The World Tomorrow

Secrets of Faith - Part 1

by Herbert W Armstrong


Did you ever think that you have more troubles, more bad breaks, or more things to worry about than anyone else? Now I’m probably talking right to you because I think most of you have felt just like that.

You know what you need to free your mind and get out from under it? You need faith; you need the kind of faith that will replace the worries, the fears, the doubts, and all that sort of thing. But very few people have it.

I wonder if you realize just what a wonderful thing it would be if you knew the real secret of real faith. Now where are you going to get it? Can you get it from a psychologist? A psychologist can explain a lot of things, and why you’re having a lot of fears and worries. He can give you a lot of good reasoning, too. But he doesn’t have the real cure, because it’s something a little bit more than that.

Now you’ll find it in the book that more of you buy than any other, but the book that fewer of you understand than any other, and the book that we sort of shy away from. And I don’t know whether some people think it’s a ‘goody-goody’ book, or some of them think it’s a very dry, dull book, or what, but when you come to understand it, it holds the very key to your life. It holds the secret of your happiness, your wellbeing, of getting your mind freed from a lot of these things that are bearing you down and making your life a little bit miserable and unhappy. And I can show you something here that no psychologist can give you, no psychiatrist, no kind of a mental counselor of any kind, because I can show you something that goes completely beyond anything he has or knows.

Universal Power (PLAY FROM 01:54)

Now here we are coming up in this wonderful chapter, this eleventh chapter of the book of Hebrews, the book that tells what Jesus Christ is doing now, what Jesus Christ has been doing for 1900 years.

Do you know Jesus Christ is alive; do you know He’s on the job? He has a very big job. One part of His job is that He is sustaining, right now, and upholding the entire universe by His power. All power has been given over to Him. So much power – it's power He could destroy this whole earth in the snap of the finger. He has the power to do it! Well He had to prove He wouldn’t do it before that power was ever given to Him. He had to prove that He was safe; that He could be trusted with that much power.

Power is a wonderful thing when it is properly used and controlled. Power, properly used, might save your life. But wrongly used it can take a lot of lives; that’s what it can do. And so you need to be sure that you can control the power if you have it and if you use it.

But now getting back to this: we do all have our troubles. Life is made that way and it’s all for a purpose. The Creator designed that we should have these things to buck up against. He didn’t make life easy.

But let me tell you something I’ve learned, my friends. I’ve lived; there are very few of you listening to me that have ever lived as much as I have lived. And when I say I have lived, if you really have, you know I mean something else.

I’ve known what suffering is. I’ve had to suffer, too. And I’ve learned a lot by the things I’ve suffered. I’ve had to learn a lot of lessons in my lifetime. And here’s one of the lessons that I have learned, and that is, that the Almighty Creator set laws in motion - forces, energies, laws. Your physicist knows about some of these laws. Your chemist knows something about them.

Now there are other laws that he knows nothing about. There are spiritual laws that he knows nothing about. And those laws affect your life. And those laws were made for your good, not for your harm. They weren’t made to punish you, they weren’t made to harm you. But they will punish you and they will harm you if you go against them.

If you utilize them, if you use them in the right manner, in the right way, those laws, will bring you happiness. And while they’re bringing you happiness, you’re going to be the means of bringing other people happiness along with those same laws.

And I have learned this: that life can be very beautiful and very happy. Now I don’t believe it’s possible for anyone to live and get through life without problems and without troubles and without things that would, literally, make the average person’s hair stand on end, that are just going to, occasionally, throw fright and fear into your mind, unless you have learned that lesson of absolute faith. That is your guarantee against it and will throw out the fear.

There’s one other thing, too, that you read of in the scriptures, and that is that "...perfect love casts out fear..." (I John 4:18). It will. If you have love and faith and you have that combination and I mean divine love. I don’t mean the love you were born with. I mean something much, much higher, more beautiful and something much more powerful than mother-love, which is one of the highest loves we know anything about, mortally and naturally, I mean, materially.

But this is a divine, spiritual love, and God has a lot of it. And He has - I was going to say more than He needs, well I don’t know that that’s the way to phrase it. But He has plenty left over to give you aplenty. He can just give you a lot of it; He has plenty to give you. And He wants to give it to you, and plenty of faith, but very few of you know anything about it. And you don’t have the faith to get over these things.

But life can be good, and life can be enjoyable, life can be thrilling and interesting.

Now I wonder if you think that a real Christian life, lived according to the Bible, is a dry, dull, boring, dreary, unhappy, morbid life? Well I don’t know whether I should talk about myself, but I know my own experience better than I know anybody else’s and I can tell you a little bit about it from that.

Proofs of God (PLAY FROM 06:30)

Now years ago - I took God up on this thing as a practical thing. I said, "I’m going to try it out; I’m going to put it to the test." I proved to myself in my early studies, here, that God exists. I was very rational about it; I wanted to be sure. Could I prove, scientifically, that there is a God, that God exists? Well I proved it. I have proved it to atheists and made them admit it.

One atheist that I didn’t respect very much, he was a communist too, came up to my office to prove to me that evolution was true by trying to make a monkey out of me, and proving to me that there wasn’t any God. And when we got through, he whimpered. He says, "I won’t accept that God or obey Him if you do make me admit He exists."

Well he had to admit that God exists, because I proved it to him by the laws and the facts of science, not by the Bible, he wouldn’t believe that anyhow.

Then the next thing is: could I prove whether the Bible is the inspired word of the actual Creator God that sits at the controls and that controls every force, every energy in this universe, that controls the breath you breathe, and your life, and your destiny?

And I have proved that. I think I proved that to some of you on this very broadcast and I proved it on a telecast.

There’s some prophecies that prove it. There are many other proofs, too. I’ve had to prove to myself in a great deal more than just one way – in more ways than one, by far.

Now I've proved it. So the next thing is, here, God promises certain things in the Bible. And He says, if I just believe Him, that He can’t lie, and He will do it.

And I began to take God at His word. And again I found promises that we’ll be delivered out of every trouble and that we don’t need to carry around a lot of fears and worries, and that life can be very beautiful, and it can be thrilling and interesting. And I took God up on it. And I’ve tried it out; and I’ve been trying it out for a long, long time. I don’t mean that I live this life perfectly. I don’t know anyone that does. I’ve known people that claim they do. I’ve known people that claim they were perfect. I’ve known people that claim they had gotten to the place they couldn’t sin anymore. And they’re very bragging. Their spiritual pride that they showed is one of the greatest sins I have ever seen in anybody.

Now I have been putting this thing to the test and I want to tell you something that I can really say. You hear people giving their testimony; I don’t do that very often, but I’m going to give you a little of my personal testimony. I don’t know of anybody’s life that I have ever come in contact with, and I have come in contact with people in every walk of life. I have known millionaires and multimillionaires, personally, by the dozens. Yes sir, I have known about every kind of character and personality that you can mention. I have known many college professors; and how many college presidents have I known, how many presidents of manufacturing concerns, how many union men, how many working men, how many carpenters, electricians, business men, salesmen? Oh, yeah, I’ve known a lot of those! And sometimes I didn’t want to know them, but some of them are pretty persuasive.

Well I have known life. And I’ve known all kinds of men. I’ve known athletes. I used to go out for every kind of athletics when I was a boy in school. And I played football, basketball, and ice hockey. And I used to skate to school even. I lived up in Iowa, you know, where you really can skate down the river. I skated down the river several miles to school, everyday, when I was in the eighth grade, before I got into high school. And I’ve known people in every walk of life.

And I want to tell you: I don’t know of anybody’s life that has been more interesting, more thrilling, more packed with thrills and with things that are just sensationally interesting than my own. And I want to tell you that I have found out that living God’s way is not dull, not at all. My life isn’t dull. My life is really exciting and it’s thrilling.

Trust In God (PLAY FROM 10:36)

But I’ve learned one lesson, and it took me years to learn it: and that is that when things look the toughest and the worst, to have absolute faith it’s going to work out alright, because I’ve got a very great powerful Personage that I can trust in. One that has the power to make it come out alright, and will! And I’ve got an absolute promise of One that I can trust, One that isn’t going to lie to me.

Now I’ve found I can’t always trust men. I’ve found a lot of men that I like. And I love them; and I think a lot of them. I like to be with them. But I found I can’t always trust every word they say. Sometimes they misrepresent and I guess sometimes they don’t think that’s dishonest to just cover up certain things, or maybe stretch the truth a little bit, or misrepresent, or represent it just a little bit different than it really was. I found I can’t always trust men. I don’t put my faith in men. I do business with them, but I don’t always put my faith in them.

But I know One I can trust and that’s God Almighty. And I can trust Jesus Christ sitting there at the right hand of God on His throne. He’ll never let me down; He never has! And I want to tell you I have put Him to the test. He’s put me to the test, too. But you know that works both ways. And when God puts you to the test sometimes in these trials and these things that come on in your life, you know, very often, He forces you to put Him to the test, too.

God says, through Malachi, He says, "...prove me now, herewith’ (Malachi 3:10). He just dares you to prove Him; put Him to the test.

I’ve done it. And I’ve known others that have done it. And anyone who has sincerely and honestly and wholeheartedly done it and really put God to the test, really trusting Him honestly, I have never known one that got let down. I want to tell you there’s One that will never let you down. And it’s really worthwhile, it pays off, it’s practical. That’s something that works.

Power of Prayer (PLAY FROM 12:36)

You say, “Isn’t prayer a silly thing?” Other people say, “Well I think prayer is good – it’s psychologically good. It has a good effect on you. It’s good auto-suggestion.” Oh yeah?

Listen: I know when I pray there’s someone there listening. I know there’s the Great Divine Power that holds in His hand every power, every force, every energy in this universe – and One who’s given me promises and can’t fail. He’s going to do what I ask, if I ask according to His will, or according to what He’s promised. Of course I just can’t ask any old foolish silly thing and get it done, because I know better than to ask that way in the first place. So I don’t.

But I’ve really found that there’s so many things about life that can be so wonderful. I can’t enumerate them or tell you here. But they really can; they can just be so wonderful, so many things. Why blessings - sometimes I think Mrs. Armstrong and I have been blessed above all other people on the face of this earth.

Now I know most people they’ll think, “Well I’ve been cursed above everybody on earth. We get more bad breaks. I don’t believe anybody has the troubles we have.”

I used to think that; I don’t any more. I’ve come to the place that I believe now that my wife and myself and our family have more blessings than anybody I know. Now actually I suppose we don’t have it all, just like, actually, I don’t think that we used to have more troubles than everybody else had either, and I don’t think you have; you don’t have more troubles than everybody else – you just think you have sometimes.

You know there’s an old saying that it can be mighty cloudy and you can see the dark, foreboding thunder clouds that frighten you and scare you. You don’t know what’s coming up in the weather. But you know the sun’s shining on the other side of those clouds. And those clouds aren’t going to stay there forever; they’re going to pass over.

And I’ve learned that’s the way with troubles, too. I have come to the place where I had to ask God…I trusted Him, but still I suffered. I trusted God, but still I was crushed down with a load of fear and worry even though I was trusting God. And God answered and delivered us. And I knew He would; and He always had. But I hadn’t learned yet to free my mind of all the weight of these things that weighted me down.

Finally one time I came to the place I couldn’t take any more. And I had to pray and I had to say to God; you know a lot of people don’t know how to pray to God. Well you talk to Him just like you would a real Father that was powerful and that you respected, that you had real respect for, a certain awe. And yet that you know so well and you know He loves you and wants you to talk to Him, and He wants to hear you, and He’s really going to be there to help and answer because you are His own son.

Well that’s the way I talk to God. And I told God at this time that He would just have to give me a respite here for awhile. I couldn’t take it any longer. And I asked Him to give me, I think it was, six months of freedom from this pressure. And I knew He’d deliver me out of these things; that wasn’t the point. But I just had to have freedom from it. And I did. And for six months everything went right.

And I began to realize, then, that I didn’t need to let these things bear me down. I began to learn what the real lesson of faith is. Now I don’t mean for one minute that when these things come up you should take them lightly and say, “Oh well, God’ll work it out. I don’t have to do anything.” And you know sometimes there’s our part we have to do.

You don’t lick an enemy by running away from him. You have to turn around and face these troubles and these things when they come up. And I’ve learned that I have to face them. And I do. But I’ve got a great big help; and I can always call on God Almighty; and I’ve got that help. And I know it’s going to work out, and I know I don’t have to carry the burden or the worry, because I can load it all, I can just commit it over to God. And I don’t let it worry me or bear my mind down any longer.

Now I think we’re probably having just as many of those things, the troubles and problems to meet, and all that, as we ever did. But we don’t worry about them any more like we used to. That’s a wonderful lesson.

Faith (PLAY FROM 16:54)

Now you find that lesson here in this eleventh chapter of Hebrews; it’s a wonderful chapter. Don’t you think, won’t you admit, my friends, that a chapter in any book that will free you from all of this fear and this worry, and relieve your mind from those things and let your mind just be happy. What is happiness? After all it’s a state of mind, isn’t it?

Maybe you think, well, maybe it’s some pain in some part of your body. Well if you disconnect the nervous system from transmitting the knowledge of that pain to your mind you won’t feel it and you won’t suffer. It’s still in your mind – that’s right.

Well now we’ve got about two or three verses here in the preceding program.

"Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." (Hebrews 11:1)

There’s the first verse; and there’s the definition of faith. You know so many people say, “My faith isn’t very strong.” Or they say, “I just can’t seem to work up the faith. I don’t have faith. Why don’t I have more faith?” So many people have said that to me – hundreds and hundreds of them. People don’t know what faith is. They don’t know why they don’t possess it. They don’t know how to get it.

And yet, my friends, "...without faith it’s impossible to please God" (Hebrews 11:6). Not only that, listen now, without faith it’s impossible for you to be saved. Without faith you have nothing but ETERNAL DEATH staring you in the face. Because we're "saved by grace THROUGH faith and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God" (Ephesians 2:8). If you don’t know what faith is, how do you expect salvation?

You know I’ve got a booklet I want you to write in for: 'What Kind of Faith Is Required for Salvation?' People don’t know what faith is. They’ve got what they call faith, but it’s the wrong kind. And a lot of people are kidding themselves! Now I’m using that expression again; it’s very effective. You know what I mean! They are self-deceived; they have a counterfeit!

Do you know that a lot of people have got a counterfeit kind of salvation? They THINK it’s real! They’ve been DECEIVED! They have faith in the people that have sold it to them! They have faith in the kind of place that they think they got it from!

And yet the people they got it from are also deceived – probably very sincere, probably very good people and very honest people.

Why don’t you write for that booklet: 'What Kind of Faith Is Required for Salvation?' or just write for the booklet on, 'Faith?' This is a most important subject. There’s nothing more important in your life!

Well, whatever subject I’m talking on, you hear me say, just like an advertising man, “This is the most important thing in your life.” And I really believe it, because everyone of these things having to do with the revelation of God, with the prophecies of what’s going to happen to our nation, what’s going to happen in the next few years - you’re going to live into it and live through it! What kind of protection do you have? There isn’t anything more important than that; and there isn’t anything more important than your knowing the way to relieve your own mind of these things.

You need the kind of faith that will replace the worries, the fears, the doubts, and all that sort of thing. But very few people have it. You know that your mind is not as free as it ought to be. I don’t care who you are. Now maybe you’ve learned the secret I have. And in that case it won’t apply to you, but otherwise I’m sure it will.

Well people just say, “I can’t seem to work up the faith.” Well you don’t work it up. That isn’t the way you get it. They just don’t know what faith is.

Do you know there are two kinds of faith? And that about 999 out of every 1,000 people, and I think it’s perhaps a much higher percentage than that even, believe in a kind of faith that’ll only bring you damnation!

Do you know that there is more than one kind of faith? You’d better read this booklet, because a lot of people think they’re alright when they’re not! No subject pertaining to Christian salvation is more generally misunderstood than that of, ‘saving faith.' What is it anyway?

‘Just believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.’ Now that’s the popular teaching today; that’s what most people believe. You were born into a world believing that; you grew up into a world believing it and, well, it just got in your mind. And because everybody believes it, so have you believed it. Isn’t that true?

Now if you’re a little bit offended at this, I hope you’re like hundreds of people that I’ve known that got a little offended at the truth, but in order to vindicate themselves, they at least wanted the satisfaction of proving that what I’m saying is so wrong. So they began to look into the Bible to prove I was wrong and, to their utter astonishment and, sometimes, at first, consternation, they found the same thing in the Bible that I’m reading to you.

Now that’s a challenge. Are you afraid to try it; or would you rather kid yourself? Because, my friends, that’s what a lot of you people are doing. I’m speaking very plainly. I’m not beating around the bush at all. I’m striking right out straight from the shoulder. I’m speaking plainly.

Faith That Saves (PLAY FROM 22:01)

Well the statement ‘Just believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shall be saved,’ is absolutely true. I’m not denying that. That’s true – IF you understand what kind of believing is required. But that’s what most people do not understand.

Now, unfortunately, it’s customary to quote only a part of a certain passage of scripture – just reading a part. You know that the Bible has been divided up into verses and, in many, many cases, a verse ends in the middle of a sentence. You read just one verse - you’ve only got part of a thought, or a part of a sentence. That’s all and, if you don’t read the rest, you don’t get the whole meaning at all.

For instance, so many people will read this back here in Ephesians, the second chapter and the eighth verse, about just believing and about the fact that we’re saved by grace through faith. Let me just read that to you. It’ll take just a second here – Ephesians {1} the second chapter. And you’ve heard this so many times.

"By grace are ye saved through faith [oh, that’s true]; and that not of yourselves: IT [what is this, ‘it,’ it’s talking about? Why the faith that saves you] By grace are you saved THROUGH faith, and that [that faith] not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:" (Ephesians 2:8)

People think that I believe in earning salvation. Let me tell you something: all the obedience in the world is not going to save you. Your works will not save you. I believe that just as much as the people believe it that hate the law of God! That’s absolutely true! Your works will not save you; your obedience will not save you; your commandment keeping is not the thing that will save you.

And let me tell you something more: they believe your faith will save you! And I don’t! I don’t believe anything about it. I know and I’m telling you on the authority of Jesus Christ, on the authority of the very WORD of God, on the authority of God Almighty! And I have that authority; and I speak by that authority. YOUR FAITH WILL NEVER SAVE YOU! You don’t have enough faith to save you.

"By grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves: IT [the faith that saves you] is the gift of God." (Ephesians 2:8)

I’ve read to you before here in Galatians (Galatians 2:16) the explanation of that. Why listen: if your faith could save you, then you supply what saves you – you’re saving yourself. That’s just as bad as your own works, or your own obedience – your own commandment keeping – saving you!

The only difference is that some people don’t want to obey God and so they say that your works, or your obedience, your commandment keeping, can’t save you! And they impute a lie to what I preach – and what Christ preached and what the apostles all preached – in saying that the very first condition to salvation is that you repent of your disobedience to God, and that you begin to be willing to keep His commandments and He’ll give you the love that will keep them "...the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit" (Romans 5:5). That’s the love that fulfills the law But then they turn around and say, “But your faith will save you.”

Well either one, that’s your own works, isn’t it? Your faith is your own works and you’re supplying it.

Well you notice what it says there in Galatians 2:16: " "A man is not justified by the works of the law, but by [what – what does justify him?] but by THE FAITH OF Jesus Christ." (Galatians 2:16)

You know that that little word, 'of,' denotes possession? The Bank of Morgan is Mr. Morgan’s bank; the faith of Christ is Christ’s faith, not your faith!

You know when Jesus Christ walked this earth in the human flesh He possessed faith. He had lots of faith. But He said, "...Of myself I can do nothing" (John 5:19, 30; paraphrased). It was the faith He had that came from God.

Now that same Christ has that same faith today! He’s at the right hand of God on the throne in heaven as your High Priest and mine! And there He is to give you all of the faith you need!

That’s why it’s in this priesthood book talking about what Christ is doing now; He’s there to give you faith now!

I’m going to continue. We’re going to go further into this eleventh chapter of Hebrews in the next broadcast. I got to digressing here a little bit today about some other things. But I think it was important for you to have them.


{1} Mr Armstrong mistakenly says, ‘Galatians, the second chapter,’ and then he reads Ephesians 2:8.