Faith in God – redefining Christianity in terms of faith

I am yet to encounter a person who is satisfied with their level of faith in God. Most Christians are still guessing and hoping and praying and trying anything to get their faith situation handled. And frankly, I am very concerned. The church is failing to recognise how important faith is and therefore is not doing enough to address this gap. At the moment, I am not hearing enough people in the church today speak compellingly about the sure path for developing effective faith in God.

 

Yet the Bible is clear: without faith, it is impossible to please God. Anything done without faith is sin. Abraham had faith in God and it was accredited to him as righteousness. Having faith is so central it is incredulous how the church is letting people keep guessing at it. No wonder Christians are generally weak. They lack confidence to tackle small challenges. Tempers, selfishness, and disease are the order of the day. Their lives are defeated and lacking in testimony.
hearingThe Good News is that the Bible is clear about how we get faith. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17). Again, while this scripture is quoted widely in the church, not many people are able to understand exactly its meaning. They are fuzzy and will resort to age-old clichés and admonitions such as: read your Bible:

 

For us to hear God’s voice, we do of course need to read the Bible regularly and prayerfully. But while Bible reading is very fundamental, it is not sufficient in itself. We need to go beyond merely reading the Bible. The Pharisees read the Bible but missed its essence. Heck, many Christians today read the Bible but still fail to grasp the essence of what it says. No wonder Christians continue to be clueless about what it takes for them to realise the Christ-wrought victory in their lives.

 

When reading the Bible, we must aim to divide the heart and nature of God and His word for us for the moment on two levels:

  • God’s timeless truths for you for the moment
  • God’s revealed word for you for the moment

 

Level 1: God’s timeless truth for you for the moment

We read the Bible to see and know God’s nature. The mystery of how we were created is that we easily excel in adopting a new behaviour once we observe it because we are created as master emulators. This is true in every sphere of human endeavour. And fundamentally, the Bible recognises this truth and has leveraged it at various points in scripture:

 

Love one another as I have loved you.

We love God because He first loved us.

Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect.

And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

 

God knows that we do not stand a chance to succeed in our transformation on our own and so He provides us with scriptures to help us see God in them. And as we gaze in His face, something will begin to happen in us. We tip our odds of success in our favour in our efforts for Christian transformation when we can see the nature of God constantly through reading scriptures.

 

In our latest ebook 5 Steps for effective Christian transformation in the Kingdom of God, we note that the basic fundamental question every Christian ought to address is how to show God to us and to the world. Jesus did it in everything he did. All scripture speaks about Jesus. Jesus is the express image of God: Emmanuel – God with us. If we read the scriptures and do not see God with us, any such reading is less than ideal. And trust me, God never asks us to do things He has not already given us ability to deal with. And yes, I am saying that we Christians have ability to solve all problems in the world from hunger, poverty, disease, ignorance, bigotry, and any other ills we have today.

 

In this process of studying scriptures, we do need to see some of the principles and timeless truths that represent God. With prayer and humility, we can depend on the Holy Spirit to coach us on how we can become more like the God we see in the word. Here at EncounteringYourDesigner.com, it is our calling to bring this experience with Emmanuel to you so that you can begin your journey of victory knowing that the odds are heavily stuck in your favour. Please check out 5 Steps for effective Christian transformation in the Kingdom of God to understand God’s truth about your transformation. When you understand God’s nature, Jesus gives you a light burden which is easy to bear.

 

Level 2: God’s revealed word for you for the moment

At this level, we hear God’s voice for the moment. This word will be in the context of whatever situation, circumstance that you are facing. But this is so important. It is experiential and it might take time us to come to grips with what this entails depending on us. This is the word that came to the prophets, this is the word that David got when he decided to take on Goliath, this is the word that Peter got when he walked on water.

 

Man shall not live on bread alone but by every word that comes out of the mouth of God. This is the revealed word. This word is fresh and current. When the Bible talks about faith coming by hear and hearing by the word of God, it is talking about this revealed word of God. This is the kind of word that creates faith in us. When this word comes, it usually will go under your skin and become one with us that you will experience a different reaction to a given situation. It is important for Christians to always learn to hear God’s revealed word in their life. This is the defining characteristic of having relationship with God. Level 1 is the bulk of your Christianity, Level 2 is the heart of your Christianity. In essence, you must actually experience God in your life and continually experience Him grow in your Christianity until your are mature in Christ.  When you mature, you begin to depend more on the knowledge you gained about God along the way than on the experience. Take time to pray for the manifest experience of the Holy Spirit in your life. Receiving the Holy Spirit is very critical in this case. The Holy Spirit is a distinct experience which gets you started on this journey.

 

God’s revealed word engenders faith. God’s revealed word comes with seeds for us to have faith. Without this important word, it is impossible to have faith. If we read the Bible and do not get this revealed word, our Bible reading will yield very limited results in our life.

 

If I were to redefine Christianity in terms of faith, I believe it is simply about striving constantly to be in a state where I am able to hear God’s revealed word regularly in my life. Hearing God’s voice daily in my life also means I am in relationship with Him. There is no way I can be in relationship with God and not hear His voice regularly in my life. That is not effective Christianity.

 

In John 10:26-27, Jesus said:

but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me (ESV).

 

For further study, check out Faith as a gift.

 

May God richly bless you.

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