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So, here it is:
“Disbelief /ˌdɪsbəˈliːf/ noun
a feeling that you do not or cannot believe or accept that something is true or real”
Webster 1828 American English Dictionary
Good evening class. Today we are going to talk about impediments to faith.
On the board, you can see the name and definition of the single most common form of faith blocker you will ever come across. It ranks right up there with an unforgiving attitude.
The definition begins with the word “feeling”. Feelings are one of the areas that must be brought into submission of the Holy Ghost. Our feelings are highly unreliable and easily influenced by demonic forces.
Our feelings are unreliable because they are influenced primarily by our perception of what an experience means and any memory of an experience that is similar though not necessarily the same.
Feelings do not like to be challenged or investigated and while you may conclude I have no use for feelings by what I have just said, you would be wrong.
Feelings are a gift from our Heavenly Father and they are the medium He will use to bless us with Joy and Peace. True worship and gratitude are also feelings.
Think for a moment. Before you became a believer in Jesus, did you not have a 'feeling' that none of the precepts of Christianity were true and you had this 'feeling' no matter what the facts may or may not have been. In other word your feeling kept you from making an honest appraisal
When the Holy Ghost finally did get a hold of you it was probably through your feelings.
Feelings are benign, neither good or bad. It all depends on the motive or the force behind those feelings. Lust, Greed and Hate are all feelings, so are Love, Joy and Peace.
What I am saying here is simply how you feel about anything is purely a choice and a result of your experiences and they can be overcome if they need to be changed.
So why is faith impeded by feelings?
Anyone care to answer that?
Yes, back there in the back. Tony, right!
Yes teacher my name is Tony and, no offence intended, but wasn't it your feelings that kept you from believing Jesus was alive when the other Disciples told you they had seen Him?1
Yes, that is right Tony. No offence taken.
My feelings of grief, loss, and the fact I had not yet fully understood or comprehended that Jesus was God and man, caused me to feel anger that such a preposterous joke was being played on me. I saw Him crucified, I saw His bloody and pale body, I believed my senses more than the witness of my friends or His words. But it wasn't a joke, He really is alive and I would have saved myself from a great humiliation had I been objective and remembered Lazarus2 and the widows boy3 and many others who had been raised from the dead by our Masters touch or command.
Doubt itself is a feeling, a feeling of fear that lives in your gut or chest. It will make you feel sick or cause your chest to get tight and make it hard to breath. Doubt tells your mind that what you want or believe is a fools tale. Doubt is founded in what you think others may think of you or what you think of you. Doubt is the ultimate in the lack of self-esteem. And more importantly it is the ultimate in a lack of God-esteem.
God-esteem is, what I truly want and is the main way of overcoming unbelief.
What I mean by God–esteem, is having a true Love affair with our God. Knowing and feeling His love for you and knowing and feeling your love for Him. When you know and experience His love for you, you will seek with all your heart to return that love through the actions that He has made clear through His written word that pleases Him. And you want to please Him because of your Love for Him.4
41 John 2:1- 6