“The assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen”. Hebrews 11:1
Faith seems to often be a mis-used and mis understood word in our modern vernacular. Sometimes faith is used akin to wishful thinking or vain imagination with little substance or reality. Other times faith can be mis-represented as some magic formula to achieve any thing we might desire. Biblical faith is far from both of these.
Hebrews 11:1 describes Faith as: “The assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen”. The writer then goes onto describe the outworking of faith as follows; by faith the Israelites crossed the Red Sea on dry Land, by faith Jericho was defeated, by faith kingdoms were conquered, by faith justice was enforced, promises were obtained, the mouths of lions stopped, the power of fire quenched, weakness made strong, foreign armies put to flight, persecution endured and the dead received back to life (paraphrase v32-35)…..and the list goes on! We would have to acknowledge that there are few things mentioned in scripture that have greater power, greater potency and greater promise than faith!
So what does this kind of faith look like? And how is it that we can live with this kind of faith?
Back in Hebrews 11:1 we are told firstly that faith is an ‘assurance of hope’. Assurance means to be fully sure, fully steadfast or fully secure in our hope (which is Christ). The Amplified version puts it this way, faith is: ‘leaning on Him with absolute confidence in His power, wisdom, and goodness’. We could say then that faith is to be ‘fully leaning upon the present promises of Christ’. Secondly we are told faith is ‘conviction of things not seen’. This word for conviction can be literally translated ‘the means by which a thing is proved or tested’. This implies both the process and the resulting proof. So faith by nature is not static but has an element of needing to be lived out, a proving process or a putting into action. We could say faith involves both a life lived fully leaning upon the present promises of Christ, and fully living out the proving process.
There is a faith that moves mountains, conquerers nations, raises the dead, endures hardships, and without which we can-not please God. This faith grows as we become a people fully leaning upon the present promises, and fully living out the proving process. What would this people look like, a community of faith filled believers fully leaning upon and fully living out Christ in our lives, community and our city? Lets go deeper together and discover the incredible power and promise of faith.