What Is Faith?
“And when he had come into the house, the blind men came to him. And Jesus said to them, ‘Do you believe that I am able to do this?’ They said to him, ‘Yes, Lord.’ Then he touched their eyes, saying, ‘According to your faith let it be to you.’” Matthew 9:28-29 What IS faith? There are “Word of Faith” teachers who teach that you can have anything you desire if you’ll only have faith. They present Scriptures to back up their false teachings, and many believe them because they don’t know the Word of God in its fullness. Then when the expected results don’t come to pass, when what the person is trying to accomplish by faith doesn’t work, they’re worse off than they were in the beginning and many fall away because of it. I saw such a thing happen before my eyes. There was a young woman who had cancer and she was being told that she would surely be healed. She had children, and they were assured that their mother was going to be healed. This went on for months, and many prayed over this woman with determination that she would be healed. They “confessed it,” and “proclaimed it” over and over and over again. They rebuked the cancer and declared she is healed. Finally ...she died. What do you suppose was the effect that had upon her children? This teaching is deadly. It can actually destroy faith. Isn't that the goal of the enemy? No, faith isn’t something you “proclaim” or “confess.” Faith is something that has to come from God himself. “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 10:17 There are two Greek words translated “word.” One is logos which means the written word, and the other is rhema which is a word spoken. Faith comes when THE LORD speaks a word TO you, not the other way around. When God has spoken to you, your faith will rest on that word until you see it come to pass. My sister, brother and myself were called home because our mother was going to have surgery and we were told she probably wouldn’t survive it. The night before the surgery, my sister and I were praying together for the strength to get through this and for the strength to support our father through it. Very suddenly and totally unexpectedly the presence of the Lord was in the room and he said, “Everything is going to be alright.” Stunned, I ran to the living-room where my father was and told him what the Lord had said. He didn’t believe it, of course. The next day, my mother had the surgery …and everything was alright. She lived many more years after that. Now let’s take a look at that “faith.” First of all, it came totally by surprise. According to the “Word of faith” teachers she should have died, because up until the time the Lord spoke, we all were expecting her to die. That expectation was not “faith,” we were just proceeding with what we were told by the doctors and expecting it to turn out that way. According to the “Word of faith” teachers, she should have died because we were “expecting” her to. They would have called that expectance “faith” - faith that she was going to die. But was that expectance “faith?” We were expecting it, believing it, so it should have gone that way, and would have …except that the Lord SPOKE. When he said everything was going to be alright, we KNEW it was going to be alright because HE had said so. THAT ...is faith. We didn’t have to work it up, we didn’t have to grit our teeth and “claim” it, we didn’t have to “speak it,” no, the Lord had spoken therefore we knew it was going to be. And it was. Faith is never something worked up. You can “confess” a thing a hundred times because you believe you SHOULD and that you’d feel guilty if you didn’t. Those false teachers put all the burden on you as to how a thing is going to work out. That, my friends, is NOT faith. Faith is KNOWING. You don’t work up "knowing." You don’t “proclaim” it, it’s not a struggle. It’s just there when the Lord puts it there. “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1 It’s the substance, it’s the knowing. When you know, when God himself has put that knowing into your heart, that is the substance of it. But the bottom line is that God has to put it into your heart. It’s not you, it’s HIM. And if he has not put a thing into your heart, then there is no way you can forcefully do so. It won’t work. Faith comes from God, not from you. " "For by grace you have been saved through faith, AND THAT NOT OF YOURSELVES, IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD, not of works, lest anyone should boast." Ephesians 2:8-9 Brothers and sisters, come out of the guilt that has been imposed on you. When something has not gone the way you insisted it would, don’t let false teachers say that it was your fault, because it wasn’t. In every situation, take your cares to the Lord, and surrender them to him that he might work them out according to his own will. Sometimes you will just know that a thing is going to go this way or that, but unless that knowing is put into your heart by the Lord himself, you cannot conjure it up because you think you should. It doesn’t work that way.