As we enter into April our thoughts turn towards Easter, and just for a change I thought that over the next three weeks our meditations could be on Faith; Hope and Love.
Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.1 Corinithians 13:13
This verse is often mis-quoted; quoted out of context and sentimentalized during Wedding Ceremonies, but let us think on them as the things which are going to last forever, looking firstly at Faith.
So what is faith?
The best definition of faith is found in Hebrews 11:1
“Now Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”
So faith is a reality, there is assurance, there is evidence for it, there is substance to it; it is not vague or woolly, or inconsequential.
The ESV Footnotes says: “Faith is a settled confidence that something in the future – something God has promised – will actually happen because God will make it happen.”
So faith is in God, faith is in His promises.
Our faith then is a belief in God, that God is all powerful, that He can make things happen; and that God is faithful to His promises and will do as He says.
But how can we know that?
Simply by knowing Him! As we come to know God more fully our belief and our trust in Him grow. We get to know Him firstly through the Bible, we read about Him in the old Testament, we read of His acts of mercy and grace towards His people; we see that He set His faithful love upon them and worked on their behalf to bring about their redemption, saving them from their waywardness. Then as we move into the New Testament we see God revealed through His Son Jesus, who is “the exact imprint of His nature” (Heb 1:3)
We see Jesus and He shows us the Father heart of God. We see Jesus, the sacrifice of the Father in giving up His Son for us that we may be saved, that we may be loved, that God’s own promises would be fulfilled in bringing salvation to all who would believe.
But what does that mean for us in the everyday? What about when our circumstances are tough and we find it hard to see past them to see God?
Well, we can trust our past experiences of God; we can trust the experiences others have had as described in the bible. And we can trust facts over our feelings, that such a God who was willing to fulfil His own plan of salvation, through the costly sacrifice of His own Son, who proved Himself by sending His Son – this God is worthy of our trust. This is the God we put our faith in.
He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?Romans 8:32
So we have assurance that God is for us, the evidence of that is found in Jesus. We may not see, but we KNOW. We know God, we know what He has done for us, and we have been shown how much He loves us.
“Now Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen“
No matter our circumstance then, or the fact that we are clinging on to Faith with our finger nails, we have the assurance that the things promised and hoped for will come to be, even though as yet they may seem afar off.
May we be strengthened in our faith today dear friends as we know, trust and put our faith in our faithful God, looking to Him who promised and who is faithful to keep His promises.