From the Pastor
Pastor Mike Burns
903.567.2072 (Ext. 3002)
Biblical faith presupposes and requires inner conviction.
Faith begins with the promises of God contained in His Word being illuminated
by the Spirit of God. The writer of Hebrews helps us to understand the
relationship between faith and conviction. Hebrews 11: l says, "Now faith
is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence [conviction] of things not
seen." The word evidence can be translated "proof" or
"conviction." Biblical faith is not just convicting, it is also convincing.
It is not a leap in the dark nor is it a worked up feeling, but rather peaceful
confidence based on evidence that demands a verdict. When one is persuaded by
the evidence it results in conviction. Once we see truth, we can’t unsee it.
Paul says that faith is a gift (Eph. 2:8, 9). God’s Word is
an incorruptible seed (1 Pet. 1:23) engrafted into our lives and fertilized by
the Spirit of God (Titus 3:5). In 1 Corinthians 12:3b Paul said, "…no one
can say, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ except by the Holy Spirit." Without the calling,
illumination and regeneration of the Holy Spirit, conviction and faith would
not be possible. Faith is like a muscle that grows—some people have
"little faith", some have "faith" and some have "great
faith." The seed of the Gospel is germinated by the regenerating activity
of the Spirit. As we learn to ruminate on God’s Word, it becomes a vital part
of our lives and we become persons with God-given convictions which in godly
actions and godly habits.
Clearly, saving faith in the Bible involves more than just
mental assent. It is a whole soul’s trust in God and in His Word as true.
Without such faith it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6). Faith involves several dimensions and impacts
on all of life:
1) Faith involves belief (mind)—it affects what we think
2) Faith involves trust (heart)—it affects how we feel
3) Faith involves response (will)—it affects what we do
Any intimate relationship impacts on how we think, feel and
act. The Christian faith involves:
1) A person to be received—Christ,
2) a truth to be believed—God’s Word and
3) a life of love to be lived.
Unbelief arises out of ignorance, while faith arises out of
being persuaded by evidence—revealed and illuminated by God. God said to the
prophet Hosea that His people are destroyed "through lack of
knowledge" of His ways, Word, will, promise and provision (Hosea 4:6).
Next Week: Can Christian convictions be misused or
Published on Monday, October 7, 2013 @ 4:47 AM CDT