It’s Time to Believe

by | Nov 30, 2000 | Spiritual Growth


As a preacher, I’ve noticed something tragic about the body of Christ: We have lost our fear and reverence for God. We have taken His holy Word and turned it into an entertaining book of fables, some of which we halfheartedly believe, and some of which we don’t believe at all.


We are interested in the Bible, but rarely are we inspired by it. Sure, we love the stories of victory, but we do not walk in its promises. If the truth were told, many of us would find out we’ve been in outright rebellion to God’s Word.


We jump and shout in church over themes such as faith, obedience and fellowship, but we’re not blessed because the Word has simply become a book of amusing stories instead of life-changing truths. It’s like the movies: We cheer our favorite biblical characters on to victory with only a dream that someday that same victory will be ours.


Not only do we mistreat the Word, but we also entertain strongholds in our lives that have developed as a result of immaturity. And even though the Bible tells us to lay aside every sin and weight that easily besets us, we continue to entertain these strongholds.


One of the most common strongholds I see in the body of Christ is unbelief. This sin is detrimental because it keeps us barricaded from the power and blessing of God. The Bible makes it clear that there’s not one situation we will go through for which God hasn’t already made a way of escape through our belief. But we simply don’t have faith in God.


In the book of Joshua, God commanded an uncommon faith in His Word by instructing the priests to take up the ark of the covenant and to walk around the city seven times, blowing their trumpets and shouting so the walls of Jericho would fall down. The people, hungry for the presence and power of God, obeyed and were victorious (see Josh. 6).


Many believers have heard this story and countless others like it, and they still don’t believe God for personal victory. Some enter the boxing ring of life with a fight-and-see attitude. But mature Christians go in knowing they will come out champions. This is not a name-it-and-claim-it thing. It’s simply trusting God.


The situations in life that seem to knock us out of the ring hold the greatest promise. But we will not enjoy the
fulfillment of the promise until
we have defeated the problem. Although we have heard this many times, we still don’t believe it.


If we are walking by sight, then we won’t be able to see the victory. But if we are walking in the Spirit, we know that when we get tired, He will help us. All we have to do is show up for the battle, and the Spirit of the Lord will come upon us.


God has anointed believers to accomplish what He has ordained. But many Christians have spent their lives running away from battles, not realizing that it’s the enemy who is afraid. God is telling us to take the city, but we are so wrapped up in our religion that we can’t hear Him.


There was a time in my church when some religious people were complaining that the congregation was standing up too long during the worship service. Obviously these people didn’t understand that spiritually hungry people don’t want to sit down. In fact, those religious people didn’t come back to church the next Sunday because they decided that “it didn’t take all of that” to worship God.


Unfortunately, believers fail to understand that it’s going to take that and more to be what God has called us to be. When God wants to move, we need to be willing to follow His lead. We have no authority to tell God no.


His blessings are reserved not for religious folks but for hungry folks–those who hunger and thirst after righteousness (see Matt. 5:6). But people who are caught up in the laziness of religion, performance and protocol will miss the move of God.


Don’t be among those who miss God’s blessing. You may have heard the promises a hundred times before. It’s time to start believing them.

Bishop Eddie L. Long is the pastor of the 18,000-member New Birth Missionary Baptist Church near Atlanta. He is the author of Taking Over (Creation House).

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

How to Operate in the Power Gifts of the Holy Spirit

How to Operate in the Power Gifts of the Holy Spirit

Before Jesus ascended to heaven, He told the apostles in Acts 1:8 (NLT), “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.” Jesus promises a gift that would give them comfort, power, strength and encouragement. That gift is the Holy Spirit, and that...

Messianic Rabbi: Make the Choice to Be an Outsider

Messianic Rabbi: Make the Choice to Be an Outsider

One of the wonderful things about reading through the Bible is that the more you read it, the more things you find within its pages. No matter how many times you read a verse or a series of verses, because the Bible is a living document, there will always be more to...

Kingdom Economics: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

Kingdom Economics: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress unanimously voted to pass a declaration of independence from Britain. Each signatory was facing death by hanging if the bold experiment failed. The Declaration of Independence declared that all men were created equal and that...

Consider This Unsung Hero of the Bible

Consider This Unsung Hero of the Bible

Sometimes, I think Martha in the Bible gets a bad rap! I am not saying that Jesus labeled Martha at all. Please hear me out. But I think we would be wise to avoid picking up and holding onto some of the dynamics in this potential sibling rivalry between Martha and...

Prophetic Word: We Are Entering the Books of Acts

Prophetic Word: We Are Entering the Books of Acts

On the morning of June 5, 2022, I was praying in preparation for the Arise Women’s Summit I was hosting near Knoxville, Tennessee, when the Lord took me into an encounter. I found myself in the library of heaven standing before a giant staircase made of extremely...

The Church Revived: 3 Keys to the Emerging Move of God

The Church Revived: 3 Keys to the Emerging Move of God

During the past two years, I believe the church at large has been in a season of returning to God. Repentance is crucial when it comes to revival. Scripture shows a clear pattern that repentance precedes the outpouring of the Holy Spirit (see Joel 2:12-28 and Acts...

RECENT ARTICLES

How Divine Wrestling Changes Our Identity

All of us at some point will hit a place of getting the wind knocked out of us. We all experience unexpected detours and times when there seems to be no way out. But there is One who lives in us,...
Spirit-Filled Pastor: How Does God Lead Us Today?

Spirit-Filled Pastor: How Does God Lead Us Today?

Whether it is the Spirit leading or forbidding in the book of Acts, or the Spirit leading throughout Christian history, it’s clear that the leading of the Spirit is important. In the Old Testament, it appears that the Spirit of God could be withdrawn completely from...

Joyce Meyer: Keys to Winning Your Race in Life

Joyce Meyer: Keys to Winning Your Race in Life

Everyone has a race to run. That just means we all have a life to live. The apostle Paul says in Hebrews 12:1 (NIV), “Therefore...let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for...

What Is ‘The One Thing’ God Wants From You?

What Is ‘The One Thing’ God Wants From You?

In 1971, I was invited to spend one month in Singapore at a new institute that had been started by John Haggai. It was still in the formative stages then—a place where Asian church leaders would be trained and challenged to witness for Christ. Today, more than 40...

37 Prayers for the Suffering Persecuted Church

37 Prayers for the Suffering Persecuted Church

It was a Pentecost bloodbath and most Christians never heard about it. More than 50 Christians were killed in one of the deadliest terror attacks on Nigerians this year. Scores of gunmen rushed in to kill Christians in the midst of worship. All told, over 360 million...

Pin It on Pinterest