I was reading the book of 1 Chronicles last night, and I was absolutely amazed at the faith of David. He fully relied on God to deliver him and his men from the hands of the Philistines. You just don’t see faith such as that today that much.
Take 1 Chronicles 14:10-16 (ESV) as an example:
And David inquired of God, “Shall I go up against the Philistines? Will you give them into my hand?” And the LORD said to him, “Go up, and I will give them into your hand.” And he went up to Baal-perazim, and David struck them down there. And David said, “God has broken through my enemies by my hand, like a bursting flood.” Therefore the name of that place is called Baal-perazim. And they left their gods there, and David gave command, and they were burned. And the Philistines yet again made a raid in the valley. And when David again inquired of God, God said to him, “You shall not go up after them; go around and come against them opposite the balsam trees. And when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the balsam trees, then go out to battle, for God has gone out before you to strike down the army of the Philistines.” And David did as God commanded him, and they struck down the Philistine army from Gibeon to Gezer.
I try to imagine what I would have done in that situation. I am human after all and I might have questioned the orders of God at least once when He said you shall not go after them; go around them… I might have said something like, “But they are right there, and I got this!” I would like to think that in the end I would have obeyed Him, because I have faith. But look at David. He did not question God at all. In verse 16 it says, “and David did as God commanded him…”
How many times in our own lives do we do without question what God is telling us to do? I can only speak for myself, and I know there are times when I don’t listen real well. The faith of David in this passage is just simply amazing to me.
Faith is all that we have. It is by faith alone that we are saved (Sola Fide). Romans 5:1 says that we are justified by faith. Notice how it does not say we are justified by faith and works; or we are justified by merit. No, it says faith only. 1 Corinthians 2:5 says, “that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.”
Why is it that I question what will happen in my life? When God says that everything will work out according to his will, why do I doubt that at times? Is it because my faith is weak? No, I don’t think so. I think it is because of my human nature, which I am continuously trying to let go of according to faith through His word.
I did a search of “faith” in the ESV Bible. It brought back 257 verses. There are so many examples of faith spelled out in the Old Testament, from Abraham to Noah and so many more. So I think faith is important to God. I think we are all weak in faith at times. I am currently questioning how a certain situation will play out in my life. Although I don’t know what will happen, God knows. God will work everything out in my life according to his will. I have to remember that truth. I have to be strong in faith.
I would like to take a minute now and try to explain faith how I understand it using what I have heard from John Piper. Does this mean that because I understand what faith is, that I have it completely? I would like to think so, but that is my prayer; that God would strengthen my faith – that I will get out of my own way and have this immeasurable faith.
Faith embraces the worth, the beauty, and the all sufficiency of Christ as its treasure, and is satisfied there. So when we make that act the definition of our being, our value as a person consists in our valuing of Jesus. The meaning and the value of self resides in our esteeming and treasuring of Christ. That is why we exist.
Faith is a gift. We cannot boast in a gift, so as we make faith our standard, the boasting is eliminated.
Why should faith be the standard of our thinking of ourselves? Faith is the root of all spiritual gifts. It is the trait that turns our natural abilities into spiritual gifts. All of our gifts then will point to the glory of Christ and not to us.
God can use our faith to move mountains if He wants too. How awesome would that be? How much better would our world be if we would have unending faith and let God use us? I long for that faith of David, which is truly faith immeasurable.
I encourage you today to not lean on your own understanding, and do not try to do things your way, but trust in God, because His ways are higher than our ways.
Father, I pray that you will strengthen my faith on a daily basis. I pray that you would give me the faith of David and so many others illustrated in Your word. I thank You for men of faith today such as John MacArthur, John Piper, Paul Washer, and so many others. Your word is infallible, undeniable, and fully sufficient, and for that I thank You. May it be that I never rely on myself, Lord, but I rely on only the cross of Christ, by which I am saved through faith.
– Adam Smith