THOSE WHO REALLY BELIEVE
By Curtis Pugh
By Curtis Pugh
Jesus said, “Thy word is truth” and “the scripture cannot be broken” (John 17:17 & 10:35). We ask the question: Who really believes the truth? Who truly believes in Christ? One Old Testament prophet asked this question in a twofold way. If we can answer either one of his questions we have the answer to the other question as well. Here are his words: “Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?” (Isaiah 53:1).
The first question has to do with the result (believing) while the second one has to do with the cause (the power of God). Who believes? Only the ones to whom the arm of God has been revealed. Now the phrase, “the arm of the LORD,” does not mean that God only has one arm. Nor does it mean that He has a literal, physical arm. This expression speaks of the power of God.
We must ask: does God reveal His power in sinners because they believe or do sinners come to believe because of God's powerful acting in and upon them? Paul tells us, “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure,” (Philippians 2:13). It is absolutely necessary that God work first in making Himself known to lost sinners. He takes the initiative in salvation! We sinners are all naturally born in a condition of “enmity against God.” Proof: “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God,” (Romans 8:7-8). It is not possible for a natural born sinner to please God. Faith is pleasing to God, but sinners cannot produce faith. God must work first! Otherwise sinners would not believe for they cannot believe or do anything pleasing to God.
So it is necessary that the all-powerful “arm of the LORD” be revealed in sinners first. Because of God's working within by the Holy Spirit and without by His providence (His control of all things), elect sinners are given the gift of saving faith.
They become those who have believed the truth - “our report” or as the King James margin says “our doctrine.”
God's Word teaches that it is pointless to have confidence in self whether in self-made faith or man-made religion. All who truly believe with “the faith of God's elect,” (Titus 1:1) do to boast in their faith, but rather give glory to God. They understand that God has worked faith in them! They know what Jonah knew: “Salvation is of the LORD,” (Jonah 2:9). Only when “the arm of the LORD” is “revealed” will men and women believe in Christ in a saving way. Only then will they believe the teaching of the Word of God. Self-made religion, man-made doctrines, and home-made faith: these will not do. Have no confidence in the flesh! “Ye must be born again,” (John 3:7).
Grace Bible Baptist Church
26080 Wax Road
Denham Springs, LA 70726