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God and faith

28 February 2014, 12:31


The question is, “How can I get faith?” The simple answer is, “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing the word of God.” – Romans 10:17

It sometimes confuses the enquirer to go into details of the matter. For instance, if I am thirsty, how shall I quench my thirst? By water no doubt. You need to simply tell me to go to a tap. There is no need to tell me, before I drink, that the water is supplied by a company and forced to pipes by machines, having been first extracted from great fountains by wells. Nor is there a need to trace the water to the clouds by the process of evaporation. To the thirsty person, all you need to say is, “There’s water, drink.” To the thirsty man, there is no need for us to go into all those details, though we are knowledgeable about them. Further information can be supplied under happier circumstances, when thirst has been quenched.

“Faith comes by hearing, and hearing the word of God.” – Romans 10:17

From this simple statement, it is clear that, “Faith comes by hearing.” It does not come by any other means, but by hearing.  Not by any mysterious and strange method, but in the most simple and natural mode, that is, by the hearing of the word.

In most churches, the child of a Christian is thought to be a Christian. While in others, though not clearly stated, it is practically accepted that the children of Church leaders don’t need conversion. Faith does not come by hereditary descent. That which is born of flesh is flesh, and nothing more. Nothing that is spiritual can be inherited by carnal generation. No matter how advanced or how high the sainthood of a Christian is, his child (when capable of understand) must, for himself, become a personal believer in Jesus. Faith doesn’t come by descent, it comes in one way and in one way only, in every case – and that is, by hearing the word. Even if nursed, brought up in the church and introduced to that church by the most solemn ritual, you must hear, just like others and you must believe as the result of that hearing. Faith is not a mystery juggled into us by the postures and mumblings of pastors and priests. There is no magic about it. It comes by hearing the word of God, and by that way only.

Faith does not come by feelings, but though faith arises many feelings of delight, joy and peace. Faith has something firmer to stand upon than feelings, which are like the weather. Faith does not even come by dreams and visions,, though the LORD gives them to those who believe. Even if you could see all the angels of heaven, that wouldn’t mean you will spend eternity in heaven with the LORD – just as seeing the pope’s body guard will not make you a cardinal. What can be seen by the eyes does not lead to salvation. People saw Jesus, the son of God, but they still pierced him, blasphemed him and killed him. Faith has more solid basis than the passing and unstable fancies of the mind.

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