I have a question for you all…and I want you to think on this. Don’t just read it and move on, don’t answer it quickly in your head because you think that your faith is strong enough that it will never waver. Remember when Peter denied Jesus, remember when King David turned from God, remember when so many followers of Christ lost their faith, even for a time. So, remember this as you ponder my question; we are all capable of losing our faith just like Peter did. We are all capable of denying our Savior in tough times. We are all capable of backsliding. In the deepest parts of our heart, we are still sinners. We are still fighting a battle with Satan, and he will take any chance he gets to win our hearts over, even if it is for five minutes, five days, five years, or a lifetime. Peter denied Him three times. If Peter could deny Him after he traveled with Him for so long, so can we.
What Does It Take For Us To Lose Faith?
Who has the power to take away our faith, even if it is for a moment? Who has the power to make us lose that faith and guide us into a sinful situation of backsliding? Who-or what- has enough power to take a hold of us and make us deny Him? Donald Trump? Hillary Clinton? The constant backsliding of America? Could it be one of your children who have started to live a sinful lifestyle? Could it be a spouse who is mean, or perhaps cheats on you? Could it be a parent who degrades you? What has the power to make us lose faith? An illness? The death of a family member? Losing a close friend? Being betrayed by someone? For a very long time, I allowed my situations to control my faith and I let my situations steer me as I made a very feeble attempt to walk with God. But the wheel of my heart would get turned, and I’d go the wrong way. I’d take the wrong turn. I hit a lot of dead ends in my faith. I felt like I was getting nowhere. My prayer life was horrible, I never studied the Bible, I stopped witnessing so boldly, I didn’t want to go to church or listen to sermons. Suddenly, the world began to look very appealing. I thought, wow, how nice would it be…to be a part of the world, and not have to worry about the things of God? How easy would my life be if I wasn’t worried about going to this church service, or reading my Bible each day? What caused my backsliding? What made me get so lukewarm? I lost my faith because I let my hard situations get to me. Somewhere along the line, I forgot how powerful God is. I let myself get disheartened. God wasn’t fixing anything in my life, so my attempts to follow Him seemed to be pointless. And then I realized this; God is not a genie in the bottle, and He owes me nothing. He could have fixed every problem I had ever faced in a blink of an eye, but He didn’t. He didn’t fix those things for a reason. They made me into a stronger Christian. When I stopped being so focused on myself and how I wanted my life to go, I was able to see His plan clearly. All I needed was to get to the end of myself, as my Pastor would say, and get to Him. He has no end. He never loses strength. I do, but He sure doesn’t.
Peter lost faith after he watched Jesus die on the cross. He was afraid for his own life, and I’m sure that he was doubting Jesus at that point. After all…He died. The Savior, the Son of God, dead. That would be a good reason to doubt things. So, he denied Him. We read on and see that he got his faith back. 1st Peter 1:3 says this, Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. He found his faith through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. We can find our faith in the same thing. We may look at America today and think to ourselves, this will never get better. We may think that revival will never happen, but Christian, let me remind you of Ninevah. Let’s read Jonah chapter 3.
1 And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the second time, saying,
2 Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee.
3 So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days’ journey.
4 And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.
5 So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.
6 For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.
7 And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water:
8 But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands.
9 Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?
10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.
A revival in a sinful place, not unlike America. God used Jonah to stir up a great revival. One of the greatest revivals that this world has ever seen. Do we not serve the same God who created this revival? Do we not serve the same Jesus who rose again on the third day? I think of the martyr Polycarp, and what we read about him in Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. As he was being killed brutally for his faith, these were his words when he was told to deny Him:
We serve the same God that Polycarp served. We may not have been serving him for 86 years, but we are still serving Him day by day. Years do not matter. We still have a personal relationship with Christ. These people urged Polycarp-deny Him! We will release you! But still, he did not waver in his faith. He looked death in the eye, and he proclaimed the name of Jesus Christ with boldness and pride for His Savior.
I ask again…what does it take for us to lose faith?
This country is in a very dangerous place, I will not deny it. But God is still capable of sending revival. Your life may be hard right now, but God is still capable of using it to His glory. He does not change, and He created you for a purpose. He created this country for a purpose, and I know that if His people humble themselves and pray, if His people rise up as a remnant of God and begin serving Him wholeheartedly, this nation will be healed. There is no if, and there is no but. He says I will. He is ready to fulfill His end of the bargain, are we? Are we willing to take things seriously? The biggest problem in America today, the biggest problem in our personal lives today, is that we have stopped taking God seriously. We are doubting Him far too much, and we are trusting in politicians far too much. Where do we put our faith? We’ve jumped on the boat with Jonah, ready to flee from Ninevah and get somewhere easy. We’ve jumped on the boat with Jonah, ready to get away from what He is calling us to do because we know it’s gonna be difficult. But all it took for Ninevah was one man dedicated to serving God…one man who realized that the boat to Tarshish wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. One man. God’s greatest revivals have come from a small remnant of believers. Can we not rise up and be a remnant?
Psalms 9:10 – And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, LORD, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.
Zechariah 8:6-12 – Thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘If it is too difficult in the sight of the remnant of this people in those days, will it also be too difficult in My sight?’ declares the LORD of hosts. “Thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘Behold, I am going to save My people from the land of the east and from the land of the west; and I will bring them back and they will live in the midst of Jerusalem; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God in truth and righteousness.