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Have Faith in God
The next morning, Peter finally saw what he’d been watching for ever since Jesus had spoken to that tree. “As they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away. And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God” (verses 20-22).

Most religious people today would absolutely faint over such an answer. They’d expect Jesus to say something like this: “Now boys, just wait a minute here. Don’t you be trying this kind of thing. I’m the Son of God, you understand? I can operate this way but I don’t want you to be out there talking to fig trees and all that kind of stuff. You’ll fall flat on your faces and give this ministry a bad reputation. Don’t you get mixed up in that blab it, grab it, tree-killing stuff.”

But that’s not what He said. He said, “Have faith in God.” With those words, He not only commanded His disciples to do what He did, He offered them the faith with which to do it. Then He went on and taught them how the process works: “For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith” (verse 23).

It strikes me as significant that Jesus gave us just 10 words to say to the mountain. He kept the command simple. He told us to speak the end result, then turn around and walk off, expecting our words to come to pass.

“But how do I find out exactly what words to say to my particular situation?” you might ask.

You do it the same way Jesus did. You spend some time getting quiet, praying and fellowshiping with the Lord over the situation. You draw near to the One Hebrews 3:1 refers to as the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus.

Ask Him about the situation. Say, “Lord, it seems to me that the desired end result here is such and such. Is that correct?” Then check your spirit for the answer. Listen on the inside of you to hear what He says. When you start doing this, you’re going to find out how easy it is to hear the voice of God because, as His child, that’s what you’re supposed to be doing.

If He says, Yes, that’s right, then go ahead and speak the command of faith. If He says no, then stand on James 1:5 for wisdom. Say, “Lord, I thank You for Your wisdom about what I should say to that tree. I’ll speak only Your words to it. I may not speak them today. I may not speak them tomorrow or next week.I’m not going to say anything to it until I hear from heaven.”

“But what if I’m facing an emergency?” you might say.

All the more reason to listen to God. You can spout multitudes of the wrong words in the middle of an emergency and nothing will happen. One word from the Lord, on the other hand, changes everything. When Jesus, your High Priest, tells you what to say, as far as heaven is concerned, as far as all the angels are concerned, and as far as all the demons of hell are concerned, it’s as if Jesus Himself is speaking—and when He speaks, He gets results.

If you don’t believe it, ask the fig tree.

Keep It Simple, Sweetheart
I’ve found in my own life that when the Lord tells me what to say, He sticks with His New Testament pattern. He keeps it simple. If my mind goes off in all directions and comes up with a massive string of words, I ignore them and keep waiting on God until I get the insight He’s endeavoring to get across to me.

It’s astounding how few words He needs to get the job done. I’ve seen Him prove that again and again over the years.

I remember a time early in my ministry when I was preaching in the Northern plains of West Texas. We were in a small building and a woman brought her teenage daughter up front for prayer. “Brother Copeland, she’s been having epileptic seizures,” she said, “and we believe it’s time for her to be healed. Would you minister to her?”

“Sure,” I said, and right at that moment—wham!—the girl hit the floor.

Talk about an emergency! The devil was tearing at that girl something awful. She was having a hard, hard seizure. But instead of reacting to it, I just stood there and checked my spirit. When I did, I heard this real big on the inside of me: No! No! No!

I hollered it just as loud as I heard it. “No! No! No!” Then the Lord spoke up inside me again and said, Hush now. That’s enough.

So I didn’t say another word. I walked back around to the podium and picked up my Bible. Al l the while, that girl was still thrashing around on the f loor. When the seizure f inally stopped, her family bundled her up and carried her out.

Of course, my natural mind tried to go wild over that. I had to fight away the idea that I hadn’t done enough, that I should have said or done something more. The devil tried to tell me that the girl didn’t get anything from God—that she left as sick as she came. But I refused to interrupt the process of faith. I cast down that imagination. “That’s not my thought,” I said, “and I’m not thinking it. I bring those thoughts into captivity.”

Years passed and I never heard anything more about that girl. One day, her face flashed across my mind and I asked the Lord to let me know whatever happened to her. Just a few days later, someone handed me her testimony. Her mother had written about it. It turns out, she never had another seizure from that night on. She graduated with honors, and 25 years later, she was still healthy and living her life for God.

That’s the kind of thing that happens when we activate the process of faith the way Jesus did. It changes everything when we follow the example of the Master, who so often was—and is—a Man of few words.

First published in the May 2011 issue of Believer's Voice of Victory Magazine
Copyright © 2011 Eagle Mountain International Church, Inc. All rights reserved.

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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