Chapter # 10 Paragraph # 3 Study # 3
May 19, 2009
Lincolnton, N.C.

<498> Thesis: Even disbelief by everyone would not make "faith" a disallowed methodology. Introduction: In our study last week we argued that Paul was presenting God's Plan for the expansion of His offer of "Life" to those who, having heard, believed. The spirit of man must have a part to play in the activities of "Life" in order to live fully. God's Plan to make His ultimate agenda the result of a massive, multi-layered task allows for the inclusion of all who, having believed, wish to enter more fully into the reality of His "Life". But, participation must be conditioned by two very fundamental realities: first, it is only an "out of faith" participation that is allowed; and, second, it is not to be determined by the visible "results" which men determine. Paul profoundly wanted Israel to be saved by the Gospel, but his proclamation of it to Israel was met by stiff resistance everywhere he went. If he had determined his "participation" on the basis of whether the people would do as he wanted, he would have quit, or if he had determined his "participation" on his own abilities, he would have altered his message to get the results he wanted. A "results" orientation is deadly to the Truth when it is held by men. Thus, we come this evening to a look at Paul's frank admission that the results for which he was looking had not panned out. We want to be clear about how he dealt with that reality.