What is faith? 2

Today is the fourth post from my book, Christianity in Simple English, and today is all about faith. What is faith and how do we put faith into action. Here is an extract from chapter 3. (see the last three posts for previous chapters).

Even though God went to great lengths to win us back, grace alone was not enough. It takes faith from us in addition to His grace. God reached out by grace, and we have to respond by faith. It takes both grace and faith to be saved. Faith is an action, as we saw from the tightrope walker example. Faith means I do something in response to what I believe. So our faith response is to believe and then act on that belief. How do we put faith into action?

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Well, remember when Peter saw Jesus walking on the water? There was a raging storm all around the disciples who were marooned in the middle of Lake Galilee. Jesus appeared to them and from a distance Peter could see it was Jesus.  Peter was such a compulsive character that he acted without thinking sometimes; so he immediately stepped to the edge of the boat and called out to Jesus, and asked Jesus to call him over. At that moment Peter believed that he would walk on the water just like Jesus was doing. But belief alone would not require any action. He could have sat in the boat all night long and said, “I believe that if Jesus calls me over to him, I will be able to walk on the water.” Peter could be 100% convinced in his mind that he would not sink. Faith however requires an action. So Peter demonstrated that not only did he believe he would walk on water if Jesus beckoned him, but he actually got out and walked over towards Jesus when Jesus called him. That is faith. It took really big faith to walk on the water.

The lesson here is that when we look at Jesus, we can do the impossible.  However, when Peter took his eyes off Jesus and realised he was walking on the lake in the middle of a storm, he realised that he was doing the impossible by faith. When he saw the storm and focused on the waves, he took his eyes off Jesus and he started to sink. Jesus had to reach out to him and took him by the hand to save him from sinking. That is what happens when we lose faith. Losing faith can happen quickly, especially when we look at circumstances.

 

2 thoughts on “What is faith?

  1. Reply Joel Apr 30,2014 7:58 pm

    If it takes our faith to be saved then why when Peter lost his faith did Jesus teach out his hand to save him? Surely that is Grace (undeserved favour) given inspite of our faith?

  2. Reply Passion May 1,2014 5:34 am

    Ephesians 2:8 says For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works so that no one can boast. It takes grace and faith to be saved. If it was only by grace alone and required no faith then everyone would be saved, and we know that is not the case.

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