FAITHFULNESS

Bible Reading: Daniel 6:1-28

So the governors and satraps sought to find some charge against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but they could find no charge or fault, because he was faithful; nor was there any error or fault found in him” [Daniel 6:4]

You may have noticed that each aspect of the fruit of the Holy Spirit is a manifestation of God’s character in our lives. The reason for this is that the Holy Spirit is God and the more He works in our lives the more we will become godlike. We saw yesterday that God is faithful, meaning that He is totally reliable and dependable. Faithfulness as a fruit of the Holy Spirit means that we also become totally reliable and dependable.

The Greek word ‘pistis’ translated in all modern Bible translations as faithfulness is used commonly in secular Greek for trustworthiness. It is the characteristic of the man who is reliable, loyal and dependable. It hinges upon what we value as important combined with commitment.

Sadly, faithfulness has become an undervalued quality, and instead people are often more excited by ability, flashiness and cleverness. Recently, when speaking with someone about faithfulness they responded by telling me that it is boring! Some years ago, a woman came to me and asked me to give her a reference for a new post that she was applying for. She became very angry when I told her that I could not honestly give her a reference, my reason being that she had worked in six different jobs over a period of 21 years, and in each case had left with a six-figure pay-off. I could not question her ability but I had serious questions about her loyalty.

God places great value on faithfulness. Speaking of Moses, God said, “He is faithful in all my house” [Numbers 12:3; Hebrews 3:5]. About Abraham Nehemiah said, “You found his heart faithful to you” [Nehemiah 9:8]. David said, “The Lord preserves the faithful” [Psalm 31:23] and “The Lord will not forsake His faithful ones.” [Psalm 37:28].

On a visit to China in 1996, I met a very godly Chinese Church leader who had spent more than 31 years in prison or under house arrest. I asked him if he had a word for me, a man nearly 40 years his junior, and his response was the words of Jesus, “Be faithful unto death and I will give you a crown of life” [Revelation 2:10].

Unfaithfulness leading to irresponsibility is the child of self-centredness. The answer to this trend is God-centeredness, but that is not cheap because the cost is our lives being given over totally to Him and allowing the Holy Spirit to produce that fruit in us.

Questions:

Why do you think it is that God places such great importance on faithfulness?

In what way do you see Daniel’s faithfulness in our Bible Reading today?

How does faithfulness look in your personal life and daily living?