Inclined to Believe



Sunday 07/23/17 

Series: Doers of the Word

Message – Inclined to Believe I



Click HERE for Video


Inclined to Believe

Hebrews 3:6-13,

“(6) but Christ as a Son over His own house, whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end. (7) Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: “TODAY, IF YOU WILL HEAR HIS VOICE, (8) DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS AS IN THE REBELLION, IN THE DAY OF TRIAL IN THE WILDERNESS, (9) WHERE YOUR FATHERS TESTED ME, TRIED ME, AND SAW MY WORKS FORTY YEARS. (10) THEREFORE I WAS ANGRY WITH THAT GENERATION, AND SAID, ‘THEY ALWAYS GO ASTRAY IN THEIR HEART, AND THEY HAVE NOT KNOWN MY WAYS.’ (11) SO I SWORE IN MY WRATH, ‘THEY SHALL NOT ENTER MY REST.’ ” (12) Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; (13) but exhort one another daily, while it is called “TODAY,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”

Mark 4:9,

“And He said to them, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!”

Those with ears to hear were on the “inside” (as opposed to the “outside” which this passage later mentions) and they are the ones who stuck around long enough to ask the questions and hear His reply.

General versus Specific

Many years ago, when I began re-teaching FAITH from a relational understanding of salvation, I mentioned the need to hear from God in order to believe. “Faith comes by HEARING…etc.” We will look at this later in this series, but even at the time I mentioned that there was a thing, not specifically mentioned in the scriptures by name, but by illustration which demonstrated a “general faith” which was most based upon God’s known character and past personal interactions with us. David makes mention of this many time in scripture. (Here is one of the more recent messages I mentioned it in from 01/16)

Well, after all this time I am not only feeling freed to teach on this I am sensing a strong urge to do so from our very real deficient of faith in this church over the past several years.

James tells us that our “DOING” is a natural outcropping of our faith…so being inclined to believe becomes very, very important when talking about being a Doer of the Word.

I offer you a parable of Jesus as a beginning case in point…

In the following passage Jesus is spinning a fictitious story about a poor beggar and a rich man named Lazarus. In this story they both die and Lazarus goes to a place of torment while the poor beggar goes to Abraham. In this story Jesus teaches us about general faith. Let’s read…

Luke 16:27-31,

“Then he said, ‘I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father’s house, (28) for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.’ (29) Abraham said to him, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.’ (30) And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ (31) But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.’ “

You see that Jesus is saying that if these men would not believe the testimony of Scripture they would not have ears to hear the words of someone who rose from the dead. As it turns out, this was true, because those same Jews who rejected Jesus HAD the words of Moses and the prophets to give them “eyes to see and ears to hear” the Messiah when He came but they did not believe. Later after many had come out of the grave during Jesus’ death as well as Jesus’ Own resurrection – they still did not believe…they did not have “eyes to see or ears to hear” even though many had raised from the grave and bore testimony of Him.

POINT: If you do not trust Jesus in general,  you will NOT trust Him in the specific!

We need to have a heart inclined to believe! 

  • The Word is the basis for ALL truth. It is the thing we refer to when we believe we’ve heard from God specifically to confirm it is something He would even say!
  • He HAVE to have ears to hear and eyes to see.
  • We need to be quick to Ask HIM! (You have not because you ask not)
  • We need to NOT ASSUME the worst from Him.
  • DON’T be prone to unbelief.
  • Be vulnerable
  • Rejoice
  • …and encourage yourself in the Lord.
  • Tell yourself, “Hope in God!” like David did!
  • Make GOD your meditation NOT your problems.

A valid question we all need to ask ourselves in ti mes of doubt is…

“How much does God have to do prove Himself to me, before I will believe?”

I Tim. 4:1-2,

“(1) Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, (2) speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron,”

Now I know that this passage is talking about apostasy, but the general truth it conveys is applicable to our teaching today. We depart from faith when we give heed to other voices, which ultimately leads to a calloused heart.

Those who fail to believe, have developed ears to hear other voices!

As believers we MUST be the voice of belief NOT unbelief!

If God did not spare His Son, but gave Him up for us all, how could He not WITH CHRIST, give us all things?

All the way through the bible the message is repeated and clear…

  • Hope in God
  • Expect from Him
  • Rely upon Him
  • Trust IN Him

The children of Israel did NOT trust Him in the wilderness. It is WHY they died there!

Hebrews 3 tells us that unbelief is EVIL!

Romans 12 tells us that whatever is not born of trust in God is SIN!

Be the Voice of Encouragement

Heb 3:13, “(13) but exhort one another daily, while it is called “TODAY,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”

Jesus is interested in your trust. He historically made investments in others encouraging them towards faith.

  • Jesus helped the man who had little faith, “Lord I believe but help my unbelief.” (Mark 9:24)
  • He prayed for Peter that His faith would not fail. (Luke 22:31-32)
  • He encouraged him to believe AFTER he had failed. (Jn. 21)
  • He appeared to Thomas and told him to meet the requirements he himself had stated for his belief, “I will NOT believe, unless I see the wounds in His hands and put my hand in his side.(Jn. 20:25) So Jesus appears to Him and says, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” (Jn. 20:27)

We covered more than this so to  hear the rest just listen to the audio above or the video below.

We will pick up here next weekBlessings! 


I hope this teaching will challenge you and encourage you to place your trust in the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.

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Hi I am Pastor Mark...

I have been a pastor for nearly 20 years now (2009), though never quite like I am today. (more on that in a moment)

As to my home, I have been married since 1995 to my wonderful wife Terissa Woodson who is my best friend, greatest fan and most valued critic.
As far as my education goes, I grew up in a Christian home, but questioned everything I was ever taught. I graduated from Bible college in 1990 and continued to question everything I was ever taught (I do not mention my college in order to avoid being labeled). Perhaps my greatest preparation for ministry has been life and ministry itself. To quote an author I have come to enjoy namely Fredrick Buechner in his writing entitled, Now and Then,

"If God speaks to us at all other than through such official channels as the Bible and the church, then I think that He speaks to us largely through what happens to us...if we keep our hearts open as well as our ears, if we listen with patience and hope, if we remember at all deeply and honestly, then I think we come to recognize beyond all doubt, that, however faintly we may hear Him, He is indeed speaking to us, and that, however little we may understand of it, His word to each of us is both recoverable and precious beyond telling."

~ Fredrick Buechner

As I said, as of 2009 I’ve been a Pastor for nearly 20 years. Earlier in 2009 the Lord revealed to me that the way we had structured our church was not in keeping with the New Testament. This was a shock to me and it is was a revelation that did not come all at once but over the course of a few weeks.

We were a traditional single pastor led congregation. It was a top-bottom model of ministry which is in part biblical, but not in the form of a monarchy.

The needed change did not come into focus until about 9 very intense months of study and discussions with those who were leaders in our church at the time.

Now, we have not one...but two co-pastors (elders) who lead the church with equal authority, but different giftings. We both teach in our own ways and styles, and our leadership skills are quite different, but complimentary. We are in complete submission to each other and work side-by-side in the labor of shepherding the flock.

Well that is about all there is of interest to tell you about me. I hope our ministry here is a blessing to you and your family. I also hope that it is only a supplement to a local church where you are committed to other believers in a community of grace.

~God Bless!