When we look through the Scriptures, we would see that the subject of faith is one subject we can’t seem to be short of. The christian believe is often refered to as a faith, i.e the christian faith. And if we also examine christianity we would see that the foundation upon which our relationship with God is based on is faith. Without faith we wouldn’t be able to access all that Jesus Christ has made available to us through His death and resurrection.The question to ask ourselves is, what really then is faith? What is it’s importance? And why would it be so important? Virtually all through the scriptures we see the word faith, both in the new and old testament there seems to be an abundance of this.
What is faith?
According to Hebrews 11:1 “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” this is one of the most outstanding definition of faith we find in the scriptures. In 1 Corinthians 2:14 we get to understand the definition above, because of the inability of man to receive the things made available through the Spirit of God, faith is the substance of the things we hoped for, that is – all our hopes which isn’t in the natural, faith gives substance to it and brings it to reality. When we have taken delivery of the things promised, faith is the evidence of this which can’t be seen with the natural eye. There is a saying that the Spiritual influences the physical. Faith is that which brings the supernatural into the natural. That’s why in Habakkuk 2:4 we are told “the just shall live by their faith” which is to say the just are people who bring to reality all thats been promised by the father through their faith In Him
In this light we see that faith is;
- Faith is a complete trust in God
- It is a testament to all God has provided and the enabler to getting it.
- Faith is the very essence of our following God [Romans 1:17,10:10].
- Faith is foolishness to the carnal mind; this we might not agree with, but the word of God clearly states this, faith is more spiritual than just a mere mental state and as such cannot be understood by the carnal mind. We try to reduce faith to just be a mental state that once you attain this state, you have faith. On the contrary faith is a spiritual force that subjects the physical to the spiritual and align both world for the establishment of the Fathers Will, purpose and design and as such cannot be understood by the human mind unless it’s been revealed through the Spirit. [ 1 Corinthians 2:12].
- Faith is a gift; often time we struggle in our work with God, because we do not know this, faith does not originate from us, it is neither something we are capable of conjuring through our own physical strength. It is a gift and it is only when we come to this understanding that we can effectively use it in our walk with God.
- Faith justifies; faith brings us to the justification that has been provided by grace [ Romans 3:21-26, Galatians 2:16] many believers battles with the issue of justification and battle with the guilt of their last life thinking it seeking for something which they can do to be sure they have been forgiven and justified, when in the real sense they have been justified by grace through Jesus Christ, and all they have to do is to receive it by faith.
- Faith is the platform on which we receive all the father has provided through the son; from salvation to blessings and all the gifts of God through the Spirit. Faith gives us access to all this. That is why Romans 1:17 & Habakkuk 2:4 says “the just shall live by faith” every stage of our lives as christians must be characterized by faith. To get to the eternal home promised by Christ, we must have faith [Hebrews 10:35-39].
Having seen what faith is, this brings us to the next question. What is the importance of faith?
Faith for a believers is as important as air is important to every living creature. Because it is the very essence with which we even start in seeking after God [Hebrews 11:6]. It brings substance (life) to all That’s loaded in the spiritual. It is also the very core of our lives as believer without which we can do nothing.
FAITH AS A GIFT
For us to effectively apply faith in our lives, we must understand that faith is a gift, it is not something we are capable of manufacturing on our own in the natural.
In 1 Corinthians 12:4-11 we see faith mentioned there as one of the gift of God through His Holy Spirit, and the Spirit, however He pleases. But this is not so we can find excuse for why at some point we are faithless. Not at all. In Romans 12:3 we are made to understand that we all have given a measure of faith, which is enough to bring us into all He has provided and called us to. Although there are different levels of faith, this comes as a result of our maturity in Christ. “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing the word if God.” To grow in our faith we must grow in our knowledge of the word of God. It could also be said that; how effectively we use the gift of God is dependent on how much of the word we are equiped with.
Hebrew 12:2 lets us know the source of faith is Jesus Christ. Many time our faith fail us because we think we are the source of our own faith , far from it Jesus is the author and the perfecter of faith, which He has freely given to us, to enable walk with Him blameless and an enabler in our ministerial work for God
When we take a look at Hebrews 11 we’d see that all the great heroes mentioned there attained success by the one thing they all shared in common “Faith”. If we must also be successful in our christian race, faith is something we can’t do without.
GROW IN FAITH
Just as every gift God has blessed us with, we need to grow in our faith. There is no way in other things and not grow in our faith. If we must grow in faith, then how?
- Through the reading and hearing of the word of God [Romans 10:17].
- Through our relationship and constant fellowship with the Holy Spirit [John 16:13-15].
- Through prayer and fasting; there are many function and benefit of prayer, and one of this is that the more we engage in this beautiful act, the more we grow and boost out faith. We build trust in the place of prayer.
- Fellowship with God and with brethren [Acts 4:14].
Faith is a beautiful thing that God has blessed us with. Although faith is a lot of things to the believer, before we can experience faith in it’s various form and levels, we must have a solid foundation, then can we effectively enjoy it in its fullness. When we don’t, we burn ourselves out trying to stir faith by our own strength and when we fail in this regard, we are quick to accuse ourself of not having enough Faith. Jesus in the scriptures says ” if you have faith as little as a mustard seed, you can say to the mountain; be thou cast into the sea and it will.” Our faith doesn’t need to be big to be effective, it just need to be as little as He has said and we become unstoppable.