May 13th, 2010, 09:25 AM
Christian Fundamentals – Faith
What is it?
Because God is invisible, we need faith to know Him: ”he that cometh to God must believe that he is…” (Hebrews 11:6). The same scripture tells us that ”faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1).
Our Christian pathway contains things we cannot see with the human eye. While we can all see the creation, and believers can enjoy fellowship and the Lord’s Supper, much else is by faith alone.
When we turn to God in repentance and put our faith and trust in the Lord Jesus, we start on a pathway of faith that leads us from earth to heaven. We have set out to meet a Man we have never seen in a place we have never been to before. We therefore need faith for this journey.
How do we get faith?
Faith is a gift of God – we each one have to go to the same source, to God, to get it. ”For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9).
We cannot be saved by works, it is only in the power of the shed blood of Christ that we can be cleansed from our sins. We cannot do anything at all to deserve the salvation of our souls; it is entirely from outside of our souls, through faith in Christ, that we can be saved.
Can we get more faith?
Most of us feel at times that our faith is very weak and that we need more faith. Even the disciples felt the need of this and asked the Lord for more faith. His response was ”If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you.” (Luke 17:5-6).
The Lord was in effect telling them to use the faith they had, however small they felt it to be. If we use the faith we have been given we shall experience the power of God to support us on our pathway.
Can our faith fail?
We cannot be saved today and lost tomorrow, but we can cease to walk by faith. If, for example, we take our eye of faith from our Lord Jesus and look at the dangers, problems and difficulties of the Christian pathway, we can experience a falling away from faith.
The Lord said to Peter ”but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted [hast returned back, or restored], strengthen thy brethren.” (Luke 22:32).
Satan, the great enemy of our souls, would desire to divert us from faith and to have us walking by sight and thus hinder our spiritual progress. We need to remember that we have God’s word and God’s Spirit to guide us on the pathway of faith and that it is our faith which gets the victory over the world (1 John 5:4-5).
[Reproduced with permission]
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