"IF YE WILL NOT BELIEVE,
SURELY YE SHALL NOT BE ESTABLISHED."
This word of God given by Isaiah to wicked king Ahaz was recorded for our learning and admonition. Unbelief caused Ahaz to disregard God's Word and lean upon the arm of the flesh. The result of his unbelief was destruction. Because he would not believe God, he could not be established in the kingdom of God.
HERE IS A WORD OF WARNING TO EVERY UNBELIEVER. If you will not believe God, you shall not be established in the kingdom of God. If you lean upon your own works, you will be damned. You might as well trust and worship Satan himself as trust your own righteousness. If you will not trust the Lord Jesus Christ, you must be lost forever. "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved" (Acts 16:31). But "he that believeth not shall be damned" (Mk. 16:16).
YET THIS WORD FROM GOD MAY CERTAINLY BE APPLIED TO ALL HIS CHILDREN. Everything in God's house is given to faith. But, "if ye will not believe, surely ye shall not be established." In all things spiritual, our instability must be traced to our unbelief. If you will not believe you will not be established in comfort (John 14:1-3), -- in doctrine (Eph.4:13-16), -- in hope (Tit.2:11-14), -- in consecration (Lk.14:25-33), -- or in usefulness (Zeph.3: 15-17; 1 Cor.15:58). Faith gives stability to God's saints in this world. Unbelief makes us unstable, wavering, and hesitant.
UNBELIEF IS INEXCUSABLE. It is inexcusable in the reprobate, and even more inexcusable in Godís saints. Our great God has proved his truth and faithfulness to us. Has he not? His goodness cannot be questioned. Yet, we often question his goodness! His providence cannot be doubted. Yet, we often doubt his providence! His grace cannot be denied. Yet, we often deny his grace! Though we are redeemed by the blood of Christ and born again by his Spirit, there is yet within us an evil nature, a perverse will, and a wicked heart of unbelief.
Let us confess our sin to the Lord. I see nothing in this world so evil as the unbelief of my own heart. Even my faith is full of unbelief. Even my faith is sin! How we ought to rejoice in the fact that our salvation depends not upon us, not even upon our faith, but upon the person and work of our Lord Jesus Christ! Yes, faith is necessary. We cannot be saved without it. But our faith looks to Christ alone for grace.
May God the Holy Spirit be pleased to both subdue our sinful nature and increase our faith. We might well pray, "Lord, I believe, help thou mine unbelief!"