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The God-Kind Of Faith – A Biblical, Historical, and Theological Defense (Part 1)

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By Troy J. EdwardsAnd Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. -Mark 11:22-24

In Kenneth Hagin's book, New Thresholds of Faith, he states that the margin of his Bible reads "Have the faith of God." He goes on to state that Greek scholars say that this should be translated as "The God Kind of Faith."[1] This is one of the expressions and teachings that have been the hallmark of his ministry – and one of the most criticized areas. Many of his critics have gone beyond just disagreeing with Rev. Hagin on this issue. Due to this teaching, some have accused Hagin of being "heretical" and a false teacher.

The teaching of "The God kind of Faith" implies that God has faith. Hagin is not shy about stating this as he says in the same lesson that God believed and spoke the world into existence. This type of teaching has caused so many critics of the Faith Movement to condemn it, consigning it and Hagin to be heretical and cultic.

It would have been helpful to us if Hagin would have given the names and book titles of the Greek Scholars he referred to when he made the statement. This may have been efficient to shut the mouths of his critics. Adding to the fact that Rev. Hagin does not waste time answering his critics, nor does he even read or listen to their criticism, it's not likely that we may find those Greek scholars that were referenced.

Why The God Kind of Faith Is Important

Though I face challenges in defending the teaching of "The God-Kind of Faith" I find that it is certainly a Biblical precept, and an important one at that. Whenever I am challenged on the statement "The God-Kind of Faith" I always respond by asking, "What other kind is there?" Human faith cannot believe past that which it can see and we certainly don't want a devil kind of faith (James 2:19).

Man has always felt a lack of sufficiency in his faith. Jesus' disciples asked Him for an increase in their faith (Luke 17:5). One man with an epileptic son cried, "Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief." (Mark 9:24) Even today, so many Christians struggle with "faith insufficiency." The cry of so many is, "I don't have enough faith." Faith is a difficult thing to conjure up from within our human reasoning and understanding, at least the kind of faith that pleases God (Rom. 7:18; Rom. 8:8; Heb. 11:6).

Thankfully, God has provided a means whereby we can receive the type of faith that he wishes to provide: "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Rom. 10:17). However, does the Word of God provide an "intellectual faith" or is there a supernatural element to the Faith that God provides? The Hebrew word translated "Word of God" in Romans 10:17 is the Greek word Rhema, which means "the spoken word." Considering the descriptions God gives of His own Word (rhema) throughout the Bible, I would submit to the reader that the faith given to us is supernatural (1 Thess. 2:13; Eph. 6:17; John 6:63; John 15:7). Luke 1:37 says this about God's Rhema[3]:

For with God nothing is ever impossible and no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment. (The Amplified Bible)
God's Rhema Word has God's POWER to impart faith to the believer. No doubt that we use our minds to weigh and understand and accept as fact everything the Bible says (1 Thess. 2:13; Rom. 12:1-3). Nevertheless, the Holy Spirit has also been gracious enough not to allow us to lean to our own understanding as we study and hear the Word. He imparts life to the Word (Prov. 3:5-8) . The Faith that the Holy Spirit imparts as a result of His pure and perfect Word is the Faith of God, or the God kind of Faith.

Bible Translations Affirming "The Faith of God"


My research has shown that there are Bible translations that affirm that Mark 11:22 can indeed be translated as "Faith of God" rather than "Faith in God." Take a moment to read through the translations below:

And Jesus answering saith to them, 'Have faith of God; for verily I say to you, that whoever may say to this mount, Be taken up, and be cast into the sea, and may not doubt in his heart, but may believe that the things that he saith do come to pass, it shall be to him whatever he may say. Because of this I say to you, all whatever -- praying -- ye do ask, believe that ye receive, and it shall be to you. (Mark 11:22-24; Young's Literal Translation)

And answering Jesus said to them, Have faith of God. For truly I say to you that whoever shall say to this mountain, Be moved and be cast into the sea, and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that what he said shall occur, he shall have whatever he said. Therefore I say to you, All things, whatever you ask, praying, believe that you shall receive them, and it will be to you. (Mark 11:22-24; Modern King James Version, © 1962-1998).

And answering, Jesus said to them, Have faith of God. For truly I say to you, Whoever says to this mountain, Be taken up and be thrown into the sea, and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will happen, it will be to him, whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, All things, whatever you ask, praying, believe that you will receive, and it will be to you. (Mark 11:22-24; Literal Translation of the Bible)

And Jesus answering, saith to them: Have the faith of God. Amen I say to you that whosoever shall say to this mountain, Be thou removed and be cast into the sea, and shall not stagger in his heart, but be believe that whatsoever he saith shall be done; it shall be done unto him. Therefore I say unto you, all things, whatsoever you ask when ye pray, believe that you shall receive: and they shall come unto you. (Mark 11:22-24; The Douay Rheims Bible)

And Jesus, answering, saith unto them, "Have the faith of God." Verily I say to you, whosoever says to this mountain, 'Be taken up and cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says comes to pass; he shall have it. Therefore, I say to you, all things whatsoever ye pray and ask for, believe that ye received them, and ye shall have them. (Mark 11:22-23; The Worrell New Testament)

So far we see five translations that confirm that Mark 11:22 can be translated "have the faith of God" vice "have faith in God." Don't let anyone tell you that it does not make a difference whether we us of or in when dealing with Mark 11:22. These two prepositions describe the source of your faith. One finds it's origin in God Himself while the other finds it's source in us. I believe that Jesus is telling us in Mark 11:22 that the source for the faith that we need to move mountains comes from God Himself. The late Greek Scholar, A.S. Worrell said this in his notes on Mark 11:22-23:

Have the faith of God; translators generally render this, "Have faith in God;" but, if this had been the thought, it would have been easy to have expressed it in the Greek. Faith originates with God; and those who have real faith have His faith; the same perhaps as "the faith which is of the Son of God." (Gal. 2:20) This mountain: nothing short of the faith of God can remove mountains; but His faith, operating through His obedient children, can accomplish this, (Acts 3:6; 9:34)[4]

A.S. Worrell, Robert Young, and the translators of the Douay Rheims Bible were not the only ones who believed this to be the correct translation of Mark 11:22. In the Original 1599 Geneva Bible notes on Mark 11:22 says "The faith of God is that assured faith and trust which we have in him."[5] A small note on Mark 11:22 in R.A. Torrey's Treasury of Scripture Knowledge says, "faith in God. or, the faith of God."[6] So perhaps the margin of Kenneth Hagin's Bible was not totally wrong after all.

However, does this mean that we can take the statement "the faith of God" and imply that it is "The God Kind of Faith?" Well, before I answer that, let's read two other Bible translations of Mark 11:22-24 that might just make this implication:

And Jesus, answering, said to them, Have God's faith. Truly I say to you, Whoever says to this mountain, Be taken up and be put into the sea; and has no doubt in his heart, but has faith that what he says will come about, he will have his desire. For this reason I say to you, Whatever you make a request for in prayer, have faith that it has been given to you, and you will have it. (The Bible In Basic English)

He responded, "Have the kind of trust that comes from God! Yes! I tell you that whoever does not doubt in his heart but trusts that what he says will happen can say to this mountain, 'Go throw yourself into the sea!' and it will be done for him. Therefore, I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, trust that you are receiving it, and it will be yours.(The Jewish New Testament by David Stern)

Have God's faith!!! (BBE) What other kind of faith can God have other than His own kind? Have the kind of trust that comes from God!!! (JNT) What kind of trust would God give us other than His kind of trust? My dear reader, I do not see anything heretical or cultic about the phrase "The God Kind of Faith."

On the contrary, research done by Joe McIntyre, author of the outstanding book, "E.W. Kenyon: The True Story" shows that one Greek scholar taught that the phrase, "The God Kind of Faith" can is indeed a correct translation. I will give you the quote from Pastor McIntyre's book:

Here again we must appeal to the root idea of the genitive as the case of genus or kind. The resultant idea is due to the context and one must not suppose that the Greek genitive means all the different English prepositions used to translate the resultant idea. Thus in Mark 11:22 we rightly translate 'have faith in God,' though the genitive does not mean 'in,' but only the God kind of faith.[7]

The quote is from a well known Greek Scholar named A.T. Robertson. As Pastor McIntyre also points out in his book, one popular critic of the Faith Movement who references Robertson's work to speak against this translation fails to quote him completely. This is quite dishonest on the part of this critic. Perhaps, Kenneth Hagin was right when he stated that Mark 11:22 can be translated as "The God Kind of Faith."

Other Scriptures In The KJV Affirms The Faith of God

If we go back to the King James Version, which seems to still be the most popular and most widely read version, we will see other passages translated using the preposition "of" rather than "in."

Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. -Gal. 2:16

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. -Gal. 2:20

According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord: In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him. -Eph. 3:11-12

For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? .....Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; -Rom. 3:3, 22-23

In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. -Col. 2:11-12

Many of the different translations I have sought on the above verses differ in how they translate the above verses. For example, most of the older versions are consistent in translating Galatians 2:20 as "faith of the Son of God" while many of the newer translations have interpreted this verse as "faith in the Son of God." In many of the modern translations of Romans 3:3, this verse is translated as "the faithfulness of God" vice "the faith of God." It is to be noted however, that the Greek Word "pistis" is used in this passage which is translated "faith" in many other passages of the Bible.

We will deal with the subject of God's faithfulness in a later lesson. Allow me to state for the record that I do not have any problems with the above translations as all of them convey a truth. Though I believe in the God-kind of faith, this faith finds it's object in God Almighty Himself. God does not impart faith in the individual that gives him or her a separate power apart from Himself. We would then become dependent on the power of faith itself (as the critics already claim that we do) rather than on the one in which we should place our God given faith. God is both the source and the object of our faith (Acts 27:25).

Returning to the translations. The greatest variety of interpretations are to be found in Colossians 2:12. Some have translated this as "faith in the power of God," "Faith in the working of God," One translation interprets it as "God's faithfulness that worked when He raised Yeshua from the dead." (Jewish New Testament). However, the three most interesting translations of Colossians 2:12 is below:

Ye are buried with Him in baptism, wherein ye also are risen with Him through the faith wrought by the operation of God, who hath raised Him from the dead. (Col. 2:12; Third Millennium Bible)

having been buried with Him in your baptism, in which you were also raised with Him through faith produced within you by God who raised Him from among the dead. (Col. 2:12; Weymouth Bible).

having been buried with Him in your baptism, in which you were also raised with Him through faith produced within you by God who raised Him from among the dead. (Col. 2:12; Wesley New Testament)

These translations see the faith that we have in Jesus Christ being raised from the dead as a faith that is produced in us by God Himself. What other kind of faith will God produce in us other than His own kind? I submit to the reader that if he or she really want to see the results in their lives that only comes as a result of exercising faith, they will do what they can to receive the God Kind of faith, the type of faith that is produced in us by God Himself.

This is the highest type of grace. God knows how we struggle to trust and believe Him and His Word. He knows that because we live in physical bodies and we live in a physical world, spiritual realities are so often difficult for us to discern. We do not see them. We believe them because we know that God would not lie but the real test comes when it is time to appropriate them. Mental acknowledgment of God's promises have failed us every time. Yet when we meditate upon God's Word, God - the Holy Spirit imparts life in His Word and produces faith in us which causes us to have complete unwavering confidence in what we do not yet see in the physical (Heb. 11:1).

Answers to the Objections Concerning "The God Kind of Faith"

The "God-Kind of Faith" teaching has caused quite a stir in the body of Christ and has raised many objections. The majority of the objections are a result of several books written that present the modern Faith movement as "cultic" and "heretical." The faith teachers have certainly done away with the traditional, or more correctly, hyper-Calvinistic view of God's sovereignty. They have never denied sovereignty of God but do not interpret this attribute of God as traditional Christianity has done.

An objection to the teaching of "the God kind of faith" is excellently summed up by one young man who debated me on an internet discussion forum. He stated to me that, "If God has faith, then who does God have faith in? To say that He has faith in Himself is a non-sense statement. Faith, by definition, requires that a being places belief in something OUTSIDE of itself; and faith is only as good as the object that you place it in. So, if God has faith, what object outside of Himself is He placing His faith in? Is this object GOOD. If it is GOOD, then why isn't IT God? So, I think we could say that if God has faith, then He really isn't God. His Deity is undermined."

It's an understandable objection. However, it is an object born in ignorance concerning the teaching of the God-Kind of faith. It shows that the person does not understand what is being taught by those who teach faith in this manner. It also tells me that the person has no understanding of what "faith" is, especially if they are thinking of faith on a human level.

If we looked at the word "faith" as confidence and certainty, we could get a better understanding of the teaching that God has faith which He imparts to every man (Rom. 12:3). God has complete and perfect confidence in His power and ability to bring to pass that which He decrees. Unlike us, God is never ever tempted to DOUBT Himself because He cannot be tempted with sin and that which is not faith is sin (Rom. 14:23; James 1:13-14).

This falls under one of the several "cannots" of God. So many people say that God can do anything. I beg to differ. God cannot be tempted to sin. He cannot be tempted to doubt and disbelieve in His ability to cause His Word to come to pass. Faith was never even an issue with God or man until the first man demonstrated a lack of faith by his disobedience (Gen. 3:1-7).

Therefore, God has complete confidence in Himself. He is certain concerning His Word and His ability. Unlike man, God does not even remotely consider that He could fail or that He may not be able to accomplish that which He has said He would do. He wants His children to have that same confidence in Him that He has in Himself. Yet, even if we don't, God will continue on with His plan. In another of the "cannots" that find in the Bible, we see that God cannot deny Himself:

It is a faithful saying: For if we be dead with him, we shall also live with him: If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us: If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself. -2 Tim. 2:11-13

Again, the issue is not whether God has faith or not. The issue whether God would ever question or deny Himself. That, He explicitly states that He cannot do. There are some things that God cannot do and the Bible makes it clear what those things are. He cannot be tempted with evil and He cannot deny Himself.

So we have answered several of the objections to the teaching of the God-Kind of Faith without denying the deity or sovereignty of God. The fact that God has confidence in Himself and is certain of Himself does not take away His deity or the fact that He rules the universe but strengthens this argument. What would do damage to the teaching of His deity and sovereignty would be for us to imply that God could ever doubt or disbelieve.

I also believe that 2 Tim. 2:13 answer the question as to the object of God's faith (confidence, certainty). He cannot deny Himself which shows that He has complete confidence in Himself. Hebrews 6 gives us some more insight as to why the object of God's faith is Himself:

For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee. And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation is to them an end of all strife. Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: -Heb. 6:13-18

Here is another one of the "cannots" of God. If we did more of a study of what God cannot do, we would have more insight into the character of God. More of God's confidence could be supernaturally imparted into us if we understood God's self imposed limitations. God cannot lie (Titus 1:1-2) and Hebrews tells us that it is impossible for Him to do so.

There is no one in the universe greater than God. When making an oath to Abraham, there was no one else He could swear to. So who did He swear and make His vow and oath to? Himself. Why did He make this oath confirmation to Himself to keep His promise to Abraham? Because He is the greatest in the universe. He is the creator of the universe. He cannot lie or break a promise. His immutability will not even allow Him to change His mind concerning any promise that He has made. So He could swear to Himself simply because He has complete confidence in His own ability and character.

God's Word To The Nations Bible Translation interprets Heb. 6:13 this way: "God made a promise to Abraham. Since he had no one greater on whom to base his oath, he based it on himself." God based the fulfillment of His promised to Abraham, not so much on Abraham's on ability to appropriate the promise but primarily on His own ability to fulfill it. God has complete confidence in Himself, glory to His holy and righteous name.

And He desires that you and I have this same confidence. He is not an unjust God who requires something of us without making the means available (Heb. 6:10; 1 John 1:9). Therefore, He gives us a measure of His own confidence and ability to fulfill His promises and act upon His commands.

In our next study on "The God Kind of Faith" we will see that the modern day faith teachers were not the first to teach this principle the way we are presenting it here. We will see that several men who are see today as great men also advocated this truth and also saw Mark 11:22 as our Lord teaching us to receive God's faith.

Notes

1. Hagin, Kenneth E. New Thresholds of Faith (Tulsa, OK: Rhema Bible Church, 1985), p. 80 2.

Ibid., p. 82 3.

The King James version uses the word "nothing" in the place of the phrase "no word." However, The Vines Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words (New York: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1984) affirms that the word "nothing" was translated from the Greek word "Rhema." 4.

Worrell, A.S. The Worrell New Testament (Springfield, Missouri: Gospel Publishing House, 1980) First published in 1904 5.

Original 1599 Geneva Bible Notes can be graciously found at http://www.reformed.org 6.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge by Canne, Browne, Blayney, Scott and others about 1880, with introduction by R.A. Torrey 7.

Robertson, A.T. A Grammer of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research (Nashville, TN: Broadman Press, 1934), 500. As quoted in the book, E.W. Kenyon: The True Story by Joe McIntyre (Lake Mary, FL: Creation House, 1997).

The God-Kind Of Faith – A Biblical, Historical, and Theological Defense (Part 2)

By Troy J. Edwards

And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. -Mark 11:22-24

The major leaders in the Word-of-Faith movement believe that verse 22 of the above text can be translated "the faith of God" or "the God kind of Faith. Some of the critics of the Word-of-Faith movement have disagreed with the faith teachers to the point of calling them heretics and/or cult leaders. The critics have accused the Faith Teachers of bad scholarship insinuating that such an interpretation has not been taught anywhere in church history.

However, evidence to the contrary has proven that in fact, throughout the history of the English translation of the Bible many scholars believed that the correct translation of verse 22 was "have the faith of God." The 1599 Geneva Bible notes[1] is the earliest proof that I have been able to find (see God Kind of Faith Part 1). In part one we have read from several translations that see the interpretation of Mark 11:22 as "The faith of God," "have God's Faith," or "have the kind of trust that comes from God."

In this essay I want to quote from respected church leaders throughout history who have also translated Mark 11:22 in the same manner as the modern faith teachers. This may not convince the critic of the validity of such a translation but it will destroy the argument that the faith teachers were the first to teach it this way.

Because some books have accused the faith teachers of drawing the inspiration for their teachings from the metaphysical cults and not from orthodox Christianity, it is necessary to quote from the writings of historical leaders in our attempts to show the true origins of the Faith Movement

Calvinism vs. Arminianism?

John Gill (1697-1771) wrote this comment on Mark 11:22 in his Exposition of The Bible:

And Jesus answering, saith unto them…

To all the disciples; for what Peter said, he said in the name of them all; and according to Matthew, the disciples said, "how soon is the fig tree withered away?" To which this is an answer; though the Arabic version renders it, "to him"; as if the words were directed particularly to Peter: have faith in God; or "the faith of God", so the Vulgate Latin, Syriac, Persic, and Ethiopic versions; that is, exercise, and make use of that faith which has God for its author, which is the work of God, and of his operation, a free grace gift of his; and which has God for its object; and is supported by his power, and encouraged by his goodness, truth, and faithfulness: and so the Arabic version renders it, "believe in God"; not only that such things may be done, as the drying up a fig tree, but those that are much greater.[2]

Charles Spurgeon in his book, Commenting and Commentaries said that "Gill is the Coryphaeus of hyper-Calvinism."[3] We can forgive Gill for his theological leanings as he helps us to prove a specific point: The interpretation of Mark 11:22 as "have the faith of God" vice "have faith in God" is not an interpretation limited to any specific theological camp. Here is a man who was labeled a hyper-calvinist by the prince of preachers who himself was a Calvinist.

However, one should not be surprised by this if they are familiar with Calvinist theology. Most Calvinists teach that saving grace is a gift from God (their interpretation of Ephesians 2:8-9) and God gives that type of faith only to the elect (in their interpretation, only a select few have been predestine to receive salvation while others have been predestined for hell). However, he did not seem to be interpreting Mark 11:22 in a Calvinistic manner since he stated in his exposition that this type of faith has to be exercised.

Regardless of Gill's motives for seeing the interpretation of Mark 11:22 the way he did, this able scholar is proof that the interpretation did not originate in the modern day Faith Movement.

A contemporary to Gill was the venerable commentator, Adam Clarke (1760-1832). Clarke is said to have read and studied, mastered the Greek, Latin, Hebrew, Samaritan, Chaldee and Syriac versions of the Scriptures, and most of the languages of western Europe. In his commentary he renders Mark 11:22 in the same manner as Gill:

Have faith in God] ecete pistin qeou is a mere Hebraism: have the faith of God, i.e. have strong faith, or the strongest faith, for thus the Hebrews expressed the superlative degree; so the mountains of God mean exceeding great mountains the hail of God, exceeding great hail, &c.[4]

Adam Clarke, being Arminian, would not have had the same motivations in interpreting Mark 11:22 in this manner that Gill might be accused of having. Most Arminians believe that salvation has been made available to all and one must exercise faith in order to receive this gift of eternal life available only through the shed blood of Christ.

Clarke went further to make this statement in another one of his writings: "Faith seems to put the almighty power of God into the hands of men; whereas unbelief appears to tie up even the hands of the Almighty."[5] While critics are castigating the modern faith teachers for making such statements, Clarke was teaching these principles over a century and a half ago.

Gill was a Calvinist and Clarke was an Arminian. Yet they both taught that the correct interpretation of Mark 11:22 was "Have the faith of God." Perhaps there is hope for reconciliation in this centuries old debate between Calvinism and Arminianism – but I wouldn't bet the rent money on it.

Holiness Influences

Some of the other influences on the "God kind of faith" doctrine are very strong. Research has produced comments by several Holiness teachers who interpreted many of the "faith" Scriptures in the same manner as the modern faith teachers. Keep in mind that the Holines teachers rejected Pentecostalism and glossolalia even they this movement finds it's roots in the Wesleyan-Holiness tradition[6].

I will not be presenting the holiness teacher quotes in any chronological order. I am unfortunately missing some biographical information on some of them. This information is important to prove that these teachers have not had any influence from the modern faith movement. Due to their rejection of glossolalia (speaking in other tongues), these men would have rejected the faith movement due to our belief and adherence to this doctrine.

For example, one of the most notable figures in the Holiness church was the notable Greek Scholar, W.B. Godbey (1833-?). Godbey is the author of Godbey's Translation of the New Testament (GBY). Godbey's is also the author of a New Testament commentary which had become very popular in the Holiness movement. Here is a comment by this holiness scholar on Mark 11:22-24:

Matthew 21:20-22; Mark 11:20-26. "And early in the morning, they, passing by, saw the fig- tree withered from its roots." The withering was so decisive that even the trunk of the tree dried up, as you see, from its roots, thus symbolizing the awful fate of the hypocrite, destined one day suddenly and decisively to wither away. Beware, lest the Lord come to you and find "nothing but leaves?" "And Peter, remembering, says to Him, Master, see, the fig-tree which Thou didst anathematize is withered away. And Jesus, responding, says to him, have the faith of God." There is a difference between faith in God and the "faith of God," the latter being a perfect faith, admitting no admixture of doubt. In justification, we have faith in God; while entire sanctification, eliminating all doubt and every other phase of depravity, is characterized by the "faith of God." Here, Jesus imputes wonderful efficiency to the faith of God.

"For truly I say unto you, whosoever may say to this mountain, Be thou plucked up, and be thou cast into the sea, and may not doubt in his heart, but believe that whatsoever he says is done, it shall be to him whatsoever he may say." They were then walking along on Mount Olivet, the highest in Southern Palestine, and here pointed out by the Savior in order to illustrate the miraculous availability of prayer, as it is His custom in all His ministry to illustrate spiritual things by temporal. Just as if great Mount Olivet were lifted up and plunged into the midst of the sea, so towering mountains of sin, responsive to the "faith of God," are lifted clearly away and dropped down into the sea of forgetfulness.

"Therefore I say unto you that all things, so many as you ask for, praying, believe that thou receive, and it shall be unto you." While prayer in the Divine order is the invariable antecedent to the blessings involved in the gracious economy, yet we must remember that we do not receive what we pray for, but what we believe for, faith being the measuring-line of our reception from God. Then what is the utility of prayer? It is to bring us up to believing ground. Hence prayer and faith are like the two oars of the boat which row us across the river. The genuine "faith of God" is very scarce upon the earth, and it is because there is not enough of genuine, importunate prayer. We must so pray into the Divine presence and get in touch with the Almighty that the Holy Ghost will inspire our prayers as well as our faith. In a mysterious way we must sink into God, utterly abandoned to His will for time and eternity, getting away from self and humanity where we can fall prostrate on the great and precious promises, and there abide at the feet of Jesus, so illuminated and inspired by the Holy Ghost that we can receive and appropriate His infallible promises, and get where we can ask Him for great and wonderful achievements in the spiritual kingdom without wavering or doubting, and thus, by importunate prayer and indefatigable faith, take the kingdom of heaven by violence. Matthew says, in this connection: "Verily I say unto you, If you have faith and doubt not, you shall not only do that of the fig-tree, but you may say to this mountain, Be thou plucked up and cast into the sea, and it shall be done." In the case of the fig-tree, the withering came instantly and complete.[7]

Godbey primarily applied this "faith of God" to the subject of sanctification which was a primary doctrine under the Holiness movement. Although Godbey and most Holiness teachers of his time believed strongly in divine healing, Godbey did not emphasize it to the extent that the Faith-Cure movement of the same period did. Nevertheless, as we will see, some faith-cure and Pentecostal advocates applied "the faith of God" teaching to the subject of divine healing and today. Many in today's faith movement applies it to every Bible promise including prosperity.

It is also well known that Godbey was one of the harshest and strongest critics of the Pentecostal movement.[8] We mention this to show any critics of the faith movement that even those who might oppose some of what Faith Teachers today believe saw the truth concerning the God kind of faith teaching in the Scriptures.

Another Holiness preacher, Elmer Ellsworth Shelhamer, in his 1932 book Prevailing Prayer and Its Results makes this statement:

The more common definition of faith represents it as of man alone. We are exhorted to "trust in the Lord," and to "have faith in God," and to "believe in the Lord Jesus Christ." Vastly important advice. We must steadfastly realize this very marked man-character of faith. But we should also as steadfastly realize this other and as very marked God-character of it, namely: The faith of man is the Gift of God. It comes from God the Spirit. To say that the power to have faith is the gift of God states a great truth; but the ground is not all covered by it. Faith itself is a gift from God, and of God. The New Testament clearly formulates this truth, as follows: "Love with faith, from God the Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ." Eph. 6:23; Heb. 12:2; 1 Cor. 12:8, 9. This is very plain. In the texts noticed, first the Father, then the Son, and then the Spirit, is said to give us faith.

This faith is definitely named, "The Faith of God," and also, "The Faith of Jesus Christ." Rom. 3:3-22; Gal. 2:20; also, margin, Mark 11:22. Now the faith of God is the faith which belongs to Him as God. It is His personal faith. It is the faith which He has in Himself, and in these three particulars: first, in His own integrity; second, in His own competency; and, third, in His own plans. It is the utter sensibility which He has of His own honesty, power, and wisdom. Or, again, it is His trust and dependency upon Himself alone. Precisely what faith is to us, it first is to Him -- "the evidence of things not seen" -- not seen as things not yet actually accomplished. The Faith of God is also named the "Spirit of Faith." This is so because its foundation is not intellectual but spiritual; and because it is internal to the Holy Spirit, and He imparts it to our spirit. 2 Cor. 4:13. God constantly brings His personal faith into His personal works, and without it He would fail at every step. "Through faith we understand that the worlds," or ages, "were framed." Heb. 11:3.

Now the Faith of God is delivered over to us at the inception of the Spiritual Life, the life of Christ in us, and as a part of it. There is a great capacity in this life for praying; and this capacity is often materially enlarged. Nevertheless, those who possess it are considerably liable to be swayed by doubt and temptation, and by knowing Christ "after the flesh." But the excision of inbred sin and the Baptism of the personal Holy Ghost give to our faith and prayer their stronger and mightier flight; and there is a deeper insight into the province of these elements than ever before.

The Faith of God gives to us spiritual witnessing. Heb. 11:1. It gives to us spiritual confidence and activity. Our spirit is filled with the Spirit of Faith, and the two are in communion; so that the victory resulting is as personal to us as it is to God. This faith never jumps at conclusions; to jump is to fall into the ditch, with no landing beyond; it is presumption, and not faith. The core of effective prayer is the Faith of God.[9]

Unlike Godbey who was a proficient Greek Scholar, Shelhamer, like Kenneth Hagin, relied on the margin of his Bible.[10] Hagin is often castigated by some scholars due to his lack of seminary training and relying upon others for his reference of the original Bible languages. Yet, decades before Hagin's ministry came into prominence, others like Shelhamer were relying upon the integrity of their Bible margins.

If this proves nothing else, perhaps it may prove that Hagin was telling the truth when he said that the margin of his Bible read "Have the faith of God" as an alternative to "Have faith in God." Either that or we may accuse both Hagin and Shelhamer of being liars, which is a pretty hefty charge to bring against a Holiness preacher.

Even worse, and that which is considered heretical by many critics today, is Shelhamer's teaching that God has faith in Himself. In other words, Shelhamer teaches that God exercises faith. Yet, this did not seem to raise any eyebrows in 1932 when this book was written as it seems to do now amongst the great apologists of our times. This book is still accepted among Holiness advocates today and is distributed on CD by HDM along with other Holiness classics.[11]

Holiness Preachers On Hebrews 11:3

Let us briefly move away from comments on Mark 11:22 and for a moment look at another Scripture that has been taught controversially by many modern Faith Teachers:

Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. (Heb. 11:3)

Many Faith teachers believe that commas should be placed after the word "faith" and the word understand, being read this way:

Through faith, [comma] we understand, [comma] that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. (Heb. 11:3)

Basically the Word-of-Faith interpretation of this is "We understand that by faith the worlds were framed by the word of God..." Though I might agree with the critics that this is a faulty interpretation of Heb. 11:3, I must also admit my joy when I discovered that they were not the first to teach Hebrews 11:3 this way.

Notice as you read Shelhamer's teaching from his 1932 book that he gave the above interpretation of Heb. 11:3. Yet, there were no charges of heresy seemed to be raised against him and no accusations of metaphysical influences. We once again remind the reader that this book is still distributed among the Holiness advocates. That is not to say that everyone in the Holiness movement (past or present) agrees with his interpretation but we can see that he was still respected among his peers.

Yet, Shelhamer was not alone within the Holiness ranks in his interpretation of Heb. 11:3. In his 1959 book, Wilbur M. Smith expounded even further on this:

There is a question as to the exact meaning of the term, "Through faith we understand." Does it mean that by our faith we understand that God framed the worlds? Or does it mean that God by an exercise of His own faith in His own word created the universe? Possibly the latter is the more exact meaning. God has faith in His own word and the exploits He does are by His faith. Since God existed before the material universe, it is evident they are all the work of Him. It is almost beyond the conception of the human mind to realize that there was a time when the only existing thing was God in the three persons of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and that all other things have been brought into being by His word, so that "things which are seen were not made of things which do appear." From this we are to believe that God can begin with nothing and do what He pleases in the creation of visible things. It is evident that the second Person of the Trinity was chiefly the agent in creation. Not only were the visible things created by Him, but, according to Hebrews 1:3, they are upheld "by the word of His power." That is to say, the continuance of these things is dependent on the constant exercise of His word.[12]

I would like to once again remind the reader that it is not my intent to prove that any particular translation of Hebrews 11:3 is right or wrong. My intent is to show the reader that there were men who were well respected in their circles who held to the same type of translation of this text that many Faith teachers hold to in our day. These men were not influenced by any metaphysical cults. Perhaps the reader may disagree with this particular interpretation of the Apostle's words here, but we should at least have knowledge of their true roots. The current faith movement has it's roots within the Holiness tradition, regardless of what some researchers will tell you.

The translation of Hebrews 11:3 is mainly due to the fact that these Holiness preachers believed that God Himself exercised faith in Himself and His own Word – ideas that are not only considered heretical by many today, but are also alleged to be rooted in cultic doctrine. Therefore, it is my desire to show the reader that the interpretation – good or bad – of Heb. 11:3 that is held by many of today's faith teachers is Holiness rooted. I would rather be accused of bad scholarship and lack of sound Bible study principles than to be accused of stealing my teaching from demonic cults.

More Holiness Influences on Mark 11:22

Getting back to the Holiness Movement and their influences on Mark 11:22, one more minister whose writings I have sought is a man named Tony Marshall Anderson. In his classic book, Prayer Availeth Much, Anderson makes this profound statement:

In order to understand truth about praying without doubt in our hearts it is necessary to consider the Saviour's opening statement, "... Have faith in God." The remarkable discourse following His opening words reveals the fundamental fact relating to the prayer of faith. Our Lord would have us see that we can possess the faith of God. He revealed this fact when He said, "Have faith in God." It would be utterly impossible to believe that those things which we say in prayer shall come to pass unless we had an implicit faith in God. When Jesus said, ''... Have faith in God," He revealed the Source of the priceless possession of the faith which enables us to pray without a doubt in our hearts. His admonition to have faith in God implies that all men have an inherent faith derived from God when He created the first man in His own image. The quality of inherited faith was not destroyed in the fall although it was greatly impaired as a result of disobedience. Jesus disclosed the amazing fact that we can possess a measure of the faith which Almighty God possesses in His own Divine Nature. This fact should not seem incredible since it is true that God did impart a measure of His own faith to man at the beginning of creation.

We do not hesitate to accept the fact that God imparts a measure of His life and love to His redeemed people. Surely it is not impossible for Him to impart a sufficient measure of His faith to His people to sustain them in life in this world of doubt and disbelief. If His people are not able to accomplish His works in the world because of the littleness of their faith, there is no valid reason to doubt that He can and will increase their measure of achieving faith. When the disciples said, "... Lord, Increase our faith," we have reasons to believe that He granted their request. (See Luke 17:5.)[13]

Whether a person agrees or disagrees with Rev. Anderson's teaching, one should see the blatant similarities in his teaching and that of the teaching in the Faith movement. We can also see that the Faith Movement via E.W. Kenyon did not introduce to the body of Christ a new translation of Mark 11:22 that was never before taught in the church. The Holiness teachers mentioned in this essay truly believed that God has faith and imparts a measure of this faith to men, most especially His own children (Rom. 12:3).

One more writer that was affiliated with the Holiness movement is the famous Unknown Christian. The Unknown Christian who obviously preferred to remain anonymous wrote several books on prayer and holiness. Here is a quote from his book, The Kneeling Christian:

We know that God is no respecter of persons, and therefore we know that any true believer in Him may share His mind and will. We are His friends if we do the things He commands us. One of those things is "prayer." Our Savior begged His disciples to "have faith in God" (the literal translation is "Have the faith of God"). Then, He declares, you can say to a mountain, "Be thou taken up and cast into the sea," and if you believe and doubt not, it shall come to pass. Then He gives this promise: "All things whatsoever ye pray and ask for, believe that ye have received them [that is, in heaven], and ye shall have them [on earth]" (Mark xi. 24). Now, this is exactly the experience we have been talking about. This is just what real men of prayer do. Such things naturally pass the comprehension of unbelievers. Such things are perplexing to the half-believers. Our Lord, however, desires that men should know that we are His disciples, sent as He was sent (John xvii. 18 and xx. 21). They will know this if we love one another (John xiii. 35). But another proof is provided, and it is this: if we know and they see that "God heareth us always" (John xi. 42).[14]

Although the writer above did not expound much on "the faith of God" theme, we can see that he believed that this is the literal translation of Mark 11:22. Again, this is verifiable proof that the source of "the God kind of faith" doctrine is Holiness.

Higher-Life and Keswick Influences

Keswick, a little town in England where an offshoot of the Holiness movement was taking place. Whereas the Holiness movement was more Wesleyan-Arminian in doctrine, The Keswick movement, also known as the Higher-Life teaching had more of a Calvinistic bent[15]. The major differences in the ways that each group expounded upon the teaching of Holiness is not within the scope of this study. An excellent study on this can be found in M. James Sawyer's article which is available on the web.

However, like our Wesleyan Holiness friends, some of the Higher-Life advocates believed that Mark 11:22 should be translated as "the faith of God." F.B. Meyer (1847-1929) was a prolific writer and a popular speaker at the Keswick conventions. He is known for his practical and devotional insights in the Scriptures. In one of his devotional commentaries Dr. Meyer wrote this comment on Mark 11:22:

The margin of the A.V. Suggests that this command might be rendered, Have the faith of God. As long as I live I shall remember this text in connection with my first meeting with Hudson Taylor. He was to preach for me on a Sunday morning, now years ago, and gave out this as a text. But he said that he had always interpreted it as dealing rather with God's faith to us than ours to Him; so that it ran thus: Reckon on God's faithfulness.[16]

Here we have another respected teacher of the past who taught from the margin of his Bible that an alternative rendering of Mark 11:22 is "have the faith of God." Not only that but he implicates the great missionary Hudson Taylor in this "heretical" teaching. If we are to criticize Hagin for teaching a "new revelation" on Mark 11:22 that supposedly has not been taught throughout the history of the church due to reading the margin of his Bible, where does that leave E.E. Shelhamer and a man who is considered to be a spiritual giant in our day, Dr. F.B. Meyer?

Another well known figure who was influenced by higher-life teaching (and to whom I must admit is one of my favorite writers) is Albert Benjamin Simpson (1843-1919). Simpson is also one of the main proponents of the Faith-Cure movement. Simpson's teaching was essential in spreading the truth concerning God's promises for bodily healing. He is also the founder of the Christian and Missionary Alliance, a still thriving Evangelical denomination with a strong overseas missionary emphasis. In his book, The Gospel of Healing, Simpson teaches his readers how to obtain faith:

Jesus does not say to you, "Have great faith yourself." But He does say, "Have the faith of God." God's faith is all-sufficient, and you can have it and use it. You can take Christ for your faith as you took Him for your justification, for your victories over temptation, for your sanctification. You may then rest in the assurance that your faith has not failed to meet the demands of the promise, for it has been Christ's own faith.[17]

In another teaching on the subject of faith Simpson says, "Faith is an actual spiritual force. It is no doubt one of the attributes of God Himself."[18] It is not within the scope of this essay to deal with the doctrine of "faith is a force," however, we can see from the Simpson quote that this was not a teaching that originated with the Faith Movement.[19] What we want to show the reader from this quote by Simpson is that He believed that Faith is one of God's own attributes, just as sovereignty, immutability, holiness, integrity and other qualities that we attribute to God. Researchers such as Joe McIntyre, Dale Simmons, and Geir Lie have given historical proof that E.W. Kenyon was strongly influenced by the teachings of A.B. Simpson and had a good relationship with him.[19]

Healing Revival Influences

Although Simpson was a strong advocate of divine healing due to his Faith-Cure roots, he did not make it the center of his ministry as did Lillian B. Yeomans. Miss Yeomans was a medical doctor who receive complete deliverance from sickness and drug addiction by the power of God. She left the medical profession to become an itinerant teacher spreading the message of salvation and divine healing. From listening to tapes by Kenneth Hagin on the subject of divine healing (which are no longer in my possession so I cannot give documented information), Miss Yeomans' teachings seemed to have had a strong impact on his life. Here is a quote from her teaching on Mark 11:22:

"But," someone asks, "Is it possible to 'consider not your own body' when it so unpleasantly, even painfully, obtrudes itself upon your notice?"

Yes; it is gloriously possible, for the God of Abraham is our God. As we unflinchingly take our stand on the naked promise, there springs up within us the "faith of God" (Mark 11:22, margin) which makes walking on the water a delight, and swinging out over the aching void with nothing beneath us but His Word, heavenly bliss. Hallelujah!!![21]

Once again we have that reference to the margin of someone's Bible. Maybe that translation of Mark 11:22 had not escaped the attention of Greek scholars and Bible translators after all. Or perhaps only those affiliated with Holiness and Pentecostal movements had these Bibles with alternative readings in the margins of them.

From the little biographical information that we have on Miss Yeomans, there is nothing indicating that she had studied any of the original Bible languages. However, our next proponent of divine healing did possess an extensive knowledge of the Greek. Charles S. Price (1887-1947), a healing evangelist in the early part of the 20th century made this statement on Mark 11:22:

Now here is that sentence in the order which the words appear in my Greek New Testament – as you probably know, the structure of Greek sentences is different from that of our English sentences. Here's the word-for-word translation from the original Greek: "And answering, Jesus says to them: 'Have you faith of God.'" Then the master went on to tell them that if they had such a faith, not only could they dry up a fig tree, but they could command a mountain to be cast into the sea. The lesson was that of the irresistible power of the faith that was the faith of God. It was indeed mountain moving faith.[22]

Rev. price goes on to say: "... you simply cannot believe without doubt until you have the faith of God. It takes God's faith to clear our human hearts of all anxieties, fears, and doubts."[23] People like Charles Price believed that once a person possesses the "faith of God" then this type of faith would eliminate all doubting. Price derived his interpretation of Mark 11:22 directly from his knowledge of the Greek.

Evangelical Partial Cessationist Influence

People such as Yeomans and Price believed that the promises for divine healing were for all believers and were available in this dispensation. They believed that all that was needed to possess healing for one's body was the Faith of God imparted into the believer. However, there were some who used this interpretation of Mark 11:22 in an attempt to prove that bodily healing was not available to all because this type of faith is not imparted to all.

Theodore H. Epp (1907 - 1985) who I consider to have been an excellent Bible teacher, is the founder of the Back To The Bible Ministry. He authored several books including James: The Epistle of Applied Christianity. In his comments on James 5:14-16 (which speaks of the prayer of faith saving the sick), Rev. Epp states:

"Only as we submit ourselves to God will He give us faith to believe when it is His will to heal a particular person. If it is not His will to heal, faith or assurance, from God will be lacking even though we may desperately want God to heal a loved one."[24]

Epp implies from this statement that healing is not the will of God for everyone. Most Faith teachers, including myself would naturally disagree with him and accuse him of misinterpreting the clear promise as stated in James 5:14-16 for our healing. Nevertheless, Epp uses "the faith of God" to justify his interpretation:

Faith of God. The "prayer of faith" is really "the faith of God." Jesus once told the disciples, "Have faith in God" (Mark. 11:22). Having said this, the Lord went on to talk about removing a mountain. The phrase "have faith in God" is literally, "have faith of God"; that is, faith which God gives. That God is the One who gives faith is substantiated by other scriptures, particularly Ephesians 2:8 and I Corinthians 12:9, which we have already noted.

From this we see that when there is true faith regarding one's healing, it isn't really our faith – it is God's faith instilled in us. Of course, the logical question arises: How will I know whether it is my feeling or a faith which God has given? You will know when that faith is there, for God gives you an assurance that it is not available in any other way.[25]

As we can see, people from different theological backgrounds saw the literal interpretation of Mark 11:22 as "The faith of God." Yet, depending on one's theological leanings, this interpretation can be applied in different ways. While those such as Lillian B. Yeomans, Charles Price, and the modern Faith teachers believe that God's healing is available to all and that we must first possess "the faith of God" in order to possess the promise of healing, Theodore Epp taught that healing was not universally available and only when it is God's will to heal would He then provide the faith. Nevertheless, unlike some critics of the Faith movement, they did agree on the fact that a literal interpretation of Mark 11:22 should be rendered "have the faith of God" vice "have faith in God."

Conclusion of Part 2

As we have seen from the presentation above, the teaching on "The faith of God" or as it is better known today, "the God kind of faith" has it's roots and origins in different preachers of different theological persuasions. We have seen this concept taught by Calvinists, Arminians, Wesleyan-Holiness, Higher-Life, Pentecostals, Healing revivalists, and Evangelicals. Some of these teachers relied upon their knowledge of the Greek Scriptures while others relied upon the margins of their Bibles. Regardless of theological background or how the individual came about their "revelation of Mark 11:22, one thing is for sure and that is that the Faith teachers are not teaching a new concept that has escape the attention of the Scholars in past centuries.

These are not the only quotes from historical figures that I could have given you. These are simply the quotes from the fruit of my own research.[26]. I would once again remind the reader that I do not present these quotes in an attempt to prove that the Word-of-Faith interpretation of Mark 11:22 (or Heb. 11:3) is the correct one. I only present these quotes to show that it was not an original concept with them. However, from my understanding of Scripture and my own experience, I believe that they are correct.

In part three of this series, which will be our final essay on this theme, I will present more Scriptural support for this teaching and also a rebuttal to an essay by my friend and fellow Word-of-Faith apologist, Derek Vreeland. Pastor Vreeland has written a rebuttal to part one of my defense on the "God Kind of Faith."

For now, Be blessed and stay in the mercy of the Lord. If these writings are a blessing to you then tell others. It's free.

Notes

1.

Geneva, Switzerland is the place where John Calvin resided and from which his teachings spread throughout most of Europe. Therefore the notes in the Geneva Bible has it's origins in Calvinism affirming that the early Calvinists taught that the true interpretation of Mark 11:22 is "have the faith of God" vice "have faith in God." One major critic of the faith movement believes that Calvinism is "within the pale of orthodoxy" while teaching his listeners that the faith movement is not orthodox and in fact a cult, using the Faith Movement's translation of Mark 11:22 for one of his reasons to ban these teachers and their adherents from the church. 2.

Gill, John John Gill's Exposition of the Bible (Paris, AR: The Baptist Standard Bearer), The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernized and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario. Available at Crosswalk.com 3.

Spurgeon, Charles H. Commenting and Commentaries (London: Passmore & Alabaster, Paternoster Buildings, 1890). Available at the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Webpage. 4.

Clarke, Adam Adam Clarke's Commentaries (Online version available at http://www.godrules.net) 5.

Clarke, Adam Christian Theology (New York, NY: Lane and Scott, 1851), Chapter Eight: Faith. 6.

Synan, Vinson The Holiness-Pentecostal Movement (Grand Rapids, MI: Wm B. Eerdman's Publishing Co.) Synan gives extensive history on how the Pentecostal movement came from the Holiness movement. 7.

Godbey, William Baxter Godbey's New Testament Commentaries Volume VII -- Matthew-John (Part 2)(Harmonized) (Spokane, WA: Holiness Data Ministry) 8.

Synan, The Holiness-Pentecostal Movement. Godbey called the Azusa people "Satan's preachers, jugglers, necromancers, enchanters, magicians, and all sorts of mendicants." 9.

Shelhamer, Elmer Ellsworth Prevailing Prayer and Its Results (Cincinnati, Ohio: Gob's Bible School and Revivalist, 1932) Scanned and sold on CD by Holiness Data Ministry, Spokane, Washington. 10.

Hagin, Kenneth E. New Thresholds of Faith (Tulsa, OK: Rhema Bible Church, 1985), p. 80. While teaching on Mark 11:12-14 and 20-24, Hagin says "Let us focus our attention on the statement 'Have faith in God,' or, as the margin reads, 'Have the faith of God.'" 11.

I am deeply indebted to Duane Maxey and Holiness Data Ministries for having made over one thousand classic holiness books available on CD. Not just for research purposes have I read these books but many of the teachings in them have been nourishing in a devotional manner. See our favorite links page for the link to HDM's webpage to obtain information for ordering this resource. 12.

Smith, William M. By Faith: An Exposition and Interpretation of the Eleventh Chapter of Hebrews (first published in 1959 by Union Bible Seminary Westfield, Indiana), now published by HDM. 13.

Anderson, Tony Marshall Prayer Availeth Much (Circleville, Ohio: The Advocate Publishing House) Reprinted by Holiness Data Ministries. 14.

An Unknown Christian The Kneeling Christian (Spokane, WA: Holiness Data Ministry, 1997) 15.

Sawyer, M. James Wesleyan & Keswick Models of Sanctification (Can be found at http://www.bible.org/docs/theology/pneuma/wes&kes.htm) 16.

Meyer, F.B. Great Verses Through The Bible (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing Company, 1966) p. 383 17.

Simpson, A.B. The Gospel of Healing (Harrisburg, PA: Christian Publications, 1986) p. 65 18.

Simpson, A.B. A Larger Christian Life (Harrisburg, PA: Christian Publications, 1979) p. 13 19.

Perhaps in another essay we can show the interested reader quotes from such notable figures as John Calvin, E.M. Bounds, F.B. Meyer, F.E. Marsh, W.M. Clow, S.D. Gordon, and Hannah Whitall Smith teaching that certain attributes of God (most especially faith) can be likened unto "a force" or "forces." See my essay "The Seven Tactics of The heresy Hunter" for how I briefly deal with this subject. You will also find a surprising quote by the great Prince of Preachers, C.H. Spurgeon, and how he defines faith. 20.

See my series of essays title "Word of Faith Movement – Is It Metaphysical?" 21.

Yeoman, Lilian B. The Great Physician (Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1933), pp. 15, 16 22.

Price, Charles S. The Real Faith For Healing (North Brunswick, NJ: Bridge-Logos Publishers, 1997) p. 46 23.

Ibid. 24.

Epp, Theodore H. James: The Epistle of Applied Christianity (Lincoln, NE: Back To The Bible, 1980), p. 256 25.

Ibid. 26.

McIntyre, Joe E.W. Kenyon: The True Story (Lake Mary, FL: Creation House, 1997). In chapter 21 of his book, Positive Confession, Pastor McIntyre provides quotes from notable classic Bible teachers such as A.T. Pierson, Charles H. Pridgeon, George B. Peck, Carrie Judd Montgomery, and a quote by A.B. Simpson from article he wrote titled, "The Faith of God." All of the above teachers taught this concept as Pastor McIntyre proves in this outstanding book.



(c) Copyright 2001 by Troy J. Edwards and Victory through the Word Ministries







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Mon, Jul. 09 2007 10:31 AM ET As you read this I realize you might be in a tight financial situation. If this is the case, to you the answer to “Why Accumulate Wealth” is simply a matter of survival from paycheck to paycheck. 




On the other hand, your financial situation may not be quite so tight so you would ask the questions slightly differently:


“Why should I CONTINUE to accumulate wealth?” According to God’s Word, the answer to either question is based on your attitude about wealth. So let’s answer these questions in light of what God says about attitudes. First, here are some examples of “accumulation attitudes” that are NOT glorifying to God.


• God does not want you to accumulate wealth simply because others encourage you to do so. There are lots of financial planners who encourage people to invest for the future. There is nothing wrong with accumulating for the future so long as you don’t neglect today’s needs.




The role of a counselor (religious, investment, or otherwise) is to offer you informed alternatives. The final choice should always be yours. You are ultimately responsible to God for how you manage your life, not someone else. So take on that responsibility by weighing what others say against God’s Word before you act.


Remember that Proverbs 14:7 warns you to, “Stay away from a foolish man for you will not find knowledge on his lips.” And in Ephesians 4:14 you find, “Then we will not longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the scheming and craftiness of men.” 


The bottom line here is to seek good counsel, seek many advisors, but remember the final decision must be prayerfully yours.  




• You have already learned during our times together that having the attitude of envy is not part of God’s plan for your life. “Then he said to them, ‘Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.’”




• You need to guard against accumulating wealth as a game. It’s only a game if you have no accountability. Recall that you are a manager for God and will stand accountable before God for the quality of your management. Stewardship in any area is not a game.


• If you strive to accumulate wealth for self-esteem…watch out! Your self-esteem as a Christian must be solidly based on our position as a child of God, a joint heir with Christ who has direct access to the throne room of God. No amount of wealth this side of Heaven can compare to the eternal riches you have in Christ.


• Loving money is not what God wants you to do. No surprise here. Remember Hebrews 13:5? “Keep our lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’”




• And finally, you are not to look to money for protection. There is absolutely no protection in this life apart from God. No amount of money is sufficient. 


To try to protect your large estate with a ten foot barbed fence in meaningless. The only true protection you can have is tied to your personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. These are some reasons against accumulating money. 


But what about the other side of the fence? What are some God-honoring reasons to accumulate wealth? What are some Godly accumulation attitudes?  


I believe God’s Word gives you only one Godly wealth accumulation attitude; there is only one reason to build wealth beyond your needs. 


You are to accumulate so you can exercise the spiritual gift of giving. 


Romans 12: says about spiritual gifts… “…if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously…” If your income were to double, would you be willing seek out the needs of others with the heart to see if God wanted to use you as a conduit to help meet these needs?


Or, would you simply consume or store everything you receive?


In 2 Chronicles 16:9 you are told that, “…the eyes of the Lord range over the earth seeking those who are fully committed to Him that He may bless them.” 


What has God entrusted to you? What has He given you the ability to do with His wealth? How do you reinvest His investment in you? 


Do you use it for your own good or do you use it to help the Kingdom. Remember, according to Deuteronomy 8:17-18, even your job (your ability to produce wealth) is a gift from Him. Why accumulate wealth? It’s all a matter of attitude! ________________________________________________






Bob Louder is the Founder and President of Christian Financial Ministries (www.good-steward.org). Bob is also the author of the new best selling book, “Debt Free Living God’s Way,” available only on the Internet (www.debtfreelivinggodsway.org). 


Since 1987 Bob has helped people in hundreds of churches all across the country and in the European military community learn, understand, apply and pass on “Debt Free Living God’s Way” principles and practical applications. He has represented some of the top Christian financial authors and ministries to include Larry Burkett, Dave Ramsey, Christian Financial Concepts, and Crown Ministries.


 
Copyright 2006 Christian Financial Ministries, Inc., All Rights Reserved. You may reprint this “Special Report” in whole or in part without permission from Christian Financial Ministries, Inc. Please credit material used to Christian Financial Ministries, Inc.

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Vote Progressives ALL OUT on Both sides!

PROGRESSIVES TO VOTE OUT:
Congressional Members of the Progressive Caucus
Rep Earl Hilliard (AL-07)
Rep Eni Faleomavaega (AS-AL)
Rep Ed Pastor (AZ-02)
Rep Lynn C Woolsey (CA-06)
Rep George Miller (CA-07)
Rep Nancy Pelosi (CA-08)
Rep Fortney "Pete" Stark (CA-13)
Rep Henry A. Waxman (CA-29)
Rep Xavier Becerra (CA-30)
Rep Julian C. Dixon (CA-32)
Rep Esteban Edward Torres (CA-34)
Rep Maxine Waters (CA-35)
Rep George E. Brown (CA-42)
Rep Bob Filner (CA-50)
Rep Diane DeGette (CO-01)
Rep Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC-AL)
Rep Corrine Brown (FL-03)
Rep Carrie P. Meek (FL-17)
Rep Alcee L. Hastings (FL-23)
Rep Cynthia A. McKinney (GA-04)
Rep John Lewis (GA-05)
Rep Neil Abercrombie (HI-01)
Rep Patsy Mink (HI-02)
Rep Jesse Jackson (IL-02)
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Rep Danny Davis (IL-07)
Rep Lane Evans (IL-17)
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Rep John Olver (MA-01)
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Rep Barney Frank (MA-04)
Rep John Tierney (MA-06)
Rep David Bonior (MI-10)
Rep Lynn N. Rivers (MI-13)
Rep John Conyers (MI-14)
Rep Bennie G. Thompson (MS-02)
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Rep Donald Payne (NJ-10)
Rep Jerrold Nadler (NY-08)
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Rep William Coyne (PA-14)
Rep Carlos A. Romero-Barcelo (PR-AL)
Rep Robert C. Scott (VA-03)
Rep Bernard Sanders (VT-AL)
Rep James A. McDermott (WA-07)

Tim Tebow Quote:

“If you’re married and you have a wife, and you really love your wife, is it good enough to only say to your wife “I love you” the day you get married?
Or, should you tell her every single day when you wake up, and at every opportunity?


That’s how I feel about my relationship with Jesus Christ. That is the most important thing in my life, so any time I get an opportunity to tell Him that I love Him, or get an opportunity to shout Him out on national TV I’m going to take that opportunity.


So I look at it like in my relationship with Him, I want to give Him the honor and glory anytime I have the opportunity.”

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