Struggling to live by faith today? We often do struggle because we misunderstand or even misdefine faith. So, what is faith?
I was reading the story in Genesis 22 of Abraham’s testing as God instructs him to sacrifice his only son. Remember, Isaac was not only his only son, but a miracle son who came because of a promise of God. Needless to say, this was test. But, this was not the first “test” that Abraham lived through. His faith had been tested several times before as God so much wanted Abraham to come to the place in life where he could truly trust God with all.
This “testing” of Abraham was to find out if he now really believed the promise of God.
Paul, in Romans 4 sums up exactly how Abraham grew in his faith and what faith actually is. According to Paul, the reason Abraham was willing to do what none of us would ever consider doing, killing our son, was because of what he believed God was going to do.
Paul writes that Abraham placed his faith in God, “in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.” Abraham’s faith was that he determined if he trusted God and did what God asked him to do, God, by His own promise, would be required to raise Isaac from the dead and fulfill the promise that Isaac would be the promised blessing to the entire world. In summation, Paul gives the definition of Abraham’s faith:
“fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.” (Romans 4:21, ESV)
Abraham isn’t considered the “father of faith” because he believed God would give him ability to do certain things; he’s considered a great person of faith because he believed God would do certain things. And note this, he believed even though he couldn’t see. Why did Abraham believe?
Abraham believed because he had already been tested and learned that God does everything He promises, without fail!
Faith is not in your own ability or even in the hope that God will give you more ability. Faith is believing that God will do what He promises, and that’s life changing, attitude changing, day changing faith. This is why you can trust God even in situations when you can’t see the answer.
“Faith can be defined as living in advance what you will understand only in reverse.”