Daily Devotional – I’m Normal.™ I AM Ministries
“To promote Godly living in a culture committed to destroying it”
Tuesday, June 7, 2016
The author of Hebrews gives us a concise definition of faith in Hebrews 11: “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Armed with this knowledge, our task as Christians is to go forth and apply this principle. It is our job to trust God, not fret over what we cannot prove through science or Earthly experience.
This sounds like a simple formula – but is it? In reality, it is much harder to find and demonstrate true faith than it sounds. Faith is not merely wishful thinking or desiring an outcome, it has foundations and elements that are crucial to achieving the goal. Scripture tells us, “Without faith, it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11:6). Thus, it is important for a person to understand the elements that lead to true faith and how to apply them in real life situations.
Knowledge is one essential element for having true faith. We must first know in what we are putting our faith. All faith must have an object. Without knowledge of the true content of your faith, it is easy to go astray in your thinking or actions. For example, in the 1960’s, a popular expression was “Keep the faith”. Unfortunately, this type of faith carried a nebulous connotation that lacked any specific object – thus, it was dead and carried no real power.
Even with a specific object of faith, however, you can still go wrong. Suicide bombers have put their faith in a false god and in false imaginations of lustful rewards after death. Despite their strong and unwavering convictions, the object of their faith is a fantasy, and any efforts they make on behalf of their faith are futile.
The object of our faith must be Jesus Christ if we desire salvation and an eternal fellowship with God. It is essential to place our complete trust in the work He has done on the Cross and in the Resurrection to conquer death and to justify us before God the Father. Our faith must also be completely in Christ Himself (Romans 3:28) and not in any works we can do (Romans 3:24).
Belief is also a key element of faith. Whereas knowledge is necessary, it is not sufficient. It is possible to know the object or content of faith and still go astray. Perhaps no better example of this is the devil. Satan has full and complete knowledge of God and Jesus Christ. In fact, Satan undoubtedly knows theology better than any human. We know from the Bible how he used Scripture to confuse and deceive, even attempting to do this with Jesus, the author of Scripture (John 1:3), in the desert (Matthew 4:1-11). Scripture tells us that even the demons believe in God – but shudder (James 2:19). Which type of belief do you have – belief in the true I AM God, or something else?
There are many people today who have knowledge of Jesus Christ, yet refuse to believe in the His power and glory. Some religions accept Christ as a prophet, but reject His work on the Cross. This demonstrates how true faith must be a product of both heart belief and the mind’s cognitive awareness and knowledge. Only when the truth received by the mind as knowledge takes root in the believing heart can true faith in the One who can save you become possible.
As intimated above, the final element is acting on your faith. Once you have become a believer in Jesus Christ, you must yield your life to Him. Faith goes beyond knowledge, no matter how complete or accurate, and demands us to cross a line where we stop belonging to ourselves and give our lives over to Jesus Christ. The next step is action motivated by appreciation for our salvation, for faith without deeds is dead (James 2:26). Even though we have been saved through grace, not our works (Ephesians 2:8), we must still show our gratitude by putting our faith into practice. We are God’s handiwork and were created to do good works (Ephesians 2:10).
In Hebrews 11, none of the faithful cited ever received the promise of entering the Promised Land, yet they acted in faith. Moreover, they did not live long enough to experience Jesus Christ, the awaited Messiah. Yet through their faith, they pleased God (Hebrews 11:6).
It is normal to want to have faith, but it is important to have faith in the proper object, and that object is Jesus Christ. It is normal to believe in Jesus Christ, but this belief must be followed by a commitment of the heart. It is normal to trust in Him, but our trust must be confirmed by actions on His behalf that demonstrate our love for Him and our fellow man. These are the crucial elements of faith that lead to eternal life. Coming to true faith requires all these steps be taken. Ask yourself today: where are you in the process?
In His love and service,
A servant of Jesus Christ
© Copyright 2016, I’m Normal.™ I AM Ministries, All rights reserved
If you find this devotional to be a blessing to you, please pass it along to others. You may become a subscriber by signing up at http://www.imnormal.com.
Paperback versions of the book “I’m Normal. I AM” are available through AuthorHouse Publishers at http://www.authorhouse.com/BookStore/ItemDetail.aspx?bookid=38944
Are You Normal? What’s Normal about You? To find out, visit our website at http://www.imnormal.com