Ephesians 2: 8-10, James 2: 14-26
Last time I was asked to write an article for you guys, I wrote about Grace, I want to continue the theme from Ephesians 2 and start to look at faith.
What is faith? Well maybe it is best to start with what faith is not. In a Christian context faith is not scrunching your face up so hard you look constipated in an attempt to believe in a concept or set of values and facts that appear unbelievable.
Neither is it like a powerbar that you have to build up so that you can perform a spiritual special move "Up down and then press both A and B keys" and get God to do a miracle on your behalf, respond to a prayer, or give you the financial breakthrough in your life.
It is in fact trusting your mate to come through and come good for you. It is accepting when Jesus said "It is finished" that it actually was, It is understanding that you are no longer the important person in these things and that Jesus is.
For Christians faith is personal, our faith isn't in Christianity, the Bible, or church. It is not believing the Nicene creed, being able to recite the apostles creed or signing up to the 39 articles of faith important as they may be. But it is trusting our friend, our brother and our Lord Jesus to do what He says He is going to do.
Jesus never called people to a religion, a doctrine and a certain world view He called them to Him. "Believe in ME." He said.
So often we can reduce faith down to something that is impersonal, but I want to tell you it is personal. Jesus is saying "Trust me.", "Follow me" and "Abide in me".
There is nothing abstract about our faith, there are no concepts to get, nothing we have to figure out, we just have to trust our friend, our lord and our creator. Without labouring the point this thing is personal, it is trusting in the person of Jesus to do what He says He is going to do.
Believing in the concept or existence of Jesus isn't enough; James speaks of this in his letter when he says "You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that and shudder". A cold belief in a philosophy does not lead to action in the same way that an active faith in a person does.
Here we start to examine what is the link between faith and works and here we are heading again to the next instalment . So till next timeThe opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.
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