The Bible says in Hebrews 11:1-2:
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
For by it the elders obtained a good report.
Put another way, we may say that faith is an inner conviction that God, not only exists, but that all His dealings are trustworthy and good, and that He can always be relied upon to do what He says. It would even be true to say that mature faith requires no miraculous manifestations of any kind to prove the existence or ability of the Most High. This does not mean that faith is some kind of blind belief based on unquestioning ignorance. On the contrary, faith is a vibrant living assurance based on the true knowledge of God as revealed in the Bible and the creation; a spiritual confidence, we may add, that manifests itself in a willingness to obey Yahweh’s law without repeatedly seeking miracles to quell personal doubts.
Being primarily an action of the mind, living faith is by far the finest compliment a believer can pay the Almighty. According to the Scriptures, this action of the mind, this mental recognition of the Eternal’s existence and infinite goodness, is accepted by Him and counted as righteousness. It is called the Righteousness of Faith. Nevertheless, it is important to remember that unless faith comes to fruition and manifests itself in obedience, a mere profession of discipleship without supporting actions is nothing more than self-deluding presumption. And so the grandest and best appeal found in the entire Bible to disillusioned and desperate man is simply to “HAVE FAITH IN GOD” or as the Apostle Paul has said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” This call to have “faith in Jesus” is not merely a call to give mental assent to the fact that a person called Jesus Christ existed or even that He is the Son of God: rather it is the distilled truth of the eternal ages coming through the lips of a spirit filled Apostle to all of us, to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ – to trust Him – to have faith – to follow – to worship and finally to obey him because he was the Jehovah’s chief agent and spokesman in the creation of the mighty universe.
Living faith, therefore, involves total commitment to Yeshua (Jesu), who in reality is the King of Israel, the “I AM” of the Old Testament and the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
- Abraham’s faith was counted as Righteousness. (Romans 4:3-5, Romans 9:30)
- Faith is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. (Galatians 5:22)
- Without faith it is impossible to please God. (Hebrews 11:6)
- It is a fact that the just can only (and do) live by faith. (Romans 1:17, Habakkuk 2:4)
- Faith that does not manifest itself in good works and obedience is dead. (James 2:17)
- A man is not justified by faith alone, but by deeds as well. (James 2:24-26)
- People generally receive of Yahweh in direct proportion to their faith. (Matthew 9:29)
- The purpose of faith is salvation of the soul. (1 Peter 1:9)
- To those given to doubt, Jesus has a special message. (John 20:27-29)
- Faith increases by hearing (or reading) the Word of God. This means that if a believer wants to increase his/her faith, then regular reading of the Scriptures is mandatory. (Romans 10:17)
Author: David B Loughran
Stewarton Bible School, Stewarton, Scotland