Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. (Romans 5:1-2 NIV)
May I ask you a question? Is it hard to please God without faith? If you said “Yes”, you’re answer would be wrong. The Bible says that it’s impossible.
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. (Hebrews 11:6)
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. (Hebrews 11:1-2)
What are you hoping for and how do you go about receiving that which you desire? We have access into salvation and the things of God purely by faith. Then the obvious question is, “What is faith?”
First, let’s look at what faith is not:
Faith is not just hoping that everything works out okay. How many times have you or someone you know said something like, “I hope it works out.” or “I hope everything is going to be okay.” When I hear someone say, “I hope so.” I want to ask them, “What is the basis of your hope?” Hope without something or someone as its foundation is worthless.
“But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.” — King David (Psalm 39:7)
David learned from experience that God was his source of hope. He found that faith is not a hit and miss thing. Faith is not a form of Russian Roulette— sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
Are there still some among you who hold that “only believing” is enough? Believing in one God? Well, remember that the demons believe this too—so strongly that they tremble in terror! (James 2:19 TLB)
Faith is not an intellectual assent. Just believing the Bible to be true is not faith. Accepting the historical Jesus is not the same as placing your faith in him. Faith is not just simply believing that God exist. I believe that George Washington was the first president of the USA, but I do not trust him for my salvation. As James said even demons believe in the existence God but how many demons are going to Heaven?
“Well, there’s ah, ah…. And then there’s ah, ah…” There are no demons who will find a home in the Father’s House. So, just believing in the existence of God does not constitute the kind of faith we are addressing now. It’s imperative for us to understand this truth. There are millions of people throughout time who believed in the existence of sort of God.
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”— Jesus (Matthew 7:21-23)
The word for “Faith” used here in Romans 5:2, in the original Greek that means the conviction of the truth with the included idea of trust and holy fervor born of faith. The word “stand” used “…we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.” Comes from the Greek that means to be of a steadfast mind of quality, to be one who does not hesitate, who does not waiver.
Faith is a transfer of trust. As I type this post I’m sitting in my office chair. I love my chair and I have faith in its ability to hold me up. It’s one thing to say that I have faith in that chair’s ability to hold me up, but it’s another thing to put my faith to test by setting in my office chair. This kind of faith is the key needed to gain access into the things of God. It’s the only key
On my key ring I have several keys. One is to my car. One is to my mailbox and another is to the door of my apartment. I can try to open my apartment’s door with my car key, but it doesn’t work. I can try the key to my mailbox, but that doesn’t work either. The only key that allows access to what is behind the door in my home is the door key. No other key will do.
Much like the key to my home, genuine faith is the only key to opening the door to God’s home, to open the way to the things that God has to offer us. It’s the key to the free salvation that he offers through Christ. Jesus said “I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved….” (John 10:9a ESV) He also said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6 ESV) But without the right key you will never open that door that leads to salvation.
See a video of this message on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmFVL8CBeVg
Look for new posts from The Mad Preacher on Saturdays.