The burden of faith

I was chatting to a close friend of mine (Raynard) about faith. We saw a video blog post from John Crowder, called “I Quit”. The main idea of the post was that faith is not equivalent to willpower, it is a form of rest. “The flavor of Faith is rest.” This got us thinking.

Hebrews 11:1 is probably the most used verse about faith. “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” (NIV) The first part of the verse makes sense in the NIV, but not really in the KJV: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

The second part of the verse is a bit more interesting, but before we look at that, let’s look at the wrong view of faith. I’ve always seen faith as the way to get God to move. Almost like a stick we use to incessantly prod God with, to get Him do our will. This is faith as a work.

Raynard said, “It’s almost like we think God must do something new.” You can take it further, it’s almost like we think God has anything left to do. He has done everything on the cross. We have been blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ (Ephesians 1:3). By his wounds we are healed (Isaiah 53:5).

Now we come back to the second part of the verse. Hebrews says faith is evidence of things not seen. We are hoping for a blessing; and faith is the sign of its existence in the future. The KJV makes it even clearer, faith is “substance” – faith is the tangible part of the intangible thing we are hoping for.

Faith does not generate anything, faith is the proof that things have already been aroused. It is a quiet certainty. I have always carried faith as a burden, but it is rest.

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