The Believer’s Faith
Faith is visible:
It is clear from the following Scripture that the early believers presented a formula that they expected newly converted believers to follow if they were genuine seekers.
Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway. And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with his entire house (Acts 16:30 – 34).
To obey is to receive Holy Spirit?
And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him (Acts 5:32).
To be saved one can expect instant changes
According to one’s knowledge and understanding in the Scriptures, for salvation is based upon a knowledge of God’s promises, such a person can expect peace and joy knowing that they are righteous before God. This knowledge does not come from feelings. Assurance comes from knowing and believing what God’s Word declares about the repentant seeker.
Expect Peace and Joy
For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost (Rom 14:17).
Expect Testimony: the message one’s lifestyle carries
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth (Acts 1:8).
Expect to gain knowledge of salvation through obedience to the Scriptures
But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption (1 Cor 1:30).
Expect Instant and gradual changes
Sanctification of and by the Holy Spirit is instant and ongoing
For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour (1 Thess 4:3-4).
But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth (2 Thess 2:13).
Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied (1 Pet 1:2).
Obedience to the Word of God is an outward sign of the inward work of the Spirit… Evidenced by humility, teachability, and prayer
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do. Acts 9:7 And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man (Acts 9:6).
And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth, And hath seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in, and putting his hand on him, that he might receive his sight (Acts 9:-1112).
Expect a new language
The first utterance, a natural born baby says is usually, dadadadadada. They are not saying daddy but a simple noise using the tongue against the palette of their mouth. I like to listen to baby talk. Babies just gurgle and practice what they think the people around them are saying.
In the Scriptures, natural born babies are used as an example for us to understand spiritual born ones. The Scriptures explain that when the Spirit gains entrance to a person’s mind the baby Christian begins to talk baby talk. They begin to pray. These sibling monosyllables can be likened to the ‘dadadada’, mentioned above.
In other words, what Paul meant in Romans is this, the new Believer is not saying “abba, Father” (‘Father, Father’), in those exact words. Instead, Paul is inferring that the person will have one-syllable sounds to talk to God in the same way as a little baby does when it is first learning new speech patterns. It will not be long, sometimes monotonous, sometimes articulate, sometimes very public and religious sounding, adult speech.
When the Holy Spirit, who is called here the ‘Spirit of Adoption’, comes in as a result of the faith and obedience of the newborn Believer, they will be like a newborn baby. Talking to God, they will likely talk in monosyllables as they begin to pray to their heavenly parent.
Simplicity: becoming like a little child
And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them (Mt 18:2).
Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me (Mt 18:4-5).
This teaching is tied up with all other teachings concerning humility and mutual submission of the Believers one to another. It is a mark of the servant of God as opposed to the false teacher, who is likened by Jesus to a hireling (Jn 10), and comes to ‘steal, kill and destroy’.
Serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews (Acts 20:19).
Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of Angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind (Col 2:18).
Which things have indeed a show of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh (Col 2:23).
Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble (1 Pet 5:5).
Paul was taught from the Old Testament that Jesus Christ is indeed Messiah, the Coming One, Emmanuel, ‘God With Us’. The Prophet Isaiah said Messiah would come. This is the who was spoken about from Eve to Isaiah and onward, until Simeon and Anna, the prophets in the temple of that time recognized Jesus the infant as He who would come. Anna went and told all of Israel that he was here.
Expect to learn by Revelation
Revelation knowledge has nothing to do with someone discerning things about another person, or situation, but rather, all of the knowledge revealed in the Scripture that lead us to Christ. As Believers begin to study the Word of God, they too will begin to receive revelation knowledge.
Saul of Tarsus was a man mighty in the Torah, the Prophets, Psalms and Proverbs. Revelation knowledge flowed because of his immense knowledge of Judaism’s Scriptures.
But all that heard him were amazed, and said; Is not this he that destroyed them which called on this name in Jerusalem, and came hither for that intent, that he might bring them bound unto the chief priests? But Saul increased the more in strength, and confounded the Jews which dwelt at Damascus, proving that this is very Christ. (Acts 9:21-22).
Not everyone will run to the new Believer, accepting their testimony, especially if their life before conversion was in active opposition to the gospel as Saul’s life was. They need friends to help them to be accepted into the household of faith.
But Barnabas took him, and brought him to the apostles, and declared unto them how he had seen the Lord in the way, and that he had spoken to him, and how he had preached boldly at Damascus in the name of Jesus (Acts 9:27).
Thank God, the church has wise discerning women and men. New converts need new friends.
And he was with them coming in and going out at Jerusalem. And he spake boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus (Acts 9:28-29).
For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father (Rom 8:15).
And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father (Gal 4:6).
Expect resting in God’s Love, Peace, and Forgiveness.
And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses (Mk 11:25-26).
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 Jn 1:9).
Expect the desire to living right
That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts (Eph 4:22).
But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds (Col 3:8-9).
Faith is tangible and recognizable; it produces works linked with right living in the light of the Gospel’s teachings; works of righteousness.
‘Now active faith is the real nature of the born again child of God, active faith is the foundation to build upon of things we hope for, and will produce the evidence of our actions, which until we act in faith we don’t see ‘ (Heb 11: 1 RBW Paraphrase)
Love in Jesus