But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 (NKJV)
Faithfulness means trustworthy, loyal, thorough in the performance of duty and steadfast in devotion and allegiance. Faithful people do what they say they will do. They take commitments they make seriously and don’t give up on completing them when things get hard. This is true of everything they do, whether it’s in their service to Jesus or anything else. Truly faithful people are faithful in all things not just some things.
In my mind this is one of the things that makes faithfulness so challenging. Most people are faithful at something. Many people are even faithful at a couple of things. But there are very few people that are truly faithful at everything they do. Yet, the type of faithfulness that the Holy Spirit will produce in our lives leads us to be faithful in every area of our lives. There are several truths about faithfulness that are important for us to understand.
Faithfulness Is A Characteristic God.
It’s important for us to understand this because as the children of God we are to reflect His character and His nature to the world around us. Since our God is faithful, we should be faithful as well. There are several things about God’s faithfulness that we need to see.
God Is Faithful To Keep His Word. In my mind this is the most important aspect of God’s faithfulness. The reason for this is that everything we have about God’s faithfulness or really His character is revealed in His Word. Everything we hope for from God is based upon what God has said. If God is not 100% faithful to keep His Word, then our hope for anything is shaky at best. Thankfully God is faithful to keep Word.
“Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through all generations. The Lord is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made.” Psalms 145:13 (NIV)
“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23 (NKJV)
God Is Faithful To Forgive Our sins. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 (NKJV)
God Is Faithful Even When We Are Not. “If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.” 2 Timothy 2:13 (NKJV)
God Is Faithful To Watch Over Us. “But the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one.” 2 Thessalonians 3:3 (NKJV)
God Is Faithful To Help Us In Temptation. “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NKJV)
God’s Faithfulness Is A Reason We Worship Him. “I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever; With my mouth will I make known Your faithfulness to all generations.” Psalms 89:1 (NKJV)
Here are some general truths that the Bible teaches about faithfulness.
Truly Faithful People Are Rare. “Most men will proclaim each his own goodness, But who can find a faithful man?” Proverbs 20:6 (NKJV)
We Should Be Faithful To Share God’s Word. “Let a man so consider us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover it is required in stewards that one be found faithful.” 1 Corinthians 4:1-2 (NKJV)
We Should Be Faithful To Use Our Spiritual Gifts. “As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:10-11 (NKJV)
We Should Be Faithful To Keep Our Word. “A person who doesn’t give a promised gift is like clouds and wind that don’t bring rain.” Proverbs 25:14 (NLT)
In the Psalms we are told the characteristics of those who will get to experience God’s presence in their lives. It is those who, “…despise persistent sinners, and honor the faithful followers of the LORD and keep their promises even when it hurts. Those who do not charge interest on the money they lend, and who refuse to accept bribes to testify against the innocent. Such people will stand firm forever.” Psalms 15:4-5 (NLT)
We Should Be Faithful At Our Jobs. Faithfulness in the Bible isn’t just with what we might call spiritual things. We are also expected to be faithful in what we might call secular things like our jobs because faithfulness affects every area of our lives. The best example I can think of here is Daniel.
“Then the other administrators and princes began searching for some fault in the way Daniel was handling his affairs, but they couldn’t find anything to criticize. He was faithful and honest and always responsible. So they concluded, “Our only chance of finding grounds for accusing Daniel will be in connection with the requirements of his religion.” Daniel 6:4-5 (NLT)
We Should Be Faithful To Jesus Unto Death. “And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write, ‘These things says the First and the Last, who was dead, and came to life: I know your works, tribulation, and poverty (but you are rich); and I know the blasphemy of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. Do not fear any of those things which you are about to suffer. Indeed, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.” Revelation 2:8-10 (NKJV)
How do we develop this kind of faithfulness? I’ll explain that tomorrow.