The Bride of Christ
The Bible says a lot about faith in Christ and its importance in the life of the believer. But let’s focus on five things that will be an encouragement to your heart. Keeping these in mind will also give you discernment against a lot of false things said about faith in our world. They are not in any order of priority and there will likely be another set of things you can know about faith down the road. So here goes…
We can have faith in a lot of things, but none of them the christ will result in any eternal good except this one thing. We must have faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live…” (John 11:25) We must believe in Christ, the one spoken of in the Scriptures, in order for anything good to come of it.
The Christ that we have faith in must not be a Christ of our own creation, but rather the true and living one, the one who came and lived a sinless life, who was crucified and who rose again from the dead, the one described in the word of God. God is who He is and He is who He says He is. “God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” (Exodus 3:14) We are not at liberty to make a Jesus into our own image and then worship Him. We either have faith in the true and living God as described in His word or we do not have faith in Christ at all.
2. Faith in Christ is a gift from God.
This is a very important truth which is plainly taught in the word of God. Understanding this truth will provide a wealth of wisdom and discernment for the child of God. Faith, the kind that results in salvation, is a gift from God. Unless God grants faith to a person, that person does not and will not have it. “For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake…” (Philippians 1:29) Elsewhere we see that we believe in Christ by the grace of God. Speaking of Apollos, Luke writes, “And when he wished to cross to Achaia, the brothers encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him. When he arrived, he greatly helped those who through grace had believed…”
This simple truth, that faith, like all the other good things we have, has its source in God, is a mighty statement against those who believe that somehow we manufactured it while we were still spiritually dead in our sins. Christ is heralded as “the founder (or author) and perfecter of our faith…” (Hebrews 12:2) It is He who began a good work in us. (Philippians 1:6)
If we have faith only because God grants it to us, then who do you believe decides when and where that faith is granted? If He has granted it to you, then it is because that was what He wanted to do. What a wonderful truth this is in Christ, to know that if you believe it is only because the God who created the universe wanted you to do so.
“Faith comes by hearing and hearing of the words of Christ.” (Romans 10:17) The tool, and the only tool that God uses to impart faith to a person is the word of God, the gospel of Jesus Christ. No amount of worldly logic, intelligence, evidence or eloquence will produce faith in the heart of the unbeliever. Ironically, God chose the very instrument that all men deny, the word of God, to produce faith in a person.
And when that word of God is heard, it must come with power and conviction. The power is none other than the Holy Spirit. He is the engine that makes the word of God productive in someone’s life.