Believe and become…

Romans 4:13-25

For the promise that he would be the heir of the world was not to Abraham or to his seed through the law, but through the righteousness of faith. For if those who are of the law are heirs, faith is made void and the promise made of no effect,  because the law brings about wrath; for where there is no law there is no transgression.

Therefore it is of faith that it might be according to grace, so that the promise might be sure to all the seed, not only to those who are of the law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all  (as it is written, “I have made you a father of many nations”  ) in the presence of Him whom he believed—God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did; who, 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.” And not being weak in faith, he did not consider his own body, already dead (since he was about a hundred years old), and the deadness of Sarah’s womb. He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God,  and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform. And therefore “it was accounted to him for righteousness.”

Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed to him, but also for us. It shall be imputed to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification.

“…what He had promised He was also able to perform. …” 

Do we really believe what we believe is really true?  If so, how would that change things?

  …“it was accounted to him for righteousness.”…

What was credited to him for righteousness?  He believed God.  God said it, it would be.

 “…He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God,  and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform….” 

Like Paul, we too can take God at his word.  We are promised that Jesus was raised up for our benefit, to cleanse us of our sins and justify us before God.  We can take hold of that promise and our belief that it is so will be counted to us as righteousness.  Believe and become.

 “… in hope believed, so that he became …” 

We can believe and become the promise of God to others as we share with them the life he brings, the justification from sin’s penalty of death.  He who gave life gives life again.  Believe and become…alive.

Become what you believe…

 Matthew 9:27-34

As Jesus left the house, he was followed by two blind men crying out, “Mercy, Son of David! Mercy on us!” 28 When Jesus got home, the blind men went in with him. Jesus said to them, “Do you really believe I can do this?” They said, “Why, yes, Master!” 29 He touched their eyes and said, “Become what you believe.” 30 It happened. They saw. Then Jesus became very stern. “Don’t let a soul know how this happened.” 31 But they were hardly out the door before they started blabbing it to everyone they met. 32 Right after that, as the blind men were leaving, a man who had been struck speechless by an evil spirit was brought to Jesus. 33 As soon as Jesus threw the evil tormenting spirit out, the man talked away just as if he’d been talking all his life. The people were up on their feet applauding: “There’s never been anything like this in Israel!” 34 The Pharisees were left sputtering, “Hocus pocus. It’s nothing but hocus pocus. He’s probably made a pact with the Devil.”

First, there is faith, touch, healing – in that order

Second the Pharisees try to discredit Jesus, specifically the power by which he accomplished the healing touch and the ability to throw out the evil spirits. The leadership cannot exercise the same power that Jesus can.  They do not ask how; they try to discredit the one who can.

The Message says Jesus stated become what you believe, or as other translations say it, according to your faith, will it be done to you.  These events begin with faith; the substance of what is hoped for; the evidence of what is not seen.  Again, the essence of what is hoped for, being certain of what we do not see.  There is an essential role that we play in accessing the power available to us.  Belief.  Exercising it; practicing it. Believe God is who He says He is.  Believe He does what He says He does.  Believe you are who God says you are.  Believe you can do all things through Christ Jesus.  Believe the Word is active and alive in you.

Breath prayer –  increase my faith, let me become.  Become what is hoped, become what is not seen.