The Gravity of Our Faith…
Hebrews chapter 11 is an amazing piece of scripture that gives us such a rich picture of living by faith in God. Read the whole chapter if you’d like, but here are a few highlights…
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”
“These (references the heroes of the faith) were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.”
The chapter as a whole tells story after story of men and women whose lives were instrumental in the biblical narrative of the redemption of creation back to God. Each of these stories highlight the faithfulness of these servants of God. Their faith compelled them to live a life of servanthood and to take the right actions in order to fulfill the perfect will of God.
So, what was the foundation of their faith? Seems like a no-brainer right? Their faith was that Jesus was rai… oh wait… that didn’t happen yet. Well their faith was that the savior was born in Bethle… no that didn’t happen yet either… What did they put their faith in?!
Anyone who lives in a home, regardless of what type of home, trusts that when they return home, the structure they left will still be there. Now I know that sometimes tragedy happens and sometimes we lose our home as a result. But for the most part, we can bank on our home being back where we left it. So, what do we do? We keep most or all of our belongings inside. We keep our food inside. We choose to go unconscious every night inside it’s four walls.
Think about it… That right there says that we put a lot of faith in that being true. If we zoom out even more we realize that we don’t just have faith in the walls or the stuff inside, but our first trust is much more foundational… Our faith in gravity. If we don’t have faith that gravity exists (and will remain for the foreseeable future) there isn’t much use wasting time on the colors of our walls or what to put in the freezer for next week, is there? In fact, it would be insanity to be concerned about the contents of our homes if we couldn’t trust the simple fact that gravity was going to keep us grounded in some form of security.
Where am I going? The faith that fuels our ability to the will of God for our lives, to live fruitful lives, has to start from the ground up. We spend far too much energy and capacity trying to hold together all the minor pieces of what we know (or think we know) of Christianity to be true. The foundational aspects of our Christian faith are things like the Apostle’s creed. Saying things like “I believe” in God being the almighty creator of everything. That Jesus is God who came in the flesh. That He conquered death. That we have life everlasting in Him. I know as Christians we assume those truths, but do we plant our “faith” on these truths? Do we really think of the gravity of believing with our whole hearts and minds that through Jesus we have a holy eternity with God through Jesus Christ who is Lord? Or… do we get too distracted trying to hold onto the little things inside the houses of our minds. Beliefs on things like the Creation narrative… The events of Revelation… or the detailed proof of the miracles in scripture. The heroes of our Christian faith did not need to know all of the answers to these questions to experience a loving relationship with God, and neither do we.
So, as we go through the statements of the Apostle’s creed, let’s really take our time with these foundational elements of our faith. Before we fill our hearts with scattered beliefs too full (which without the strong foundation will just lead to either pride or anxiousness) let’s start with the foundational belief that Jesus is Lord. We have an eternity with Him. We have access to the holiness of God and the fruit of His Spirit. When our lives get pulled down and centered on the gravity of these truths, It becomes much easier to let go of the temporary, the trivial, and the unknown, so that we can live out our faith according to the universally redeeming will of God.