Faith (1): faith is acting on God’s word 

Faith is not a feeling, faith is not an idea, it is not an impression. Faith is action. 

While grace comes into reality based on understanding of the word of grace, dealing with the mind but faith is not just hearing God’s word, but acting on it. 
Jesus asked his disciples, where is your faith? He also said to Peter, oh you of little faith, why did you doubt?
Doubt is seen with Peter when he shifted his view (while walking on water) from Jesus and he began to sink. 
But he had walked on water by faith acting on the word of Jesus that he should come to him on water. 
It would have been presumptuous for him to have stepped into the water, just because he saw Jesus doing it. 
Many people are in presumption because they try to do something because someone else is doing it. They presume that because someone said it works for him that way, it would work for them also. Be careful what you copy. 
And when you start in faith you have to be committed to continuing in faith. You should not start in the spirit and want to end in the flesh as Paul told the Galatians. 
Peter started walking on water but he wanted to get smart along the way,  and looked at the boisterous wind,  at the storm on the sea and he started to sink. 
The walk of faith is the walk on the word. It starts with the word and continues with the word. It starts with divine instruction and continues with the same. 
Adam and Eve started by faith, acting based on the word of God. The choice of the fruit of which tree to eat was taken day by day. It was a daily walk of faith in which they ate of many of the trees in the garden and not the most prominent one, right in the middle of the garden. 
The forbidden one was the easiest to reach, the most prominent,  but they rejected it not because of personal preference but based on the word of God. That is faith. 

When you choose to work as the Bible says, working with your own hands, it is an act of faith,  doing what the word says. When you refuse to be engaged in sexual wrong, it is an act of faith. 
So when we say that without faith it is impossible to please God, people think it has to be something that makes no sense, something that has to do with making a lot of noise, but faith is simply acting on God’s word. 

The just shall live by faith is not the spectacular, it is the regular. 

But sometimes it is spectacular as Jesus said Peter should cast his net into the deep, after he had toiled all night with nothing to show for it. He did,  against his best judgement, and the result was nothing short of spectacular. 
Jesus praised people who have faith for healing . But you may ask,  what is the word of God in that?
The faith dimension is that Jesus is the word of God that makes things happen, that creates,  and the people spoke and acted recognising his divine authority. 

There can be no faith without the word of God. Jesus said the scriptures point to him. He is the word of God. 
During a storm and Jesus was in the boat, the disciples cried that Jesus,  who was sleeping, did not care that they are about to die. Did the word of God say they were about to die? If not, it means it is not faith. And Jesus asked them : where is your faith? He did not see it in their words or actions.
Faith does not exist in a vacuum, it is action on the word, not just word for miracles but about everything. When the word controls you, you are acting in faith. 
When the children of Israel did not want to move to the the land of Canaan,  they yielded to fear instead of to faith as God had told them that he will bring them into a new place. 
When Adam ate the forbidden fruit,  he yielded to peer pressure because the Bible said he was not deceived. He acted against his best judgement. Man therefore lost out on the life of faith. 
When God spoke to Noah and Abraham etc (and they acted on the word) it was to get them to act on His word (be in faith)  regardless of what was happening. 

Noah exhibited faith for 120 years,  acting based on the word of God that it will rain destructively on the earth, building the ark before the flood. 

We live by faith as we live based on the word of God, on the reality of God, who he is, his promises, his coming judgement, what he says we should do, his personal instruction, impressions in our hearts. 
Abraham had his name changed to father of many nations, and he agreed, despite having no child with his wife, Sarah. He agreed that his name be changed, because God said so. He stepped out to offer the son Isaac when God said so, that was far from a self generated idea. It is faith, acting on the word. 
So we are beginning to understand how and why faith pleases God. Faith recognises God as supreme. 
Jesus said if we say to the mountain, be removed and cast into the sea,  it will obey us. We say it because he said we should say it,  not because it is a good idea,  and that is faith. So there is faith in the seemingly big things and the small things, in the life of holiness, day to day obedience and also in miracles. 

Persistent Prayer is an expression of faith. 

Jesus taught this as he gave the parable of an importuned widow. It was not about the obviously spectacular but she acted based on the law to approach a judge. She went to him day in day out. That does not fit into the miracle grid that many have put faith (just the instantaneous and jaw dropping), but that is faith. 
When Eve ate the wrong fruit, she bought into a lie. She approached things from a demonically inspired wisdom, she came to an independent conclusion about the fruit and acted against against the word of God, contrary to faith. 
So fear is not really the opposite of faith, it is rebellion,  self-will as opposed to God’s will, regardless of the logic behind it. 
Because faith is not an emotion, the opposite can’t be an emotion. It can’t be fear. It is rebellion. 

It is understanding that that helps us to grasp how angry God was when the children of Israel did chose to reject the promised land. Though there was fear involved. 

However, fear was involved in Jesus going through to the cross but he still went their anyway in an act of faith in God.


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