By Robin Swoverland
This article on faith is meant to be a basic look at the subject of faith. We have more in-depth teaching on this and many more subjects available at The Spoken Word Church for those wishing to delve deeper into the things of God.
First of all we need to realize that faith is not some strange or unattainable power that only a few people can operate in. We operate in faith all day, every day. The New Webster's Dictionary lists as the first definition of faith: trust, confidence. The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary definition lists: complete trust; and also: firm belief in something for which there is no proof. Most of us have never seen our human brain, but we almost all believe that we have one! We get in our cars and expect that we will be able to drive them somewhere when many of us have no idea at all how they work. We fly in airplanes without ever having studied the laws of thrust and lift. Faith is just simply trust and confidence that something we believe to be true is actually true. And we do this every day!
What we refer to as Bible faith is simply trust and confidence that what the Bible says is true. Hebrews 11:1 says "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." The word translated faith here is the Greek word pistis, which means: persuasion, assurance, belief. It refers to the conviction of the truth of something. Simply put, it means believing that God meant what He said and said what He meant! Hebrews 11:1 tells us that persuasion and assurance of something gives it substance and stands as evidence of its existence. That works for the positive and for the negative. Worry is just "faith" (persuasion and assurance) in the wrong thing! And many people we know certainly do that a lot!
The answer for the believer is to find out what God has promised in His Word and then to find out how to get the faith to believe it so it can have substance and become real in our lives. Hebrews 11:6 says "Without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him." We all want to please God so we need to understand how to operate in faith. We'll discuss where faith comes from and how to get it in the next article.