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"My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing" (James 1:2-4).

"That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises" (Heb. 6:12).

The power of patience is a working power. When faith has a tendency to waver, it is patience that comes to faith's aid to make it stand. The power of patience is necessary to undergird faith.

Almost everywhere you find faith mentioned in the Bible, you also find patience. Faith and patience are the power twins. Together they will produce every time. Patience without faith has no power to call into reality the thing desired. Faith is the substance of things we hope for. Patience without faith has no substance.

On the other hand, faith without patience many times will fail to stand firm on the evidence of the Word that gives deed to things not seen. Jesus told Peter that he had prayed for him that his faith fail not. Without the power of patience at work, we will allow sensory knowledge - the things we see - to overwhelm our faith.

Patience undergirds faith and gives it endurance to persevere until the answer comes. Faith is a powerful force. It always works. It is not that our faith is weak and needs strength, but without the power of patience we ourselves stop the force of faith from working with negative confession and action. It is our faith, and we can put it into action. It is our faith, and we can stop it from working.

Traditionally, we think of patience as knuckling under and being satisfied with whatever comes our way. That is not at all what patience is. Patience is a real force. It is to be developed. The Word says in Titus 2:2 that we are to be sound or developed in patience.

Faith is a force that is to be developed. The same scripture says that we are to be sound in faith. Patience and faith are two individual forces. They work together the way faith and love work together. All of these are different forces. They each play a different role in our Christian lives.

It is dangerous to confuse these forces and try to use one in the place of the other. For instance, the Bible says in Hebrews 11:1 that faith is the substance of things hoped for. Hope without faith has no substance.

People say, "We are hoping and praying." This sounds good but it has no substance. In this case, hope is being confused with faith. Without the substance of faith that kind of praying will not produce any results.

You can see that in a critical situation this would be dangerous. We need to have our thinking straightened out according to the Bible so that we can properly use these forces in their proper places and produce God's perfect will in our lives.

One of the most common traditions and mistakes in this area of believing is that trials and tribulations develop faith. Trials and tribulations do not develop cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.

Trials and tribulations develop patience. We have already learned from James Chapter 1 that this is true. The Apostle Paul says the same thing in Romans 5:3, "And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;"

Faith is developed as we act on the Word of God. Hebrews 12:2 states that Jesus is the Author and Finisher, or Developer of our faith. It does not say that Satan is the developer of our faith. It is vitally important that we realize the difference between the developing of faith and developing of patience. Faith should be developed on the Word of God before the trial or testing comes.

Jesus said in Luke 6:47 that if a man acts on His words, he likened him unto a man who builds his house on a rock. When the flood beat upon the house, the house did not fall. Notice the man had to dig deep. This is where his faith was developed. During the storm is when his patience was developed. He knew his house would stand because it was built on rock.

Remember how Jesus said the man built on that rock? He acted on the Word. Faith is developed before the trial comes. The force of patience is developed in the trial or tribulation and undergirds or keeps the door open for our faith to work and to overcome whatever has been put before us.

The definition of patience is being constant or being the same way at all times. James says in Chapter 1 that we are to be single-minded. We must always respond or react in every circumstance of life the same way - on the Word of God. Regardless of what may be thrown at us, we must become so Word-of-God minded that we do not act in fear or doubt but always act on whatever the Word of our God says.

The Word says that Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Jesus has always and will always respond to the Word rather than to circumstances, reason, or fear. This is the way that we should be. Being sound in patience is to answer every doubt and every fear with the firm assurance and confession that God's Word is true, regardless of what we feel or see. Regardless of what storm may come our way, my Father's Word cannot fail. In that kind of atmosphere, faith is free to move and overcome whatever Satan has put in our way.

In order to properly develop the power of patience, we must know what the Bible says about testings and trials. If you read the first chapter of James, the Greek word translated temptations is the same word for trials and testings. It is vitally important that we know, from verse 13, that God is not tested by evil, and He does not tempt or test men with evil. We are warned never to say that we are tested of God.

Verse 14 explains what a test or trial is. A test or trial is anything that applies pressure on the lusts or desires of the flesh. Any pressure that draws us away from God's Word is the beginning of a test. If we then act on that lust, sin is the result. Still, we have a way of escape, for the Word says we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ. He is faithful to forgive us our sins when we confess them. We are still more than conquerors in Jesus.

When Satan applies pressure on our bodies to make them sick, we don't have to succumb to that pressure. When he presents us with financial ruin, we don't have to yield to the temptation to turn to the world and borrow. Most of the time, this only makes matters worse.

Thank God, we can turn to God's Word in Philippians 4:19 and use our faith. Then, regardless of circumstances, we exercise the power of patience and continue to stand fast in the liberty unto which we have been called.

Don't forget the ministry of the Holy Spirit in all of this. He is continually working in you, teaching, interceding, backing your faith with His mighty power. This is where the power of patience is so very important. As long as your faith is active, the Spirit of God is active.

It is impossible to please God without faith. Patience guards against your admitting a doubt or confession of fear into your consciousness. Even when we stretch our faith as far as it will go, He that is within us is greater than he that is in the world.

"There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will no suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it" (1 Cor. 10:13).

This scripture reveals three more important things about trials:
  1. Testings and temptations are common to man. No man is ever tested or tried with things that are not common to mankind. Satan does not have the right to call upon his experience as a heavenly being to apply things that are outside the realm of humanity as tests or trials.
  2. God is faithful. You will never face anything that you cannot overcome.
  3. God always provides the way of escape.
Satan cannot attack with any weapon that is greater than what God has provided for us as weapons. Thank God, the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but powerful through god to the pulling down of strongholds. Satan is limited to the things that are common to mankind, but we are not. We have access to the full armor of God.

Our patience rests solidly on the full assurance that, no matter what comes next; Jesus has provided more than enough victory to put us over.

Many Christians use "all things work together for the good of those that love God" as an excuse to fail. To them this scripture says, "All the devil does to me will turn out for my good. After all, you know the Bible says we are made stronger by the trials and tribulations of this life."

The Bible does not say that at all! When the Apostle Paul wrote that all things work together for the good of those that love God and are called according to His purpose, he was teaching on intercessory prayer.

"Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose" (Rom. 8:26-28).

All things work together for the good of those that love God, when we are operating together in intercessory prayer!

"And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ" (Eph. 4:11-12).

This is the way that the saints are perfected, not through tribulations. We are to be perfected by the Word through the ministry.

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm glad to know that God did not send cancer to edify me, or poverty to perfect my faith. No, these curses are not from God. They are from Satan, and we are to triumph over them with the power twins - faith and patience.

The Word does not say that faith is developed by trials, but the Word does say that the trying of our faith worketh patience. It is what we do with trials and tribulations that makes the difference, not the fact that we are suffering.

There are those in the Church who think we are to glory in tribulations. Tribulation is not the goal of Christianity. Many think that we cannot be worth anything until we suffer. That is not true. You will not be worth anything unless you overcome that suffering.

Suffering is the result of the attack of Satan. There is no glory in knuckling down and enduring trial. The glory is in overcoming that trial with the Word of God through the power of God. This is why we can count it all joy when we are tried. We know that Jesus has defeated Satan, and that we are victors over anything he sends our way.

Jesus said in John 16:33, "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." The glory lies in overcoming the world and its trials and tribulations. Trouble may come our way, but through the good things of God, He always causes us to triumph in Christ Jesus.

Paul said, "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ....And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope" (Rom. 5:1-4).

Paul was saying that he had peace with God whatever came his way. He had this peace, not only when things were working right for him, but also when trouble came down the road. He did not let go of his peace with God because of tribulation. This tribulation only worked patience in him, and patience brought the experience of victory. Then the experience of victory worked hope.

This is how faith and patience work together to produce victory. Your body has symptoms of sickness; it is screaming with pain. You must get your faith into operation. The first thing you do is go to the will of God - the Word.

Open you Bible to Matthew 8:17, "Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses." First Peter 2:24, "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed."

God's Word does not say that by His stripes you may by healed. The Word says, "By His stripes you were healed." You were healed.

Now you are beginning to look at healing through the eye of faith. Your faith is looking beyond the symptoms in your body. Then you say, "Father, 1 Peter 2:24 says that by the stripes of Jesus, I was healed. I apply this Word to my body, and I command it to be healed in the Name of Jesus. The Word says that I am healed. I say that I am healed. Sickness, I speak to you in the Name of Jesus, and I command you to leave my body."

That did it. You believed you received when you prayed. Jesus said, "Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them." You have His Word.

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (Heb. 11:1).

You must believe that you are healed before you see the results in your body. You cannot wait until your body looks and feels healed before you believe it. If you do, you will never receive by faith.

You cannot get faith's results without exerting the force of faith. Faith is believing that you receive whatever you ask before it can be seen with the sense of sight or felt with the sense of touch. You do have evidence in faith, but it is the Word of God, not the sought-after result. The Word is your evidence that you have it now.

You have exercised your faith in God's Word. Now let patience have her perfect work. The force of faith is at work, undergirded by the power of patience. Your faith connected with the Father the very moment that you took His Word as the evidence of your healing. Confess with your mouth that it is yours, and by your actions show that it is yours. You must talk healing, and you must act healing.

Patience begins to work from the time that you believed you received, and it must be allowed to work until the last symptom leaves your body. The voice of patience says, "I know God's Word is true. I will not be moved by what I see or feel. I will only be moved by the Word of God. I patiently rest on the truth of God's mighty Word!"

The experience of the answer is inevitable.

Excerpt permission granted by
Eagle Mountain International Church, Inc.
aka:  Kenneth Copeland Ministries

Author Biography

Kenneth Copeland
Web site: Kenneth Copeland Ministries
For the last 50 years Kenneth and Gloria Copeland have been passionately teaching Christians all over the world how to apply the principles of faith found in God’s WORD to their lives.

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