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New Horizons

February, 2003: My Faith Looks up to Thee

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Contents

The Nature of Faith

To the question "Why study faith?" there are three answers. First, such study is important because of the significance of faith in the Bible. A basic word study shows the vast number of instances of the word faith and its cognates. For example: "Your faith has healed you" (Mark 5:34). "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved" (Acts 16:31). "I live by faith" (Gal. 2:20). "Without faith it is impossible to please God" (Heb. 11:6). "This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith" (1 John 5:4).

It is not only the words for faith which show the importance of this matter. In many passages, the word itself is missing, but the theme is there. In passage after passage, the idea of faith and the challenge to faith are present. Read more

The Assurance of Faith

Doubtless, every Christian minister has various defining moments. For me, one of those moments was a conversation that I had with a young student who was attending my church. I can remember sitting on the front steps of the church chatting to her about her problem of doubt. In trying to discover her particular difficulty, I mentioned to her several causes of doubt, such as the miracles of the Bible, or whether or not other religions will save people, or the problem of suffering. But to all these suggestions she answered "No."

Her doubt was whether God would accept her. Although she was a Christian, she was deeply concerned about her acceptability to God. She was in despair about it. I myself had been troubled with intellectual doubts, but the question of whether or not God would accept me hardly crossed my mind. I realized then that there were people who had different doubts. My question at that stage in my life was, "Where is the true God?" But her question was, "Where is the gracious God?" In her experience of the Christian life, she was conscious of sin, she was conscious of guilt, she was aware of the judgment that lay ahead. And she had responded to her doubt with attempts to be good. Read more

The Life of Faith

How do we live by faith? For the preacher, this question is even more complex: "How can I challenge my people to live by faith when I live by faith inadequately myself?"

There are two passages in Scripture that speak particularly about the life of faith. The first of these states: Read more

 
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