“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1 ESV.
When the word faith comes up in a discussion, the most difficult aspect is clarifying the definition. Many people in the world and even within the Christian community often use the word interchangeably with belief, trust, or religious affiliation. This most often leads to miscommunication unless one totally understands the other person’s position.
Many books and papers have been written on all three topics. Some good, some bad, but all have a perspective worth understanding. So today, rather than kill my readers with technical, theological terminology, we are going to use the student’s cliff note version.
For example, when one speaks about a faith community, one is speaking about a group of people who are set apart around certain doctrinal positions that they believe and live out. This is the FAITH of organizational membership. Typically, it is the label and category people box you within. The result is your denomination (or non-denomination which is a denomination).
When the Bible writes about FAITH, one needs to clarify from the context which part of faith is being discussed. For when one hears, speaks, or reads about faith, one must look at the context to determine if the writer means a set of doctrinal positions, a mental decision of belief, a secured confidence of trust, or the enabling power of God.
For the FAITH mentioned in the Bible comes with the following three faces:
First there is the enabling power of God. This Faith is written about in Romans 12:3, 3:28, 5:1, and 4:5. Also Hebrews 12:2, and Ephesians 2:8.
Then there is the mental decision based on your perception of reality as defined by God. Also known as your worldview. This Greek word is also translated throughout the Bible as Belief. This is found in Romans 10:17, Romans: 6-10, Romans 12:6-8, Romans 14:1-3, and Mathew 21:21.
Finally there is the secured confidence placed in someone or something. We call this Trust. This is explained in Hebrews 11: and 2 Corinthians 10:15 where we place our trust in Jesus Christ the foundation of our faith.
The question most often discussed is whether or not faith is something we develop or something we just live out. I believe when one sees the three faces of faith, then one come to realize that it is a gift from God that empowers us. From His gift, we begin to change our perception of reality based on His Word and Spirit, and then learn to walk with Him which results into seeing how He intervenes in our life and in the lives of others. This leads to the building-up of a mutual trust between the Triune God and oneself.
So in summary: the gift of empowering Faith leads to the development of beliefs which leads to a more secured relationship with the living God. These are the three faces of FAITH.
Rooting For You in Christ!
Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
* Great Business Emulates a Good God
* Be Radical…Follow Christ!
* Simply The Messenger
* Unequally Married
Does a Friend Need Encouragement…Share Today’s Message!