Faith is Action, The Evidence of what we BelieveBiblical Living . Torah/Bible
Often we hear the saying, “faith in action,” but a more accurate phrase would be faith is action. Faith is the action we take in regards to what we believe. Faith is the evidence of what we believe.
In the Bible there is a passage often referred to as the Hall of Faith. It lists a bunch of hero’s of our faith. Let’s take a look at this passage for a second. It is in Hebrews 11. I copied this passage from BibleHub.com. Normally, I remove the titles and references, but I left them on purpose so we can go back and look at them. Most Believers know the stories that the author of Hebrews is referring to in these passages, but if you don’t I left the references in place for you to go and read the stories for yourself. I am going to type my commentary within the body of the scriptures in italics.
1Now faith is the assurance of what we hope for and the certainty of what we do not see.2This is why the ancients were commended.3By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.
Faith is the assurance of what we hope for and certainty of what we do not see, that sounds so beautiful, but what does it mean. To understand this passage we must go back to Hebrews 10. In Hebrews chapter ten we are told that “if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
But recall the former days in which, after you were illuminated, you endured a great struggle with sufferings: partly while you were made a spectacle both by reproaches and tribulations, and partly while you became companions of those who were so treated; for you had compassion on me in my chains, and joyfully accepted the plundering of your goods, knowing that you have a better and an enduring possession for yourselves in heaven. Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise: “For yet a little while, And He who is coming will come and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him.” But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul.” The book of Hebrews is a letter written to Israel, the children of Abraham, Jews, the descendants of the Promise. These people knew who God was and is. But, now were uncertain of how to live because Messiah had come. Messiah had died and rose from the dead conquering sin and death. But yet, He had not yet restored Israel. So the writer of Hebrews is telling these believers, you must live like your forefathers who had faith in a Messiah even before he came. You must place your hope in the promises just like they did, and live with the assurance, knowledge, that all scripture will be complete in His time. Then he goes on to testify of the proof of these ancestors faith.
The Faith of Abel, Enoch, Noah
4By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as righteous when God gave approval to his gifts. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead.
5By faith Enoch was taken up so that he did not see death: “He could not be found, because God had taken him away.” For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.
6And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who approaches Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.
(Abel and Enoch pleased God by their faith. What was their faith? They believed He existed and sought Him.)
7By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in godly fear built an ark to save his family. By faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.
(Noah did not know what was to come, but he obeyed and did as God told him and built the ark, this was his act of faith. This action of obedience made him righteous in God’s sight. Abel, Enoch, and Noah are made right in God’s sight and rewarded because of their actions.)
8By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, without knowing where he was going. 9By faith he dwelt in the promised land as a stranger in a foreign country. He lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.
11By faith Sarah, even though she was barren and beyond the proper age, was enabled to conceive a child, because she considered Him faithful who had promised.12And so from one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.
13All these people died in faith, without having received the things they were promised. However, they saw them and welcomed them from afar. And they acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth.
(It is critical that we realize that all these people mentioned died in faith, they did not actually see the promised land given to their descendants, nor did they witness the coming of the Messiah. Yet, the lives they lived declared to God and men that they believed the promises.)
14Now those who say such things show that they are seeking a country of their own. 15If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return.16Instead, they were longing for a better country, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.
(Their belief in a better country, a heavenly one, is what motivated them to obey God.)
17By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac on the altar. He who had received the promises was ready to offer his one and only son,18even though God had said to him, “Through Isaac your offspring will be reckoned.”9Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and in a sense, he did receive Isaac back from death.
(Abraham knew God’s character, and trusted that God would restore his son’s life, He obeyed God because he knew God.)
The Faith of Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph
20By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning the future.
21By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of Joseph’s sons and worshiped as he leaned on the top of his staff.
22By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of the Israelites and gave instructions about his bones.
23By faith Moses’ parents hid him for three months after his birth, because they saw that he was a beautiful child, and they were unafraid of the king’s edict.
24By faith Moses, when he was grown, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter.25He chose to suffer oppression with God’s people rather than to experience the fleeting enjoyment of sin.26He valued disgrace for Christ above the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking ahead to his reward.
(Moses valued disgrace for Messiah over temporary treasures in Egypt. Moses faith, his lifestyle of suffering, was because of his hope and belief that their indeed was a Messiah who would redeem him and his people.)
17By faith Moses left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw Him who is invisible.28By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch Israel’s own firstborn.
29By faith the people passed through the Red Sea as on dry land; but when the Egyptians tried to follow, they were drowned.
(Faith is the evidence of every believers hope of Messiah. Faith is the testimony that we know we are redeemed from the eternal separation from God due to our sin through His promised Messiah. The Messiah he promised from the beginning when Adam and Eve sinned in the garden. All of us sin. we all fall short of the glory of God. We all go astray, everyone. Even the saints of old, sinned. Yet they lived by faith. Knowing that God, the creator of heaven and earth, is a keeper of His promises. They sought to know God and obey God, because they believed in Him and His love for them.)
The Faith of Many
30By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the people had marched around them for seven days.
31By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies in peace, did not perish with those who were disobedient.
32And what more shall I say? Time will not allow me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets,33who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions,34quenched the raging fire, and escaped the edge of the sword; who gained strength from weakness, became mighty in battle, and put foreign armies to flight. 35Women received back their dead, raised to life again. Others were tortured and refused their release, so that they might gain a better resurrection. 36Still others endured mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment.
37They were stoned, they were sawed in two, they were put to death by the sword. They went around in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, oppressed, and mistreated. 38The world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and hid in caves and holes in the ground.
(These all are listed as people of faith, people who took action because they believed in God and His promised Messiah. I find most people do not realize that faith is the act of obedience that comes from the assurance, knowledge, and hope in the promised Messiah. Messiah has come, and He is Yeshua (Jesus). If we say that we believe in Him, then our lives should be a testimony of that belief.)
Faith is the actions of our belief. Belief is what we know to be true even if we can’t see it or explain it.
We must believe, and know, before we can truly testify.
How do we know?
We know because God, gave us evidence of His existence, and His promise from the very beginning, and He had men write a record of it all so we might be assured of His love and perfect will for us.
It is easy at times to forget that our actions do NOT save us, rather they testify to our salvation. We must not become prideful, and puffed up in our faith. Even these saints listed in Hebrews 11, were not perfect, no their righteousness came from Yeshua, just like ours does. If we think we can become righteous and sinless, we deceive ourselves. Our righteousness is but filthy rages, it is Messiah alone that covers our sin.
Let’s never forget that even Lot was called righteous by God in 2 Peter 2. Lot had found himself surrounded by sin and filth, and we may have thought he was lost because we could not see his faith. The lifestyle Lot was living in the city of sin did not testify to his knowledge of God and the hope of his Messiah. Yet, when push came to shove, Lot did the right thing. One righteous act testified to God and men that indeed Lot did know and believe.
Now we all know that Lot suffered for his sin, and his choices. His future children for generations suffer because of his choices. But what we can learn from Lot is that no sin is too great that our Messiah’s blood does not cover it.
Redemption is available to all, and the road of repentance is only one right decision away. We are all sinners in need of a Savior. But, our hope is this: There is a Savior who takes away the sin of the world.
Let us each acknowledge the greatness our our God, and His amazing redemption, and let us walk out our faith in fear and trembling. For though we sin, we are forgiven.
Written by Katie
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