Chapter 14 – The Certainty of Faith
unto the promise of God, he wavered not through unbelief, being fully
assured that what He had promised He was able also to perform." Rom. 4: 20, 21.
Abraham did not doubt. Glorious testimony
to provoke us to jealousy, and thus to the imitation of his example.
Therefore the word also gives us to know what the power was in virtue
of which he obtained faith and brought all doubt to silence. The secret
lay simply in the conviction: What God has promised, He is able also to
perform. On this account he was assured, and whenever reflections and
doubtings would arise, he always held before his eyes the
incontrovertible argument: That which has been promised, God is able to
perform. Hence it is that there stands written: "Without
being weakened in faith, he considered his own body now as good as dead
before Him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead and
calleth the things that are not as though they were." (Rom. 4:
19, 17, RV.) To every question, "How can these things be?" there was
his simple answer: "What God has promised He is able also to perform.
For the Lord there is nothing too wonderful. It is not my business to
be anxious, and to say how God's word can be fulfilled. The Lord will
see to it."
My reader, you mourn over the power of
your doubts, and say that you cannot overcome them: come, learn of
Abraham how you can do this. The first thing that is necessary is that
you understand and reflect what promise the Lord has given you. If the
Lord has given no promises for you, then it cannot be your duty to
believe. But, as surely as the word says "Believe," is there also a
promise which you must believe. To take only one out of the thousands
which are in the Scriptures, "The Son of Man is come to seek and to
save that which was lost." God gives you the gracious promise, and
commands you to believe it with all your heart. It is His will that you
should receive it as the truth that His Son has come for all that are
lost, hence also for you. He desires that you should believe that His
Son seeks you and longs for you, and that His Son will save you.
God wills that you should ponder this
thought and cherish it in your heart, until your whole soul takes its
stand on this truth: Jesus seeks me, lost as I am; there is grace for
me. As soon as you believe that, the Savior begins to come in to you.
If now you have reached this first point,
if you know that there is a promise also for you, then the second duty
is not to look into yourselves to know if there is hope that what you
expect will take place. As Abraham did not regard his own body, which
was already dead, so must you not regard your own dead soul. Although
you feel yourself to be dead, powerless, insincere, very sinful,
although you are lacking in penitence, earnestness, and in all else
that you know you ought to have, still act like Abraham: believe on
God, who maketh the dead alive, and calleth the things that are not as
though they were. Act like Abraham, and cast down every doubt with the
thought: "What God has promised He is able also to perform." Keep your
mind occupied with this certain truth: He is come to save that which
was lost, and there is no lost one so far lost that Jesus cannot find
him and cannot save him.
Once again, it comes simply to these two
points: know if there is a promise for you, lost sinner; if so, then
cleave simply to this fact: What has been promised He is able also to
perform. "Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. I will no longer
dishonor Thee by doubtings: Thy power, Thy love, Thy faithfulness, I
will adore and trust. I will venture to surrender my soul to Thee.
Although I feel it not, I will believe it. Thou seekest and savest that
which is lost. Lord, help: I do believe."