Living By Faith

A HAPPY MAN IN CHRIST

I think myself happy, King Agrippa… (Acts 26:2)

You can think yourself happy or you can think yourself sad! Mark Hankins

The Apostle Paul could be shipwrecked, snake bit, beat in the head, left for dead, or confined in prison and still say, “I feel like singing right now because the Greater One is in me.” How would you like to be chained to Paul for about a year and a half? Paul was not some confused, lonely, bitter preacher. He stood before King Agrippa after thirty years and said, “Oh, king, I think myself happy.” (Acts 26:2)

King Agrippa, his sister Bernice, Governor Festus, all the military leaders, lawyers, and other prominent people were there when Paul came in. They wanted to mock him, but you cannot ridicule a happy man. He probably had the least reason to be happy of anybody in that whole crowd. But when he entered he said, “I am a happy man.”

The king said, “Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.” (Acts 2:28) King Agrippa may be the most upset man in hell because he had a testimony from the greatest preacher other than the Lord Jesus Christ, and yet he refused to become a Christian!

Confession: I think myself happy! I am righteous. I am a new creature. I am redeemed. I am blessed!

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GRACE VS. LEGALISM

By whom also we have access by faith into this grace where in we stand… (Romans 5:2)

The mystery and the glory of the believer’s life is that your life is one with Him. Mark Hankins

Salvation is the reuniting of God and man. God’s does not work on you while you are isolated from Him. He doesn’t gradually render you fit to be reunited to Him. Legalism teaches that God operates on you apart from Himself, but grace begins by uniting you to God. Through that union, He supplies the life and power necessary to bring you into His holiness.

Grace is the opposite of legalism. Legalism says that you are not good enough and will have to live in sin-consciousness for the rest of your life. Grace, however, says because of what Christ has done, your spirit is instantly joined to Christ.

God welcomes you because of faith in Christ. He takes you right in and gives you His righteousness. Consider the depth of this principle of the Gospel when it is applied: you are united with Christ!

Confession: I have access by faith into the grace of God. I rejoice in hope of the glory of God because of what Christ has done for me. I am dead to sin and alive unto God!

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BEFORE YOU DIE

To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. (2 Corinthians 5:19)

For your faith to be effective, you must acknowledge those things with the words in your mouth. – Mark Hankins

I heard Jesse Duplantis tell this story about his grandma’s birthday. She had been poor all of her life, so they bought her the most beautiful dress they could find. They said, “Granny, won’t you wear it to church?”  She replied, “I can’t wear that dress. It’s too pretty. It’s just too beautiful. I can’t wear it. I’m going to keep it in the closet. I want to be buried in it.”

That is exactly the way most Christians are. As soon as you receive Christ, God gives you beautiful new clothes–robes of righteousness. Most Christians look at them and say, “Oh, I couldn’t wear that. I am unworthy, so I’ll hang it in the closet and wait until I am dead. When I die, I’ll be righteous.”

You are righteous now. You are righteous before you die! You are made righteous through faith in Christ!

Confession: I am made righteous through faith in Christ! God has reconciled me to Himself.  I am winning the war against my flesh and my mind because I am acknowledging who I am in Christ!

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YOU ARE RIGHTEOUS NOW

I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins…declare thou, that thou mayest be justified. (Isaiah 43:25-26)

You will never get God’s best blessings as long as you live with a sense of condemnation, guilt, and unworthiness. – Mark Hankins

In Smith Wigglesworth’s book, Ever Increasing Faith, he tells the story of praying for an Episcopalian priest who wanted to be filled with the Holy Spirit. When he started to pray for him, the priest fell down on his knees and began to say, “O God ,make me holy and clean.” Wigglesworth said, “Stop, old man! I thought you were saved! If you’re saved, then you are holy.”  The man said, “Well, I am aren’t I? I am righteous!” He lifted up his hands and got filled with the Holy Spirit right there!

In order to put on the new man in Christ you have to say something. You need to declare that you are righteous. If you fail to declare your righteousness, the devil will keep you in a sense of guilt and condemnation. He will try to cheat you out of God’s best blessings for your life. You will never get God’s best blessings as long as you live with a sense of condemnation, guilt, and unworthiness. In Christ, righteousness has been imparted to your spirit. You are a new creature in Christ.

Confession: I am a new creation, and this new man has been created in righteousness and true holiness!

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HEAVEN ON EARTH

But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the Lord. (Numbers 14:21)

Jesus came to restore the glory that God intended for us to have!

Mark Hankins

We are living in days of great glory when the glory and the goodness of God break into our lives on a scale that is unprecedented. This is the time of the restoration of glory in the church around the world!

In Deuteronomy 11:21, the phrase, “as the days of heaven upon the earth” is used to describe the special time of blessing the children of God would enjoy in the Promised Land. God gave them instructions on how to act to possess the land. He used the word “possess” seven times in this chapter. Over and over He told them they must possess this land of promise.

We know that God is a faith God and He is pleased by faith. I like to say, “Faith cranks God’s tractor.” For us to enter into all that He has provided for us, we must believe God. We must maintain a spirit of faith to go forward in this time. According to Philippians 3:12-14, we press forward and never look back. Smith Wigglesworth said, “Never look back if you want the power of God in your life.”

Confession: I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:14)

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