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Faith

Scripture defines faith (πίστις) as the substance of that which is hoped for, the conviction of accomplished deeds not seen in Hebrews 11:1. It is therefore not an attitude or belief that is dictated by probability, that is wishful thinking based upon a desire, want, or need; rather, it is a conviction based upon a promise.

Substance is referring to the underlying essence by which something exists. Christ is the exact image of God in the flesh. Through His life the fundamental nature of God was made visible to humans, Hebrews 1:3.

Conviction is the act of presenting evidence to persuade a person’s mind to believe in the truth. This evidence is established upon accomplished deeds that are not seen. We see this demonstrated in the actions of God when He determined to show the heirs of promise the immutability of His determination by giving two immutable facts, it is impossible for God to lie and making an oath based upon His word, Hebrews 6:13-18. The conviction of faith is therefore based upon the facts related to accomplished deeds that God has done.

Therefore, faith is the essence of that which is hoped for, and by the conviction based upon the facts of the promise that hope is based upon, the individual expressing belief will act according to their confidence in the person making the promise.

Many times in Scripture Jesus called out the faith of those around Him, especially of those who would not normally have faith. When a Centurion, a Gentile, asked Jesus to heal his servant, he expressed faith in the fact that Christ is the Messiah promised to the Jews by only asking that Jesus speaks the words, for one who is of authority only […]

Faith2023-12-14T08:12:55-08:00

The Importance of an Accurate Gospel Message

Since God did not determine that some would perish, so no one is headed to hell by God’s choice (2 Peter 3:9), it is important to present the facts of the Gospel accurately, according to what Scripture states.

Over in 1 Corinthians 15, Paul reminds the Corinthians saints of the gospel that he brought. This is one of the clearest presentations of the gospel to the Gentiles in Scripture. Paul states, this is the gospel by which we are saved (1 Corinthians 15:2). Christ died on behalf of our sins according to the Scriptures, was buried, and rose again on the third day according to the Scriptures.

This is the message that contains the inherent ability of God to save (Romans 1:16) and the only sin that the Holy Spirit is convicting unbelievers of today (John 16:9). Faith is an interesting concept. We often consider faith to be something within the mind. However, it is specifically defined in Hebrews 11:1 as the substance of that which is hoped for, the evidence of accomplished deeds not seen, and in James we find that faith without works is dead (James 2:17), also we know from 1 John 3:4 that sin is an action, not something that happens within the mind; therefore, faith is not seen from God’s perspective as something within the mind, but an action that results from belief within the mind. Saying you believe something is not faith. Faith will always manifest itself in works, for it is the act of believing. Abraham believed God and there was an action that was associated with that belief. This was demonstrated when Abraham was willing to sacrifice his son, for in his mind he concluded that God would have […]

The Importance of an Accurate Gospel Message2023-11-25T07:59:11-08:00

Conviction (ἔλεγχος)

Conviction, the evidence or proof that a belief is based upon. Faith is the substance of that which is hoped for, the conviction of accomplished works not seen (Hebrews 11:1). Since hope is always based upon a promise (Romans 8:24), faith in the one giving the promise is what undergirds the hope we have, even though we cannot at this time look at what was promised. When used in action it still carries the same meaning; therefore, Scripture, which is God-breathed, is profitable towards teaching and conviction, along with correction and child-training (2 Timothy 3:16). Which is why the Pastor is instructed to preach in season and out of season while convicting along with rebuking in all longsuffering and doctrine (2 Timothy 4:2).

There is so much great information in these passages and the meaning of the words, like teaching is different from doctrine, and child-training is specific to Christians, along with the fact that the Scripture is actually God-breathed, but we will have to look at these another time. Understanding conviction is important, because it is not about accusing a person, but about why we believe what we believe. The conviction is not judgment but laying out the truth so that our faith is shown to be based upon actual promises from God, not from humans. We see this with the Holy Spirit’s work concerning the unbelievers today. He convicts them of a sin – not believing in Christ’s death for sins and resurrection (John 16:8-11), righteousness – because Christ goes to the Father, and judgment – because the ruler of this world has been judged. He is not making them feel bad about their sins, but convincing them through truth of the facts of […]

Conviction (ἔλεγχος)2023-11-25T08:02:34-08:00

What is the Sin Nature

What is the Sin Nature?

When Adam sinned , his nature became bent towards doing wrong because in sinning he not only determined to reject God’s word, but also separated himself from God. After this happened, all of the offspring from Adam and Eve were born with his fallen image and likeness. As a result, we are all born separated from God in our spirit with a nature that wants to do wrong; even though we have a conscience which knows what is beneficial (good) from what causes calamity (evil).

Wrong does not just mean wicked or evil, although both of these terms can be included in doing wrong. Most of the things we seek to do that are wrong are a result of us rejecting God’s way and seeking to do it our own. Such as, we want to please God through our own efforts (works) rather than living out from faith through grace. Both actually produce works. Faith without works is dead – how can you say you have faith if your actions never show it? One manifests works to please God, the other displays works because in Christ we are already pleasing to Him. Israel rejected the righteousness of God in Christ because they sought to make their own righteousness through works.

The Sin Nature is terminology that is used to describe our bent nature that we received from Adam. Scripture does not use this specific term, but rather refers to it as sin or the flesh. However, it does specifically describe a part of us that seeks to do those things that we know are not right and how to overcome it, which is not referring to […]

What is the Sin Nature2018-11-11T22:52:32-08:00

Dealing with Bad Thoughts

A temptation is a solicitation to do wrong. It comes from a desire to perform something that we know is against God’s expectation of us. Understanding how we go from a temptation to sin is important to comprehend in order to stop the process by taking the way of escape before we work out the desire from the temptation. In the book of James, we find the process by which we are solicited and how that temptation works out to sin.

Let no one say when tempted, “I am being tempted from God”. For the God is without temptation of wrong and He tempts no one. But each one is tempted by his own strong desire while being drawn out and baited. Then the strong desire after being conceived, births sin. And the sin, when it is finished, brings forth death – James 1:13-15.

We are first presented with a strong desire to do wrong by one of our three enemies: the sin nature, Satan, or the world system. This temptation has no impact on us until we accept the desire as our own and then choose to perform it. Conception is the combination of a wrong desire and the determination to do it. This is a trespass and always happens within the mind, resulting in a person being in a state of unrighteousness, although sin has not yet happened. Conception does not guarantee birth, but unless it is interrupted it will always result in sin. Once a temptation has become a desire within us that we have determined to fulfill, if we do not apply the truth, the faith, or reject what the world wants, this determination will work out to sin when we perform the […]

Dealing with Bad Thoughts2023-12-14T08:11:01-08:00
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