Faith. Part 7
My studies on Faith have shown me at least FOUR DISTINCT WAYS in which Faith operates.
The first of these ways is what may be called THE LEARNING AND DECLARING FAITH
The Bible is every Christian’s “rule book”, and from reading and studying we may come to know a great deal about God. Let’s have a few simple examples.
“By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.” (Hebrews 11:3)
Do you believe this? Or do you believe in the “big bang”? These days it is becoming more and more difficult to maintain a belief in the Creator and His Creation. Evolution is taught in schools, and our children are growing up to accept what scientists say. Asked whether they believe in Creation they either hedge, not wanting to be out of sync with their peers, or else declare vocally that Science has proved otherwise.
But the Bible tells us that God created the Universe. If you truly believe that, and are ready and willing to declare it publicly regardless of what others say, then YOU HAVE TAKEN A VITAL STEP OF FAITH.
“From the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female.’” (Mark 10:6) Jesus spoke these words.
Do you believe in Adam and Eve as literal people? Can you stand up against the growing tide of mockery and derision coming from those who treat the early chapters of Genesis as fable rather than literal truth? Can you draw alongside your Lord and Master, who believed in Adam and Eve, and declare your faith in the Genesis account? If so then YOU HAVE TAKEN A SECOND STEP OF FAITH.
“For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away.” (Matthew 24:38-39)
Do you believe in a Global Flood, and a literal Noah? Once again, these were the words of Jesus Himself. As a Christian, do you maintain the authority of Jesus’ words, and declare your belief in them, regardless of what others may say? If so, the YOU HAVE TAKEN A THIRD STEP OF FAITH.
“Then Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I do not know a man?” (Luke 1:34)
Do you believe in the Virgin Birth of Jesus? You’d be surprised how many Christians fight shy of believing it. There was once a Bishop of Durham who openly declared that the Virgin Birth and the Resurrection of Jesus were not literal, but had to be “spiritually understood.” But if you hold fast to these two precious truths, which are the basis of man’s salvation, know that YOU HAVE TAKEN YET ANOTHER STEP OF FAITH.
These four examples are sufficient for our needs. But one thing has to be understood – the need for DECLARATION of our beliefs. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16) “Always be ready to give a defence to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.” (1 Peter 3:15)
Quite apart from any public declaration, it is a good thing to make an occasional declaration of belief in our prayer times. It is necessary, not only for the Lord to hear it, but also the Devil.
Father, I declare my absolute belief in You as the Creator of the Universe. I believe in Adam and Eve as the first created pair. I believe in a literal Flood, in which only Noah and his family were saved. I believe that Jesus was born to Mary, a Virgin, and that He was a real figure in history, dying on a cross, and resurrected by the power of God, brings man salvation from his sins.
All this has to do with Faith, of the LEARNING AND DECLARING kind.