Paul described faith as the “assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” [Hebrews 11:1]. Everything we do in life is ultimately by faith, for faith is not simply a belief in something, but rather it is the exercising of what we profess to believe in once we have received evidence of its truth. For example, when we use phrases such as, “I have faith in my parents,” what are we saying? Are we saying that we believe that our parents exist, or are we saying that we trust in our parents? And if we trust in them, how do we treat them? Perhaps with respect and obedience? If we treated them with disrespect and rebelled against them, could we confess that we truly have faith in them?
The same is true of our relationship with God, for when we begin to “believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him,” [Hebrews 11:6], we must start to exercise our faith in Him through repentance and obedience. For Paul wrote “that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” [Romans 10:9-10].
The Apostle James gives further insight by asking the important question, “What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, and one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.” [James 2:15-18]. In other words, what good is our confession if we do not do those things which God commanded after we have come to know something of His marvelous love? Jesus said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also.” [John 14:12].
Therefore, James asked concerning Abraham, “Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?” [James 2:22]. For “faith worketh by love,” [Galatians 5:6], and Jesus said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments… He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me.” [John 14:15 and 21]
Scriptures to Consider
Hebrews 11:1, 6 (KJV)
11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen… 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.
Romans 10:9-10 (KJV)
10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
James 2:14-26 (KJV)
2:14 What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? 2:15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, 2:16 And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? 2:17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. 2:18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.
2:19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. 2:20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? 2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? [Read Romans 4:16] 2:22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. 2:24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
2:25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? 2:26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
Galatians 5:6 (KJV)
5:6 For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.
1:23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass; 1:24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
Matthew 14:22-31 (KJV)
14:22 And straightway Jesus constrained His disciples to get into a ship, and to go before Him unto the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. 14:23 And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, He was there alone. 14:24 But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary.
14:25 And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea. 14:26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear. 14:27 But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid. 14:28 And Peter answered Him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.
14:29 And He said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. 14:30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. 14:31 And immediately Jesus stretched forth His hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?
The Principles of the Doctrine of Christ
The Great Plan of Redemption
Twelve principles found within the Gospel of Jesus Christ outline the plan of our redemption and salvation. Beginning with the creation and ending with eternal life