Some Thoughts On Faith And Trust
By Eli Stutzman
September 1, 2009
By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible" Heb. 11:3
Too often we hear the expression "We must go out in blind faith." Is faith really blind? Is faith limited to those who are physically blind? Do we have to be totally blind to reality to have it? What do people mean when they use the term "blind faith" and is that what the Bible teaches? Some people think so. But the Bible says this also in Hebrews 11; "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."
Substance and evidence do not sound very much like blind to me. I believe the notion that faith is blind is only in the minds of those who do not fully understand what faith is. Faith is based on someone's word that is trustworthy.
Recently I had gall bladder surgery. Even though I had no experience with this surgeon, I had the word of others that she was a good surgeon. Friends had experienced the benefits Dr. Crosbie's skill and spoke highly of her.
This is an example of what faith is. I trusted my life to her based on another person's account of her skills. And they proved to be correct. This is a simple example of what faith really is. It is not blind trust, based on fables and old stories. Trust is built by a word from someone you trust that has had experience.
The New Testament has many accounts written by people that had experienced what God is like, by observing Jesus' ministry. Therefore, even though we like to have direct experience with someone's skills and abilities, it is not necessary to have experience. This would not be faith but experience.
When I lack faith, how do I go about building it? I did not have to try to somehow manufacture faith, instead I asked questions from experienced people. Trust has to always underlie faith. Trust in God is built by hearing or reading the accounts of people who testify to what God is like. Faith is built by studying the object of your faith, namely Jesus Christ.
Even though you don't personally know most of the writers here, there is a certain amount of trust extended to strangers. Bad experience and deception fosters distrust. But it is not my word I am asking you to look at, it is what is written in scripture that can never be changed, that I ask you to consider. Also, no one is his own witness in a court and a credible witness can really influence the outcome of a trial.
So was Jesus really speaking for his Father (God) when he spoke? Consider how he came into the world. First, an angel speaks to Mary. Joseph was spoken to in a dream. Shepherds got the word directly from the angels. Simeon was told he would see the messiah before his death. When Jesus was baptized, a voice from heaven said "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Matthew 3:17.
Many Old Testament prophets foretold of a coming messiah. This many witnesses really influence me to take the claims of Jesus Christ seriously.
I exercise faith when I believe that He who promised is able to do what he says he will do.
Remember when the paralyzed man was lowered through the roof? Jesus simply says "your sins are forgiven" in Matt 9: 5. He then explains why he said that. This was to prove to you and me "that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins"(Verse 6).
Now when he says for me to place my trust in Him for eternal life, I can know that he is able to give eternal life to those who believe on his name. My trust is based on the strong evidence I have not seen personally.
We operate on trust every day when working with other people. They may tell us where a problem lies or how to fix it. Chemistry books tell us to not mix certain substances or disaster will occur. If we try it anyway, we will find out that the person writing really did know what he was talking about.
Is faith blind? The world might think so. But you and I know that the faith we have is never blind, but built upon the creator of all things. Go ahead. Take the first step. Trust placed in Jesus Christ will never disappoint you.
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