Know Your Faith?
1 Thess 3:5 For this cause, when I could no longer forbear, I sent to know your faith, lest by some means the tempter have tempted you, and our labour be in vain.
Interesting verse. Paul knew that the Christians in Thessolica had been persecuted and had suffered for the gospel, and he loved them, and wanted to make sure they were alright. He couldn’t get there himself, but like a parent with a child, he had to know they were okay. So, he sent someone to ‘know their faith’.
Just like a doctor has certain diagnostic tools to perform a check up, to see our physical health, and a mechanic has either a check list or computer diagnostic to determine the running condition of a vehicle, so a seasoned minister has certain diagnostic tools, to locate a persons heart and life, with respect to the Word of God.
In no particular order, here are a couple of these tools:
1. Their words. You can quickly discover what a person believes by what they are saying.
Mt 12:34 O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.
Mt 12:35 A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.
People that believe the Word of God in an area, have it hidden in their hearts.
What they believe, will be spoken, for the primary action of faith is words.
2. Their actions: Mt 9:2 And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.
When someone believes the Word of God in a certain area, there will be corresponding actions that go with what they believe. They will be attending church, caring for the poor, walking in love, forgiveness, and will be in prayer.
So, if someone claims to be a believer, you can find out what they believe about a certain area of the Word, by what they say, and do, in that area.
Does anyone have any other spiritual diagnostic tools, to discover where the faith of another person, or group truly lies?
‘Father God, show me how to discern where the faith of others is at, and to add to them, in any way You and they will allow, in Your name I pray Lord Jesus, Amen’