The World Tomorrow

Secrets of Faith - Part 2

by Herbert W Armstrong


You know, if we could only get our minds free from these troubles, and learn the way to have peace of mind and freedom from these fears and these worries, what would it mean? It would mean a lot. And you can have it. And it's absolutely ridiculous and foolish to go around under a burden of these things. I don't mean it's foolish to have troubles, because you're going to have them. I don't know any way to prevent that, because that's life and the Almighty that created us ordained it that way. It's for our good, however, and He ordained these things to teach us certain lessons. And you don't need to be troubled by them.

There's something that no psychologist or psychiatrist can tell you or give you – and that's the real way out. They always try to think that it must be done by the forces within your own mind, within your own being.

Well you've got all of that of course, but you've got something so much more that they don't seem to know anything about. There's the force that controls the universe, the force that gives you the air that you breathe, the Great Intelligence – and it's an intelligent force – the Creator that sustains this universe. An outside Power that you can have direct contact with. And you can drink in from that Power, who is God Almighty, faith – faith to trust and to know that there is a promise that you'll be delivered out of every trouble.

You read in the scripture, "Many are the afflictions of the righteous [well, so do the unrighteous have their afflictions, too. But it only mentions the righteous here because it says]: but the [Eternal] delivereth him out of them all" (Psalm 34:19). But it doesn't say the Eternal delivers the unrighteous out of anything.

Well of course faith...people say, "I don't have much faith." One reason is you haven't gotten in touch with God. You haven't repented of transgressing HIS laws! You've only repented of what you think is wrong. And the natural mind of man is hostile toward God! So you only repent of what you think is right that God condemns, and what you think is wrong that God approves.

But when you come to the place of realizing that God is right and when you really surrender your life over to Him to live His way and to seek out His ways, His paths, to walk in them and to trust Him and to realize that He is the All Powerful One and the All Powerful Being that can just supply to you everything you lack and everything you need.

You know the one thing above all else, perhaps, that you need to help you out of these things is faith. You need other things too, but let's get onto the faith right now, because we've come up to the 'faith chapter' of the Bible.

We're going through this book, one of the most neglected books in the Bible, telling where Christ is now, what He's doing now. What has Jesus Christ been doing these last eighteen, nineteen hundred years? It's a little over nineteen hundred. And He's been on the job as our High Priest – and as our High Priest He is there to help us in this matter of faith. He is there so that our petitions, when they come to God Almighty, are going to be answered. He's there interceding for us. And He has been given all power in heaven and in earth – enough that He could not only move mountains, He sustains the whole universe – all the galaxies and the Milky Ways and everything that the astronomers see in the heavens, millions of millions of times bigger than this whole earth. There's a lot of power. And that's a power that you can bring to your aid.

Real Faith and Wisdom (PLAY FROM 03:56)

Now we've been going through this eleventh chapter.

"Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." (Hebrews 11:1) This is about the third day I've been on that. The marginal rendering says, 'assurance, assurance of things hoped for.'

Now you don't hope for something that you already have, do you? No, you don't hope for what you already have. So faith, my friends, then comes before possession. Now do you get that? Faith is the assurance that you will have what you have not yet got – what you hope for and you don't have it yet.

Now you don't need any faith after you get it. So faith is something you have to have before you see it, before you feel it, before you have it, before you possess it, before it has come to you. Now that is lesson number one, I should say, in faith. That's what you need to know about faith.

Once you have received the possession you don't hope for it any longer and you don't need to have any faith about it. You've got it.

But even before you receive it you do have it in substance. That substance is the assurance that it's coming; it's on the way; you shall possess it – whatever it is – deliverance from some trouble; maybe it's wisdom. You read over in James in your Bible: "If any man lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For a man that wavers is just like a chip of wood out here on the sea" (James 1:5-6 paraphrased). And the sea waves toss it and blow it here, there, the other way. It isn't going anywhere. It'll just be tossed around. Did you ever notice that out on the sea?

Well that's the way you are when you waver and when you don't have faith in God. But He says if you ask, believing, you'll receive it.

Now how much is wisdom worth? There is knowledge – that's a wonderful thing. But knowledge doesn't necessarily give you wisdom. Wisdom comes from the right use of knowledge and the right reasoning process on knowledge.

Now understanding is even better than knowledge. A lot of people have knowledge. But you know there is something that is still...I don't know that it's more valuable, but it might be more convenient to have, at times, and that's wisdom.

Now there is a difference. Solomon wanted wisdom. And God gave him more of it than any man. And I don't think that you or I could have as much wisdom as Solomon today, because I believe that God has determined that Solomon was to have more than any man.

But nevertheless, beginning with age sixteen, there was one thing that I craved. I don't know that I asked God for it a great deal in those days, because I didn't know God very well at that time. The truth of it is, now that I think about it, and I don't know that I'd ever connected this before, it was age sixteen that ambition was aroused in me to begin to get somewhere in the world. And it was also about age sixteen that I dropped out of church and Sunday school and began to lose all interest in religion. And until God began to strike me down at age thirty – like a different manner than He did the apostle Paul, but just as certainly as He did the apostle Paul, and to deal with me and to bring me to myself and to my senses which began – that process began at age thirty. In between there I didn't know very much about God.

Well you know, I wanted understanding, but I don't believe I asked God for it. But I sought it; and I wanted it; and God began to give it to me. But He didn't give me REAL understanding until He had knocked me down and brought me to Him. Because our minds are carnal – that means they're material – they're made out of matter. And they only comprehend material things.

You know the only knowledge you can receive into your mind, naturally that is, that comes through the five senses – what you can see, or touch, or feel, or what you can hear, smell, or taste – and you cannot see spiritual things or principles. And you don't taste them and you don't feel them. So you don't get much knowledge of those things. And God's spiritual laws, the spiritual things, are invisible. They're not the things that are seen.

That's why our chemists and our physicists and our scientists don't know much about spiritual things. It's clear beyond their realm, or, as old Job might have said, 'beyond their ken.' They don't know much about it. And you can't have complete knowledge until you know the spiritual principles and the spiritual laws, because those things act on our physical persons; and they have a great deal to do with our lives.

But I began to ask God for more and more understanding after He brought me to Him and where I really began to know Him. And then I began to realize that I had some understanding, but I lacked wisdom. And of all men, I really felt I had less wisdom than anybody.

Now wisdom is the ability to have knowledge, and to have understanding of that knowledge, and then to have the right processes of reasoning by all of that, to make a right decision, to APPLY that knowledge, to show what is the right course, the right decision to make in regard to a specific case or instance in a certain circumstance – to know what to do with it. So you see the most practical thing of it, perhaps, is after all, the wisdom.

Faith is Evidence (PLAY FROM 09:37)

Now again, faith is an evidence; it is the substance, or the assurance, of what you hope for, but it is the evidence of things not seen. Well you haven't got it yet. You don't see it. But you have an evidence that you're going to have it. It's absolutely sure.

What is that evidence? A case in court, a trial being held in court – a man's life often hinges on the evidence. The evidence is what they judge by. They determine which way it is and what is true and what is false according to the evidence.

Now do you determine what is true or false about receiving an answer from God by the evidence? And what is the evidence that determines whether it is true that God has heard, that God is answering? Why your faith is the only evidence you have. You don't have an evidence you can see. A lot of people want an evidence they can see. Well when you see it you don't need any faith any longer.

Now just remember this: that faith is blind, it has to fly blind. It is the thing you have to have before you can see, before there is the visible evidence. Faith is, then, something spiritual, isn't it? Of course! You don't see it, you don't feel it, you don't hear it, you don't taste it, you don't smell it.

So it's an evidence of what you don't see – which means you don't have it. Faith precedes the actual receiving of what you ask for. Faith is the evidence you shall have it before you see it, before you receive it. It is an evidence of things not yet seen. You don't see it; you don't feel it. But you do have that evidence. You hope for it and you know you're going to have it. Faith becomes an absolute knowing without having seen, without having yet possessed.

And so I want you to notice that when you hope for things that ... or you ask God for things there is an evidence, there is a proof, because evidence is proof that you shall receive what you have asked.

Now what is the proof? What is the proof that God has heard and that it can't fail, that it's either already done and you haven't seen it, or it's on the way and you haven't received it, one or the other? What is that evidence? Is it the receiving of it? Oh no! That wouldn't require faith; and wouldn't be faith.

A good definition of faith is that God will perform whatever He has promised in His written word – the Bible! Why don't you study the Bible and see what it promises? It makes promises to you and you can rely on them! That's a written promissory note from God Almighty! Why don't we wake up, then, and study the Bible with a little more common sense? Make a practical thing of it! Is there anyone at the other end listening when you pray? Of course there is. Of course there is.

Now we had come up here the other day, if you remember, to the fact that "By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death." (Hebrews 11:5)

What does that mean? Where did he go? Now was Enoch taken up to heaven; is he there at the right hand of God, with Jesus Christ, now? Well, my friends, I can tell you this definitely: he was NOT there nineteen hundred years ago because, at that time, if you will turn to John, the third chapter, and the thirteenth verse, John 3:13, you will read where Jesus Christ Himself said, if He knew what He was talking about, He said, listen:

"NO MAN hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of Man." (John 3:13)

Now He was talking about the heaven He had come down from – where He had been with the Father from the very beginning. Because, you read in the very first chapter of John, He is the Logos, or the Word that was made flesh, Jesus Christ (John 1:1-2;14).

He "...was the Word, and the Word was WITH God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1). And He had been with God from the very beginning. He had always been; had always been there. So Jesus Christ had come from the very throne of God. And that's where He has gone back to now; that's where He is now.

Now Christ said that when He was on this earth 1900 years ago, "No man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of Man" (John 3:13). He Himself. He's the only man that had ever been there, but He was now made man, and He was a man. And yet He was the only One that had ever been to heaven.

What are you going to do with that? Say, "Well, I'd rather believe Enoch {1} went there, so I'm going to scratch that out and call Jesus Christ a liar!" Well Jesus ought to know. He came from there and He said that no man had ever gone there.

Faithful Enoch (PLAY FROM 14:26)

Now let's get into this. At the age of sixty-five, sixty-five years of age, Enoch had a son named Methuselah. Now you read of that back here in Genesis 5:22.

"And Enoch walked with God, after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and he begat sons and daughters [now notice it....] And Enoch walked with God, AFTER he begat Methuselah, three hundred years , and [continued to be the father of] sons and daughters." (Genesis 5:22)

Now here was a man that, undoubtedly, pleased God – a man that walked with God. And you know that was just as rare a thing in those days as it is today? Enoch had faith, because, now in Hebrews 11:6, where we've been back here, and I have read the fourth verse, you know, just a few broadcasts back here ...

"By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain [and so on]... By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God. But without faith it is impossible to please [God]: for he that cometh to God MUST BELIEVE that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him." (Hebrews 11:4-6)

Now Noah is next mentioned if you'll notice, there, in the next verse. Enoch had faith then, because without faith it's impossible to please God. And he pleased God; he walked with God. So we know that Enoch obeyed God and followed Him in the paths of God by faith. And Enoch is given as one of the great examples of faith in this 'faith chapter' in the eleventh chapter of Hebrews.

Now Noah had also walked with God. As I say, that comes here in this ninth verse. Enoch and Noah did not follow the paths of the world which had corrupted God's way.

Now you turn back here in Genesis the sixth chapter and the twelfth verse. "God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way [that's God's way] upon the earth" (Genesis 6:12). All flesh had corrupted God's way. Well, human nature is the same today as it was then before the Flood.

Well, Enoch did have this kind of faith. Noah also had it. Noah walked with God and is given as an example of faith.

Now those men proved their belief in God by walking in the ways of God, by doing the things that pleased God. In other words: they didn't have a dead faith, they had a living faith. And it was really living, and they walked in it. No man can walk with God except he is in agreement with God, and with the will of God, in doing it.

Now did you ever notice – here is something that IS in your Bible; and this is true; it's one of the very basic truths of life; remember this. Amos the third chapter and the third verse: "Can two walk together except they be agreed (Amos 3:3)?" Not very far – two people can't continue together very far except they be agreed.

But Enoch was walking with God for 300 years. That's a long time. That's longer than the United States has been here as a nation. That's just like he had started to walk with God way back a long, long time, well, as a matter of fact over a 100 years before George Washington, and was still walking with God today. Think of that. Can your mind even conceive all of that?

So, in his generation, Enoch was actually the only recorded person who followed the ways of God. If there were any others, there's no record of it, even though it possibly took him sixty-five years to learn to walk with God, because it is not recorded that he walked with God prior to that time. He may have, but that fact is not stated. So Enoch followed God's ways for at least 300 years.

Did Enoch Die? (PLAY FROM 18:48)

Now if Enoch did not die, if he had been changed to immortality, if he had continued to walk with God up in heaven somewhere, then his days would have been a lot more than three hundred and sixty-five years. They would have been, well, clear up to the time that Moses wrote it, which was a long time afterward, at least. But the Bible plainly says that all of his days were just exactly that many, and no more. Now, remember, Moses does not say that Enoch didn't die. He doesn't say that he never died.

Rather, he says, "Enoch walked with God: and he was not [then he says]; he was not; for God took him" (Genesis 5:24). 'He was not; for God took him.' What does that mean?

Now Paul records the same event by saying, "He was not found" (Hebrews 11:5). Let me turn right back here and read this again.

"For by faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found [that just says they couldn't find him; they didn't know where he was, because God had translated him... was not found] Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and [he] was ...that he should not see death." (Hebrews 11:5)

Does that mean that he did not, then, see death?

Now let's go a little further. The scripture records that Enoch was not found, because God took him and, or, translated him. The Bible does not say that Enoch went to heaven because he was translated. Instead it says, 'he was not found'. Well now certainly Enoch was translated, but what does, 'translated,' mean?

My friends listen: strange as it may seem, nowhere in all the Bible does this word, 'translate,' or, 'translated,' mean, 'to make immortal.' It does not mean that any place in the Bible.

Now the original Greek word for, 'translate,' is ... well ... I can't pronounce it. It's m-e-t-a-t-i-t-h-e-m-i; that's Greek; and it's Greek to me and it's Greek to you. And I won't try to pronounce it. That is the word that is translated into our language; and there I used the word, 'translated.' And what did I mean – 'made immortal?' No, just changed into a different language. According to Strong, it signifies, and this is the definition, 'transfer, transport, exchange, or to change sides.'

Now this same Greek word is rendered, 'carried over,' in Acts 7:16. Here we read that, after Jacob died, his body was 'carried over,' or, 'transported' – that is, 'translated' – to Sychem where he was buried. That's what your Bible says, that Jacob was translated over to Sychem where he was buried. Now that doesn't mean he was made immortal and taken to heaven. Jacob was transported, or translated, to a place of burial.

Now that's why Moses said that God took Enoch. God removed – translated – him so that he was not found.

In Deuteronomy 34:6, you read also how God took Moses from the people after which he died and was buried. But it says then, "...but no man knoweth his sepulcher unto this day" (Deuteronomy 34:6). God removed Moses and he was not found – just like Enoch, then.

So Enoch was not made immortal after all. He was taken away and was not found. All of his days were three hundred and sixty-five years{2} That's as long as Enoch lived and that's what your Bible says.

Now Enoch is included by Paul among the fathers who 'obtained a good report through faith.' But he says in Hebrews 11:39:

"All these, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise:" (Hebrews 11:39)

People of Faith Died (PLAY FROM 22:53)

Now notice that: he's speaking of 'all of these,' including Enoch. He starts out here by Abel, and then he comes to Enoch, and then Moses, and he comes on down to Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, and even Sarah is mentioned. And he says, in verse 13, "THESE ALL DIED IN FAITH, not having received the promises." (Hebrews 11:13)

So there you have an out-and-out statement that Enoch died. He's one of those included. "These all died not having received the promise" (Hebrews 11:13). You find that again in verse 39. I was just then reading it to you in verse 13. And over here in verse 39, next to the last verse: "These ALL, having obtained a good report through faith [including Enoch], received not the promise" (Hebrews 11:39). So he didn't go to heaven.

Now "...the hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, has promised before the world began" (Titus 1:2), – as you read in Titus 1:2. So Enoch is one of 'all these' who have not yet obtained the promise of eternal life and inheritance. Enoch and all the worthies of old will receive the promise of eternal life at the return of Christ – the same time that Christians obtain it. And you read all of that in the fortieth verse – Hebrews 11:40.

Now since Enoch has not yet inherited eternal life, he must be dead. This is exactly what Paul writes in Hebrews 11:13. Paul said that Enoch died, really, if you notice it. I just read it to you there: "THESE ALL DIED IN FAITH" (Hebrews 11:13), and he is including, beginning with Abel, and then Enoch and Moses and Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and so on. And in verse 13 Paul proved that they had not inherited the promise by saying, "These all died in faith." (Hebrews 11:13)

But what about Paul saying that "Enoch should not see death;" now he did say that, didn't he? "Enoch should not see death." Enoch lived only three hundred and sixty-five years. Then what could Paul possibly mean by saying, "By faith Enoch was translated THAT HE SHOULD NOT SEE DEATH?" (Hebrews 11:5)

Now, if he was translated, he was converted, changed – not from mortal to immortal – but from the darkness of this world to the light of the gospel. And he was not found, now, he says, because God translated him.

Well this verse nowhere says that Enoch did not die. Rather, it says, "Enoch SHOULD NOT see death." But what does that mean?

Now, remember, there is more than one death mentioned in the Bible. There's a first death; and then there is a second death. Which death did Paul mean?

What is the "wages of sin"? It's death (Romans 6:23). But "'s appointed to all men once to die, and after this the judgment' (Hebrews 9:27). And it's the second death that is the wages of sin. The first death is appointed unto men – Hebrews 9:27 {3}. That death cannot be humanly evaded; it's inevitable.

But Paul said that, "Enoch was translated, he SHOULD not see death" (Hebrews 11:5). That word, 'should,' applies to the future, not to the past.

The phrase, 'should not see,' is in the conditional tense of the verb having reference to a future event. It is not in the past tense. It doesn't say, 'he did not see death,' but that he 'SHOULD NOT,' in the future, see death – referring, of course, to the second death.

Now did Jesus ever speak of a death that might be escaped? He certainly did. In John 8:51, Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, If any man keep my saying he shall never see death." (John 8:51)

But those men all died, my friends. He was talking of not seeing this second death that is the penalty of sin. That's the only death that you need to worry about – the death from which you cannot EVER be resurrected.

"Whosoever liveth and believeth in me [John 11:26] shall never die."

That applies to you. You won't ever die permanently.

Now this death is one that can be escaped – on condition that men keep the sayings of Jesus and believe in Him. Then it must be the second death which will never touch those who are in the first resurrection. You read of that in Revelation twenty (verse 6). And Enoch will be in the first resurrection because he met the conditions.

Well I haven't quite time to finish it. I'm going to pick up there. I've got a little more to say on that and to get to this about Elijah tomorrow. And are you going to have a surprise when I reveal to you where Elijah went. And that it is plainly told in the scriptures of your Bible. You're really going to be surprised.

Now I want you to write in for the booklet that I have on 'What Kind of Faith Is Required for Salvation?' A lot of you have been hearing that there is no works. But how do you know what's right? Actually, you'll have to study your Bible if you're going to really know, because God Almighty, the Creator, is the One who set down these laws of right and wrong.

Those are laws that are living; they're in motion; they're real; they live; they're alive! They were set in motion for your happiness. If you live according to them, you'll be happy. And if you break them, you're going to be miserable and unhappy. And most of you are carrying around a lot of misery, a lot of headaches, a lot of heartaches, a lot of troubles.

Now if you just had the right kind of faith, you could be rid of them. Write in for this booklet on 'Faith.' Write in for that booklet on, did Elijah go to heaven, and Enoch; where are they; did they go to heaven? Now write in for those booklets. There's no charge. So until tomorrow, goodbye friends.


{1} Mr. Armstrong said, 'Elijah,' but meant to say, 'Enoch.'

{2} Mr. Armstrong just said, 'three hundred and sixty-five,' omitting, 'years,' which was implied.

{3} Mr. Armstrong referenced Hebrews 9:21, but actually read Hebrews 9:27