Relaxed Mental Attitude,
No. 2 -
We have been considering in this basic
doctrine series the
matter of our personal spiritual maturity.
This we have found the Scriptures refer to under the
as a structure which is in our souls. This
structure is in the form of a pentagon.
It has five basic facets to it.
is) one convenient way of thinking of it.
It is a defense system which God provides for our
souls. It is based upon doctrine and that
of full knowledge; that is, the Word of God which we have learned and
received with a positive response and which now resides in our human
the point of contact between us and God, and for the guidance of the
facets of our souls.
Now we have already looked at the
facet of grace
orientation. We have looked at the facet
of mastering the details of life, where doctrine is first and all the
of life are secondary. Both of these are
very strategic and we spent quite a bit of time on these.
They are structures upon which is based the
one that we are now looking at—a relaxed mental attitude. Unless you thoroughly understand grace
orientation and are oriented to the grace of God, and unless you
to be related to the details of your life so that you control them. Again I remind you (about) these details of
eating and recreation and bank accounts and housing and clothing: (It’s) not that they are not essential,
that we are in control of them. Most
Christians, as with most people of the world, are not in control of
them. But when you have these two
in a position to build this mental attitude—a relaxed mental
This means an attitude where there are
no mental attitude
sins that possess the mentality of our souls, so that in our minds we
ease. Now God has supplied a technique
by which to build and maintain a relaxed mental attitude.
This technique is resting by faith in God and
in His Word and His promises. So we call
it “the faith rest” technique. It
of those techniques for the Christian life that you have to learn. If you don’t learn how to operate under
faith rest technique, you will not be in a position to develop in your
relaxed mental attitude. So this is what
we’re going to look at this morning.
This concept of resting by faith upon
what God has said is
expressed in the Word of God in the book of Isaiah 41:10.
Isaiah puts it this way: “Fear
thou not for I am with thee. Be not
dismayed for I am thy God. I will
strengthen thee; yea, I will help
thee. Yea, I will uphold these with the
right hand of my righteousness.” Then
that very precious verse in 1 Peter 5:7 where Peter says,
“Casting all your
care upon Him for He careth for you.”
So the great enemy of a relaxed mental
attitude is worry, in
one form or another—anxieties that possess our souls through our
minds. Now God has a plan, and we enter
this plan at
the point of salvation. Once we’ve
entered the plan of God for us, there is no suffering, there is no
heartache, no disappointment, no hurt, no frustration, no aggravation
too great for God’s provision. In
plan, every one of these has been covered.
God’s provisions are all found in the Bible. These provisions we’re going to find,
a little preview summary, are three-fold.
God’s provisions for all the problems that
face you: 1) Promises that He makes; 2)
3) Prophecy (which is a type of promises or a type of doctrine, but a
Now the Christian’s concern in
the time of trial is the
question of whether he’s going to go positive or negative to
these things in
the form of promises, doctrines, and prophecy which come out of the
God. God has made these provisions for
him to use in the faith rest technique.
Now if a Christian goes positive when he’s
under trial, and he uses the
faith rest technique, God will bring into play in his life the
He has made from eternity past for that particular problem. Now if he goes negative, and refuses to act
under the faith rest technique, then this will be indicated within the
the believer by the fact that he is going to be trusting in self-made
You may evaluate yourselves as to how
many times this week
you came up to a problem and you came up with a self-made solution, and
it worked, and maybe you think it worked.
Maybe you’re under the delusion that you
resolved that in the best way
possible, because you never bothered taking it to God.
As a matter of fact, maybe the thing you
should have done was not to do anything at all.
It is very shocking to people to realize that part
of the faith rest
technique is learning to do nothing when you’re confronted with
problems. It’s a little difficult
for people to accept
the idea when they come to you with a problem and they unravel a
they say to you, “Now here’s my difficulty.”
And you say to them, “Well the first solution
is to do nothing.”
I once had a very good youth director
who got himself in a
couple of pickles because he took dramatic moves when people came to
crisis situations. Well the people were
all upset. They were all in a furor. They were all in a lather.
They were all determined that he had to do
something. Being inexperienced, he
rushed out, and he got himself burned. I
said, “Next time, the thing you want to remember when people come
to you with
some climactic situation that requires some actions is that you have to
do nothing. That’s the first thing
you have to
remember. You have to do nothing.” Faith rest starts with doing nothing.
Now that gives God an opportunity and
a chance to start
talking to your mentality, to start moving your emotions, and start
your will, and it gets you out of the picture where you’re
fouling up the
situation. Now you’re going to have
think about that a while, and take some entering in, to learning how to
your problems by doing nothing, because everything you’ve ever
been taught …
was to get out and be a hustler, and to start maneuvering with your
Well, when you do this, you will
reflect this in certain
ways. You will be a worry wart. You will be filled with anxiety.
You’ll constantly be planning.
You’ll be fretting. You’ll
be upset. You’ll be disturbed. You’ll suffer from insomnia. You’ll be scheming.
You’ll be operating. You’ll
be scrounging. And you’ll be
shifty-eyed because you’re
looking everywhere to take it all in.
The signals are very definitive for the person who
is operating in his
own capacities rather than resting in faith on what God can do for him.
So you’re going to have to
decide who’s more capable of
solving your problems—you or the Lord.
Then you’ll decide who’s going to be
responsible for these problems. Though God
is infinitely more capable, He only
answers your problems on the faith rest technique; otherwise He
them. That’s the first thing you
learn. God operates only on this
technique, and if you’ve got problems, unless you take it and
leave it with
Him, He’s not going to touch it with a ten-foot pole. And you’re going to stay with your
and you’re going to stay with your self-made human solutions. Now while God is working on our problems,
therefore, we can have a relaxed mental attitude because it becomes His
problem, and He’s an expert at problem-solving.
So the faith rest technique puts the mentality of
our souls at ease, and
it supplies our emotions with peace and inner happiness, and it guides
to the right move and the right decisions.
Now many Christians are willing, I
realize, to turn their
problems over to the Lord. We
find a great deal of resistance in this auditorium this morning of
don’t want to turn their problems over to the Lord.
The problem is how to do it. So
we’re going to ask you to turn to the book
of Genesis, the 15th chapter, to take a look at an incident
life of Abram that is an excellent example of how to go about the faith
technique and what it involves in our lives, for the purpose of
relaxed mental attitude.
Genesis 14 - 15
We have to look first of all briefly
at the background of
chapter 15 which is Genesis 14. In
Genesis 14 you have an account of victory for Abram with a relaxed
mental attitude. Chedorlaomer, the king of
Elam, and three of
his king pals attacked the city of Sodom where, you remember, his
has chosen to live. Now Sodom was an
extremely wicked city. It was a hotbed,
along with Gomorrah, of homosexuality and of bestiality.
(I hope you understand what that is—sex
involvement with animals). And of the
child sacrifices. It was the most
degrading type of society you could imagine, very much of course like
the one …
in which we live today. God brought
judgment. He wiped the city out
eventually by destruction from heaven.
Now while Lot was a citizen there,
Chedorlaomer, king of
Elam, with his king pals attacked the city, and Lot and a number of
taken captives. The word was brought to
(that his) nephew has been taken captive by Chedorlaomer.
Now Abram at this point could have taken the
attitude toward Lot, “Well, I told him so.
I told him so. I warned
he’s got what he deserves. This is
exactly what should happen to him when he wouldn’t listen to
me.” But because Abram had a relaxed
attitude, he was neither vindictive nor was he glad to see what had
Instead we read in Genesis 14:14 that
Abram (as he was
called at this time) proceeded to mount a military expedition. “When Abram heard that his brother had
taken captive (that is, his nephew, Lot), he armed his trained servants
his own house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued them unto
Dan.” Now Abram kept a military
his own servants. He drilled them. He trained them. He
had 318 men in a standing army within his
Now he also had three allies, three
kings, and their troops
which joined him, so there were others besides these 318 that were
the attack under Abram. But, it was a
small force, a very small force, in comparison with the large number
and the other three kings.
Well the result was, in verses 15 and
16, that Abram used
the tactic of dividing his men into two (groups), having an attack that
from directions, and it was a night attack, we’re told, and the
result was that
it caused confusion among the troops of Chedorlaomer.
They began fighting against one another, and
they set them to flight toward Damascus unto Hobah.
He brought back, verse 16 says, all the
goods. He also brought again his brother
Lot and his goods, and the women also and the people.
The result was tremendous victory.
Abram had a relaxed mental attitude toward
this stupid move on the part of Lot to go and get himself involved so
with the world. He could not distinguish
between all the good times and the good things that the world had to
through the city of Sodom and that which was the plan of God for him. But Abram had a great victory in spite of
what Lot deserved, and he rescued him.
But Abram also had a great victory in
conquering his greed for
the loot of the battle. He brought back
the goods. When he returned, we read in
verse 18, that he met Melchizedek. Now
this was before the Aaronic priesthood was in existence.
He was a priest of the most high God.
This priest blessed him and said, “Blessed be
Abram (verse 19) of the most high God, possessor of heaven and
earth.” Here you have a little bit
of Bible doctrine
that Melchizedek reminded Abram that the God that he served, and to
owed his allegiance, was the possessor of all of heaven and all of
Now this was going to be important
because the king of Sodom
was grateful for the rescue that Abram had brought off.
So he went to Abram and he said, “You take
the loot. I’ll take the captives and
people.” But Abram refused. In verse 22, Abram said to the king of Sodom,
“I’ve lifted up my hand unto the Lord, the most high God,
the possessor of
heaven and earth.” He repeats what
heard Melchizedek say. He learned his
doctrine and in that moment he believed it.
God possesses everything, and he says,
“I’ve lifted my hand to this God
who possesses everything, and I’ve declared to this God (in verse
23) that I’ll
not take a thread, even to a sandal strap, and that I will not take
that is thine lest thou should say, ‘I’ve made Abram
Now this may not have pleased Sodom. Sometimes Christians are in a position where
somebody comes and gives you a gift (and I’ve had this
experience, and it’s a
very painful thing to go through, and you have to tell a person,
“I won’t take
your gift because of the reason I think you’re giving it and what
I think this
gift is reflecting, and I cannot in conscience accept your gift, and I
you’re using it to an evil end, for conscience, prestige, or for
And Abram said to this king who was
something in his own
right, the King of Sodom, “I don’t want anything. You keep it all.” He
really was bordering on an insult to the
King of Sodom. While he had this victory
over his greed for what could have been a very valuable addition to his
addition, he refused to do anything that would take credit away from
Yet he also experienced another
victory. That was that he didn’t
impose his standard
of spirituality on the kings who were his allies. For
he turns to the king Sodom and he says in
verse 24, “Save (or accept) only that which the young men have
eaten.” He says, “What my men
in battle have eaten,
I’ll take that. I won’t pay
that.” “… and the
portion of the men
that were with me (his allies) Aner, Eschol, and Mamre; let them take
portion.” He wasn’t going to
his allies his spiritual convictions. Now
that takes (a) relaxed mental attitude.
We have a lot of Christians running
around who because they
don’t have a relaxed mental attitude are ever trying to impose
relationship with the Lord and their growth in spiritual things upon
have not come to that point or who don’t see it that way. So they want their convictions imposed in the
patterns of dress and living and expression and vacationing and
what not, that they consider consistent and fitting for their concepts
spiritual development and spirituality.
Where again, that’s a matter of that
individual and his God.
So here are three great victories: the victory over the military force of
the victory over his greed for the loot; (and,) the victory over
standards on his allies. That’s how
come out of chapter 14. Now you’re
mountaintop. This is exhilarating. This is great to have come off the field of
battle and then to have been able to have two more victories over
this very dramatic and wonderful way.
(However,) learn a spiritual principal
at this point. It is characteristic in
spiritual things that
when you have won a great victory with the Lord, when you have really
grips with a sin, with a temptation, when you have conquered because of
response to doctrine, that that’s when you become extremely
defeat. You would think that now you
have become really strong and stable.
But Satan immediately counterattacks.
He moves right in because there is a certain letdown
in us spiritually
and in our total beings after a spiritual victory.
He takes advantage of this fact.
That’s why in 1 Corinthians chapter 10, verse
12 says, “Wherefore him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest
he fall.” Because you think you
stand at the point of
some spiritual victory and some spiritual strength.
Now Satan is out to conduct a
counterattack. 1 Peter 5 describes this
for us in verses
8-9. 1 Peter 5:8 says, “Be sober; be
vigilant because your adversary the devil like a roaring lion walketh
seeking whom he may devour. Whom is this
steadfast in the faith knowing that the same afflictions are
your brethren that are in the world.”
Now there’s a lot in this verse
that we can’t pause on this
morning, but we’re going to in the near future, as to what it
means to resist
the devil. Because there are a lot of
Christians who have made the grievous mistake of thinking that because
Scripture says, “Greater is He that is in us than is in the
world,” that we’ve
got it made as far as the devil is concerned.
They don’t understand the techniques and the
wiles by which the devil
manipulates you mentality so that your emotions and you will are
under his domination. Here you are a
born again believer, and this verse has a basic declaration about that.
But so much this morning that it
indicates that Satan is
ready with a counterattack and he’s ready to move in at the time
when we have
experienced our victories. Well this is
what happened to Abram and we move into chapter 15, and the first thing
discover is that Abram has deteriorated in his relaxed mental attitude. Verse 1 in chapter 15 begins, “After
things,” that is, after these victories of chapter 14, the Word
of the Lord
comes to Abram’s rescue. God is
deliver something specific to Abram, and God is speaking to him in a
because the Word, the Bible, has not been written up to this
Today God does not speak to you in a
vision. If somebody comes along to you and
just had a vision last night and God told me to do something,”
you know you’re
talking to a nut, or to a Christian who’s gotten himself tied in
with some cult
group. God is not going to speak to you
in dreams, and he’s not going to speak to you in visions. Now the devil might move in on you that way,
but God is not. He’s going to speak
you through one thing only and that is through the Word of God. If you want to know something about what God
has for you and about the solutions for what you face, then you better
the Word of God, or you’re never going to find out.
So the Word of the Lord is the answer
that comes here to
Abram. And this word is the dramatic
statement, “Fear not.” Now the
that God comes along and says this to Abram after the victories of
indicates that something has happened to Abram’s relaxed mental
attitude. It’s the same concept that
you find in
Deuteronomy 31:6-8: “Be strong and
good courage. Fear not, nor be afraid of
them, for the Lord thy God, He it is that doeth go with thee, and He
fail thee nor forsake thee. And Moses
called unto Joshua and said unto him in the site of all Israel,
‘Be strong and of
good courage for thou must go with this people unto the land which the
hath sworn unto their fathers to give them, and thou shalt cause them
inherit it. And the Lord, He it is that
doeth go before thee. He will be with
thee and will never leave thee nor forsake thee. Fear
Neither be dismayed.”
We have the same thing in the New
Testament. Philippians 4:5:
“Let your moderation be known unto men. The Lord is at hand. Be
anxious for nothing, but in everything by
prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made
God, and the peace of God which passeth all understanding will keep
and minds through Christ Jesus.” The
concept of not being afraid.
Now this raises the question, why
would Abram be
afraid? What is it that he fears? We put the Scriptures together on the things
that follow, and we can perhaps draw some conclusions, some deductions,
what’s bothering him and what has fractured his relaxed mental
attitude. For God goes on to say,
“Fear not Abram, I am
thy shield and thy exceedingly great reward.”
“I am thy shield,” which means God is
his protector, and this perhaps
suggests that he’s worried that maybe Chedorlaomer is going to
seek vengeance upon the defeat that Abram and his allies imposed on him. So he’s worried about the counterattack.
When God says, “I am thy
exceedingly great reward,” it may
suggest, and seems to suggest that Abram had a little concern about his
security, and he was giving second thoughts to whether he should have
what may have amounted to a million dollars’ worth of loot out of
battle. He’s getting kind of old
now. He’s an 85-year-old cat at this
time. This is getting to be a little up
there, and he’s beginning to think about when he’s going to
retire, and perhaps
this is on his mind. Where is his real
social security going to come from?
Well, if God is our shield, and
He’s our exceedingly great
reward, then the only thing to do is to relax and to believe it. Our human viewpoint will discount these
promises, but divine viewpoint sees these circumstances in God’s
Now what God is doing here is giving
him promises, right
here. If you want to learn the faith
rest technique, the first thing you have to learn is to believe and to
the promises of God. Now immediately you
recognize that that requires one other thing.
You can neither nor claim the promises of God until
you have learned
I think it would be a good thing at
our Lord’s Supper
service, come the first of next month, that we spend the time with the
believers sharing dramatic promises that they have found in the Word of
God. Now you won’t have any trouble
finding them because (someone has counted up) there are over 7,000 of
this life. And they’re only good for
life. After you die, these over 7,000
promises are absolutely no good.
Now all this week you ought to have
been claiming the
promises of God in order to keep your mind at ease.
You ought to have been claiming the promises
like 1 John 1:9 concerning the confession of sin and the forgiveness
brings. You ought to have been claiming
the promises of something like Romans 8:28 that tells us that all
working out for divine good. The promise
of 1 Peter 5:7 that tells us to just put your cares on the Lord Jesus
Christ. Promises of Hebrews 13:5 that
tells us that the Lord will never leave us or forsake us.
He stands by us. Hebrews
God’s help is always available.
The promise of Matthew 21:22 of our access to prayer
and what we accomplish
through it. And of course 1
Thessalonians 5:18 that says, “In everything give thanks for this
is the will
of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”
This is the will of God concerning you.
This is the promise of blessing, to give thanks.
Now it’s necessary that you
claim the promises of God if
you’re going to have a relaxed mental attitude.
So it’s not too bad an idea, and I’ve
been thinking about doing this in
Berean Academy: to have our students
each start a spiritual notebook included in which is one section called
Promises of God. And as they read the
Word of God, they record in their own words (1, 2, 3, down the page)
promise of God. And that sometime we have
academy chapel sessions where we let the kids share what they find God
promised that He will do for them, and talk about it a little bit. It wouldn’t be too bad an idea for you
that at home with your children. Maybe
just sit down to the supper table and say, “Now I want you to
tell me the
promises that you found in the Bible today (or this week).”It
wouldn’t be too
bad an idea for you to keep a little book, and when you come across a
you jot it down.
Now some of you, I know, do that. I’ve been with some of you where
talking over some of your problems, and right while you’re
talking over some of
your problems you have your notebook there.
While you’re saying something
(“here’s a problem”), you say, “And
…” and you turn down to your notebook and you read a
promise that you
understand this, and you’re answering your own question and
coming to your own
solutions because you’re believing the promises of God.
Now this is a very great thing. If you as parents are not imposing and
pressing upon your children the place that promise play in their lives,
done them a very great disservice. Your
kids will never have a mind that is at ease.
Your kids will never have a mind that’s any
freer than most people’s are
anxieties and worries and pressures until they learn what God has
do for them. And the more you learn
about His promises, the harder it is to be uptight.
So you go ahead and pay all the money you
want to your psychiatrist and your analyst and everybody else that you
can give you solutions, but I’m giving you a cheap way out, and
the one that
works. You get the promises of God and
you get them into the mentality of your soul, and you’re going to
be at ease as
no psychiatrist can ever bring you.
Now Abram apparently responded to that
positively, in a
positive way, and he accepted these promises that he need not fear and
would be his shield. BUT, and here we go
again, that’s how we do. There’s
something else. OK, I see that, but
still unhappy. In verses 2 and 3 he
comes up with concern over the fact that he has no son.
And even though God is his shield and God is
his reward, there’s still something else.
And that’s how you and I often are.
We’re so blessed above what other people are,
and yet we’re not happy
because there’s something we think we should have that we
There are a lot of people going around
good marriages to pieces because certain ideals that they have, or
think are ideals, or certain things they’d like to see that they
like to have are not there, or they think are not there.
So they proceed to forget all the blessing
and to accept the happy situation that they do have for some ideal that
never will have, so they kick it to pieces.
We’re too preoccupied often with demanding so
that we can’t enjoy what
God’s grace has provided.
Well Abram said, “I have to view
my steward Eleazar as my
heir.” Notice how he says this. Abram said, “Lord God, what will thou
me?” God says, “I’m
going to be your
shield. I’m going to be your
reward.” Abram says, “Reward! What reward!
What are you going to give me?
How are you going to reward me?
You didn’t give me a son.
schmeward! And what you have here is a
little tinge of Abram rebuking and complaining to God about the fact
has let him down. He says,
childless. The heir of my house is this
Eleazar of Damascus.” And when
are spiritually confused, they blame someone else for their situation.
A spiritually mature Christian takes
responsibility for his
situation and for the decisions of his life.
And I can always tell somebody that’s
spiritually disoriented when they
come with a complaint and then they identify somebody else as the cause
complaint. Now this is so elementary you
would think that people would know better than to do this.
When you get far enough into an understanding
of the Word of God, you won’t go around saying,
“Here’s my situation, and
so-and-so is to blame.” That is not
true. Your situation is the result of
your direct actions and relationships to God, and don’t you
forget it. When your relationships to God
your situations will follow in the same pattern. When
they’re not right, you will be suffering
from self-imposed misery. But it
be somebody else’s fault.
This is the trend of modern
psychology—to find a patsy. It
ignores the fact that we have an old sin
nature and that’s where our wrong acts originate, and so we are
our own miseries. But it’s a nice
cop-out for the odd-balls and for unhappy people who want to save face
So what does God do?
Well He comes through with another promise. Verse 4 says, “And behold the Word of
Lord came. (Here you’ve got doctrine
again.) The Word of the Lord came unto
him saying, ‘This shall not be thine heir.
But he that shall come forth out of thine own loins
shall be thy
heir.’” Abram is to have a son
his own body. Now mind you, he is now 85
years old. How old was he when the son
was born? He was 100.
He had 15 more years with no son.
Now God says, “Don’t worry, Abram,
going to have a baby boy.” He says,
going to have a baby boy? I’m
85.” And as we’re going to see
next Sunday, the
Bible says that Abram was sexually a dead potato, and so was the whole
of the body of his wife Sarah.
And now do you get the feeling of
faith rest? He says, “You
didn’t give me a son. What are you
talking about reward? The big reward was
the nation that I was to
become and this land that we were to possess.
I’m 85.” God
says, “You’ll have
the boy.” So Abram says, “Oh,
he starts building the cradle, and he keeps working on it for 15 years. The thing begins to peel the paint off and he
has to keep repainting it. God has
so what’s going to happen. Well he
a relaxed mental attitude for most of those 15 years.
Romans 4:20-21 puts it in a very
beautiful way. For most of those 15 years
after God told him
this, Abram stood by the promise and he believed it.
Romans 4:20 says, “He staggered not at the
promise of God through unbelief, but was strong in faith, giving glory
and being fully persuaded that what He had promised He was able to
perform.” Now there was a little
when he did fracture his relaxed mental attitude, and it was because of
wife again. And he was not spiritually
mature to carry the ball. So he let her
talk him into a substitute arrangement to solve this problem of having
son through marrying the servant girl Hagar, which has come down to
this day as
the cause of the conflict and the problem between the Jews and the
descended from that son of Hagar.
But these promises are illustrated. God said, “Now I’m going to
I’m telling you, Abram. When I give
a promise I want you to understand what it is I’m giving
you.” So He said, “Let’s
walk outside here.” So he takes him
out of the tent and He says,
“Look up at that sky,” and there was that magnificent
star-spangled sky above
his head. He said, “Abram, do you
those stars? As numerous as you see
those interstellar spaces above your head, so shall be your descendants. That’s how many people are going to
from your body—not from Eleazar’s.”
This declared a principal that is
behind all promises that
we need to learn. The stars in space are
innumerable, and yet they move in an orderly pattern because of
creation. Colossians 1:17 says He
created it and He keeps it in order. Now
the stars call attention to the essence of God.
Here was something that Abram could draw from what
God said. He looked up at the stars and
what he saw
reminded him of the character of God. It
reminded him of God’s omniscience. God
had the intelligence to create the star plan.
It reminded him of God’s omnipotence.
He had the power to make and to control the
interstellar spaces and the
universe. He had the omnipresence to be
on hand to control this star creation.
And He was immutable, and He was veracity. He was absolutely unchangeable, and He was
truth. So His promises were always going
to be fulfilled.
The promises of the Bible depend on
this essence of
God. You need to remember and remind
yourself very often of what God is like.
And sometimes when you sit down with your children
you should say,
“Alright, tell me what God is like.” And
they should be able to tell you that God is sovereignty.
He is righteousness. He
is eternal life. He is justice. He is love.
He is omnipotent. He is
omniscient. He is omnipresent. He is immutable. He
is veracity. They ought to have a precise
what God is like. Because as we move
through life and remember the essence of God, it answers a lot of
Now God cannot be untrue to Himself. So these promises for fulfillment depend upon
who God is, and this is what He’s like.
So once you’ve learned a promise, it’s
not a question of whether He’s
going to keep it. It’s a questions
whether you’re going to believe it. And
your negative volition is an insult to the character of God. And if you do that, you fall apart in a
crisis. You worry. You’re
with fear, and that’s an insult.
Now the major problem with Christians
today is that they don’t
know the promises, and so they’re in a frap in their lives. If God can hold a complex universe together,
as Abram looked at those starts, he realized He could solve his problem
having that baby son.
First were the stars. Then
illustrated the business of promises with salvation.
We read in verse 6, “He (Abram) believed in
the Lord, and He (God) accounted it to him for righteousness.” The word “believed” in the Lord
here is in
the Hebrew, “amen,” from which we have our word
“amen.” What it says is that
Abram said, “amen” to
God. He confirmed it.
It’s in a Hebrew stem which means that he was
caused to believe this; that is by when he looked up there, he saw
he realized what God was like to be able to create and maintain that,
was forced to the conclusion that He would keep His promise.
And this is in that tense that
indicates that he believed
God in the past. Years ago when he was a
young man in Ur of the Chaldeans, he believed.
And God credited this faith in God and what He was
going to do for him
to Abram’s salvation.
Now what, in effect, the Scriptures
are reminding us of here
is that God did the most for Abram when he provided him salvation, and
when He does the most for you and me.
Romans 8:32 says, “He that spared not His own
Son, but delivered Him up
for us all, how shall He not also freely give us all things?” Now God has given us the most here in
salvation. That’s the hardest thing
God had to provide for you and me; that was resolving the fact that we
dirty sinners, and yet we can walk in a sinless heaven.
Now that took some doing. And
He did that. Now He did this for us when
we were His
Now turn to Romans 5:10.
Now that we are His friends and family, what will He
do? “For if when we were enemies we
to God by the death of His son, much more being reconciled we shall be
His life.” And God says, “Now
saved; I’ve already done the most for you in saving you; now
I’m going to do
much more than the most.” Now
about as strong as language can put it.
And that’s grace. And
gives you a promise of salvation, he’s going to give you not only
that which is
the most, but much more along with it. No
problem is too great which our Father hasn’t solved.
So the unsaved world is turned off
toward Christians because
we don’t claim promises. So what do
do? Well, we sublimate by going to
emotional meetings, with gimmicks so we can stir people up to draw
vows so we’ll get God to improve our situation.
Now there’s one other thing, and
that is the faithfulness of
God. He illustrates his promises with
faithfulness. He says, “I am the
who brought you forth out of the Ur of the Chaldeans to give thee this
inherit it.” Abram’s been in
Promised Land for many years now. He has
failed God many times. God has never
failed Him. And all these illustrations
point up to one thing—the Lord Jesus Christ.
He is the Creator reminded by the stars.
He is the One who went to the cross.
And He is the faithful and true one.
There is another factor that
we’re going to take up next
time by which we develop the faith rest technique.
This morning we learned: 1)
Promises – If you are going to come to a
relaxed mental attitude, learn the promises of the Word of God and
them. There are over 7,000 of them, all
available for you to use in this life only.
If you know them, and you claim them with a positive
response, you are
on your way. If you go negative and
reject them, you’re going to start sublimating, substituting,
creating your own
solutions, and creating along with it all of your own misery. And your life is going to be a poverty
pathetic situation of pursuit of self-interest such that someday you
stand to look at yourself for what you have surrounded yourself with,
you have pursued, or what you have sacrificed in the process of that
whereas Satan had you tied up in knots, and your mind was anything but
upon the provisions and the guidance of God.
I hope you were impressed with the
leading of Satan. It is a big thing in the
life of Christians,
and he does it under cover. A relaxed
mental attitude puts the skids on that power in Satan’s life in a
John E. Danish, 1971
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