Wednesday, July 02, 2008

What is Faith in Christ?

Biblical faith is not:
  • wishful thinking
  • hope
  • a blind leap
  • trying to be good
  • doing good things
  • believing despite the evidence otherwise
  • courage to take a risk
However, biblical faith is:
  • a reasonable trust and confidence
This trust and confidence is manifest in actions. If I believe my car can get me to work safely, I will get in it, turn it on, and drive to work expecting to get there. In fact, I would rarely think about it, because I have good reasons to believe it will get me there safely.

But, when the car has not been performing well, and I have good reason to believe it would be dangerous to drive, I will develop a reasonable doubt. And the reasonable doubt may cause me not to trust my car to get me to work safely. So, if I refuse to drive it, that will be a wise decision. However, if I drive it anyway, it will be a foolish decision. No amount of hoping will change the car's condition.

Faith in Christ

When we say we have faith in Christ, what do we really mean? Are we hoping he can save us? Are we expecting him to fix our lives? Are we believing the biblical information about him? Are we doing good works as an act of faith? What are we doing when we have faith in Christ?

I will submit to you that it is possible to do good works, believe the information, and have some expectations of him without really having faith in him. Faith means we trust the information is true, and thus we have full confidence and trust in Christ to do what he says, the way he says.

We are confident in who he is and what he is capable of. We obey him, because we know who he is, and what he wants. We've vetted other people's opinions about him, because we know that pleasing him is what really matters. We do good works because we know what pleases him, and we want to do so—not to simply appear righteous. We also try to persuade men, because we know why Jesus came and what the goal really is. Our love is tempered by serious self-examination and comparison to the Word of God, not by worldly expectations. We have settled the matter of the Bible's role in our lives.

Our love must be sincere, because God sees our hearts. Our service must be pure, because he who searches all things knows why we do what we do. Our love for God must be genuine, because there is no gain for hollow people-pleasing. Are we to be perfect? No, because the sacrifice of Christ makes us perfect. But we care enough to seek excellence because he is trustworthy, he is worthy, and we confidently trust him.

No comments:

Post a Comment