As true friends of God, it is important we consider whether we are willing to lay down our lives for Jesus and whether we are truly ready to trust Jesus with all our hearts, for, “What does it profit a man to gain the world and lose his soul,” Asked Jesus, because to be a true disciple and friend of Jesus will require leaving this world behind and laying down our lives for Jesus. It is to be rejected by our families and friends and leaving this world behind to challenge its policies and to die for what we believe, and for the one in whom we believe.
Therefore, as Christians, we are to know that for us to lay down our lives for Jesus, we must not only know who Jesus is but also learn to develop a lasting and trusting relationship with him because it is the type of relationship we have with Jesus and what we know about Jesus will help us believe in Jesus. But for us to do what Jesus asks us to do showing we trust him, things we know the world hates, and things that may lead to our death, death by the hands of those opposing the leadership of Jesus, we must learn what it means to have faith in God and trust in Jesus Christ. Because when it comes to relationships, the key to a lasting successful outcome is trust, and when it comes to Jesus and the matter of faith, trust is the underlying issue at work.
We must learn to trust Jesus, and that means we are to do what he asks us to do knowing he has our best interest at heart, but a part of this underlying issue and our failure to commit and trust Jesus is the reality we are sinners at birth who have lived our lives in sin, sinners who have come to accept the realities of a falling world, and because the root of sin has excavated itself deep in our hearts, we are having a hard time overcoming its reality that was once part of our lives.
Because of sin, we have learned not to believe and trust in God, we have learned not to believe and trust in Jesus Christ which was the first sin committed against God in the garden that led to our rebellion and fall from grace. Sin has taught us how to make the choice of not trusting and committing to Jesus, “Did God say, you shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” We know there is a God, and what is required of us, but knowing what is required, we chose not to trust and commit to God; therefore, failing to do the things he asked us to do because of sin.
Sin told us God cannot be trusted, that the desires of God are to keep us from the truth. The serpent said to Eve, “God knows that in the day you eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” We have learned to listen to the voice of the enemy rather than the voice of God, and because we do, we are partly committed to Jesus Christ. Therefore, when the trails of the world come and we are tested, it is easy for us to walk away because we are not properly rooted in our relationship with Jesus Christ. Genesis 3:5.
There is no doubt we have accepted Jesus Christ, we say we believe he died for our sins, rose from the grave and now live forever, and because of his death on our behalf, we shall also live forever because of his grace. But deep in our hearts, there is that underlying trust issue. We are called to separate ourselves from the world that we might live as people of the kingdom, and although we know this to be true, we are having a hard time fulfilling the king’s order.
We have somehow compromised our position in God’s presence, and trying to please the world, are at work fitting their human understand into what the word of God declares. We know the truth, and although we know the truth, we are trying to save the world with a compromised gospel because we do not trust Jesus.
We teach at present a compromised gospel proclaiming, “God will not work miracles in our generation” because of our human and sinful nature, and we have also confused ourselves when it comes to the gifts of the Holy Spirit because we are failing to commit to Jesus Christ. We read the bible, but only certain parts, the parts that fit into what we can accept and believe forgetting the words of Jesus who said, “You are my friends, if you do whatsoever, I command you.” because if we are true disciples and friends of Jesus we will do what he commands. John 15:14.
This question came about because we do not trust Jesus, we simply do not believe in his authority because of the sin nature that rules our minds and hearts. The guilt of sin prevents us from accepting the words of Jesus who told us we can perform miracles, that we can receive healing, and that we can command mountains to move out of their places. We are walking in doubt because we do not understand the freedom we have in Christ, and although Jesus has demonstrated his faithfulness and his willingness to forgive our sins and rebellions, we simply do not trust him.
We say we believe Jesus can raise the dead, heal the sick, and cast out devils. We saw him perform these things to know he has power over the kingdom of the enemy; demons cried out at his presence bowing to him, and at his word, he drives them out. But when Jesus told us to go, “preach, saying, the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.” We step back from the task, but not because Jesus has not demonstrated his authority to do these things he calls on us to do, but because we do not find ourselves worthy of the calling or find ourselves qualified to do the things Jesus commands us to do because we do not believe.
But if we were to come to the realization Jesus is God, and who Jesus is in relation to us, we would lean on his word to do the things he commands. But because the root of the problem is trust, and our view of who Jesus is in relation to us, we are reluctant to obey because trust is standing in the way. We say we believe Jesus is the son of God, but we do not trust in his authority. We say we believe, but are hesitant to do what Jesus commands us to do, and when faced with persecution, we ran away because we do not understand what it means to believe in Jesus Christ. Matthew 10:7-8.
John at the river Jordan declares, “O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth, therefore, fruits meet for repentance:” because we need to repent and turn away from our doubts to now believe and do the things Jesus calls on us to do. The fruits we are called to produce are obedience, it is to do what Jesus said we are to do which is to preach the gospel, raise the dead, and cast out demons as God through Jesus Christ commands. It is not to say we believe in Jesus and do nothing with what God calls us to do, but rather obey God in all things as employees of his kingdom.
To say we believe in Jesus is good, but we are to remember, the devils are terrified at the thought of God, “Because when Jesus came to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way. And, when they saw Jesus, they cried out, saying, what have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? art thou come here to torment us before the time?”
To believe in Jesus is good, but for us to have an effect in God’s kingdom, we must learn to trust Jesus, we must do what he commands, we are to obey his word because when we will have learned to trust in Jesus, we will lay down our lives for him walking in true obedience standing in the face of persecution to the glory of God bringing fort fruit in righteousness showing we are true disciples who know what it means to believe in Jesus Christ.
Therefore, when we say we believe in Jesus, it is to obey his word, it is to do what he commands, and it is to live the way Jesus commands we are to live and treat the world around us. It is not to says we believe and show no evidence of what we mean when we say we believe, but to stand in persecution, and to persist in trails knowing we will receive our reward at the end of the age.
So what do we mean when we say we believe in Jesus? As Christians, we are declaring we are followers of Jesus Christ, disciples willing to lay down our lives for what we know about Jesus. It is to walk in obedience according to the words of Jesus in opposition to the policies of this world in the face of persecution proclaiming the kingdom of God as living testimonies to the work and power of God that is to be established in the earth and God’s eternal kingdom which is the inheritance of all who believe in Jesus our King.