Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Faith In... What?

"It doesn’t matter how much faith you have, if the object of your faith is not valid you will go straight to hell. The value of the faith is not in the one trusting, but the one in whom you are trusting. … It is not the faithfulness of the one who believes, but rather the faithfulness of the one who is believed in." ~ Josh McDowell

This is a very important point that McDowell is making. It is often thought today that faith saves you. "It does not matter what you believe, just believe in something," you may hear people say. Even Christians sometimes think that it is our faith that saves us, but that is, to quote a friend, "a lie from the pit of hell and it smells like smoke." Our faith is useless if it is not placed in someone who is faithful and deserving of that faith. Faith is foolish if it is not directed at one who is faithful and deserving of our faith. And, that kind of faith is nothing more than the proper response to the faithfulness of what we are looking to. Faith does not save us. It is the work of Jesus Christ that saves and when we place our faith in Him He gives us the gift of the salvation He won for us. Christian faith is objective (meaning dependent on the object faith looks to) and not subjective (meaning dependent on the subject who has the faith). Thank God for that because my faith would get me nowhere fast.

Another important point about this is that this destroys all notion of faith being "a work." It is clear that we are not saved by our works but "grace through faith" (Ephesians 2:8-9). Some have tried to claim that this is inconsistent because faith is a work. Not so. If salvation were dependent on our faith, then yes it would be a work, but salvation is dependent on the work of Christ. Our faith is merely the proper response to His faithfulness to His promises. Faith is merely empty hands where the gift of salvation that Jesus won for us is placed by God. Faith does not add anything to salvation but only the conduit on which is flows to the believer.

By His Grace,

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