2Timothy 2.11-13 This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him. If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us. If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself. (NKJV)
This is a faithful saying: If we are faithless, He remains faithful. He cannot deny Himself.
In its context, Paul is speaking of our Lord’s perfection in all things. Regardless of our response, He is who He is. He will faithfully reward. He will faithfully judge. He is faithful. It is not an attribute or characteristic of Christ; it is the essence of His existence. He cannot deny what He is.
On a broader application to our daily life, we can take this principle and allow it to give us confidence, to live securely and to purge pretense from our relationship with Him.
In our relationships to other people, we are careful to gloss over our sin, to sugar coat our failures and to communicate in such a way that the depth of our pride is concealed by religious vocabulary. It is a great need of ours that people have a higher opinion of us that what we deserve.
Our deceptive and prideful heart would have us try to persuade God in the same manner. We go to him in prayer with carefully crafted words, feigning humility in one breath and countering with rationalization in the next. What a waste of time, truly.
God is not fooled by our pretense, so why bother?
Have your ever contemplated the folly of trying to persuade God with your words attempting to convince Him of our intentions or justifying why we were unable to avoid sinning?
There is blessed freedom in living and praying with the understanding that God knows us infinitely better than we will ever know ourselves. In fact, we are in a constant battle to deceive even our own perception of our sin.
Jer 17.9 The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?
God already knows how pitiful we are. Experience the blessing of God’s response to our humility. Admit you don’t understand. Admit your failures, your weaknesses, your lack of faith and your complete dependence on God. Admit your lack of wisdom, your sin… all those things He already knows about you.
Admit to God that when it gets right down to it, you just don’t really have the first clue and throw yourself on His mercy and love. He already knows… He’s just waiting for you to figure it out. Experience the freedom and refreshment of giving up pretending you are what you are not. This is not a false, downtrodden self-serving humility. It is TRUE humility.
In myself nothing; in God everything.
Are you afraid if you face this reality you will be discouraged and defeated? To the contrary, God promises great victory, salvation and freedom when we reach this point of utter bankruptcy and dependence on Him (Matt 5.3).
- Is your faith weak? God is faithful.
Duet 7.9 Therefore know that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments;
- Do you struggle in unbelief? Jesus will respond to your cry of help.
Mark 9.24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
- Are you fearful or lack courage? The Lord will give you strength.
Psa 31.24 Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart, All you who hope in the LORD.
Psa 29.11 The LORD will give strength to His people; The LORD will bless His people with peace.
- Do you lack wisdom and understanding? God will give it freely to those who ask, not doubting.
James 1.5-6 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.
- Do trials and suffering discourage or embitter you? See God’s purpose and reward for them.
James 1.2-3 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
1Pet 2.19-21 For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us…
A dear brother wrote me yesterday to tell me of his gratitude to God, and God’s worthiness to be praised in all circumstances… despite the fact that his wife is terminally ill and he has five small children. Only God can give rejoicing in such a fire. Count this man blessed whom God has found worthy to receive comfort in the depths of trials. O, that God would find us worthy of such an honor!
This is a faithful saying: If we are faithless, He remains faithful.
Let us not pretend. God has promised to richly supply us (Phil 4.19) with everything He requires from us, and abundantly reward us (Luke 6.35) for what He gave in the first place. Where we lack, He will supply. When we fail, He will succeed. Where we are weak, He will be strong. When we fear, He will give courage. When our faith is small, He cannot deny Himself.
Lord, help us today to forsake our need to pretend we are something we aren’t. Grant us the courage and wisdom to admit our helplessness and dependence on You. Give us spiritual eyes to see our true condition so that we may fully turn to you today, having no trust in ourselves and complete reliance on You. Amen.
Contemplation: Can you identify areas of your life where you maintain a facade or pretense with God? Are there areas where your faith is weak?
Application: God has promised to be faithful, we merely have to believe it and take Him at His word.
- What is the most obvious Bible truth you have learned today?
- What change in your life needs to be made concerning this truth?
- What specific thing will you do today to begin that change?