Articles

Articles

On What is Your Faith Based?

Biblical, saving “faith” comes from and is built upon the Word.  “So faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ,” Romans 10:17.  That the Word of God says this is certainly sufficient, but have you ever wondered why this is so?  Think about it for a moment…

We can know God exists from the evidence provided in the world He created that surrounds us, and from the wonders present in our own bodies. Such didn’t just happen by chance, cf. Romans 1:18-20 and Hebrews 3:4.  But these natural revelations of God, though they tell us of His existence, power, and nature, do not tell us how to live in response to God.  For this, we needed a specific revelation from God.  The Scriptures are that specific revelation, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work,” 2Timothy 3:16-17.  From the Scriptures, we “learn what is pleasing to the Lord,” Ephesians 5:10.  Without knowledge of God’s Word, our faith is, at best, immature, incomplete, and impotent since it is based only on the knowledge of God’s existence and nature without the ability to provide us the information needed to please and be in fellowship with Him, Hebrews 11:6

With these things in mind, please consider the following very carefully and honestly:

  • Is your faith based on God’s Word, or your personal thoughts, feelings, and desires?  How can you tell?  If God’s Word contradicts what you think, feel, or desire, which takes precedence in your life?  When we substitute our own thinking, feelings and desires for what God has said, we have become become our own god instead of humbly submitting to the God.  In such cases, we are selfishly choosing our will over His will.  Remember that even Jesus Christ, would not do this.  When facing the horrors of the cross, He prayed, “Father, if Thou art willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Thine be done,” Luke 22:42.  He set aside His own personal feelings and desires, as difficult as such surely was, to submit to God’s will.  Is your faith based on God’s Word (His revealed will), or your own feelings and desires?
  • Is your faith based on God’s Word, or your experiences?  For some, “faith” is the result of their own personal “experience(s).”  They view their physical blessings, or even salvation from physical peril or tragedy as evidence of God’s spiritual acceptance of them and therefore fellowship with Him.  But let’s think about these things.  Do ‘bad things’ happen to ‘good people’?  Yes.  Do ‘good things’ happen to ‘bad people?’ Also, yes.  Then how can our ‘good’ experiences be either the cause or validation of our “faith”?  Note the truth from God’s word on these matters, “…He (God) permitted all the nations to go their own ways; and yet He did not leave Himself without witness, in that He did good and gave you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying your hearts with food and gladness,” Acts 14:16b-17.  God loves and sustains even those who don’t love Him (cf. Matt.5:45), but does so as a “witness” giving evidence of His existence and nature rather than as evidence of our faith and fellowship with Him.  So how do we know we are acceptable to and in fellowship with God?  His Word explains it very clearly in 1John 2:3-6, “By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.”  This is why our faith MUST come from and be based in the Word rather than our own experiences… even those “better felt than told” ones.
  • Is your faith based on God’s Word, or your families’ or friends’ convictions?  Many people are what they are religiously because of the influence of their family and/or friends.  If your family/friends led you to and taught you the Truth of God’s Word, that’s great.  But if they influenced you to believe a “different” or “distort(ed)” version of “the gospel” that is “according to man” rather than “the revelation of Jesus Christ,” they are “accursed” according to Gal.1:6-12.  How can you know whether your faith is based on the true or a distorted gospel?  It’s actually very simple: Read and study your New Testament.  It was delivered and is meant to be both read and understood, Eph.3:3-5.  If what you have been taught by your circle of friends and family does not match was the Bible says you have a choice to make.  You can believe them, or you can believe GodBut remember, it is not the opinions or doctrines/teachings of your family that will judge you in the end, “He who rejects Me, and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the word that I spoke is what will judge him at the last day,” John 12:48.  Your family and friends may have themselves been deceived by false teaching and perversions of the gospel, so on what should your faith be based?  Honestly answer one question:  If your family and/or friends believe and practice something other than the revealed truth of the gospel, which will you accept and follow? 

By God’s grace we are saved through faith, Eph.2:8.  But for God’s grace to save us “through faith,” that faith has to come from and be founded upon “the word(s) of Christ” (Rom.10:17) rather than our own personal thoughts, feelings, desires, and experiences or the anyone else’s convictions.  It has be YOUR faith produced and sustained by the truth of the revealed “word of God.”  Now please consider carefully our title question, “On what is YOUR faith based?” Your eternity depends upon the answer. 

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