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Hebrews/Psalms Scripture Study: What is Faith

A Look Inside

Faith, everlasting faith. Faith in a God who is with us on the mountain top and in the valleys of life. Your faith is affirmed when you see houses left with a single room intact after being ravaged by a tornado - the room that the family took refuge in. You can take comfort in God's commitment to his people when a group of miners are pulled from a collapsed Chilean mine after more than two months underground. Those miners "have expressed a oneness with the Holy Spirit."[i] This is a closeness that we all should have regardless of what happens in the world around us.

Break It Down

Faith Is A Requirement: Hebrews 11:1-3,6 1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 2 For by it the elders obtained a good report. 3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. 6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

These verses clearly state that faith is a requirement in the life of a Christian believer. In spite of the demands that a material world may place on us, we cannot create a God - a living God - that can be visibly seen and touched. Can He be felt? Certainly. We feel His presence often. We see evidence of his presence and activity in our world if we care to open our eyes to the daily miracles that happen in our world. Faith is the "evidence of things not seen" since we do not physically see the hand of God touching someone. In the example used above, we can see the tracks and the capsule lowered in the mine shaft to rescue the miners, but there is no physical evidence (required by some in this world) of God's presence with them during the sixty nine day ordeal endured by those miners.

Verse 2 states that, by faith, the elders obtained a good report. Let's use the real world example of the miners again. They had intercessory prayers said in their behalf coming from all areas of our world from the beginning of their ordeal. That is a representation of a strong faith felt by God's flock. There was no indication that they may be alive for over two weeks[ii], but the prayers flowed. Prayers for God's will in any situation will be answered positively. It may take more than two months or it may take a decade or more, but God's will is always the answer to our prayers.

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