June 21, 2017 (Faith Defined)

What faith is not:

·         What the world calls faith-

·          strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.

·         This puts God in the realm of Santa Claus and Unicorns.

·         This is not what Biblical faith is

What faith is

  • Πίστις (Pistis)- “belief, trust, conviction” in the person of God and Christ as the only means of salvation, forgiveness of sin, and guarantee of eternal life.
  • Persuaded by evidence or a sound argument.
  •  Hebrews 11:1-
     Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
  • “Faith is seeing the invisible, but not the nonexistent”
    -A.W. Tozer

“Faith is not an opinion but a certitude. “The substance of things hoped for,” says the apostle– not the phantasies of empty conjecture”
- Saint Bernard of Clairvaux

Examples of Faith in Scripture

„  Noah: (Gen 6-9)

„  God spoke to him and Noah obeyed. He did not see God but he heard from God and had faith that what God said would happen.

„  Abraham: (Gen 12-18)

God spoke to Abraham and made a promise to him. Abraham listened and obeyed

„  The Disciples: (The Gospels)

„  They followed Jesus, God in flesh. They still had issues with their faith but ultimately believed.

„  The Apostle Paul (Acts/Epistles)

„  Acts 9 (Paul’s Conversion)

„  Jesus reveals himself to Paul, and Paul believes and has faith

 

 

 

Requires Three Things (1/3)

Knowledge:

Facts, information, and skills acquired by a person through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.

“An intelligent heart acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.” – Proverbs 18:15

Knowledge of God is the first step to faith. Without knowledge of God, how will we have faith?

 ”How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard?” -- Romans 10:14a

Faith Requires Three Things (2/3)

„  Belief:

„  An acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists.

„  Trust, faith, or confidence in someone or something.

„  “He does not believe that does not live according to his belief”
-Thomas Fuller

„   ”How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard?” -- Romans 10:14a

Faith Requires Three things (3/3)

„  Trust:
firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of
someone or something.

„  In the Hebrew: חָסָה (chasah)

„  To seek refuge

„  O Lord my God, in You I have taken refuge;
Save me from all those who pursue me, and deliver me
- (Psalm 7:1)

„  In the Hebrew:  בָּטַח (batach)

„  Have confidence in. (Be completely certain of something)

„  “Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid;
For the Lord God is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation.” –Isaiah 12:2

 

 

Conclusion

       Biblical Faith is not the same as believing in Santa or unicorns

       Every example of faith in the Bible is supported by an interaction with God.

       Faith requires knowledge, belief and trust.

       Think about how your faith lines up with the Biblical definition. Is your faith based on God moving in your life, or on thoughts of God being a genie or magician?

 

 

 

 

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