Acting on Faith
Pursue after your enemies… for the Lord your God hath delivered them into your hand (Joshua 10:19).
The Bible calls the devil a thief; one who steals. Thieves do not just walk around looking at things. Neither do they usually bother with low-end goods. No! They steal things that are valuable to you.
John 10:10 paints a clear picture of this:
“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”
God is a giver, and Satan is a taker. God restores, and Satan steals. God recovers, and Satan removes. In fact, God gives so much life, that it is not just life, it is abundant life or life that is so great that it flows out of you to touch others. Abundant life can be described like a cup that runs over with life so much so that you have to drink from your saucer because your cup is overflowing.
David experienced the loss of a thief and the goodness of God’s promises. I Samuel 30:10 says, “David pursued.” He sought out the enemy and persisted in God’s word. Many Christians do not know how to pursue, and become fearful at the thought of going into battle. God girds His people with “strength unto the battle” and He will subdue those that rise up against you (Psalms 18:39).
In order to recover all, you must be willing to put your faith in God’s Word, as David did, and to pursue your enemy. It is up to you to aggressively go after everything that God promised to you in His Word.
The deeper you go in the Spirit, the more you find out that your still on the surface. God wants you to reach great depth in Him. Psalms 42:7 says:
“Deep calleth unto deep at the noise of thy waterspouts.”
There is a place, in the Spirit, where your very being cries out to the Lord in prayer, but you can not know that place if you do not pursue God’s promises with intensity.
Every miracle that took place in God’s Word happened with action on the part of the individual who was in need.
Exodus 14:15-16 says:
“And the LORD said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me? speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward: But lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thine hand over the sea, and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea.”
God asked Moses, “Why are you still crying to me?” Then the Lord said, “speak” or act upon your faith in me. God told Moses to lift up the rod, stretch his hand out over the sea and go forth. Moses instruction from the Lord was to march on and keep going. As he did, the Red Sea split before him. Moses witnessed the miraculous as he acted upon his faith in God.
Then God gave the Promised Land to possess:
“And the LORD said unto me, Behold, I have begun to give Sihon and his land before thee: begin to possess, that thou mayest inherit his land”(Deuteronomy 2:31).
God said, “I have begun to give.” He doesn’t give until people start moving and acting upon faith. He will take care of the enemy in your way, but once He gives you the land, you must go and possess it. He often leaves it up to you to overcome the obstacles. Most importantly, you can not inherit until you take ownership-until you receive what God has promised to you.
Move forward into the New Testament. Think about the faith that it took for Bartimaeus to cry out to the Lord, “Have mercy on me” (Mark 10:47). Those around him were most likely discomforted by his yelling, and they may have even said, “Be quiet.” Nevertheless, he kept shouting out, “Lord, have mercy on me, Son of David, have mercy on me.” Bartemaeus was acting upon his faith. The result-he got his answer!
We find the same scenario in the story of the woman with the issue of blood. She also acted upon her faith, she said, “If I may but touch Him, I’ll be made whole” (Mark 5:28). She reached out for her answer, the Lord Jesus, and He healed her.
The early church is another example of faith in action. On the Day of Pentecost:
“They were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance” (Acts 2:4).
Believers prayed and then began to speak; acting upon the revelation and infilling that God had given them. As with the early church, we must not wait and then react, but rather act first in faith and then see God move. You see, pursuit is faith in action:
“It is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him’ (Hebrews 11:6).
Pursuit, active faith, brings victory!
The more you come to know the Lord, the more you find out that He has so much more waiting for you to receive, yet nothing miraculous happens without faith. Until Moses stretched the rod over the Red Sea, the water stayed intact. Until the Children of Israel were ready to possess the Promised Land, they wandered forty years in the wilderness. Until David unleashed the small stone from his sling, Goliath towered over him, sneering at the young man’s God. Until Bartimaeus and the woman with the issue of bless acted in faith, their miracle remained unfulfilled.
This is true even of salvation. Forgiveness is a free gift, bought by the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Yet God does not force you to accept the Savior into your heart. Only you can do that.
Pursuit is the key!