14 Nov More on Faith's Object and Substance
Last post I spoke about the show Lost and it’s contrivance of faith. I contended that what it is portraying in its series (remember, I like the show so this is not a bash, per se) is not Christian faith. It may be humanistic faith – that is, faith in what the human being can do – though I doubt this even. I tend to think that it is hollow and flimsy when it comes right down to it. And, according to my last post, could be classified as a mental condition in real life.
Well, today I wanted to fill out a little more on what true Christian faith is. Living in (or near for some people) the South, many people would call themselves Christian if you were to ask them. I equate this with the Northerner’s response of “Well, I am a good person.” This simply won’t do. As we saw last time, faith is resting in a sure reality. Exercising faith is resting in a chair. It is not attempting to live in your own strength.
More than this, Christian faith is more than one decision. Many have fooled themselves into believing that because they were baptized…Or because they go to church semi-regularly to regularly…Or because _________. This is not saving, Christian faith.
Baptism is not salvation. Walking down the aisle is not salvation. A decision is not salvific.
This morning I was struck hard by Hebrews 9 verse 28: So Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him. The word “eagerly” is the Greek word “apekdechomai” which is equated with the kind of eagerness a mother and father when they are 2 weeks away from the birth of their first child (see Rom 8.19). They can be disappointed that he hasn’t come yet. They could be overwhelmed with excitement. They could be frustrated at the current state of things because they want him to be here. All of these things can be true of the Christian.
Those who will be saved when Christ returns will be those who have been eagerly waiting for him…If this doesn’t characterize your life and what you’re hoping for, you probably don’t know the full magnificence of what it means to follow Christ. In reality, not one of us will comprehend the magnitude of glory that is yet to be revealed. However, the Christian will grow more and more desirous of Christ’s return because he learns more and more of what it means to follow and love Jesus. It is not because they are like John Locke in Lost and just believe. No. They have tasted the sweet honey of God’s truth and long for more of it.
This is what I pray this blog does for many of us, myself included – that we grow in our knowledge and desire and eager expectation for Jesus’ return. You may feel like you have so much to learn. There is so much in the Bible that you have yet to learn to let this kind of waiting characterize your life. The best way to eat an elephant is to take one bite at a time. One day at a time. The people that know the Bible the best have given themselves to reading it every day of their lives. It didn’t just happen the next day they decided to do so. However, they earnestly desired to know God and love him better as he is revealed in the Bible.
For those of you that read this blog and have certain question, send me an e-mail [commentsonthewire -at- mac.com] and we could move through various questions together. If not, keep checking back and question by question could be answered.