The Just Shall Live By Faith

Paul PayneTeaching Resources

In Hebrews 10:38, we find these instructions as inspired by the Holy Spirit: Now the just shall live by faith. In order to carry out these instructions, it is necessary to find out first of all, who are the just? Once this is clear in our thinking, then we can determine who are given these instructions.

You will notice in Romans 4:25, Who (Jesus) was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification. Also in Romans 5:1 we read, Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Did you notice the words our and we? To whom is the Apostle Paul speaking? To sinners? To the world? No! But to born again, Spirit-filled people. All of the Epistles were written to Christians people who have done what Romans 10:9 says, That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. If you have done this, then you are among the our and we to whom Paul was speaking. You are just, and you are to live by faith. One other translation states, The just shall have their lives sustained by faith.

The next question that seems to arise is how do you get faith? Faith is imparted to the Christian by God at the time of the new birth. We are told in Ephesians 2:8, For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. God gave us a gift when we were born again, and it is called faith. Romans 12:3 proclaims, God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. Notice this says the measure and not a measure. Some people seem to think God gives some more faith than others, but this is not true. His Word says that He is no respecter of persons. Every Christian has the same measure, and Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our faith. The only difference between the faith of Kenneth Copeland and your faith is that his may be more highly developed, but you both have the same measure. To blame God for a lack of faith is nothing but ignorance. His Word has told us how to get faith, and if we don’t have it, it’s not God’s fault.

Let’s look now at Hebrews 11:6, But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Here we find that in order to please God, we must live by faith. Some of you may be asking, Why? The reason God requires that we live by faith is simply because that is how He lives. We are told in the scriptures that if we are to follow and imitate God, we must live by faith. Notice also that the kind of faith that pleased God not only believes that He is, but also that He is a rewarder. In other words, the God-pleasing faith says, “God is able to reward me and He will.” You see, there are many, many Christians who believe God can meet their needs but are not sure whether He will or not. This is not an example of the faith that pleases God. You must believe that He is and He will. Some of you may be asking, “How do you know if He will?” I know because His Word says so. God’s Word is His will!

At this point we have learned that 1) the just shall live by faith, 2) who the just are, 3) and how faith is obtained. Now we must determine what faith is. When all of these questions are settled and answered in your heart, then you are on your way to a victorious Christian life. In order to find out what faith is, we must read the classic faith scripture.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1

From this we find that faith is a substance and faith is evidence. The word substance is defined as the raw material by which something is made. Therefore, faith is the raw material by which things that cannot be seen are made visible. Faith literally reaches out into the world of hope and brings it into the realm of reality. The Moffatt translation states, Now faith means that we are confident of what we hope for, convinced of what we do not see.

Faith is the evidence of things not seen. The word evidence means proof. If you have evidence or proof of something, then this means that it does exist whether you can see it or not. In other words, my faith is the proof that what I am believing for does have existence; I just can’t see it yet. However, if I will not cast away my faith and not be moved by what I can see, then my faith will give substance to what I am believing for and cause it to become visible or manifested.

I believe at this point I should give you an illustration of how my family, my staff, and I applied these principles in believing God for an airplane for this ministry. Some years ago, the Lord spoke to me and instructed me to use my faith for an airplane for this ministry and for the Gospel’s sake. We all went to prayer according to Mark 11:24 which states, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

This is what Jesus referred to as the prayer of faith. Now it is important that you realize in praying the prayer of faith you must believe you receive when you pray and not after you can see the manifestation. The moment we said “Amen” that settled it as far as we were concerned.The airplane became ours right then; we just couldn’t see it.

However, remember what we have already stated: faith is the evidence of things not seen. The airplane did exist, for I had proof of its existence through faith. Now I must begin my confession of faith and say, “I believe I receive.” Saying what I believe gives substance to what I cannot see, for faith is released primarily through the words of your mouth. Remember the teachings of Jesus in Mark 11:23:

…whoesoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.

For nearly two years we confessed, “We believe we receive our airplane!” without any physical evidence that it would happen. But this is where it counts: you cannot be moved by physical evidence or by what you see or hear. You must hold fast to what you believe. One day, the Lord asked me if I really believed I received when I prayed, and I said, “I do.” Then He said, “Son, believing demands action. If you really believe you must act.”

I said to Him, “I know believing demands action, but how do You want me to put this into action?” He said, “I want you to set up your schedule so tight that the only way to fulfill it is by an airplane.” I obeyed the voice of the Lord and followed His instructions. This meant that there was no way for me to be in all the places that I had scheduled by driving. I had to begin flying commercial airlines and preach in as many as four different states in a week’s time. Every time I boarded a commercial airplane, I said, “I’m not moved by this; I believe I receive my airplane.”

A few months later God sent a man to work as my office manager and accountant who just happened to have about 12,000 hours of flying time. He and his wife and Carolyn and I knew that God was putting things together to get that airplane into our hands. We continued to say, “We believe we receive.” Praise God! A short time later, God instructed some people to give us their airplane. It became a reality in the here and now. Faith produced it! Faith gave substance to it, and faith caused it to become visible!

Some say, “Yes, Brother Jerry, that works for you because you are a preacher.” No, my friend, it works for me because I am a whosoever believeth. It works for me because I believe it will. I also believe it will work for you for 1 John 5:1, 4-5 states,

5Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him… 4For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. 5Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

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