What's it mean to be a believer

9.12.15 What does it mean to be a Believer?
A BELIEVER is “one who believes,” that is, one who has faith in something or someone

I am entreating you, then, I, the prisoner in the Lord, 
to walk worthily of the calling with which you were called, 
with all humility and meekness, 
with patience, bearing with one another in love, 
endeavoring to keep the unity of the spirit with the tie of peace: 
one body and one spirit, 
according as you were called also with one expectation of your calling; 
one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 
one God and Father of all, 
Who is over all and through all and in all. 
Ephesians 4:1-6

Believers Receive the Word

We need the Word (vs. 6a). We do not need new, cutting edge social theories. There have been so many come only to be later discarded as unworkable. Theories about happiness, marriage, raising children and so forth originate from the same folks who once thought the earth was flat; who once used leeches to heal sickness; who say eggs are unhealthy, then say they're healthy; then unhealthy, then healthy, according to what decade you live in. We do not need another theory.

Instead, we need the eternal word of life! (John 5:24; Philippians 2:16; 1 Corinthians 15:2, 58) It is a serious matter to reject it!

The word “received” means to “welcome”; the way you would welcome an honored guest into your home. You are eager to make him/her comfortable and at ease. Not everyone at Thessalonica received the word this way (the latter part of the verse speaks of tribulation brought on believers by those who rejected the word). Nor are we encouraged to blindly receive the word (Acts 17:11). We should investigate it, weigh it, and make a reasonable decision. But having said that, far more blindly reject the word than blindly receive it.

Believers Accept Both Tribulation & Joy Brought By Faith

Sometimes receiving the word brings a certain amount of trouble. As one is coming to the point of faith, there is a struggle. Jesus said it would often be this way (John 16:33).

Sometimes it is in the midst of turmoil that people enter the kingdom (Acts 14:22b). Sometimes the only way to escape tribulation is to simply ignore the word of the kingdom. Amazingly, it is in the times of tribulation that the 1st century church grew so rapidly.

We do not often think of tribulation and joy as partners, but they are in verse 6 of our text. There can both be outer tribulation and inner joy (see also 2 Corinthians 4:16-18). Where does joy come from in such adversity? From the hope that is within us; the confidence, peace and strength (Romans 5:1-5; Philippians 4:7,8; 4:4). These things belong to the faithful in spite of tribulation. It is a gratifying thing to suffer loss when such tests your faith and your faith rises to meet the challenge, because the loss is temporary, but victory is forever.

Believers Are Good Examples

The disciples at Thessalonica were models of faith (1 Thessalonians 1:7). The word ”example” means “pattern”. Others are encouraged to look at the Thessalonian faithful and urged to “be like them.” Would it make you feel pretty good to know that the apostle Paul would select you to be an “example” or “pattern” that others should follow? The Thessalonians had earned it! They were not good examples by accident! It is proper to imitate the faith and lives of others if they imitate Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1) It is not enough to “talk” or “think” Christianity. We must “do” it (James 1:22-25).

Believers Sound Forth Their Faith

The Thessalonians were clear voices of faith (vs. 8). It is the “word of the Lord” that should be “sounded forth”. That's our business as a church. The Lord Himself is the source of our message (1 Thessalonians 2:13). Churches that deal in politics, drama, the arts, psychology, entertainment…. are in the wrong business.

The phrase “sound forth” refers to the sound made by trumpets. It is clear, distinguishable, obvious and noticeable. We do not offer new age fads; we do not offer human creeds changed by the whim of the human mind; we do not consult the opinion polls to determine what we teach; we do not give counsel based on modern trends or on long held traditions of men, We preach the word! (2 Timothy 4:2-4).

Believers Reject the Worthless

Christians view things from a different perspective (vs. 9). The world has a knack for esteeming the worthless and rejecting the precious. Many are overdosing on selfishness and greed, exalting the wicked and wickedness. Love, honor and godliness are often mocked. The family is troubled. It is time to “turn to God from idols”!

This is why cowards do not become Christians. This kind of commitment calls for the courage to refuse to allow the world to have its way with us. It will not tell us how to dress, how to talk, how to live, and what is important.

Believers Wait for Jesus

“Waiting” is not simply biding our time! (vs. 10). It is a “wait” of busy preparation as we “make all things ready” on a personal level for His coming. The Day will come when the trumpets of God will announce the end of the final hour (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18). All worldly plans and ambitions will be rendered null and void forever. Tongues that mocked will confess Jesus as they watch those whom they once mocked rise to meet the Lord in the air, bright shining as the sun. And then, judgment. And then, eternity. For the believer, an eternal victory!

If your not a believer then what are you waiting for? God is waiting for you to say yes.

 

God I come to you thinking you for saving my soul all those years ago. I love you more and more each day. God please be with my friends and family who don't know you as their Lord and Savior, I pray that today will be the day for salvation. Lord be with my facebook family and friends and know that I love you. I ask these things in Jesus Name Amen.

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