Faith plays an important role in the life of a believer since it is responsible for the entire process of our trust in God and this process continues until we reach the kingdom of God. In short, faith is the sum of all the things that God is doing in our lives! God calls us to be His children and it is through repentance (Rom. 2:4) that a person gets saved. The Holy Spirit guides us into the truth (Jn. ) and stirs up our minds in such a manner that we perceive from a perspective that we never even considered before! This confrontation that occurs between our inner and outer being forces us to choose this precious truth, thus giving birth to a living faith. A faith that works so deep in our hearts, that enables us to walk in godliness and truth, that constantly triggers us to live pleasing and acceptable lives.
a.General: Faith is the acceptance of what we cannot see, but feel deep inside our hearts.
b.Biblical: Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen (Heb. 11:1).
The Bible clearly teaches us that it is by grace that we are saved through faith; it is the gift of God (Eph. 2:8, 9). Salvation by faith is a free gift from God as He has already paid the price for it. Though, it is freely given by God, we have to utilize it in the most appropriate manner. Faith is freely given by God to produce certain works and we have a measure of control because we have an important part to play in it. We need to believe in the truth and also, utilize what God has given us in order to produce the fruit of the Spirit. Thus, faith is a gift as well as a work! It is a gift because it was freely given to us by the Son of Man (Jn. ) and it is work because we must exercise it (Jn. ). Just like we need food for our mortal body, the same way, we need to nourish our spiritual being and this can be achieved only by working towards it.
Romans says “SO THEN FAITH COMETH BY HEARING, AND HEARING BY THE WORD OF GOD.”In other words, it simply means that Faith comes by hearing God’s Word. Faith comes by hearing, reading and studying the Word of God. The level of a believer’s faith is built upon the actual amount of God’s Word he has heard or read combined with the correct and actual understanding, he has of that Word.
Hearing and studying God’s Word must always produce faith in a child of God. However, many times it (hearing and studying God’s Word) does not always produce faith in a child of God. Faith must come forth from hearing and reading God’s Word but it also depends on the type of heart or the fellowship with God that person has. This will affect his reaction to the Bible. A person who studies the Word of God diligently should gain much more knowledge than a person who does not; but there are many factors that can hinder the person’s understanding like pride, emotions, sins, desires, lust, etc…which Satan will use as a means to take away the Word that is supposed to be sowed in the believer’s heart. (Mark 4:15). So, it is the grace of God that has to work in Him. Our master says, “This is the work of God that ye believe on him whom he hath sent” (John ). God works in the heart of His children, thus creating a strong trust in Him.
Hannah is considered as one of the biblical woman of Faith. She had a strong and deep faith in God. Though, she was barren and considered herself as a failure, she approached the Lord in sincere prayer; she made a promise to God that she would dedicate her firstborn son to the Lord. As the scripture mentions in 1 Samuel 1:20, Hannah conceived and bore her child of promise, Samuel, saying “Because I have asked him of the LORD”.
If we examine the faith of Hannah, we can realize that she was really strong in her faith. She prayed earnestly and sincerely for a child and her faith made her realize that God had complete control of her life. She chose to accept God’s will in her life and learn the lessons that God taught her. This display of faith prompts us to examine the depth of our faith.
Many a time, our hearts and minds are filled with bundles of questions. We ask God, Why? Why is all this happening? Shouldn’t we realize that as Hannah was strong in her faith, we should also be strong in our faith even if we pass through trials and temptations!
The attitude of complete and sole trust in God, who enables us to have faith in His ultimate purpose, makes this purpose more important to us than the transient things of this life. Hannah demonstrated her complete trust in God and has set an example for all of us to follow. She sang a song of thanksgiving which was a prayer to God (1 Samuel 2:1-10). In the same way, let us also fill our hearts with songs of thanksgiving and pour it out to our beloved Father in Heaven.
The Scripture tells us to examine ourselves. 2 Cor. 13:5 says “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves…..”. 2 Tim. 4:2 says “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season…” Just having faith within ourselves is not enough; instead we need to preach the Word as the Lord commands. Our faith should not be in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God (1 Cor 2:5). 2 Tim. says “Study to shew thyself approved unto God…” We need to have an overwhelming desire to bring forth God’s Word as Heb 4:12 says “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
A Christian believer is to live and walk by faith. As a person’s faith grows, his understanding and reliance on Jesus should grow more and more each day. 2 Cor. 5:7 says “For we walk by faith, not by sight.” Gal. 3:11, Rom. and Heb. says “…The just shall live by Faith.”
So, as vessels of God, we have a great responsibility that God has entrusted to us and we ought to fulfill the purpose of God’s will in our lives. Let us keep reminding ourselves the key verse again and again……. “The just shall live by faith” (Heb.10: 38)!