Not Blind, Non-Leaping Faith

It often appears that I have a different definition of “faith,” and the role it plays in Christianity, than many others (within or without the church) today. “Faith,” biblically speaking, is derived from the Greek, pistis – “being persuaded, convinced; belief.” It is concerning confidence or trust. Faith is normally considered something of religion. Logically, faith is an intellectual assent to certain truth statements. What I would add to and insist on concerning this definition is that there is no such thing as a so-called “leap of faith” or “blind faith.” By definition, faith is not something that is an irrational leap, nor is it blind; for how does one become persuaded and believe if there is no evidence to convince that one? Strictly speaking, if one leaps or follows blindly, then that one is operating out of something other than faith. Such a one could easily be religious, but void of any faith, in fact.

The role I understand faith to play in Christianity is one that is thoroughly effective. Faith has to do with believing on Jesus Christ generally, but on His death and resurrection specifically. One can simply “believe” in the life of the historical Jesus (which, in fact, does not concern faith), but a faith in the resurrection, and the resurrection life of that Christ carries with it a power beyond a simple religious belief. It is the faith OF Christ – the very same faith that drove Him to the cross; that nailed Him to His cross – made available to humanity in the Resurrection Life of Christ.

The Resurrection Life of Christ is imputed (or imparted) in humanity when it believes out of Christ’s own faith in God’s worldview. The fact of resurrection life is that faith belongs to Christ, wholly and completely. Thus the works of faith were completed by the faith of Christ on His cross, and are worked out in us by the faith of Christ in His Resurrection Life. In other words, Christ performed exactly the works necessary on His cross (exemplified by His resurrection) and our resurrection is not dependent on the works which we can add to His, but as a result of His faithfulness and the works which He performs in us when we believe out of (His) faith.

What I have expressed here is the Vision of “faith” according to Pauline Theology (the Apostle Paul). I challenge us to study these references as “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God (Rom 10:17). Acts 20:21; 26:18 Romans 1:5, 8, 12, 17; 3:3, 22-31; 4:5-20; 5:1-2; 9:32; 10:6, 8, 17; 11:20; 12:3, 6; 14:1, 22-23 1Corinthains 2:5; 12:9; 13:2, 13; 15:14-17; 16:13 2Corinthains 1:24; 4:13; 5:7; 8:7; 10:15; 13:5 Galatians 1:23; 2:16, 20; 3:2-14, 22-26; 5:5-6, 22; 6:10 Ephesians 2:8; 3:12, 17; 4:5, 13; 6:16, 23 Philippians 1:25, 27; 2:17; 3:9 Colossians 1:4, 23; 2:5, 7, 12, 20-23 1Thessalonains 1:3-4, 8, 11; 2:13; 3:2, 5-7, 10; 5:8 1Timothy 1:2, 4-5, 14, 19; 2:7, 15; 3:9, 13; 4:12; 5:8, 12; 6:11-12, 20-21 2Timothy 1:5, 13; 2:18, 22; 3:10, 15; 4:7 Titus 1:1, 4, 13; 2:2, 10; 4:7 Philemon 5-6 Hebrews 4:2; 6:1, 12; 10:22, 38; 11:13; 12:2; 13:7.

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