169. Unbelief

1. WHAT warning is given in the Bible concerning unbelief?
“Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.” Heb. 3:12.

2. Without faith, what is impossible?
“Without faith it is impossible to please Him.” Heb. 11:6.

3. How only can we be justified?
“Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Rom. 5:1.

4. By what do the just live?
“Now the just shall live by faith.” Heb. 10:38.

NOTE.-If men are justified by faith, and are to live by faith, it follows that to be unbelieving is not to be justified, and consequently not to live in the sense here referred to.

5. In whom does the Lord have no pleasure?
“But if any man draw back, My soul shall have no pleasure in him.” Same verse.

6. What kind of report did the ten spies bring back concerning the promised land?
“They brought up an evil report of the land which they had searched.” Num. 13:32.

7. What did Caleb say of the ability of Israel to take it?
“Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.” Verse 30.

8. What did the ten spies say?
“But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we.” Verse 31.

9. Why did not Israel attain to the standard of righteousness?
“But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith.” Rom. 9:31,32.

10. When told of the disciples’ failure to heal an afflicted son, what did Christ say of that generation?
“He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him unto Me.” Mark 9:19.

11. What did Christ say to Thomas because he did not believe the testimony of his brethren concerning His resurrection?
“Reach hither thy finger, and behold My hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into My side: and be not faithless, but believing.” John 20:27.

NOTE.-The Lord rebuked Thomas for his unbelief, because he would not accept the testimony of so many credible witnesses who had seen Him. How much more reprehensible is that unbelief which holds out against the present “cloud of witnesses” of prophecy fulfilled and fulfilling!

12. After speaking of the numerous examples of faith presented in Hebrews 11, what does Paul exhort us to do?
“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.” Heb. 12:1.

NOTE.-The “every weight” here spoken of includes those traits of character and habits of life that retard or hinder our running successfully the Christian race. These are to be laid aside. But there is one thing referred to here that is more than a weight; it is a sin, and one that easily besets us all,- the sin of unbelief. To be unbelieving, therefore, is sinful.

13. Why did many fail to enter into God’s rest anciently?
“And to whom sware He that they should not enter into His rest, but to them that believed not? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.” Heb. 3:18,19.

14. How are these unbelieving ones spoken of?
“But with whom was He grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcasses fell in the wilderness?” Verse 17.

15. What lesson should we learn from their course?
“Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into His rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.” Heb. 4:1.

NOTE.-God does not change. If He was grieved at the unbelief of the Israelites, and refused them admittance to Canaan in consequence, He cannot permit us to enter the heavenly rest as long as we indulge in unbelief.

16. What should all labor to do?
“Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.” Verse 11.

17. Against what are we warned when rebuked of God?
“My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of Him.” Heb. 12:5.

18. Whom does the Lord chasten?
“For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth.” Verse 6.

19. When God made a promise to Abraham that seemed impossible of fulfillment, how did the patriarch receive it?
“He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God.” Rom. 4:20.

20. For what was Abraham’s faith counted?
“For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.” Verse 3.

21. When troubled with doubts, how should we pray? “Lord, I believe; help Thou mine unbelief.” Mark 9:24.

22. What is promised those who believe when they pray?
“Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.” Mark 11:24.