In Part 6 of our “How to build your faith” Pastor Shawn looks at how knowledge builds faith. We explore the profound relationship between knowledge and faith. We delve into the belief that knowledge is not a hindrance to faith, but rather a catalyst that deepens our understanding and strengthens our convictions. Join us as we uncover the transformative power of knowledge in building a strong and unshakeable faith that sustains us through life’s trials and tribulations. Learn more in “How Knowledge Builds Faith”
“The Intersection of Knowledge and Faith: Building a Strong Foundation,”
God is moving in many ways through our congregation
We are over half completed training Christian leaders the Kingdom Way. discipleship pathway
We are at the beginning stages of setting up Kingdom Way Equippers Network in Liberia, Kenya, Uganda, Benin & India
On our way to fulfill the vision God gave me to bring 100 million new disciples into His Kingdom
I encourage you to join us in this endeavour
Both by making disciples right here in our congregation
and prayerfully supporting our international outreach!
If you would like to get involved in any other way please come speak to me.
on another note, facebook has informed us KWEN has a estimated audience of 26-32 Million people
Please pray for wisdom as we reach to fulfill this opportunity.
3 seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. 4 For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust. 5 Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge, 6 and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness, 7 and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.2 Peter 1:3–8 NASB95
Today we are going to take a look at the building block of knowledge to stregthen our Faith
something I feel every believer needs to focus on
As Pastor Trevor mentioned last week, The steps Peter lists here are not a isolated todo list.
He Not saying get more excellence and then knowledge and then work on self control
8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.2 Peter 1:8 NASB95
They are like giant barrels that constantly need to be filled
and you can fill them all at the same time because they are all interconnected
Some people may beleive the opposite is true
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.Proverbs 3:5-6 NASB95
they may think….”knowledge gets in the way of faith”
faith is believing without knowing.
To believe that, you have to misunderstand what faith is.
Many people today assume that a Christian’s faith in God is what might be defined as blind faith.
This is the idea that belief is based on . . . well, just belief.
In other words, there is no evidence or logical reason to believe something, it’s just “faith.”
Or you might say , faith is simply a subjective feeling or emotional response to the idea that God exists.
The idea that faith is “blind” is found throughout our culture.
For example, in the film, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Indiana, played by Harrison Ford, must retrieve the Holy Grail of Christ to save the life of his father (Sean Connery).
He makes it through a long corridor of deadly obstacles only to find himself standing on the edge of a deep chasm
clip of Indiana jones Stepping out in Blind faith. 1:51
The latest salvo of atheist attacks on Christianity assumes that faith is blind.
Richard Dawkins, for instance, wrote, “Faith is the great cop-out, the great excuse to evade the need to think and evaluate evidence. Faith is belief in spite of, even perhaps because of, the lack of evidence.”
I find it interesting Christians are not allowed to have faith, but scientists are allowed operate in it every day
According to scientific law of conservation of matter. Matter is neither created or destroyed.
eg. in the Big Bang theory where did all the matter that compressed together, come from?
no-one can scientifically answer that. Its a faith statement
they now say all the energy in the universe came together in a single point
Well, Where did the energy come from?
again a faith statement.
The main verse in the Bible defining faith is found in
1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.Hebrews 11:1 NIV
Some people read this by putting the emphasis on “hope for” and “not seen.”
This interpretation seems to agree with the idea that faith means working up a sense of assurance when there is no real evidence or reason to support it.
We can’t see it, but believe it anyway. Like Indiana Jones, we just step out “in faith” and hope for the best.
But I suggest that a better English translation of Hebrews 11:1 is this:
1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.Hebrews 11:1 NKJV
Put this way, we find three words that need to be explored further.
The original Greek word means “firm persuasion,” or “a conviction based upon hearing.”
This carries the meaning of forensic evidence, which is the kind of evidence used in a court of law.
Far from being an irrational belief, faith in this sense is the height of reasonableness,
the result of weighing the evidence and reaching a logical conclusion in light of the facts.
What is more reasonable?
everything, was created out of nothing, by no-one, it just a really long time.
a Divine being beyond our understanding created everything.
Now for a rational person the reasonableness between the 2 is very evident
31 because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.”Acts 17:31 NASB95
The “proof” Paul referred to was the kind of testimony or facts presented during a court trial.
He is saying that the evidence for Jesus rising from the dead is the same sort of evidence used to convince the jury of the guilt or innocence of the defendant.
Can you imagine a judge reporting the verdict after a long trial with these words,
“I have decided to find the defendant guilty as charged because I take it on faith that he committed the crime. I have no evidence he did it, but I just believe he did it. I just believe!”
This would truly be “blind faith.” It would also be absurd.
We expect judges to make decisions according to the evidence.
Paul appeals to this kind of reasoning when asking his pagan hearers to respond to the Gospel.
This word refers to something that is “set under” something else as a support.
This means there is something substantial that supports one’s faith.
It’s not the Indiana Jones “step of faith” where he saw nothing!
Instead, it is knowing what supports you before taking a step.
It’s not a “step in the dark,” it’s a step into the light!
This refers to proof, or a personal conviction based on the facts.
This is very similar to the idea of forensic evidence as we noted when defining “faith.”
So I hope you can see that Faith is not blind
but rather a belief based on the available evidence
That “available evidence” is what Peter is referring to as knowledge.
And we are given and abundant source of knowledge to support our beleif in God.
Not only in the Bible, but also in creation
1 The heavens are telling of the glory of God; And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.Psalm 19:1 NASB95
20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.Romans 1:20 NASB95
I find it absurd the belief that to be a Christian you have to check you brain at the door and just take everything by faith
You only have to do that when you lack the knowledge God is so willing to give!
Faith is supported by the knowledge God has given
In our Indiana Jones clip
Faith would be taking 1 step to the left or right and seeing there is a walkway there!
That’s why to grow our faith we need to gain the knowledge God has provided
there are times God may ask you to “take a step of faith”
in that you may not have all the knowledge you think your need
but those things are usually a smaller glimpse of what God has already prepared you for.
Its not based on nothing,
but instead a period of God’s preparation in your life.
Let’s take a look at the life of David.
specifically in his encounter with Goliath
1 Now the Philistines gathered their armies for battle; and they were gathered at Socoh which belongs to Judah, and they camped between Socoh and Azekah, in Ephes-dammim. 2 Saul and the men of Israel were gathered and camped in the valley of Elah, and drew up in battle array to encounter the Philistines. 3 The Philistines stood on the mountain on one side while Israel stood on the mountain on the other side, with the valley between them. 4 Then a champion came out from the armies of the Philistines named Goliath, from Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. 5 He had a bronze helmet on his head, and he was clothed with scale-armor which weighed five thousand shekels of bronze. 6 He also had bronze greaves on his legs and a bronze javelin slung between his shoulders. 7 The shaft of his spear was like a weaver’s beam, and the head of his spear weighed six hundred shekels of iron; his shield-carrier also walked before him. 8 He stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel and said to them, “Why do you come out to draw up in battle array? Am I not the Philistine and you servants of Saul? Choose a man for yourselves and let him come down to me. 9 “If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will become your servants; but if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall become our servants and serve us.” 10 Again the Philistine said, “I defy the ranks of Israel this day; give me a man that we may fight together.” 11 When Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.1 Samuel 17:1–11 NASB95
Height: Golaith was 6 1/2 cubics which translates in 9’9”
shekel was a unit of weight that turned into a currency
kind of like the British pound…where do you think that came from?
320 barley kernals = torah Shekel
Our best understanding is that goliaths
Armour weighed between 100 and 159 lbs (45-72KG)
Spear 12-19 lbs (5.4-8.6 kg)
He was indeed a man to be feared on the battle field.
and he, knew how to fight as He was the Philistine’s champion
for forty days he challenged Sauls army, with no takers
then David came on the scene
26 Then David spoke to the men who were standing by him, saying, “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should taunt the armies of the living God?”1 Samuel 17:26 NASB95
Thats may sound to you and me to be a faith filled statement
and it was, but not how you might think
For us on the outside.
We know David was a young man at the time
We know He was too small for Saul armour
even though Saul’s armour may have been larger than average… was head taller than everyone else
We know David was not yet a soldier
He was a shepherd boy.
Him believing he can take out Goliath seems unreasonable to us because our knowledge is limited
So some take it that he was infused with “blind faith” to beleive he could handle Goliath
But is that really it?
Or was the Faith he was acting on something God had been building in him from an early age
You may know where I’m going with this!
34 But David said to Saul, “Your servant was tending his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and took a lamb from the flock, 35 I went out after him and attacked him, and rescued it from his mouth; and when he rose up against me, I seized him by his beard and struck him and killed him. 36 “Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, since he has taunted the armies of the living God.”1 Samuel 17:34–36 NASB95
David was not operating out of Blind Faith, but rather out of Faith that was fueled by knowledge that he could complete the task with God’s help.
Obviously a shepherd boy could not defeat a bear with his own bare hands
nor could He defeat a lion in the same way
But the knowledge David gained, was that God physiically helped David when he needed His help.
honestly, if I believed I could beat a bear and a lion at hand to hand combat, there’s not a person on this earth I would be afraid of.
That’s where David was at
Not Blind faith
But faith that had been built up with knowledge.
7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.Proverbs 1:7 NASB95
6 For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.Proverbs 2:6 NASB95
2 that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.Colossians 2:2–3 NASB95
God challenges us to go after the knowledge of God’s mysterys
15 The mind of the prudent acquires knowledge, And the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.Proverbs 18:15 NASB95
It’s clear from scripture God wants us to go after knowledge,
Its a good thing
It builds our faith
During the 60’s
A powerful move of God took place, where many people came to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ
known as the Jesus movement
During the same time the academic community became more secularized.
Whether it was the focus that Jesus could return at any moment
or the desire not to be a part of the increasing secularized academic community
many christians separated themselves from gaining knowledge and hung on to blind faith taking it to the extreme.
we can see the results of that today.
Simple fact is you need to increase your Godly knowledge, if you want to increase your Faith
the more you learn about God, the more your faith will increase.
Building Godly knowledge involves a purposeful and intentional journey of deepening your understanding of God and His principles.
Here are some steps to help you build Godly knowledge:
1. Study the Bible:
The Bible is the primary source of Godly knowledge.
Regularly read and study it to gain insights into God’s character, His will, and His teachings.
Consider using study guides, commentaries, and concordances to aid your understanding.
Seek God’s guidance and wisdom through prayer.
Ask Him to help you understand His Word and to reveal His truth to you.
Pray for discernment and the ability to apply what you learn.
3. Join a Bible Study Group:
Participate in a Bible study group or a small group.
These settings provide opportunities for discussion, questions, and shared insights, which can enhance your understanding of the Bible.
4. Read Christian Books and Literature:
There are many books and resources written by theologians, pastors, and Christian authors that can help deepen your knowledge of God.
Look for books on theology, Christian living, and biblical studies.
5. Listen to Sermons and Teachings:
Attend church services and listen to sermons and teachings by knowledgeable and trusted Christian leaders.
We have 10 years of sermons on Youtube
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6. Meditation and Reflection:
Spend time meditating on the Scriptures and reflecting on their meaning.
Think about how they apply to your life and circumstances.
7. Seek Wise Counsel:
Surround yourself with mentors and fellow believers who can provide guidance and insight.
They can answer your questions and offer valuable perspectives.
8. Serve and Apply:
Apply what you learn in practical ways.
Service, acts of kindness, and living out your faith are crucial for deepening your Godly knowledge.
9. Practice Discernment:
Not all sources of information align with Godly knowledge.
Exercise discernment when choosing what to read, listen to, or believe.
Make sure that the sources you consult are rooted in biblical truth.
10. Stay Humble:
Remember that your understanding of God is a lifelong journey.
Stay humble and open to correction.
Be willing to adjust your beliefs and knowledge as you grow in your relationship with God.
11. Learn about Church History:
Understanding the history of the Christian faith and the development of theological doctrines can provide a broader context for your knowledge of God.
12. Engage in Regular Worship:
Regularly attend church services, participate in worship, and engage in communal activities to reinforce your connection with the Christian community and its teachings.
Building Godly knowledge is a continuous process that requires dedication, patience, and a genuine desire to know and grow in your relationship with God.
It’s not just about accumulating information but about developing a deep, personal understanding of God that transforms your life and character