Summer 2006 Magazine: The Curse of Doubt Part II
Author: Professor Walter J. Veith, PhD
Publish date:
 
 
Faith in Knowledge

If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that waverth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord (James 1:5-7).


We need faith in God and in His Word. The world is rapidly filling its cup, and the indignation of God will not much longer be held in check. In a world of skepticism and uncertainty, we need to show what it means to have a living and intelligent faith. This faith is developed through careful study of God’s Word, which gives us the knowledge to understand His promises, and the conditions upon which these promises are fulfilled. When we understand the true will of God, and fulfill the conditions of His promises, we will have the confidence to come before His throne with an unwavering faith, doubting nothing.

E. G. White writes this:

God is behind every promise, and we cannot dishonor Him more than by questioning and hesitating, by asking and not believing, and then by talking doubt. If you do not immediately receive what you have asked for, will you go on in sullenness and unbelief? Believe; believe that God will do just what He has promised. Keep your prayers ascending, and watch, work and wait. Fight the good fight of faith. Say to your heart, “God has invited me to come. He has heard my prayer. He has pledged His word that He will receive me, and He will fulfill His promise. I can trust God; for He so loved me that He gave His only-begotten Son to die for me. The Son of God is my Redeemer” (FE 299.2).


We are told in Hebrews 11:6, “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” Without first obtaining the faith of the Gospel, we cannot come to a knowledge of God and His Word. Without the knowledge of God, we cannot fully comprehend His will, thus we will not live according to His precepts and our faith is powerless. We cannot serve God without an unwavering belief in every word that comes from His mouth. Knowledge of truth will expel all doubt in our souls, producing living and intelligent faith.

From God, the fountain of wisdom, proceeds all the knowledge that is of value to man, all that the intellect can grasp or retain. The fruit of the tree representing good and evil is not to be eagerly plucked, because it is recommended by one who was once a bright angel in glory. He has said that if men eat thereof, they shall know good and evil. But let it alone. The true light shines from Jesus Christ, who “lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” From the Holy Spirit proceeds divine knowledge. He knows what humanity needs to promote peace, happiness, and restfulness here in this world, and secure eternal rest in the Kingdom of God (FE 437.1).


This is the knowledge and wisdom to seek after, for it leads to light and life eternal. When Christ came to Earth, only those who sincerely desired truth and light from heaven received Him with gladness.

 

This class of people is represented by the merchantman in the parable of the pearl of great price:

In the parable the pearl is not represented as a gift. The merchantman bought it at the price of all that he had. Many question the meaning of this, since Christ is represented in the Scriptures as a gift. He is a gift, but only to those who give themselves, soul, body and spirit, to Him without reserve. We are to give ourselves to Christ, to live a life of willing obedience to all His requirements. All that we are, all the talents and capabilities we possess, are the Lord’s, to be consecrated to His service. When we thus give ourselves wholly to Him, Christ, with all the treasures of heaven, gives Himself to us. We obtain the pearl of great price (COL 116.2).


Jesus said this:

This is life eternal…That they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent (John 17:3).


And the prophet Jeremiah declared this:

Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: but let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth Me, that I am the Lord which exercise loving-kindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth; for in these things I delight, saith the Lord (Jeremiah 9:23-24).

Scarcely can the human mind comprehend the breadth and depth and height of the spiritual attainments of him who gains this knowledge (AA 531.1).


Faith in Sanctification
In the second letter by Peter to those who had obtained “like precious faith” with himself, the apostle sets forth the divine plan for the development of Christian character. He writes this:

Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (2 Peter 1:2-7).


Speaking about this passage, E. G White writes this:

These words are full of instruction, and strike the keynote of victory. The apostle presents before the believers the ladder of Christian progress, every step of which represents advancement in the knowledge of God, and in the climbing of which there is to be no standstill. Faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and charity are the rounds of the ladder. We are saved by climbing round after round, mounting step after step, to the height of Christ’s ideal for us (AA 530.1).


If we truly wish to obtain victory over sin, we must stop doubting what God can do for us. Lack of faith is what causes weakness in Christianity, and failure to live victoriously for Christ. He sets the standard. It is only by our lack of faith that we fail to reach that standard.

God expects us to build characters in accordance with the pattern set before us. We are to lay brick by brick, adding grace to grace, finding our weak points and correcting them in accordance with the directions given. When a crack is seen in the walls of a mansion, we know that something about the building is wrong. In our character building, cracks are often seen. Unless these defects are remedied, the house will fall when the tempest of trial beats upon it. God gives us strength, reasoning power, time, in order that we may build characters on which He can place His stamp of approval. He desires each child of His to build a noble character, by the doing of pure, noble deeds, that in the end he may present a symmetrical structure, a fair temple, honored by man and God. In our character building we must build on Christ. He is the sure foundation – a foundation which can never be moved. The tempest of temptation and trail cannot move the building which is riveted to the Eternal Rock (CG 165-166).


May we obtain a living and unshakable faith, that we may experience the wondrous things God has in store for us!

 

 

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