The Faces Of Genuine Faith

Luke 18:8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?

Do you have faith in Jesus?
If you do, you are in Christ’s Kingdom.

In Luke chapters 17 and 18 Jesus has been talking about the Kingdom of God. Jesus told the Pharisees:

Luke 17:20-21 … The Kingdom of God cometh not with observation: 21 neither shall they say, Lo here! Or, lo there! For, behold, THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS WITHIN YOU.

The Kingdom of God comes within you, within your heart, when you receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. This Kingdom spans the earth, as

every believer that follows Jesus by faith is in
the Kingdom of God.

After talking about the PRESENT Kingdom of God, Jesus began to speak on the FUTURE Kingdom of God. Beloved, Jesus is coming soon! We do not know when, but we know He is. Today Jesus asks us a question:

Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh,
shall he find faith on the earth?

When the “Son of Man” – that’s a title of Jesus as Messiah – “when the Son of man cometh, will He find faith on the earth?”. I believe Jesus will find some faith on the earth, but I also believe Jesus will find false faith.

There is a true faith that saves, and a false faith that damns.
There is a true faith from the Savior, and a false faith from th
There is a true faith given by God, and a false faith manufactured by man.
What does genuine, saving faith look like?

Genuine Faith Is An OVERCOMING Faith

The Bible tells us that those in the Kingdom of God, those justified by faith in Christ, must “live by faith”. This principle is revealed in both the Old and New Testaments:

Habakkuk 2:4 Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.

Hebrews 10:38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.

This principle is repeated in Romans 1:17 and Galatians 3:11.

The Bible declares “no one is justified by the law”, and {it is} not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; which {God} shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior.

Jesus Christ is the One Sent from God the Father
Who is the Key to Heaven!

When we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, He sends the Spirit (John 15:26)

The Holy Spirit causes us to be “born again” (John 3:3, 7; 1 Peter 1:23).
We are reborn as children of God by faith in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:26).
We are “transferred from the darkness into God’s marvelous light”
(1 Peter 2:9)
We are not what we were, but are now “new creatures in Christ”
(2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 6:15)
“predestined to be conformed to the image of God’s Son” (Romans 8:29)

Illustrate Our lives are radically changed by God when we surrender to His Son. A man came eagerly but very late to a revival meeting. He found the workmen tearing down the tent in which the meetings had been held. Frantic at missing the Evangelist, he asked one of the workers,What can I do to be saved?” The workman, also a Christian, said, “You can’t do anything to be saved. It’s too late.” Horrified, the man said, “What do you mean? How can it be too late?” The believer told him, “The work has already been done. Jesus Christ died on Calvary for your sins. He rose again, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. You just need to believe and receive this. JESUS is THE ONE SENT from the Father, the Key to Heaven.

Because Genuine, saving faith is GOD MADE, it is PERSISTENT. Jesus illustrates this.

Luke 18:1-8 And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; 2 saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: 3 and there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. 4 And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; 5 yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. 6 And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. 7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? 8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily….

This is a beautiful picture that compares a lost judge to the Holy and ever faithful Judge of all creation. The lost judge cared nothing for the widow. What had happened to the widow? Perhaps she had been robbed, as people stalk and rob senior citizens today by telephone scams, or shoddy workmanship. This widow had been done wrong. She went to the judge, and demanded that her adversary be punished. The lost and uncaring judge at first would not hear her. But as she came day by day, eventually he was wearied to the point where he decided to do his job, and punish her adversary. would do his job. Jesus asked:

Luke 18-7-8 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? 8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily…

God’s Chosen – the Saved – cry DAY AND NIGHT to Him. Genuine faith OVERCOMES. It looks to Jesus.

This is a concept that we see carried forward from the Old Testament. In the Old Testament God told Israel:

Deuteronomy 7:6-8 the Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth. 7 The Lord did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: 8 but because the Lord loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers

God calls all to salvation. He doesn’t call us because we are worthy. He calls us because WE NEED HIM. God chooses to save us, though we are broken. I love what the Apostle wrote, because it is so much like our Deuteronomy passage:

1 Corinthians 1:27-29 … God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; 28 and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to naught things that are: 29 that no flesh should glory in his presence.

God chose to love us.
God chooses to call us.
Once we are saved, we REST IN HIM.
God indelibly marks us by inhabiting Us.
We look to Him NO MATTER WHAT.

This widow kept on calling on the unjust judge. She persisted, though there was no indication that the judge would ever do anything for her. Beloved, the faith that saves is persistent.

  • When we are tried by the adversary the devil (1 Peter 5:8), cry out to the Father.
  • When we are tried by the adversary of sickness or disability, cry out to the Father.
  • When attacked by the world, we cry out to God in Jesus’ name. God loves us. He shed the blood of His Son on Calvary for us. God will hear us. God loves to hear us, and will avenge us. God fights for me!

Time may pass, but let us rest in Jesus’ work. We are now God’s for Christ’s sake. Be persistent in prayer. If you are the elect, the chosen of God, then you are to cry out to Him DAY AND NIGHT. Neither prayer nor God is not a spare tire, but is a daily way of life for the Christ follower.

Genuine Faith Not Only OVERCOMES,
But It RESTS In Jesus, The One Sent

Luke 18:9-14 And {Jesus} spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: 10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. 12 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. 13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

Two men went to the Temple to pray. One man had a proud focus on himself. Let’s break down the Pharisee’s position and prayer. First we read,

Luke 18:11 … The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself

The Pharisee did not kneel, but stood up. He made himself equal to God. He was too good to bend the knee – after all, he was a great and godly guy! He “prayed with himself”. His prayers went no farther than his own ears. God was not listening to Him. The Pharisee was not relying of God as he prayed. Notice how many times he uses the word “I”:

I thank Thee,
I am not as other men are,
I fast twice in the week,
I give tithes of all that
I possess.

The Pharisee started his prayer right. He said “I thank Thee”. But even his thanks was defiled. He was thanking God for making him better than those around him. As a Pharisee, he looked good on the outside. Jesus said of the Pharisees, the self righteous:

Matthew 23:27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchers, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.

If you’ll notice, the Pharisee uses the pronoun “I” FIVE TIMES. In the Bible FIVE is the number of GRACE. The Pharisee traded his works for the Grace of God. He was not relying on Jesus, the One Sent.

God does not judge us based on how others around us are. God judges us based on how we compare to HIM. This is why salvation MUST be by Grace. We are to rest in Christ, trusting Him and Him alone for salvation.

Hebrews 4:9-11 There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. 10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. 11 Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.

Why does the text say “LABOR to enter into THAT REST”. Because our own worst enemy is ourselves, our pride, our self sufficiency. We have to battle that BAD ME, and force ourselves to rest in Him. God told Israel:

The LORD God of Israel has given rest unto His people” (1 Chronicles 23:25 See also Exodus 33:14). Jesus Christ is the One Sent to give us rest.

Come to Me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

Compare the PUBLICAN to the Pharisee. The Publican humbled himself. We read:

Luke 18:13 … the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner

The publican (someone who collected taxes for the Roman Empire), was totally focused on his inabilities and sinfulness. He was NOT presumptuous with God, but prayed God be merciful to me a sinner. He was relying on the One Sent to save us. Jesus says:

Luke 18:14 … this man {the Publican} went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

The Justified) shall live by faith! You cannot be made right before God by your own works. You must Rest on the Lord Jesus. As the late Andrew Murray said:

Pride must die in you, or nothing of heaven can live in you.”

Genuine Faith Not Only Overcomes and Rests,
But It Is Obedient To the One Sent From God.

Luke 18:16-17 Jesus called them unto him, and said, {Allow the} little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for OF such is the kingdom of God. 17 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.

Many churches today have internal problems because they are not representative of the Kingdom of God. The Pastor is the king, the deacons are the kings, or certain well placed families are the kings, or the flock itself is the king. Beloved, the Kingdom of God has only ONE King, and that is God. It is not a democracy, but a monarchy. We are to become like little children. What God has said, we receive. What God has rejected, we reject. We base our beliefs on the Bible, not on what our opinions are. This is certainly not popular in our current politically correct, cancel culture – but it wasn’t popular in Jesus’ day, either. What does the faith of a child practically look like?

Almost before Jesus finishes speaking “a certain ruler” asks Jesus:

Luke 18:18 Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?

Jesus tells the man:

Luke 18:19-20 … Why callest thou me good? none is good, save one, that is, God. 20 Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor thy father and thy mother.

When Jesus quotes the commandments to this man, He quotes the second part of the ten commandments. The first part of the ten commandments relate to loving God, i.e.

  1. God will be first in your life (Exodus 20:2-3)
  2. You will not worship anyone but God (Exodus 20:4-6)
  3. You will not take the Name of God in vain (Exodus 20:7)
  4. You will dedicate one day in seven to worship God (Exodus 20:8-11)

You can sum up these first four commandments as “you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37). This man was not doing these things. He was following an idol. So Jesus starts out with the second part of the ten commandments, which is to “love others the way you want to be loved” (Matthew 22:39). Of course, the man easily passed that part of the text. The man honored his parents (5th commandment), had murdered no one (6th commandment), had committed no sexual sins (7th commandment), had not stolen property from others (8th commandment), nor had he slandered anyone (9th commandment). The man replied, “I’ve done all these things from my youth up”.

But the man had committed idolatry. He put THINGS in front of God.

Luke 18:22-25 … when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me. 23 And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich. 24 And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful, he said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 25 For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

This man had made an idol out of his stuff. He was not following God as a little child, but had surrounded himself with stuff that he loved more than God. Genuine Faith rejects the golden calf, and looks to the One Sent from God.

Jesus told him “sell it all – give it away – and come follow Me”. We, as God’s children, are to love our Heavenly Father more than anything else we have.

Back in 1852 Pastor John Angell James preached a message entitled “What is the Idol of our Day”. In that message he noted three things as the idol of our day: Love of pleasure, Excessive worldliness, and Wealth. Truthfully, this has always been our problem. We place our trust in the wrong things – often to our damnation.

We called to put away our idols, and trust in the One Sent. The Apostle Paul tells us:

Philippians 3:49Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: 5 circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; 6 concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. 7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. 8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, 9 and be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:

Do you have the faith, saving faith, the only faith that comes from God? Have you believed on the One Sent, Jesus Christ our Lord? Oh, what a blessing it is to have Him in your life, to be a part of His Kingdom. Come, and give yourselves to Him this very day. For the glory of God, for your earthly peace of mind, and your heavenly destination. In Christ’s name I pray. Amen and Amen!

Illustration Prior to the message I passed out Cross Pennies from the Cross Penny Ministries. Jesus Christ is the ONE SENT from God. You can order 500 stamped Cross Pennies by sending a check to Steve Petty/ Cross Penny Ministries. Details are at

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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