 “He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.”  “The man who professes to be continuing in Him is himself also bound to live as He lived.”

            The outwardly religious Pharisees were arguing with Jesus, and saying they were never in bondage to anyone, but were children of Abraham.  Jesus told them that if they were children of Abraham, then they would act like Abraham—they would live a Scriptural life, and would show the fruits of faith righteousness.  That is required of everyone who claims to follow Abraham.

            Abraham was willing to place everything in his life in subjection to God’s will.  Because of that obedient attitude, he was able to overcome in the faith, and to receive God’s blessings in this life.  We are to enjoy good health and protection; peace in our home; God’s control of employment issues, and have all financial obligations paid in full.  By living as Abraham lived, we can be blessed as he was blessed.  Galatians 3:9 “So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.”

            A review of the principles of faith in Abraham’s life is of spiritual benefit.  His first call was to leave the security of his home, so he obeyed immediately and without questioning.  The next issue was how to meet a wrong in the scriptural way.  A dispute arose between their herdsmen, so Abraham said to Lot: There should not be any strife or wrong attitudes between us, “for we are brethren.”  You choose the land you think is best for you, and I will take what is left for me, Genesis 13:8.

            Abraham did not mention the problem to anyone, but presented a scriptural solution only to Lot.  If we mention wrong treatment to anyone, we please Satan and displease God—because we have not met it scripturally.  A believer is privileged to tell their injustices to God only.  Philippians 4:6 ”Let your request be unreservedly made known in the presence of God.”

            The next issue for Abraham was divine healing.  God told him that He was going to perform a miracle of healing for him and his wife, so that they could have their own son.  Abraham accepted that promise, and he believed God would fulfill it.  Abraham Romans 4:18 “contrary to hope, in hope believed, so that he became the father of many nations, according to what was spoken, ‘So shall your descendants be.’"

            There was the financial matter to deal with, as Abraham left his home and had to trust God by faith.  When the King of Sodom offered him wealth, Abraham refused it.  He did not want the king to take the credit.  Abram said Genesis 14:22-23 “I have lift up mine hand unto the LORD, the most high God, the possessor of heaven and earth, That I will not take from a thread even to a shoelatchet, and that I will not take any thing that is thine, lest thou shouldest say, I have made Abram rich.”

            Abraham met this money issue right, and received God’s financial blessings next.  And we are called to meet such things in the same scriptural way, if we desire to reach the same Heaven as Abraham.  This financial teaching is opposite to the teaching of the average organization that calls itself a Christian church today.

            God says we are not to avenge ourselves in any way—not with a look and not with a word, but every wrong is to be placed into the hands of the righteous Judge.  1 Peter 2:19-21 “For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully.  …when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God.  For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps.”  “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord” Romans 12:19.

            Our hope of Heaven depends on our not being overcome with evil, but overcoming evil by meeting it right.  Only the overcomers in faith, are going to enter God’s kingdom.  Being a child of the Father depends on whether we are able to love our enemies; to pray for those who hate us; to bless them that curse us; to pray for them that use us; and to do good for those who do harm to us.

            Luke 6:35 "Love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High.”

            The unjust steward was going to be fired from his job, so right away he makes plans for the future by reducing the bills of his master’s debtors.  In this way, they would be willing to take him into their homes when he lost his employment.  The steward used the few weeks he had to make sure someone would take care of him.  Jesus then applies the principle to the believer.

            Luke 16:9-10 “I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.  ‘Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.’” 

            No one can ignore the importance of being scriptural on finances.  We are to use the money that passes through our hands on earth, so that we are given an eternal home in Heaven—when we leave this world.

            Jesus told the centurion that the scriptural stand he took on healing, would give him an entrance into Heaven with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  The right stand the centurion took was to accept only the Word as sufficient evidence his servant was healed. 

            Jesus said Matthew 8:10-12 “I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.  And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.  But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

            The Hebrews who lacked faith in the Word of God would be cast out of an eternal home in Heaven.  This was a matter of divine healing, and it refers back to Abraham—who accepted God’s Word in faith for the promise of a child of his own.  If we walk in the steps of faithful Abraham, we will receive the blessings of Abraham—1 Peter 3:9 “you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.”

            Abraham was in God’s workshop, and was being taught lesson after lesson until he graduated.  School students do not just receive a little instruction and then nothing more; but they go through lesson after lesson until they are proficient in all subjects.  The school’s goal is to turn out a finished product with the students having a good understanding of a basic education.

            A child is not born to remain a child; but to learn, develop, and grow to maturity.  It is the same in our spiritual lives.  Jesus died on the cross that we might grow spiritually, and receive His blessings in all things.  This matter of graduation has been ignored by the professing Christian world.

            When we have been taught by God, and come to the place where—at any cost; at any risk; and whether it even means our life, we will put God’s will and Word ahead of everything else—that is graduation day.  When we are totally surrendered to God and His Word, we have reached graduation.

            Abraham did not reach that place the first day, but he was willing to learn, and by God’s grace, he said “Yes” to God’s commands.  If Abraham had not learned the valuable lesson of always putting God first—even ahead of his own son—graduation day would never have arrived for him. 

            If he had not obeyed the first command, he would never have been able to say “Yes” to the last.  But He went through God’s training school and workshop—and graduated!


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