Faithfulness Fruit for Christmas

December 26, 2018

 

“Old Faithful” is a famous geyser in Wyoming’s Yellowstone National Park. It was so named in 1870 because it reliably erupts at somewhat consistent and predictable intervals. A famous Latin motto, Semper fidelis, means “Always faithful.” God is always faithful, and we should learn to take Him at His word.

 

What is needed in everyone’s life is the Fruit of the Spirit –
Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, FAITHFULNESS Gentleness, Self-control. Let’s talk about FAITHFULNESS.

 

How much can you and I be counted on to be faithful?

What is faithfulness?

 

1. God is ALWAYS Faithful – I Corinthians 1:9

9 God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.

God fulfilled every prophecy and promise of the Old Testament.

 

God keeps His PROMISES.  

Christmas is all about God being FAITHFUL to what He promised from Genesis to Malachi. Genesis 3:14-15 – 14 So the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, “Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. 15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”

 

God keeps His promises even when we don't keep ours – Romans 3:3-4 – 3 What if some did not have faith? Will their lack of faith nullify God’s faithfulness? 4 Not at all! Let God be true, and every man a liar. As it is written: “So that you may be proved right when you speak and prevail when you judge.”

 

II Timothy 2:11-13 –11 Here is a trustworthy saying: If we died with him, we will also live with him; 12 if we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us; 13 if we are faithless, he will remain faithful, for he cannot disown himself.

 

Although all people sometimes fail at faithfulness, we can always count on God. That enables us to have complete faith and trust in Him. It’s vital that we respond to the faithfulness of God the Father and Jesus Christ with deep and abiding faith, so that we will then give Them our very best.

 

God puts BOUNDARIES on how harshly we can be tempted – I Corinthians 10:13 – 13 No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

 

II Thessalonians 3:3 – 3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.

 

2. We are CALLED to be faithful – I Corinthians 4:2; Hebrews 10:22-25

Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.

Hebrews 10:22-25 - 22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

 

Our faith is in what JESUS did for us – Galatians 2:16 – 16 know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified.

 

His death on the cross for our sins and our forgiveness and salvation as long as we believe in and follow Him.

 

Why should I believe in Jesus if it is going to get me killed? – Galatians 3:14 – 14 He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.

 

Our faith is not that we won't suffer hardship, but that we have eternal life as long as we follow Jesus! Millions of Christians have suffered horribly and even walk to their execution in full confidence of their faith in God’s promises through Jesus Christ.

 

3. Faithfulness is defined by:

Faithfulness means OBEDIENCE – Romans 4:9

9 Is this blessedness only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? We have been saying that Abraham’s faith was credited to him as righteousness.

 

JESUS is our model for faithfulnessHebrews 2:17 – 17 For this reason he had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. What would have happened if Jesus had been unfaithful in obeying God?

 

Hebrews 3:1-6 – Therefore, holy brothers, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, the apostle and high priest whom we confess. 2 He was faithful to the one who appointed him, just as Moses was faithful in all God’s house. 3 Jesus has been found worthy of greater honor than Moses, just as the builder of a house has greater honor than the house itself. 4 For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything. 5 Moses was faithful as a servant in all God’s house, testifying to what would be said in the future. 6 But Christ is faithful as a son over God’s house. And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast.

 

Faithfulness means TRUSTWORTHYLuke 12:42-44

42 The Lord answered, “Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom the master puts in charge of his servants to give them their food allowance at the proper time? 43 It will be good for that servant whom the master finds doing so when he returns. 44 I tell you the truth, he will put him in charge of all his possessions.

 

All good relationships are built on the foundation of faith and faithfulness—of mutual trust born out of trustworthiness. A good marriage is largely defined as a faithful wife and faithful husband. You don't want to be married to someone who is faithful to you only part of the time. A good friend is a faithful friend—not a “fair-weather friend,” but one who “loves at all times”.  A good employee is a trusted and dependable employee.

 

Faithful is full time, not part time – I Timothy 5:9 – 9 No widow may be put on the list of widows unless she is over sixty, has been faithful to her husband.

 

God doesn't want us to be faithful only part of the time. We are not to be partially faithful – SONday morning or when asleep.

 

Faithfulness in the face of PERSECUTIONII Thessalonians 1:4
4 Therefore, among God’s churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring.

 

We must be faithful even when it doesn't make sense. – Hebrews 4:14 – 14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.

 

Faithfulness involves ACTION. Are you living like a follower of Jesus or a part-time follower?

 

Fight the good fight of being faithful – 1 Timothy 6:12 – 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

 

Revelation 2:10 – 10 Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life.

 

Revelation 14:12 – 12 This calls for patient endurance on the part of the saints who obey God’s commandments and remain faithful to Jesus.

 

Matthew 24:13 – But he that shall endure to the end, the same shall be saved. He  says, “But he who endures to the end shall be saved.”

 

May these words be said of you – I Timothy 1:12 – 12 I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me faithful, appointing me to his service.

 

II Timothy 4:7 – 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

As you celebrate the birth of our LORD, Savior and role model, reflect on how FAITHFUL God has been in keeping His promises and giving you love, mercy and grace, even when your faith has faltered.

 

Don’t wait for the New Year. Resolve NOW to fight against temptation. Stand against those who want to water down, compromise or outright destroy your freedom of religion, tell you what you can and cannot believe or say, etc. Be faithful to your faith in Christ, even if it leads to earthly ruin, suffering or death.

 

Merry Christmas and may God bless your New Year!

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