|Today’s reading is drawn from Hebrews 11:1.
What Does It Mean to Have Faith?
In the Bible, faith is always tied to an active trust in God and his Word. For the believer, there is no such thing as “blind faith.” Faith is the sensible response to the revealed will of God and the privileges he has promised his people. Biblical faith does not mean that people can believe in any unlikely thing and God, in response, must bring it to pass. In other words, faith that is not directly attached to God’s Word is merely positive thinking.
At its core, faith — trusting God — is how people access the salvation God has provided in Christ Jesus. Abraham, the father of all who have saving faith (Ro 4:16), believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness (Jas 2:23). Faith is not righteousness, but it is how we access Jesus’ saving righteousness — something we could never access on our own (Eph 2:8).
Faith, God’s gift to his followers (Eph 2:8), is fortified by paying careful attention to the Bible and practicing the spiritual disciplines. Romans 10:17 says, Faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ. Throughout the Christian life, faith continues to be how believers receive the privileges and necessities for serving Christ. We trust God to give what he has promised — whether it is gifts and abilities to do the work of Jesus in the world and in our own hearts (Jn 14:12 – 13) or whether it is carrying us through our spiritual journey and into our eternal home in heaven.