I was raised around people that knew what it meant to preach faith. It was just something we talked about once a year or so. It was something that pounded into us week in and week out.
While I was in High School, I attended Word of Life Church in Saint Joseph, Missouri. I remember when Brian Zahnd would pastor the church as would preach faith. In fact, he believe the sercet to growing a church to “preach faith and the church will grow.” He based that on Acts 16:5. “So the churches were strengthened in the faith and grew daily in numbers.”
When I lived in Tulsa, you are surrounded with Word of Faith churches and my first introduction to ministry was working at Destiny Church in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma; a church that believed in the power of faith without excuse. Faith your family’s salvation, healing, deliverance and evangelism was common themes under Eastman Curtis.
I consider the Faith message as one of many layers of my theological framework today.
Peter Boehler was one to preach faith too
If you do not know who Peter Boehler is, he was a leader in the Moravian movement back in the 1700’s. He would go back and forth between Georgia and Herrnhut, Germany. Many just known them as “the Germans.”
On a boat one time, a storm was coming against them and everyone but the Moravians was freaking out. They would just starting singing praises everywhere they went on the boats and they have no fear. They were too full of faith to fear anything.
This especially impacted a young man from England that just couldn’t figure out why they were do peaceful when everyone else was fearing death by drowning.
A few months later, the english man asked Peter Boehler want to speak on at a church. Boehler responded these words,
Preach faith till you have it; and then, because you have it, you will preach faith.
Faith is something you can impart, it is something you have to grow in. It does not just happen. It is something you that must cultivate and as you do, it is will increase.
It is like signs and wonder. They should follow the believer. However, if they are not; you should follow them until they follow you. Chase faith until faith chases you. Trust me, faith and miracles will follow you when you believe God and change the anointing on your life.
I like to compare it to my time as a wrestler. I did not just get to the state championship. I had to practice everyday and grow in my confidence that I was ready to wrestle in the championship round at the University of Missouri. It all started with wrestling my own doubt and fear of failure at practice every day.
By the way, if you are wondering who the English man was, his name was John Wesley. You might have heard of him from driving by your local United Methodist Church. Yea, that is the same guy.
Preach faith for the End Time Harvest
Many of you are like me and you got annoyed at the over-emphasis on prosperity in the faith movement. It seems that any discussion of faith had to do with finances. Many started to wonder if the prosperity message was little more than the American Dream with a little Jesus sprinkled on top. I will admit it, I wondered that more times that I care to remember.
The message of prosperity is biblical and it is critical in our generation but it was misguided and misunderstood. Most of the passages calling us to preach faith for finances almost always connected to the great commission. Prosperity is not for you but it is through you.
The other missing link in the message of prosperity was the other side of the coin. We are to preach faith but we are also to preach generosity. Without generosity, prosperity has lost its mission. I believe hearing Don Finto preaching this at a meeting and it really impacted me to this day.
One of the things that the power of God will do is give you the power to prosperity but just a few words later in Acts 1:8; we are told to be witnesses to the death to the ends of the earth. We prosper for the gospel to to the most remote villages in India and Africa.
I like to say like this: you do not give to get but you give so the lost can get Jesus.
Why do you preach faith?
Giving and claiming your seed is great if it is for biblical reasons. Are you claiming that saved would be saved and the gospel would run swiftly across the land or are you focus on getting another rental house for usersy on the lower class? Is your faith for the people going to hell without Christ or getting more money than you can spend in your lifetime?
I believe the most important thing we can do as believes, especially those of us that believe in prosperity is stop and consider why we want prosperity. Is it for selfish reason or do we really want it for kingdom purposes? I think many will be surprise at their motives. Most are not as pure as we want them to be.
Why many would defend us to preach faith. They can not be the person of generosity they want to be because they wanted to give the appearance of being more prosperous than they was. They did this but taking on more debt than they can handle. Remember, Paul said be in debt to no one but the debt of love.
I believe that the true blessing of the Lord has no payments due on the third of the month. If your debt hinders you from fulfilling the call to be generous so that other can preach faith in the remote corners of the world; that is sin.