We’re told in Scripture that we’re to serve God by our faith. We’re told that it’s impossible to please God without faith (Hebrews 11:6). As a matter of fact, anything not coming from faith is sin (Romans 14:23).
But, just as important as faith is, it’s just as important to know where this faith comes from. The Bible is clear on this issue, even if we are a little fuzzy sometimes.
Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.
This verse literally says that faith springs out of hearing, but hearing through the Word of Christ. There are a few key concepts that are important in this verse. The first is that, of all the different kinds of faith that we can have; only the faith that has its birth in the Word of God is valuable.
The next is one you may not want to hear. But, this faith comes by hearing the Word and not reading the Word. That’s because it’s the Greek word rhema that’s translated word in this verse. The Greek word rhema always refers to the revealed Word of God to us.
This isn’t talking about reading the Bible and drumming up faith in ourselves. It’s about listening to the Holy Spirit speaking to us. It might take place while we’re reading the Scripture, praying, or listening to a sermon.
Jesus got upset at the Pharisees for this same type of superstition.
You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life.
Here’s what takes place sometimes. It may be that there’s a believer in need of healing – for example. As they’re reading the Bible, the Holy Spirit uses it to grab their attention. The Lord takes the Word that they’re reading and makes it rhema to them.
In a moment of divine faith and obedience, they declare that Word with their voice. Immediately they’re healed.
What does he do next? He starts teaching that if you confess this verse, you will be healed. That is superstition.
It’s not reciting the verse that healed this person. Christ our Healer was the one who made them whole.
This is how easy it can be, to turn faith into superstition. Instead of bringing people to a deeper relationship with Christ, it’s easier to recite Scripture over and over.
Please understand – I didn’t say to stop memorizing and confessing the Scripture. What I am saying is to seek to hear from Christ. He’s the One our life flows from and not our “works of righteousness.”
Question: Why is it so much easier for us to recite the Bible than to seek to hear from God?
© Nick Zaccardi 2013