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. – Heb. 11:6 KJV
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The biblical book of Hebrews, especially chapter 11, is seen generally as the book of Faith. This is because it focussed more on faith related issues than any other book of the Bible.
Chapter 11, verse 1 has since being the major source for the definition of what faith is, saying that it is the substance of things hoped for and evidence of things unseen. By this definition, the Christian who professes to have faith is expected to bring into reality what is yet to exist with the belief that it is existing based simply on the fact that the Almighty God said it will exist. Such belief will manifest in the person living a life that exudes confidence that it is done and all that is happening is awaiting delivery of that request.
Thus, effective communication links with the foundation of that faith, which is the Almighty God must be established and maintained at all times for the faith to have meaning else it will be a wrong faith. This is to help ensure that the promise from the foundation of the faith is well communicated. The faith bearer must also be clear about what he/she is hearing so as to avoid mis-communication.
Faith bearer must also be sure that those pronouncements being referenced also apply to him or her. A general pronouncement does not always apply to all and confirmation of the relevance of the pronouncements to each person’s situation must be established.
In summary, faith relies on effective communication of the pronouncements of the Almighty God who remains the foundation of the faith. Faith will be wrong faith if any of these two points are not in place and the faith bearer will likely be headed for failure assuredly.
Once the Christian is sure about all the above, the scripture today advises that such a Christian must:
1. Believe that the Almighty God is. By this it is implied that such a person must believe in the existence of God and be aware of His capabilities. Hearing the pronouncements only, will clearly be insufficient to build faith in what is pronounced as the ability of the person to do what he has said is equally important. This will come if one is familiar with the performance of such a person in similar situations prior to one’s situation. Else it will be the case of taking a blind risk.
However, Faith will likely develop naturally or will increase in someone who is aware of the capability of the person making the pronouncement. It is very unlikely that anyone can perform beyond his/her limit. It will be easy to develop Faith if one spends more time interacting with the Word either by hearing and/or reading it and meditating on it – Rom. 10:17.
2. Believe that God rewards all those who diligently seek Him. This is also similar to the point earlier raised about the need to be aware of what God has done in the lives of others. If the individual is unaware of how God has rewarded people who sought Him diligently and placed their trust in Him, it will be difficult to convince such a person that his/her trust in God can be rewarded and so encourage him/her to do same. This awareness will also develop when regular interaction with the Word through the earlier listed ways is encouraged.
However, beyond the promised reward for those who trust and diligently seek the Lord, today’s scripture says God cannot be pleased with anyone who does not have faith in Him. This is because lack of faith in God is an under-estimation of the ability of God and a diminishing of his status. That was a major reason why the Israelites spent 40 years roaming the desert (Ps. 95:9-11) just as Moses did not enter the promised land – Num. 20:2-13. Someone who God is unhappy with will receive nothing from the Lord as the Bible regards lack of faith as sin – Rom. 14:23. The delay in granting that request may be due to your lack of faith in Him. Develop your faith in Him by spending more time interacting with His Word to be able to know what and how He has done it for others some of which this chapter of the book of Hebrews lists – Heb. 11: 7-12; 17-26. It will definitely go a long way in improving your relationship with Him and increase your chances of receiving positive responses to your request. May God help grow your faith in Him in Jesus name. Amen.