Living by Faith
Receiving the free gift of eternal life is a simple matter of living by faith. If you have faith in God, and love Him with all your heart, you will be saved from death. While this is a simple concept there are many Bible scriptures on faith that fill in the details of what it means to have faith in God. My hope is that you will open a Bible and find the passages I’m about to share with you and allow the Word of God to speak directly to you. True understanding of the Bible comes from personal study. The Bible is not just a book, but is the powerful Word of God and it will speak directly to you if you read with an open heart and an open mind.
The world we live in makes it difficult to have faith in God. You don’t have to go far to find some form of entertainment, advertising, or even formal classroom teaching that mocks living by faith. The idea that there is one God who created everything is widely accepted, but many people have a difficult time accepting the resurrection of Jesus, or how His death on the Cross provides eternal life, or how God can be Father, Son and Holy Spirit all at the same time. There is no absolute proof for these things. The world we live in is so full of lies, and people have been deceived so many times, it’s difficult to give into living by faith in Jesus Christ.
What is Faith?
We find a simple definition of faith in the book of Hebrews.
“Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)
We tend to place our faith easily in the things of this world that we can see, touch, and hold in our hands. The Bible makes the point that this is not really faith at all, and that real faith is the spiritual faith of things not seen.
“Look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:18)
Jesus becomes real to a believer through faith. It is that blind faith that provides you with a complete understanding of the Lord. The Word of God tells us that those who do not believe will never fully understand because “these things are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14). Living by faith in God is the central element of Salvation.
Faith Leads to Salvation
“By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his household, by which he condemned the world, and became an heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.” (Hebrews 11:7)
The story of Noah and the flood that everyone is familiar with, is a picture painted by God to demonstrate salvation by faith. Noah believed God and was saved. There was no hint of rain or flood conditions but Noah built the ark anyway. Similarly, you may be living a great life in this world, with no rain clouds in your sky, but the Word of God is warning you a day will come when you need Jesus in order not to be washed away by the flood of judgment. The Bible tells us the earth as we know it will pass away, and be replaced by a new world with Jesus as King; and only those who believe in Him, those who have faith, will be allowed to live there.
“But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. And all the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats… The King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world’… Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels.’” (Matthew 25:31-32,34,41)
Jesus is returning to save this world, and He will sit in judgment over all. Those who believe in Jesus, those who were living by faith, will have eternal life and those who do not believe will be forever separated from God in what is described as eternal fire. That’s a powerful message. What’s important to understand about this punishment is it is entirely your choice. God isn’t going to send you into that eternal fire, it’s a choice you make either to trust in God or turn your back on God. God has given you the free will to make this decision on your own.
Know the Enemy
I can’t imagine why anyone would turn their back on God and follow the devil into the eternal fire, but the Bible tells us many will. Satan is a powerfully persuasive being who wanders around this world with his demons convincing people to ignore God and lust after money, sex, and power. These things are not inherently evil, but Satan knows how to use them to destroy us. It’s easy to become addicted to their charm and corrupted by their influence. For reasons not fully defined in the Bible, God is allowing Satan to have his way in this world. You can see the corruption of Satan in many places including many governments around the world, in business dealings everywhere, and even in some churches and so-called “charity” organizations. Satan and his demons are at work wherever they can find a willing participant.
We are no match for Satan’s power without God on our side. Without the help of the Holy Spirit, we are easily manipulated by Satan and his demons. This is why God provided us with a simple path to salvation through Jesus Christ. The Son of God died on the Cross as payment for our sins – your sins, my sins, everyone’s sins. All we need to do to take hold of this eternal salvation is activate our faith in God, acknowledge our helpless, sinful nature, acknowledge our need for a Savior, ask for God’s mercy, and fully place our trust in the hands of Jesus Christ.
“He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” (John 3:18)
God does not want you do die and spend eternity with Satan; He wants everyone to come to him and live a joyful life through all eternity.
God is Waiting for You
“The Lord is not slow about His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)
God is waiting for you. He wants you to come to him right now with genuine faith in Jesus Christ. He wants everyone to come, but the sad fact is that many never will. The Bible makes it clear that no one knows exactly when the end will come and when Jesus will return.
Here’s what Jesus said about the end of this age:
“See to it that no one misleads you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many. And you will be hearing of war and rumors of wars; see that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes.” (Matthew 24:4-7)
Nation against nation, kingdom against kingdom, famines, earthquakes in various places; doesn’t that description fit the world we live in today? Many Bible scholars believe we are living in the end times. A careful study of the Bible will lead most to this conclusion. The Word of God tells us there’s a glorious new world coming for those who have faith in God and have trusted Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Please pick up a Bible and study these Scriptures yourself. Open your heart. Open your mind. Let the Word of God speak directly to you. Every minute you waste moves us one step closer to the end.