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AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE EFFECTIVENESS OF FAITH IN THE LIFE OF A CHRISTIAN
EXTRACT FROM CHAPTER TWO
FAITH AND BELIEVERSThere are some odd ideas about faith, so odd we need to clarify what we are discussing.Faith is not â€œbelieving what you know isnâ€™t trueâ€ nor â€œbelieving something for which there is no evidenceâ€ thatâ€™s being foolish. The Bible is a big book all about faith so there are a few facts to get straight. The elementary fact is that faith is in-built. We are born believers. If you think you have no faith-try it! Try not believing in anything or anybody â€“ your wife, husband, doctor, bank, boss baker or chief. There are no guarantees, but we put our lives into the hands of surgeons and trust drivers of cars, and planes without thinking of faith. But thatâ€™s what is it faith is a kind of immune system fettering out fears that otherwise would paralyze all activity. When it fails we developÂ breakdown, Jesus said not to have phobia but faith (Luke 8:50).Stop using faculty of faith and you would never get out of bed in the morning or step outside; you would fancy the sky might fall down. In this world a million cobra troubles are coiled to strike, but we carry on, usually quite regardless and confident. The bible says, â€œGod has dealt to every man the measure of faithâ€ (Romans 12:3) Christ said â€œonly believeâ€ Mark 5:36) because we can.Â Â Â Â Â
Thereâ€™s no mystique about faith perhaps little Children are the biggest believers. Many a time l have lifted a child in my arms, but not one ever screamed for fear of falling Jesus Himself carried a child as an illustrated sermon. He said the child carried a passport to the Kingdom of God. Faith doesnâ€™t come by murdering common sense. It isnâ€™t a peculiar psychology development with great effort by saints in cause, living on beard and water. It isnâ€™t peculiar at all. It is natural. Doubt is peculiar â€“ irrational in fact. It is the only thing that ever surprised Jesus.Talking of saints is the next. People confuse faith and virtue. Faith is there. Faith is just faith. Virtue is developed. Faith doesnâ€™t come in the same way as learning the piano, grade by grade. People talk suit jackets. We can have faith even when we know we are not very good. Sinner can have faith; otherwise they could never be saved. Nobody is good, but Christ taught us that all can believe. He commended some people for their faith, but they were foreigners, quite ignorant ofÂ doctrine. The bible does the same. It has a role of honor (Hebrew 11) listing heroes and heroines. They are remembered not for valor or kindness, but for their complete reliance upon God. Faith is a perfectly ordinary thing that makes us outstanding in the eyes of God.Â Â Â Faith is a perfectly ordinary thing that makes us outstanding in the eyes of God. Scripture states, â€œWithout faith is impossible to please Godâ€ (Hebrews 11:6). By faith it is possible to please God, and faith is possible to everybody.Â We are what we believe. We had better watch what we do believe. We make that decision and it makes us in fact.Believing tests us. The kind of God we believe in is a window into our soul-believing in Christ or something else, for example we are what we believe following a faith that only demands a few prayers-what does that say about us? Minimum-effort religions can be quite popular â€“ small demands big following â€“ cheap faith for worth-nothing people. Jesus Christ asks everything â€œSon, give me your heartâ€. A broad religion is an easy road, but gets narrower and leads nowhere. Faith in Christ is a shining light that shines more and more unto perfect dayâ€ (Proverbs 4:18).
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