Thursday, April 10, 2008

Faith is the Assurance of Things Not Seen

I've been thinking lately about how we indeed do not live by sight, but by faith. Faith is our sight.

You know, I had hit points in my Grace Walk where I accept the Grace of God in theory but deny it in practice. There are times when I am impatient and do not want to wait for the natural, spiritual, real, genuine fruit of the Spirit. It's sort of like when Abraham waited so long for his promised son and after awhile started to probably reason within himself, "God promised me a son, but maybe I have to initiate the process. After all, don't I have to do my part?"

Yet Romans 4 says: "He didn't weaken in faith even when he considered his own body, which was a good as dead (since he was about 100 years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah's womb. No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what He had promised."

There are times when I feel SURELY I must do SOMETHING. I must get this thing to fly. I must initiate the fruit producing process or I will simply prove myself not to be serious about my faith and am a false believer.

But Jesus, who cannot lie, told us that a healthy tree bears good fruit. He said, and cannot lie, that a diseased tree cannot bear good fruit. If you are healthy (having the Spirit of God) then you will bear fruit because from the Spirit comes good fruit. Yet we cannot be led by Him if we are under the Law. So Jesus commands us to "Take away the stone". The stone represents the Ten Commandments. But the crowd yells to Him "Lord, there will be a stench!" But what they don't know is that Jesus will raise Lazarus from the dead and once the stone is removed, resurrection Life comes walking out!!


Aida said...

Great post! I've never thought about the stone representing the law but you're right. It was the law and behind the law is the stench of death. Great analogy!

The thing that stood out for me in the Romans 4 scripture that you quoted was "but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God."

Living by faith is a growing process as we focus our attention more and more on Jesus rather than on the circumstances of life. Circumstances are distracting but as we stay focused on Jesus, we'll experience more of his life in the midst of our circumstances.

Great stuff!


Bino Manjasseril said...

Faith is our sight.

Absolutely! It reminds me of something Hudson Taylor said:

Faith, I now see, is "the substance of things hoped for" and not mere shadow. It is not less than sight, but more. Sight only shows the outward forms of things; faith gives the substance. You can rest on substance; you can feed on substance.

Joel Brueseke said...

Awesome! Great post and great comments.

Faith is what makes our life in Christ not a religion. Indeed it is substance, it is assurance of the unseen. Religion sticks to the seen. Sure, it may believe in an invisible God, but it goes about trying to please this invisible God through what is seen. Religion is constantly looking at law, looking at behavior, looking at sin, looking at what is seen outwardly.

Faith is assurance of what is not seen, and the substance of it... and the fruit of it is both inward and outward expression.

Religion tries to skip to the end result. But faith waits. Faith rests. Faith trusts in something other than itself.

Matthew said...

You're too much for me, Joel!

Religion tries to skip to the end result. But faith waits. Faith rests. Faith trusts in something other than itself

I JUST got through reading parts of 2nd Corinthians.

12(A) We are not commending ourselves to you again but(B) giving you cause to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast about outward appearance and not about what is in the heart. 13For if we(C) are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14For the love of Christ(D) controls us, because we have concluded this: that(E) one has died for all, therefore all have died; 15and he died for all,(F) that those who live might no longer live for themselves but(G) for him who for their sake died and was raised.