As Christians we throw around a lot of words like repentance, glorification, sanctification, and faith. We have little understanding on the meaning of words like these, and how the words apply to our lives. In the next few months I am going to unpack these words, give you a biblical understanding, and how to apply it to your life.
Faith is a gift from God (Eph. 2:8). Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see (Heb. 11:1). This definition of faith is often the same for the word believe. A belief is something we think exists. If we just believe in God, we are no better than demons (Jas. 2:19). Neither can faith be by itself, if not accompanied by action, it is dead (Jas. 2:7). Abraham had an amazing display of faith when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? Abraham knew killing his son Isaac would end the line of Jesus, but Abraham still choose to obey(action) God. Abraham's faith and actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did (Jas. 2:22). Through faith you will be righteous (Ro 1:17). And faith produces works; that’s why the passage says “works of faith.” When we put our faith in Christ, God changes our hearts and desires so good works are actually possible (Philippians 2:13). If you have faith, works will be done, which have been prepared for you (Eph. 2: 8-10).
Do you just believe in Jesus or do you have faith in Jesus?
John Calvin, a preacher in the 1500s said this in his third book of the Institutes of Christian Religion within chapter 4, "This is so true that the term faith is often used as a synonym for confidence” (Calvin 148). In him(God) and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence (Eph. 3:12). God is faithful to all his promises (Ps. 145: 13). We tend to look at God’s promises objectively but not in our own experience. We must take his promises and embrace them in our heart, then our confidence through faith will come to life. A true faithful Christian is one that is firmly convinced he is reconciled to God. John Calvin talks about this in his book, “In other words, you can’t have strong faith in the Lord unless you are gloriously confident of being an heir to the heavenly kingdom” (Calvin 149). This is why Paul says, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Ro. 8:38-39). PROCLAIM the kingdom of heaven through the faith God has given you!
Are you confident to be an heir to the heavenly kingdom?
God you are so glorious, thank you for giving me faith, that produces good works that you have already prepared for us to do. Let us be confident of the gift you have in store for us in Heaven.
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