Written and preached by David P. Nolte

GENESIS 3:1-19

Two little brothers, about 7 and 10, were out playing. The day began to wane and dusk was setting in. The older brother said, "Look, Joey, how far the sun has gone down. It's time to go home now!" The younger brother said, "Okay, Billy. But the sun isn't really going down. Remember how Daddy 'splained it to us?" Billy said, "Well, it looks like the sun is going down and I believe what I see!" Joey said, "Well I believe Daddy!" Three siblings had been put to bed for a nap in the bedroom they shared. Lightning and thunder flashed and boomed. The two elder children became frightened and hid under the bed, whimpering. The younger child, a little boy of about 6 peered under the bed at the cringing children and said, "Aw, quit yer bawlin'! Don't you 'spect God knows what He's doin'?" A rather simple minister, while preaching to a handful of folks one day, pointed to his Bible and declared, "Brethren, whatever the Lord tells me in this Book I'll do! In fact," he continued, "if He ordered me to jump through a brick wall 2 feet thick, I'd attempt it. You see," he explained, "going through it is God's responsibility; jumping at it is mine!" He was right! The element that ties these stories together is the same element that ties our lives together and the same element that is the sole basis for our relationship to God: faith! In the text we encounter our primal ancestors and in their experience we come to grips with the 3 essential ingredients to real faith, Bible faith, saving faith. What are those 3 essentials?

So, the serpent attacked Eve at the point of her belief in what God had to say. She, like all of us, needed a mind to believe God. But there is more to faith:

So, believe it or not, Eve trusted the counsel of the serpent more than she trusted God's word. Adam trusted the counsel of Eve more than he trusted what God had said. Who do you Trust? But believing and trusting are only 2 of the 3 essentials of faith. There is also

Faith: a mind to believe God, a heart to trust God, a will to obey God. Let me close, illustrating it in these ways: This week I was taking my grandson, Tommy, to soccer practice. When I am with my grandchildren we usually visit about things. Tommy asked me about people dying and going to heaven and about those who die and go with the devil. I said, "Tommy, those who believe in Jesus don"t have to worry about ever going with the devil." He said, "I do believe! In my mind I believe about Jesus." I received an e-mail from my granddaughter Alisha. She wrote, "Dear Grandpa, I love you. I wish the world would turn to GOD instead of the devil or nobody. Why doesn`t the world know about GOD? Grandpa, please answer my questions. Love, Alisha." The world has no excuse for not knowing God! Romans 1:19-20 says, "because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse." Do YOU know God? Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son, has come to make Him known. He said, "If you have seen me, you have seen the Father." Believe Him, put your trust in Him, and then obey! That's the only Biblical faith; that's the faith that pleases God; that's the faith that saves!

First stories from unknown sources

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