Faith And Thanksgiving
(week 28/05)
Olubi Johnson

Hebrews 11:1-3 NKJV: Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 2 For by it the elders obtained a good testimony. 3 By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.

Here, Paul reveals to us that faith is trust or confidence in God and the unseen realities promised in His written Word.

The very essence of faith is the conviction of the reality of the unseen world of the spirit based on trust in God’s integrity expressed in His written Word:

Numbers 23:19 NKJV:  “God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good? 

This is why Jesus says in:

Mark 11:22-24 NKJV: So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. 23 For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will come to pass, he will have whatever he says. 24 Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them. 

So, when you pray you must believe God hears and gives you what you asked for even though the answer is not yet immediately manifested to the physical senses.

Now, what happens between when you pray and receive in the spirit and when you have the answer in physical manifestation?

Plenty!

In fact the answers to so many prayers are aborted in the spirit realm and never come into physical manifestation, because of spiritual laziness (Heb. 6.12) and lack of knowledge (Hos. 4.6) of spiritual things and their operation.

In the time between when we pray and God gives the answer in the spirit realm and when we receive the answer in the physical realm, spiritual warfare is taking place in the heavens.

Satanic angels seek to hinder the answer to your prayers from coming into physical manifestation:

Daniel 10:12-13 NKJV: Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words. 13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia.

Revelation 12:7-8 NIV: And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. 8 But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven

So, after you pray in faith in the understanding you also need to prayer in the spirit with all kinds of prayer regularly (daily, weekly or monthly see our book “A Practical guide to prayer” for more details) to create and maintain an open heaven through which the answer to your prayer request can come.

Furthermore, you need to maintain a walk in the love of God so your praying in the spirit can be effective (1 Cor. 13.1) and so that you can be effectively led by the spirit to receive the answer to your prayer of faith (1 Jn. 3.22-23).

Finally, you cause your faith to abound by frequently thanking God in your thoughts as you by faith “see Him that is invisible” (Heb. 11.27), especially when you are tempted to doubt or fear.

Colossians 2:7 NKJV: rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.

Colossians 4:2 KJV: Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving

So, as you thus keep your mind on God with faith and thanksgiving He will keep you in perfect peace:

Isaiah 26:3 NKJV: You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. 

Philippians 4:6-7 NKJV: Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. 

So by faith, prayer in the spirit, love and thanksgiving you can live in a place of perfect peace in which all your prayers will be answered.

We should now use these principles of faith, prayer, love and thanksgiving not only to meet our personal physical and material needs, but to perfect the love of God (1Jn. 2.5) in our lives, subdue our nations (Heb. 11.33) and so cause the Kingdom of God to come and His will to be done in the earth as it is in heaven (Lu. 11.2).

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