Faith, the things hoped for
Posted: Saturday, November 12
Verse of the day:
Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see. 2 Through their faith, the people in days of old earned a good reputation. (Hebrews 11:1-2)
In Hebrews there is an element which is regarded as essential to the Christian life—faith. It is what makes the Christian different from the non-Christian. Henry David Thoreau, once said, “If I seem to walk out of step with others, it is because I am listening to another drum beat.” That is an exact description of faith: Christians walk as though listening to another drum beat.
This chapter in Hebrews centers on what faith is. Faith is greatly misunderstood and there are many peculiar ideas of what it is. Faith is not positive thinking. Faith is not a hunch that is followed. Faith is not just hoping for the best, just hoping that everything will turn out alright. Faith is not a feeling of optimism. Faith is none of these things, though all of them have been identified as faith.
What is faith then? Faith begins with things “hoped for”, that is, it starts with a sense of discontent. You can never have much faith unless you are dissatisfied with the way you are now, and are longing for something better. That is why, all through the Bible, the great enemy of faith is a complacent spirit, an attitude of self-satisfaction with the status quo. But if you are dissatisfied, if you are looking for something better, then you are in a position to exercise faith, and, “through their, (your), faith, the people in days of old, (of today), earned a good reputation.”