Date: 11 Sep 2022
Speaker: Ps Luwin Wong
Sermon Text: Luke 17:1-19
Today’s sermon is about faith. Early on, there is a plea from the apostles for Jesus to “Increase our faith!”(17:5), and it concludes with a declaration that a foreigner’s faith has made him well (17:19).
So we’ll be looking at the text with a view to understanding a bit more about what the Christian faith is about
Now, we know what faith feels like. It feels like confidence, it feels like assurance; it feels safe. That’s the experience of faith. You know you have faith in something or someone when you are confident that he or she is trustworthy and will not let you down, so you rely on the words of the person, you trust in the promises of that person, and that means faith makes a difference. It makes a difference not merely in how safe and confident you feel about someone or something, it makes a difference to how you behave because of the trust that you have.
For example, if you have faith in the weatherman who tells you that the forecast for the rest of today will be dark clouds and thunderstorms, then you’ll tell the kids, sorry we can’t go to the beach this afternoon like we wanted to, we’ll have to find another activity to do. Your family plans for the day is altered because of your faith in the weatherman.
If your prof says that only chapters 3-9 of the textbook will appear on the final exam, and if you have faith in the words of your prof, then you will focus on those chapters, and not worry about the rest. So your faith will affect how you spend your study week.
And if you have faith that Man U will win the EPL this season, I don’t know what to say to you. Your faith will make you pretty miserable in the coming months.
In a nutshell, faith is something you experience, yes; it’s something you feel, yes, but it doesn’t end there, it also affects and alters the way you behave and the things you do.
In other words, faith is tangible, faith is visible. And our passage today reveals 3 ways in which Christian faith shapes the heart and moves the hands of Jesus’ disciples.
First, faith graciously forgives.
17 And he said to his disciples, “Temptations to sin are sure to come, but woe to the one through whom they come! 2 It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin. 3 Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, 4 and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.”