Updated: Oct 10, 2019
The word faith means different things to different people. For some it may be their belief system, “what faith do you practice?” or for some, it may be the ability to trust God in very difficult times. Today I want to shed some light on the topic of faith, from the Christian perspective. Faith is very important in our Christian walk because that is the very thing our belief system hinges upon. As Christians we believe that God created the whole universe (both things seen & unseen), we also believe God sent His only son (Jesus) to die and come back to life for the redemption of humanity. In order to believe all these things we’ve been taught and also learned through the bible, we need to have faith.
What is Faith?
Faith according to Hebrews 11:1 is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen. Simply put, faith is believing that something will happen even when you don’t see any signs of that very thing happening. God requires us to have faith because He needs us to trust Him. The writer in the book of Hebrews also says that without faith, it is impossible to please God, because those who come to Him must believe that He is, and He also is a rewarder of those that diligently seek Him. For us to walk this Christian walk, faith is needed, the bible goes ahead to say that by faith, the people of old obtained a good testimony or report. Now, who doesn’t want to testify?
An Example of Great Faith
Abraham is one that the bible refers to as the father of faith. Abraham was a wealthy man, who God had blessed tremendously but there was an issue, he had no child, no one to carry on with his legacy. It was a deep desire for him and his wife for many years to have a child. So one day God revealed to Abraham that he would indeed have a child, and he would be called a father of many nations. God went ahead to tell him that his descendants would be as innumerable as the sand on the seashore.
Isn’t it like God to blow our minds away with promises that seem impossible? That is because He wants us to trust in His innate ability to make it happen and not ours. If God was a Naija (Nigerian) guy now, I would have said He was washing (flattering) Abraham, because the thing He was promising him was too good to be true. But God is not man, and God always backs up His word with action. Who remembers their high school physics? Okay in high school we learned that there is something called kinetic energy. An object gains this energy during its acceleration and maintains it unless there are changes due to speed. It is the same thing when God speaks. When He speaks, His word is set in motion and has great energy/power and the word doesn't return to Him void but it accomplishes the very thing He sent it out to accomplish (Isaiah 55:11).
In fact, the bible says in Numbers 23:19 that; “God is not a man that he should lie, nor the son of man that He should repent, has He said and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?” God is not out here playing games, He means business when He speaks. Just reading this passage of scripture again has reinforced my belief in God, to keep trusting Him for the things He has promised, that I have not yet seen. Okay back to Abraham, the promises were so extravagant, and Abraham up until that point had not fathered any child, not even illegitimately.
His wife Sarah laughed at the promise of God. She was of the opinion that at her old age (she was about 90 years old, I know it’s crazy!) what pleasure was she going to gain from being intimate with her husband who was also well advanced in age. When they waited and waited, and it seemed like the promise was slack in coming, (there was a slight detour, Abraham got her maid pregnant but God still insisted that it was through Sarah He was going to bless Abraham) God came through on His promise. He blessed them with a child, who they named Isaac, meaning laughter. This reminds me of a passage of scripture found in Psalms (126) that says; “When the Lord turned the captivity of Zion around, we were like those who dreamed! Then our mouths were filled with laughter and our tongues with singing”.
When God finally comes through on His promises to us, laughter/joy always ensues. God will never do anything for you and you will be like “is that all?” No! He is always willing and able to do exceedingly, abundantly, above all that we can ever ask or think of. The bible also says of Abraham that against hope, he believed in hope that he was going to be the father of many nations. It also goes ahead to say of him that he was not weak in his faith, he did not even consider his own body, or his wife’s and he did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God and being fully convinced that what God had promised, He was able to perform, and therefore it was accounted to him for righteousness.
And if we know how the story goes, Isaac gave birth to a man named Jacob whose name was then changed to Israel by God and I am sure everyone knows that there is a nation today in 2018 called Israel. When God makes a promise to His child, it is not just a today thing or next week thing, it is a generational thing.
Abraham was a man of exceptional faith! He trusted fully and completely in God even when it did not look like things were going to pan out. I can only imagine how he dealt with the naysayers, the people who usually mock you unintentionally, telling you to give up on your dreams, just because it is taking years to come to pass. There have been times in my life when I had to stand on faith and faith alone, trusting God to come through for me in situations I could not deliver myself from. I had to stand on His promise, I had to stand on His Word, and completely trust that He knew what He was doing and He would come through, and come through He did.
Others who exercised their faith were Daniel and the three Hebrew boys (their story can be found in the book of Daniel). Daniel trusted God to deliver him from the Lion's den when he was thrown in there for his faith in God. Also, the three Hebrew boys who were thrown into the lake of fire for their belief in God as well trusted that the God who they served was able to deliver them from it and He did. You see, you cannot have faith and have doubts at the same time. You have to choose one, it’s either you believe that God is all He says that He is, or you believe that your situation is a god.
The biggest contender of our faith is our ability to see. Because what we believe God for hasn’t been made manifest, we trust more in the situation right in front of us. And if we keep focusing on that, we will lose faith and in turn not receive anything from God. Just like the woman with the issue of blood in the bible believed that if only she could get to Christ and touch His garment, she would be made whole, we also have to come to a resolve similar to hers and believe in the power of God.
“Faith comes by hearing and hearing of the word of God” Paul (Romans 10:17)
How can we build our Faith?
Our faith can be built by studying the word of God and also communing with other believers. You need people in your circle who believe in God just as you do and even more than you do. Those people are the ones who will encourage you when the going gets tough to keep your focus on Jesus. You also need to fill yourself up with the word of God. You can’t say you have faith and you don’t read the bible. You can’t say you have faith and you don’t take time out to listen to the word of God (what kind faith is that?). If you don’t get acquainted with God’s word, you will be like the foolish man who built his house on sand and when the winds and rains came, his house was destroyed because it wasn’t built on a firm foundation (see Matthew 7:24-27).
Another way to build your faith is through prayer. So while you read your bible and surround yourself with other believers together with going to church, you have to have an active prayer life. Jude 1:20 says to build up yourself in your most holy faith praying in the Holy Spirit. Jesus from time to time exemplified this by always withdrawing Himself to go spend time praying. When you pray, your spirit is built up, your faith grows and you feel empowered. Heaven releases strength and power to you when you commune with God, it’s like a divine exchange takes place. You cast your worries on God and He in return gives you His power, peace, joy and strength, to be able to keep standing even in the difficult times.
Faith is very important as a believer; we can’t say we are followers of Christ if we don’t have faith. We need it to please God, we need it to stand in the difficult times, and we need it in our everyday lives. And faith when utilized, even if it is as little as a mustard seed as Christ said in the bible, there wouldn’t be any obstacle we won’t be able to overcome.
Do you need a job? Use faith! A house? Use faith! Are you believing God for healing? Use faith! A spouse? Use faith! Finances? Use faith! Dealing with a difficult boss? You better be faithful and work your faith! The list is endless, there is no circumstance in this life that you will encounter that God will not require faith from you. My pastor always says just as money is earth’s currency, faith is heaven’s currency. So you better get your faith game face on, because without faith it is impossible to please God.
Who else is going to work on their faith this weekend? I know I am, let us not allow doubt, fear, unbelief or the enemy rob us of the great things God has for us this year! Thank y’all for reading, remember to always comment with your thoughts below, or if you have anything that you want us to pray with you about, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Like, share & subscribe to never miss an update. Xoxo