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Transformed By Faith



"30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days."
Good Morning My Beloved,

Welcome to worship this Lord's Day!
We are so thankful for our beloved brothers and sisters in Christ from around the world, we are glad that you are all with us today. I would like to encourage you to visit our Prayer Wall, not only to pray for our brothers and sisters in their time of need, but to also add any prayers or concerns that you may have.
Many Christians have trusted Christ as Savior, but have failed to make Him Lord over their lives, they disguised some besetting sin that keeps bringing them down. They promise God that they won’t do it again, only to repeatedly fail. Some have drifted into worldliness and spiritual apathy, and sadly, they don’t even realize that they have a problem. Churches have problems, which are in part, the sum of all of the problems of their congregations. 
Faith is not some magical force. Rather, faith is the channel through which God’s blessings flow.
Salvation does not insulate us from the worlds problems. In fact, more often than not, it brings us into conflict with problems that didn’t even bother us before we were saved. Before we were saved, selfishness, pride, greed, lust, and many other sins didn’t trouble us. In many instances, we may even have considered some of them virtues! 
However, when you get saved and realize that there are many demons that must be conquered, and many of them are entrenched in your own heart! Not only do you face these enemies within, but now you face enemies from without that previously caused you no problems. Often, family members and friends don’t like your newfound faith, because it now threatens their being comfortable in their sins.  
Victory over our personal demons comes when we no longer trust in ourselves, but trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. Our problem is not that we are weak, but in being so prone to pride, that we believe  ourselves to be strong.  Even when God grants us victory, we tend to try to steal at least some of the credit for ourselves. Therefore, God’s plan for victory humbles our pride by accentuating our weakness and His tremendous power. Victory with God, always involves faith, because faith acknowledges God's ability and always exalts God's glory. However, it also accentuates our inability and humbles our pride. The more we trust God, the more He is sure to amaze!
Let us pray.
Heavenly Father,
Father, we thank You for Your Word for us today,  we pray that You would bind these truths to our hearts, that we may rejoice and You may be glorified. Lord, we thank You for the great work You are accomplishing in and through our lives. May we demonstrate by our lives that true saving faith produces obedience and transformed lives, that the unbelieving world might take notice and come to know the truth, embrace the truth and Christ. May it all be for Your glory and for Christ's sake.
In His name we pray
Today's Message:  Transformed By Faith
As we continue in our study of the wonderful book of Hebrews chapter 11, what is remarkable about this book is its historical reach, taking us through much of the Old Testament. I love that. So often, in the church today, we over look the value of the Old Testament and the many lessons that we can apply to our daily lives.  The overall theme of this great chapter of faith, is those who are in a right relationship with God, came to Him by faith, and they continue to live by faith, even though it may be contrary to the culture. I believe that that is a very important lesson for all of us today.
So often, in our desire to be liked, to be well thought of by those in the world around, as Christians, we find ourselves compromising our beliefs to "fit it" with the world. Forgetting that obedience to God often means separation from the world. That’s what marks us as the people of God; we obey God, no matter the cost. Even when it goes against your own human will, though it may cost you your dreams, your ambitions; it may even cost you your life, but you do it because God said to.
The call to salvation, is faith unto obedience, and obedience unto repentance. 
Open with me your Bibles the Hebrews chapter eleven verse 30. I suppose we could say that in our study of this tremendous chapter of faith, we have, in a sense, marched ourselves right up to the walls of Jericho. Here we see the courage of faith. True faith demonstrates courage in the face of opposition and it will obey at any cost. 
I would like to invite you to follow along with me as I read, to set the text in our minds, as we prepare our hearts for what the Spirit of God is saying to us. Hebrews 11:30.  
"By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days." 
I'd like to begin by saying that any faith in God, any professed faith in Christ that crumbles under pressure of the world, is not a true saving faith. I believe that is well demonstrated by Lord in the parable of the sower or as it is often called, the parable of the soils. Allow me to quickly read that to you, Matthew chapter 13.
"That day Jesus went out of the house and was sitting by the sea. And large crowds gathered to Him, so He got into a boat and sat down, and the whole crowd was standing on the beach. And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying, "Behold, the sower went out to sow; and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil. But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out. And others fell on the good soil and *yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty. He who has ears, let him hear."
In our study of this great chapter in the book of Hebrews, we seen those who were tested and demonstrated the courageous kind of faith. In our ongoing study, we are moving out of the Pentateuch into the book of Joshua. The walls of Jericho, or teichos in the Greek, refers to an outer wall, the great, massive wall that surrounded the city of Jericho. 
The writer has been up to this point, citing as examples of faith the great men before and after the flood, up until Israel left Egypt, Moses being drawn out of the experience in Egypt and as the one who would lead them out. Having left the land of Egypt; they were on their way to the Promised Land. After
40 years of unbelief, wandering in the wilderness and the generation of doubters died out.
Now, in the Promised Land, and we’re going to meet the generation that is able to go into the land, and the story is given to us in Joshua chapter 6.
 Jericho was tightly shut because of the sons of Israel, they had been told that the children of Israel were nearby. Some estimates were, when they came out of Egypt, there were as many as two million.They were ready to enter the land of Canaan. Jericho had already been spied out, but was shut up, no one went in or out. 

Joshua 6 verses 1 through 5, "Now Jericho was tightly shut because of the sons of Israel; no one went out and no one came in. The Lord said to Joshua, "See, I have given Jericho into your hand, with its king and the valiant warriors. You shall march around the city, all the men of war circling the city once. You shall do so for six days. Also seven priests shall carry seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark; then on the seventh day you shall march around the city seven times, and the priests shall blow the trumpets. It shall be that when they make a long blast with the ram’s horn, and when you hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city will fall down flat, and the people will go up every man straight ahead."
Can you imagine, God says "You're going to march around the city for six days and on the seventh day, march around seven times, blowing horns and shouting, then the walls will fall down flat. Well, as strange as that may sound, they did exactly that. Then in verse 20-21, "So the people shouted, and priests blew the trumpets; and when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, the people shouted with a great shout and the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight ahead, and they took the city. They utterly destroyed everything in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox and sheep and donkey, with the edge of the sword."
At the entrance into the land of Canaan, the land of promise, and there’s a demonstration of faith on the part of Joshua, who is the new leader. Moses is now gone. Having crossed the Jordan, they are in between the Jordan and Jericho. It was a strong city, it was barred, it was fortified. It seemed an impossible task to take over the city, because it was the guardian city of the southern part of the land of Israel. 
It is one of the cities that scared the spies, and because of their unbelief, they were punished for that, and wandered around for four decades in the wilderness. I'm sure you remember the story in Deuteronomy chapter 1 "Where can we go up? Our brethren have made our hearts melt, saying, "The people are bigger and taller than we; the cities are large and fortified to heaven. And besides, we saw the sons of the Anakim there."
God commanded them, "Six days go around each day. The seventh day go around seven times; the seventh time it’ll collapse." This time, the people obeyed, and it fell exactly as God said it would. They’d learned not to disobey because the consequences were so severe. Now, Jericho, the gateway to the land has been captured. You know, I believe that God delights in slaying the pride of men. A shepherd boy and a stone defeated the Philistines, and now the land of Canaan suffers its first defeat by God's people simply walk around its walls, blowing a horn and shouting. Exhibiting faith. That is the testimony of God.
In Closing..
There are four degrees of faith. There’s faith which comes empty handed and receives what God has to give. Then there is the simplest faith which reckons to receive the gift, God has made promises, and we can count on God to fulfill His promises. Then, there is faith that risks. The faith begins to dare to be obedient no matter the circumstance. And lastly, there is faith that rests in suffering. True faith, always rules the life of the believer. The demonstration of faith is always obedience, the One true and Living God was for them, and they had come to believe in Him, in faith they were obedient, and faith gained them the victory.
True faith cannot be shaken, it cannot be broken, regardless of  how dire the circumstances. True faith endures, it expects victory. It is triumphant. Faith has the courage to believe God, even in impossible circumstances. In spite of ridiculous commands, it obeys, believing the incredible promises of God.
Jericho is an illustration of that kind of faith. They were without military experience, without an army, without weapons but they had faith in God's promise! And, that, is all they needed.
There are times in life, when you don’t know which way to go or what lies ahead, at the end of the road that you take. And, you will have to make a decision. Decisions in your relationships with other people and in your relationship with God. But of all the decisions that you can make, I know the best one of all. 
Choose Christ. Because, believe me, there’s no real danger in that, other than the danger that God will pour so much blessing into your life, that you won’t be able to contain it. So much peace, a peace you cannot obtain from this world. And so much joy, that people will begin to think you've lost your mind. 
Then, choose to be a blessing in the life of your parents, your spouse, your children. Choose to be a blessing to your neighbor, and to be a blessing wherever you go, to whomever you meet and whenever you have opportunity. 
The, let God, do as the wonderful old church song says, "Make me a blessing, Make me a blessing. Out of my life my Jesus shine. Make a blessing O Savior I pray.
Make me a blessing, To someone today."
I believe it should be the hearts cry, of every believer, to be a blessing to others in need.
May it be so.. 

And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

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The Brian Monzon Ministries



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