Faith Acts On The Word Of God
By George Müller
What is faith? In the simplest manner in which I am able to express it, I answer: Faith is the assurance that the thing which God has said in His Word is true, and that God will act according to what He has said in His Word.
This assurance, this reliance on God’s Word, this confidence – is faith. No impressions are to be taken in connection with faith. Impressions have neither one thing nor the other to do with faith. Faith has to do with the Word of God. It is no impressions, strong or weak, which will make any difference. We have to do with the written Word, and not ourselves or our impressions.
Probabilities are not to be taken into account. Many people are willing to believe regarding those things that seem probable to them. Faith has nothing to do with probabilities. The province of faith begins where probabilities cease, and sight and sense fail.
A great many of God’s children are cast down and lament their want of faith. They say that they have no impressions, no feeling, they see no probability that the thing they wish will come to pass.
Appearances are not to be taken into account. The question is – whether God has spoken it in His Word.
And, now, beloved Christian friends, you are in great need to ask yourselves whether you are in the habit of thus confiding, in your innermost soul, in what God has said in His Word, and whether you are in earnest in seeking to find whether the thing you want is in accordance with what He has said in His Word.
Trials – The Food of Faith
God delights to increase the faith of His children. Our faith, which is feeble at first, is developed and strengthened more and more by use. We ought, instead of wanting no trials before victory, no exercise for patience, to be willing to take them from God’s hand as a means. I say – and say it deliberately – trials, obstacles, difficulties, and sometimes defeats are the very food of faith. I get letters from many of God’s dear children who say: "Dear Brother Müller, I’m writing this because I am so weak and feeble in faith."
Just so surely as we ask to have our faith strengthened, we must feel a willingness to take from God’s hand the means for strengthening it. We must allow Him to educate us through trials and bereavements and troubles. It is through trials that faith is exercised and developed more and more.
God affectionately permits difficulties, that He may develop unceasingly that which He is willing to do for us, and to this end we should not shrink. If He gives us sorrow and hindrances and losses and afflictions, we should take them out of His hands as evidences of His love and care for us in developing more and more that faith which He is seeking to strengthen in us. We come then to the conclusion that God is a lovable Being, and we are satisfied with Him, and say: "It is my Father, let Him do as He pleases."
When I first began to allow God to deal with me, relying on Him, taking Him at His Word, I rested on the simple promises I found in the sixth chapter of Matthew. Read Matthew 6:25-34 carefully.
I believed the Word. I rested on it and practiced it. I took God at His Word!
In the last half century of labor I have been able with the simplicity of a child, to rely upon God. I have had my trials, but I have laid hold upon God, and so it has come to pass that I have been sustained. It is not only permission, but positive command that He gives, to cast the burdens upon Him. Oh, let us do it! My beloved brothers and sisters in Christ, "Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and He shall sustain thee" (Psa. 55:22). Day by day I do it. This morning sixty matters in connection with the church of which I am pastor, I brought before the Lord, and thus it is, day by day I do it, and year by year; ten years, thirty years, forty years.
Stay Your Soul on God
Do not expect to obtain full faith at once. All such things as jumping into a full exercise of faith I discountenance. The little faith I have I did not obtain at once. Letters come to me full of questions from those who seek to have their faith strengthened.
Stay your soul on the Word of God, and you will have an increase of your faith.
Some say, "I shall never have the gift of faith that Mr. Müller has." This is a mistake – it is a great error – there is not a particle of truth in it. My faith is the same kind of faith that all of God’s children have had. It is the same kind that Simon Peter had, and all Christians may obtain the like faith.
My faith is their faith, though there may be more of it because my faith has been more developed by exercise than theirs; but their faith is precisely the faith I exercise, only, with regard to degree, mine may be more strongly exercised.
Now, my beloved brothers and sisters, begin in a little way. But first quietly and carefully examine and see whether what you are trusting for is something in accordance with His promises in His written Word.