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May 30, 2016 SnyderTalk: Without Faith It Is Impossible to Please Yahweh

1--Intro Covering Israel and ME

“Therefore behold, I am going to make them know—this time I will make them know My power and My might; and they shall know that My Name is Yahweh.” (Jeremiah 16: 21)

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Katie and I are traveling in Israel and gathering information for SnyderTalk.  While we are there, I am posting excerpts from His Name is Yahweh in SnyderTalk.

The message in the book is important.  Please take the time to read it.

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Without Faith It Is Impossible to Please Yahweh

Habakkuk 2: 3-4 says,

“For the vision is yet for the appointed time; it hastens toward the goal and it will not fail.  Though it tarries, wait for it; for it will certainly come, it will not delay.  Behold, as for the proud one, his soul is not right within him; but the righteous will live by his faith.”[i]

Paul said it as clearly and succinctly as it can be said in Hebrews 11: 6:

“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.”[ii]

In other words, without faith we are dead.

Faith in Yahweh leads to righteousness and salvation, and righteous people live by faith.  While it makes sense to us that God should require good works from us as the price for our salvation, in reality our good works are not good enough.  As the proverb says, “There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.”[iii]  What seems right to us is actually wrong.  If we persist in pursuing a course that seems right, but is not, we will miss out on righteousness and salvation altogether.

Having made these points, we need to consider what Abraham did that made him righteous before God since Isaiah used him as the example we should follow.  Genesis 15: 6 says,

“Then he (Abraham) believed in Yahweh; and He (Yahweh) reckoned it to him as righteousness.”[iv]

A literal translation of the Hebrew in this verse reads as follows:

“Then he (Abraham) believed in Yahweh, and He (Yahweh) credited it to him as righteousness.”[v]

If you search the Bible thoroughly, you will find nothing that even suggests Abraham’s righteousness was dependent on anything except his faith in Yahweh.  If you doubt this, then look for yourself or ask someone you trust to show you.  Notice that I did not say ask them to tell you.  Make them show you because it does not exist.

Why is this important?  Because God made promises to Abraham that all of us depend on for our salvation, and all of God’s promises, every single one of them, were and are dependent on our having faith in Him just as Abraham did.

Yahweh declared Abraham righteous because he had faith in Him.  Today God declares anyone righteous who has faith in Him, but faith in Him to do what?  We must have faith in Yahweh to redeem and save us, to take care of us, to protect us, and to provide for us as we carry out the work He gives us to do.

In Romans 4: 19-22, the apostle Paul said Abraham drew strength from his faith.  He was about 100 years old and Sarah was about 90, but he remained convinced that Yahweh was able to do exactly what He promised—i.e., that He would give him a son by Sarah through whom the covenant would pass to future generations.  Even though Yahweh’s promise seemed impossible to fulfill from a human perspective, Abraham remained steadfast in faith and gave glory to God.

Abraham’s righteousness was not dependent on circumcision.  We know this because circumcision is only an outward, visible sign of the covenant and nothing more.[vi]  It was important as a sign, but Abraham’s righteousness was NOT dependent on it.  Also, God declared Abraham righteous before He required circumcision as the sign of the covenant.  Thus, his righteousness could not have been dependent on it.  Furthermore, we know that circumcision of the flesh is symbolic of the inward condition Yahweh truly desires—circumcision of the heart.

Deuteronomy 30: 6 says,

“Moreover, Yahweh your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love Yahweh your God with all your heart and with all your soul, in order that you may live.”[vii]

As Isaiah would say, “See!”  Yahweh wants our hearts and souls.

What’s more, we know from Yahweh’s Word that Abraham’s righteousness could not have been dependent on obeying the Law (the Torah) since Yahweh did not give the Law until hundreds of years after He declared Abraham righteous.  Genesis 15: 6 says that Yahweh declared Abraham righteous because he had faith, and His requirement has never changed.  However, Yahweh tested Abraham’s faith by telling him to sacrifice Isaac,[viii] and Abraham’s willingness to obey God demonstrated that he had the kind of faith that pleases Him.

Yahweh never intended for the Torah to impart life to His people.  In fact, the Torah brought us death because it showed us how pure and holy God is and how filthy and dirty we are when compared to Him.  The Torah is perfect and good, and it shows us how much we need a Redeemer and Savior.  But it cannot impart life.  In fact, it exposes us as sinners who are guilty and shows us that we deserve God’s punishment.

Paul explained it this way in his letter to the Romans:

“So then, no human being can be found upright at the tribunal of God by keeping the Law; all that the Law does is to tell us what is sinful….Are we saying that the Law has been made pointless by faith?  Out of the question; we are placing the Law on its true footing.”[ix]

Yahweh neither says nor implies that the Torah can impart salvation or life, but He does say we should live by the Laws in the Torah and that not obeying His Laws will bring us death.  Yet, again and again Yahweh declares that faith in Him is the requirement for salvation.  He could not have made it any clearer.

Our Decision

There are almost 6½ billion people living on the earth right now [this book was written several years ago], and there may be twice that many opinions about what God requires from us for salvation.  However, Yahweh is sovereign, and He has exclusive jurisdiction in this matter.  Any attempt we make to substitute our personal views for His unambiguous command is the same as the sin Adam committed in the Garden of Eden.

From God’s perspective, Adam’s sin was an act of moral independence.  It was a direct assault on His sovereignty and a sin of the highest magnitude.  Only God has the authority to determine right and wrong, good and evil, and He alone has the privilege of determining how He redeems and saves mankind.

It would be foolish to ignore these facts because the consequences for doing so are catastrophic.  Search the Scriptures and find out what Yahweh said He would do to people who reject His gift and choose to follow their own instincts instead.  He said that He would reject them and send them to the lake of fire where there will be perpetual burning and eternal punishment, and forever is a long, long time.

God laid out His plan for our redemption and salvation very clearly in the Bible.  He did not give us a list of options and tell us to select the one that is most consistent with our personal preferences and traditions.  He told us to accept or reject His plan, and each one of us must do just that.

At the end of the day, Yahweh requires us to decide if we have faith in Him.  Abraham made his choice, and Yahweh declared him righteous.  Since God never changes, He will declare us righteous as well if we have faith in Him, but if we do not have faith in Him we are doomed to die an eternal death.  It is very frightening and just that simple.

Saving faith is alive and active and it produces works that Yahweh calls “good,” but it does not have to be perfect.  Abraham did not have perfect faith, but Yahweh used him to bless the whole world.  Noah did not have flawless faith either, but Yahweh preserved life on earth through him.  Samson and Gideon did not display unswerving faith, but Yahweh delivered Israel from her adversaries through them.  These people were ordinary human beings who God used to do extraordinary things because they had saving faith.  Yahweh still uses ordinary human beings to change the world.  Are you one of these people?

Jesus’ comments on the importance of faith are revealing.  Following the transfiguration (see Matthew 17: 1-13), Jesus encountered the father of a demon-possessed boy.  His disciples had tried unsuccessfully to exorcise the demon, and when the man saw Jesus coming down off the mountain, he pleaded with Him to heal his son.  Jesus healed him instantly, and His disciples asked Him why they were unable to drive the demon out of the boy.  Jesus said,

“Because of the littleness of your faith; for truly I say to you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain (the Mount of Transfiguration or Mount Tabor), ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.”[x]

The people who heard Him say these words must have been shocked.  Using human logic, it did not make any sense, but Jesus was telling them not to rely on human logic.  He was admonishing them to have faith in Yahweh, to be firm in their convictions, and to go forward without fear, relying on God.

Yahweh uses small measures of faith (i.e., faith as small as a tiny mustard seed) to accomplish colossal things, or things that seem impossible using human logic.  Put your faith to work and trust Yahweh to accomplish His objectives, and you can actually experience what I’m talking about.  Yahweh is ready right now to do what He said He will do.  Are you willing to let Him?

His Name is Yahweh: It explains why God’s Name is so important.  It’s available in eBook format and in paperback.  It’s also available for free in PDF format.

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3--HNIY the Website

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His Name is Yahweh, the website, is a companion of the book His Name is Yahweh.

To see videos that explain the importance of God’s Name, click here.

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15--Concentric Circles 5

“The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me. Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.” (John 17: 22-24)

See “His Name is Yahweh”.

[i] Habakkuk 2: 3-4.

[ii] Hebrews 11: 6.

[iii] Proverbs 16: 25.

[iv] Genesis 15: 6.

[v] Kohlenberger, John III, The Interlinear NIV Hebrew-English Old Testament, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1987.

[vi] Genesis 17: 11.

[vii] Deuteronomy 30: 6.

[viii] Genesis 22: 1-2.

[ix] Romans 3:  20 and 31 from The New Jerusalem Bible.

[x] Matthew 17: 20.