“I assure you that whoever tells this hill to get up and throw itself in the sea and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.” –Mark 11:23
These are the words of our savior and lord, Jesus Christ. In other words, we’ll say that this is a promise which he made for all those with a mature faith. This clearly points out the existence of a weak and a strong faith.
The scriptures are very clear on the fact that no one can please God without faith. Our spiritual father or ancestor whom we all know as Abraham was titled the father of faith. And we, as Christians today, ought to follow his footsteps. It was through faith that he obeyed God’s instructions and left for a land he knew nothing about. As a result of his obedience, God made him a father to many nations. Here, we start perceiving the relationship between faith and obedience. There is no faith without obedience.
We can also perceive faith as obedience. It has to do with taking God for who He says He is. Faith is acting upon what God says. With this in mind, we’ll stop trying to help God and rather believe that He will accomplish His promises. It is sad to hear people say that they are aware of what the Bible is saying about their situation, yet we perceive them not acting on the word. God’s words are true and holy. His words are reliable and that’s why we should fully trust in His ability to accomplish what He says He will.
Just as the scriptures reveal, we can perceive faith as the certainty or full conviction that God will fulfill all His promises. With this certainty in our hearts, there is no second to waste in fear or doubt. Whatever situation you are undergoing, do not allow it to overcome you. Start by asking yourself what God says about the situation. The Holy Scriptures can best reveal God’s mind about your situation. That’s why the Bible should be your standard of life. Once you know God’s mind about your situation, speak out words of faith. Make declarations in the name of Jesus Christ. And for sure, God who hears and answers His children with intervene in your case.
Christianity is revealed in us through our actions. We cannot confess with our mouths that we belong to Christ and do things that are not reflecting our confession. As Christians, we ought to speak only what we have first believed in our hearts. Our words and actions must be in accord. And for sure, Christ-centered actions are all based on faith or the power to hear, believe and act on God’s word. Being a Christian does not imply that you won’t fall sick. But you can be sure that there is a difference between your sickness and that of a person who does not believe in Jesus Christ. As Christians, our belief is on Jesus Christ, the mighty healer.
The scriptures clearly say that by His stripes we were healed. So, what next? Will you remain crying on your sick bed or will you act upon these holy words from God? Act on the Word of God as you call upon Jesus the healer. Use your ability to believe in the healing power of Jesus Christ to command sickness to leave you. Declare yourself healed by the words of Jesus Christ. And just as the scriptures say, whenever we ask anything in prayer through the name of Jesus Christ, we should believe in our hearts that we have received. However, it is not only in believing that you have received but also in acting as one who has received what he asked from God.
Chances are very high that you have read the scripture that says, “As Christians, we walk by faith and not by sight.” This goes along the same line as the saying that we cannot please God without faith. Satan and his agents strive to make you look at your present situation from the natural, human point of view. You can be sure that the moment you start looking at your situation from the human eye, you’ll be filled with discouragement, worries, fear and sadness. Such will lead you into panic and sin. Hence, you must not live by sight as a Christian. What do we mean by living in faith and not by sight? A clear example here is when a person prays for healing, although the physical pains are still there, he/she thanks God for healing them. Yes, you can pray for financial blessings and chose to thank God for blessing you although the physical signs of poverty are still there. You do this because of your certainty that God has heard and answered your prayers.
Note that it is by acting on the word of God that a person grows his/her faith. In other words, exercising the word of God will help in growing your faith. A weak faith clearly results from lack of exercise. It’s just like a boxer who eats much but does not exercise his muscles. He’ll simply gain weight but won’t be able to stand a single fighting round. This also applies for Christians; you cannot spend all your time studying God’s word without acting upon it.
Desemond Mbantoh is a lover and servant of Jesus Christ who suffered and was crucified for our sins on the cross. In response to Jesus’ instructions to spread the Holy Gospel, Desemond owns and runs https://bestofchristianity.com/.
Starting in Genesis 13 and finally concluding in Genesis 21 with the birth of Isaac, we see an account of Abram and Sarai’s struggle of faith. Abram’s covenant with God in Genesis 13 and 15 leaves Abram and Sarai with God’s promise of descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky (15:5) and a claim to the lands of nearby nations (15:18). Abram was already in his mid-80’s at this time and Sarai was considered barren and beyond child-bearing years. As they wrestle with God’s seemingly improbable promise, Abram and Sarai eventually decide to take matters into their own hands. Sarai convinces Abram to go in unto her Egyptian handmaid, Hagar, in order to help the prophesy along. Hagar does indeed conceive a son, Ishmael, however this was not in accordance with God’s promise. The whole account is one that teaches us the importance of waiting upon the promises of the Lord. For good measure, God waits over 15 years more before fulfilling His promise, making the supernatural blessing of Isaac undeniable.
It may certainly appear the book of Job is written to be a parable, play, fable or legend where we see all the behind-the-scenes discussions along with the playing out of corresponding events. However, the book of Job is an actual account of a man named Job who was tested by God, and—as a result of his trial—comes to a clearer understanding of his Creator.
Even if the account of Job was written as a fable, we know the Word of God is God-breathed, “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16), so we know it’s importance would not be diminished. Regardless, we know Job was a real person. Ezekiel 14, verses 14 and 20 refer to Noah, Daniel and Job. We know Daniel was a historical person and a contemporary of Ezekiel’s, therefore we can safely recognize Noah and Job were actual people and therefore their accounts not just stories.
Answers2Prayer. Retrieved from http://www.answers2prayer.org/bible_questions/Answers/bible/book_of_job.htm
In extreme King James Only-ism, the bible-believing Christian pins all authority on the King James Version (KJV) bible, turning a wary eye toward the “new age” versions, which usually includes anything other than the KJV, but specifically:
New International Version (NIV)
New King James Version (NKJV)
English Standard Version (ESV)
New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Revised Standard Version (RSV)
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
The King James Only View
KJV Only assertions include beliefs that
The inerrant, unchanging Word of God has been preserved in the KJV which the newer bible versions have bubbled up to usurp.
Newer versions have already shown a tendency to footnote key passages and then, in the next release, the footnotes have been removed entirely (NIV, for example.)
Copyright law dictates new bible versions must be changed “substantially” in order to be considered new and marketable, forcing a conflict of interest (accuracy versus money.)
“To be copyrightable, a derivative work must be different enough from the original to be regarded as a ‘new work’ or must contain a substantial amount of new material. Making minor changes or additions of little substance to a pre-existing work will not qualify the work as a new version for copyright purposes.” (The Derivative Copyright Law, per Ecclesia.org)
Newer bible versions have been derived from corrupt sources, leading to egregious omissions and alterations.
One King James Only Argument: Isaiah 14:12
In her book, New Age Bible Versions, Gail Riplinger attempts to highlight many of the errors and omissions propagated by the newer books. One example that merits mentioning is the contortion of Isaiah 14:12, where the single biblical reference to the name Lucifer is removed by the new age versions, replacing the reference with “morning star”–a title given to Jesus Christ in Revelation 22:16. King James Only opponents argue this whole passage is obviously sarcastic in tone and that “morning star” or “shining one” are “perfectly acceptable translations of the Hebrew word.” (White, The King James Only Controversy, p.180-181.)
Riplinger establishes the newer versions are taking liberties with the original Hebrew in this case. She writes:
“An examination of the original Hebrew will dispel any illusion that ‘morning star’ is an acceptable substitute for the word ‘Lucifer.’ The Hebrew is ‘helel, ben sharchar,’ which is accurately translated ‘Lucifer, son of the morning.’ The NIV and NASB give an English translation as if the Hebrew said, ‘shachar kokab, ben shachar‘ or morning star, son of the morning (or dawn). Yet the word for star (kokab) appears nowhere in the text. Also ‘morning’ appears only once, as the KJV shows, not twice as new versions indicate. The word kokab is translated as ‘star’ dozens of other times by NIV translators; morning or dawn is likewise used hundreds of times. New version editors know boqer kokab is ‘morning star’ since it is used in Job 38:7. If God had intended to communicate ‘morning star’, he could have repeated hit here. The word he chose, helel, appears nowhere else in the Old Testament, just as Lucifer appears nowhere else.” (Riplinger, p.42-43.)*
According to Revelation 13:4, Satan’s ambition to be worshiped will be realized: “and they worshiped the dragon.” As Riplinger points out, for this to happen, the world will have to be confused on Satan’s true identity. As in the Garden, this begins with corrupting God’s Word, which–as a King James Only supporter–Riplinger eagerly defends.
Against King James Only
Unfortunately for the KJV Only cause, that eagerness turns overzealous in places and Riplinger–like many vocal KJV Only advocates–falls into a number of traps and errors along her way. One example is when she attempts to use acrostic algebra to reduce (NASV-NIV)-AV=X into SIN=X. Even her use of NASV disrupts her own pattern of referring to the version as NASB everywhere else in her book. Still, if even 50 percent of Riplinger’s work is accurate, it becomes impossible to refute there is a corruption of God’s Word taking place.
However, the KJV itself is not without its errors. For instance, KJV Only advocate Dr. Terry Watkins asserts the ESV has removed the word “hell” 40 times and removed the words “devil” or “devils” 83 times. While this can and should be alarming to anyone looking to rest in the truth the Bible is God-breathed, Watkins leaves out the fact that the ESV largely corrects the term “hell” to the words that actually show up in the original Greek, Aramaic and Hebrew: Hades, Sheol and Gehenna. The KJV Only argument is that most the public won’t be familiar with the terms Hades, Sheol and Gehenna, however this is certainly not a sound argument. Are we to bend the Scripture to the ignorance of the people (as many have tried) or are we to elevate the people to the level of God’s Word? (Of course, this argument could be pushed to the literal end and lead us to abandon all English versions since the Bible was originally written in ancient Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic.)
Another example where opponents to KJV Only state the KJV translation is inferior is in Genesis 50:20. On page 287 of Dr. James White’s detailed analysis, The King James Only Controversy, he compares the passage as it appears in the KJV and in the NASB:
20 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
20 As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about [a]this present result, to preserve many people alive.
Here is how the actual passage looks in Hebrew according to the Masoretic text:
For reference, the definition from Strong’s Concordance:
2803 chashab khaw-shab’ a primitive root; properly, to plait or interpenetrate, i.e. (literally) to weave or (gen.) to fabricate; figuratively, to plot or contrive (usually in a malicious sense); hence (from the mental effort) to think, regard, value, compute:–(make) account (of), conceive, consider, count, cunning (man, work, workman), devise, esteem, find out, forecast, hold, imagine, impute, invent, be like, mean, purpose, reckon(-ing be made), regard, think.
The word in question here is chashab () and it is clearly repeated in the Masoretic example. (Notice how accent marks change between the two instances.) White tries to make the case that it would make more sense to mirror the intent of the original author and use the same word in repetition. To that end, it might. As he does with regularity, White stops short of diving into actual textual analysis to explain the context surrounding both usages to reverse engineer the KJV authors’ decisions. He may be quite right in his assertion, but he–like Riplinger whom he sarcastically attacks–often expects the reader to swallow his sortie of arguments whole.
Conclusion: King James First
Many intelligent people stand committed on both sides of the KJV Only issue. Both sides have done their homework. For every superstitious, paranoid KJV Only advocate, there seems to be an equally apathetic, callous new age bible advocate. Both sides lean to intellectualism and textual criticism to make their points, however neither side is faultless when advancing their perspectives through their prejudices. To a serious student, it becomes painfully apparent that even learning ancient Greek and Hebrew won’t fully help you discern truth; even those experts disagree!
Still, if half the KJV Only case is true, it remains irrefutable there is an erosion game being played on God’s Word. Inversely, if half the new age bible defense is true, the pattern of corruption entering the newer bibles still isn’t satisfactorily addressed.
And so, this student is landing on a position of KJV First; not KJV Only. I can acknowledge we have many more supporting documents and copies on which to base solid translation work than the Hampton Court Conference had during their work in the early 1600’s. The KJV could be made more accurate, certainly. At the same time, I can look at the assertions by the KJV Only camp and recognize there is absolutely a targeted devolution (alt. devil-ution) occurring in the contemporary versions. If we look at the Enemy’s attacks in the Garden and on Jesus in the desert, it is plainly evident the Enemy favors the tactic of undermining God’s Word.
* I found it interesting to discover for as much as White attacks Riplinger in his book The King James Only Controversy, his 2009 revision glosses past Riplinger’s more thorough analysis of the Hebrew text in this case. Certainly, if her textual criticism on Isaiah 14 was errant, he would have been sure to dismantle it.
Recently, I have been talking with a very dear friend about God and our responsibility as believers. She finished an account of her own personal spiritual journey with the following:
I believe you will get SOME of the answers you seek to your questions as you continue to seek God’s council through prayer.
Will you get all your answers? I don’t think so. If we are all knowing, where does that put God?
I’m not even a good facebooker so I presented this to you via email vs posting on your blog as I do not have the research to support.
Without my faith, I would be wandering aimlessly always searching.
I do not want to live like that again.
Tried it for 30 years, it didn’t work.
Her final comment gave me pause. I agree we can find peace in God. Absolutely. But I don’t believe we should stop seeking to close the gap between us and our Creator (and there is definitely a gap; more like a canyon.)
So, I turned to the Bible to see what it held. I find 40 entries in the form of examples and directives to seek the Lord.
I now feel I can rest into my restlessness.
that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;
1 Chronicles 16:11
Seek the LORD and His strength; Seek His face continually.
1 Chronicles 22:19
“Now set your heart and your soul to seek the LORD your God; arise, therefore, and build the sanctuary of the LORD God, so that you may bring the ark of the covenant of the LORD and the holy vessels of God into the house that is to be built for the name of the LORD.”
The LORD has looked down from heaven upon the sons of men To see if there are any who understand, Who seek after God.
‘AFTER THESE THINGS I will return, AND I WILL REBUILD THE TABERNACLE OF DAVID WHICH HAS FALLEN, AND I WILL REBUILD ITS RUINS, AND I WILL RESTORE IT, SO THAT THE REST OF MANKIND MAY SEEK THE LORD, AND ALL THE GENTILES WHO ARE CALLED BY MY NAME,’
“In that day I will raise up the fallen booth of David, And wall up its breaches; I will also raise up its ruins And rebuild it as in the days of old; That they may possess the remnant of Edom And all the nations who are called by My name,” Declares the LORD who does this.
And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.
Seek the LORD while He may be found; Call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way And the unrighteous man his thoughts; And let him return to the LORD, And He will have compassion on him, And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.
Sow with a view to righteousness, Reap in accordance with kindness; Break up your fallow ground, For it is time to seek the LORD Until He comes to rain righteousness on you.
For thus says the LORD to the house of Israel, “Seek Me that you may live. “But do not resort to Bethel And do not come to Gilgal, Nor cross over to Beersheba; For Gilgal will certainly go into captivity And Bethel will come to trouble. “Seek the LORD that you may live, Or He will break forth like a fire, O house of Joseph, And it will consume with none to quench it for Bethel,
“In those days and at that time,” declares the LORD, “the sons of Israel will come, both they and the sons of Judah as well; they will go along weeping as they go, and it will be the LORD their God they will seek.
For the sons of Israel will remain for many days without king or prince, without sacrifice or sacred pillar and without ephod or household idols. Afterward the sons of Israel will return and seek the LORD their God and David their king; and they will come trembling to the LORD and to His goodness in the last days.
When Ephraim saw his sickness, And Judah his wound, Then Ephraim went to Assyria And sent to King Jareb But he is unable to heal you, Or to cure you of your wound. For I will be like a lion to Ephraim And like a young lion to the house of Judah I, even I, will tear to pieces and go away, I will carry away, and there will be none to deliver. I will go away and return to My place Until they acknowledge their guilt and seek My face; In their affliction they will earnestly seek Me.
Seek the LORD, All you humble of the earth Who have carried out His ordinances; Seek righteousness, seek humility Perhaps you will be hidden In the day of the LORD’S anger.
“Thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘It will yet be that peoples will come, even the inhabitants of many cities. ‘The inhabitants of one will go to another, saying, “Let us go at once to entreat the favor of the LORD, and to seek the LORD of hosts; I will also go.” ‘So many peoples and mighty nations will come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem and to entreat the favor of the LORD.’
“I love those who love me; And those who diligently seek me will find me.
“But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul. “When you are in distress and all these things have come upon you, in the latter days you will return to the LORD your God and listen to His voice. “For the LORD your God is a compassionate God; He will not fail you nor destroy you nor forget the covenant with your fathers which He swore to them.
1 Chronicles 28:9
“As for you, my son Solomon, know the God of your father, and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind; for the LORD searches all hearts, and understands every intent of the thoughts If you seek Him, He will let you find Him; but if you forsake Him, He will reject you forever.
2 Chronicles 15:1-2
Now the Spirit of God came on Azariah the son of Oded, and he went out to meet Asa and said to him, “Listen to me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin: the LORD is with you when you are with Him And if you seek Him, He will let you find Him; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you.
“I have not spoken in secret, In some dark land; I did not say to the offspring of Jacob, ‘Seek Me in a waste place’; I, the LORD, speak righteousness, Declaring things that are upright.
‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. ‘Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. ‘You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.
“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. “For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.
“So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. “For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it will be opened.
2 Corinthians 6:2
for He says, “AT THE ACCEPTABLE TIME I LISTENED TO YOU, AND ON THE DAY OF SALVATION I HELPED YOU.” Behold, now is “THE ACCEPTABLE TIME,” behold, now is “THE DAY OF SALVATION”–
When You said, “Seek My face,” my heart said to You, “Your face, O LORD, I shall seek.”
2 Chronicles 11:16
Those from all the tribes of Israel who set their hearts on seeking the LORD God of Israel followed them to Jerusalem, to sacrifice to the LORD God of their fathers.
‘You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.
“The LORD will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the LORD drives you. “There you will serve gods, the work of man’s hands, wood and stone, which neither see nor hear nor eat nor smell. “But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul.
1 Chronicles 22:17-19
David also commanded all the leaders of Israel to help his son Solomon, saying, “Is not the LORD your God with you? And has He not given you rest on every side? For He has given the inhabitants of the land into my hand, and the land is subdued before the LORD and before His people. “Now set your heart and your soul to seek the LORD your God; arise, therefore, and build the sanctuary of the LORD God, so that you may bring the ark of the covenant of the LORD and the holy vessels of God into the house that is to be built for the name of the LORD.”
2 Chronicles 15:12-15
They entered into the covenant to seek the LORD God of their fathers with all their heart and soul; and whoever would not seek the LORD God of Israel should be put to death, whether small or great, man or woman. Moreover, they made an oath to the LORD with a loud voice, with shouting, with trumpets and with horns.
O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water.
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
“But seek His kingdom, and these things will be added to you.
One thing I have asked from the LORD, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the LORD And to meditate in His temple.
“The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in the field, which a man found and hid again; and from joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking fine pearls, and upon finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.
2 Kings 22:11-20
When the king heard the words of the book of the law, he tore his clothes. Then the king commanded Hilkiah the priest, Ahikam the son of Shaphan, Achbor the son of Micaiah, Shaphan the scribe, and Asaiah the king’s servant saying, “Go, inquire of the LORD for me and the people and all Judah concerning the words of this book that has been found, for great is the wrath of the LORD that burns against us, because our fathers have not listened to the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.”
2 Chronicles 14:2-7
Asa did good and right in the sight of the LORD his God, for he removed the foreign altars and high places, tore down the sacred pillars, cut down the Asherim, and commanded Judah to seek the LORD God of their fathers and to observe the law and the commandment.
2 Chronicles 17:3-6
The LORD was with Jehoshaphat because he followed the example of his father David’s earlier days and did not seek the Baals, but sought the God of his father, followed His commandments, and did not act as Israel did. So the LORD established the kingdom in his control, and all Judah brought tribute to Jehoshaphat, and he had great riches and honor.
2 Chronicles 20:1-4
Now it came about after this that the sons of Moab and the sons of Ammon, together with some of the Meunites, came to make war against Jehoshaphat. Then some came and reported to Jehoshaphat, saying, “A great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea, out of Aram and behold, they are in Hazazon-tamar (that is Engedi).” Jehoshaphat was afraid and turned his attention to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.
Then I proclaimed a fast there at the river of Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God to seek from Him a safe journey for us, our little ones, and all our possessions.
OpenBible.info. Retrieved on August 13, 2015 from http://www.openbible.info/topics/seeking_god.
Knowing Jesus. Retrieved on August 13, 2015 from http://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Seeking-God.