The death of a seed
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone; but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. (John 12:24)
When talking about Faith, Jesus mentioned it as seeds. They look small, then they die, then they'll grow and produce lots of fruits.
When I look at Abraham, he went through a time of death of faith. It took him a long time, 25 years, for that seed to die. Until such a moment, he doesn't believe it any more. When God said to him about the son again, he only laughed. He had tried his best, all he could, even a fake one Ishmail. And that's it, no more he could do. Sarah was nearly 100 years old, too old for this baby thing. ---- the faith died.
Then the real faith was able to come back to life. He did have a son of their own, and he did have children like the sand of the seashore.
As long as he kept trying, the faith hasn't died.
Sometimes I hear preachings about test, it's like God set up a test for people to pass, He wants to see if we're good enough...
I don't really agree with this approach.
God already knows how good or bad we are. He doesn't need to test, or exam us.
The trial, test, is a process that we have to go through, not for God, but for ourselves.
It's like a piece of gold. When you first found it in the field, it is gold, but it has a lot of other stuff in it. First, we get rid of the dirt, mud(sin), that's sort of easy. But then, the tricky bit is stuff like copper, or other metals that are like gold, they look like gold, and mix with gold, that's the hard part to get rid off.
The only way to get rid of them is through fire. through test and trial. Real gold will stand the fire. Other ingredients will then gradually melt and fall away in the heat of fire. Sometimes it takes a long time for some ingredients to melt as it combines with gold so tightly. But eventually, only pure gold will last.
This other part or ingredients are like the good qualities of our souls. Our natural ability, our good will, our effort trying to make faith work.
But God is trying to let us understand that only He will do the work that He has called us to do. We can't try to do His work.
Just like, Moses tries to seperate the water of that red sea by his own natural ability. But that's exactly what so many of us are doing!
Over the 25 years of Abraham's life, God was only teaching him one thing: he can't have a child by his own effort. If God said it will happen, it has to be a miracle, no man can fake it.
Death is the turning point of true faith. A seed, if not died, it's still a seed. But to produce fruit, it has to die first.