Posts Tagged ‘God is faithful

08
Sep
13

Cheer up, we will understand it all by and by

In my younger years I used to love strumming the guitar and sing simple songs (I wasn’t very good at all). One of the first songs I learned how to play became one my favorite songs due to its message. Over the years when I led a fellowship or meeting I many times had everyone sing this song because it was simple, short and encouraging.

Recently I was amazed to find out there are MANY verses to this song instead of the first verse and refrain I had heard all my life. Once I saw the complete song, I knew I would have to blog about it because some of the verses are truly awesome. Without further ado, may I present to you, the complete song “Farther Along”.

1. Tempted and tried, we’re oft made to wonder
Why it should be thus all the day long;
While there are others living about us,
Never molested, though in the wrong.
o Refrain:
Farther along we’ll know more about it,
Farther along we’ll understand why;
Cheer up, my brother, live in the sunshine,
We’ll understand it all by and by.
2. Sometimes I wonder why I must suffer,
Go in the rain, the cold, and the snow,
When there are many living in comfort,
Giving no heed to all I can do.
3. Tempted and tried, how often we question
Why we must suffer year after year,
Being accused by those of our loved ones,
E’en though we’ve walked in God’s holy fear.
4. Often when death has taken our loved ones,
Leaving our home so lone and so drear,
Then do we wonder why others prosper,
Living so wicked year after year.
5. “Faithful till death,” saith our loving Master;
Short is our time to labor and wait;
Then will our toiling seem to be nothing,
When we shall pass the heavenly gate.
6. Soon we will see our dear, loving Savior,
Hear the last trumpet sound through the sky;
Then we will meet those gone on before us,
Then we shall know and understand why.

There are several contradictory claims for the authorship of this song. The words and music are frequently attributed to W. B. Stevens, although others have attributed the words to W. A. Fletcher

If there is anyone out there who has never had these questions come up in their mind, I wonder how much of a stand for God is really being made. Anyone who boldly proclaims the Gospel of Jesus Christ and faithfully stands firm in that Gospel SHALL suffer persecution, affliction and tribulation, many times while watching people who despise God seemingly live the “perfect life”.

Unless we live for more than what this life has to offer, we will spend much of this life in misery, jealous of others success and questioning our very faith. We live, stand and speak God’s Word not for the physical rewards in this life but rather because God says to do it with the hope that farther along we will understand why.

I pray that having these words to this simple song handy can bring you comfort during times of distress, joy during times of sorrow and confidence during times of uncertainty. Always remember that just because we don’t understand the whys and the wherefores of things today doesn’t mean we won’t have an epiphany tomorrow. Cheer up my brothers and sisters and live in the sunshine for God has assured us that we will understand it all by and by.

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03
Jun
13

God was, is and always will be faithful

As any of you who read my blogs on a regular basis know, I am a great believer in the grace, mercy and love of God because these attributes of God are mentioned time and again in the New Testament. None of us would be alive if it were not for God’s grace. None of us would have an eternity to look forward to with God if not for God’s mercy. None of us would even be here except for the love of God.

Having said these things, there is another aspect of God that is just as important to understand as His grace, mercy and love. As great as these things are, and they are GREAT, they would be meaningless except for the faithfulness of God. The term “God is faithful” (or some variation of it) is used many times in the Bible, especially in the Psalms and Paul’s epistles.

Here is a partial list of the references in Psalms if you want to spend a few minutes looking them up and getting a general idea of the context regarding God’s faithfulness;

Psalms 33:4, 36:5, 86:15, 89:1, 89:8, 91:3-6, 92:1-3, 108:4, 115:1, and 143:1

Certainly it is significant that David would write about the faithfulness of God so many times. David knew God better than anyone and no matter what situation David found himself in, he took comfort in knowing that “God is faithful”. Without a deeply held belief in the faithfulness of God, it is impossible to consistently believe in the promises of God in our lives.

To believe in the integrity of the Word of God, that His Word is true and can be trusted, we must know and believe that God is faithful and that He will not renege on His Word or forget to perform it. Creation has survived the test of time because God is faithful. God’s Word has survived the test of time because God is faithful to do what He has promised.

In the New Testament, the phrase “God is faithful” can be found in:

Romans 3:3-4, 1 Corinthians 1:9, 1 Corinthians 10:13, 2 Corinthians 1:18, 1 Thessalonians 5:24, Hebrews 10:23 and 1John 1:9

Perhaps the most humbling chapter in the New Testament relating to being a leader in the Church is 2 Timothy 2. Within this chapter there are three verses that sum up the full scope of why it is so important to understand that God is faithful. Please look closely at 2 Timothy 2:11-13 from the Amplified Bible (copyright 1954, 58, 62, 64, 65 and 87; by Lockman Foundation)

“The saying is sure and worthy of confidence: If we have died with Him, we shall also live with Him.

12 If we endure, we shall also reign with Him. If we deny and disown and reject Him, He will also deny and disown and reject us.

13 If we are faithless [do not believe and are untrue to Him], He remains true (faithful to His Word and His righteous character), for He cannot deny Himself.”

Sometimes allowing the Word of God to speak for itself is best and these verses bear that statement out. Regardless of whether we remain faithful to God or not, God remains true because He cannot deny Himself. I leave you with a quote from Charles Haddon Spurgeon:

“Through the ages, our God has had billions of people to deal with. Yet there does not stand under heaven’s cover, or above the stars, or in hell itself a single soul who can say that God is not absolutely faithful. No item in the list of our divine promises is unfulfilled. God remembers every promise that He ever made, and He honors each in the experience of those who believe in Him. They who trust in the Lord will find Him faithful, not only in great things, but also in little things. His faintest word will stand firm and steadfast. His least truth will never grow dim. The glory of God’s faithfulness is that no sin of ours has ever made Him unfaithful. Unbelief is a damning thing, yet even when we do not believe, God is faithful.”