Friday, May 15, 2009

What is faith? What is belief?

Faith toward Christ gets beyond just simple belief. As men are called to faith through Calvary the acceptance of Christ is an initial act of the believer that follows the process of repentance. After man believes, faith is thus carried out through a life of subjection to God in mind, will, and body. A child of God obeys and walks in a consciousness to the presence of God by faith. Saving faith will demand obedience and accountability to God.
Through Revelation from the Spirit of God mans conscience is enlightened to a need of the death of Christ as a sacrifice for sin. Through enlightenment the Holy Spirit makes man willing to accept the person of Christ. When man accepts the death of Christ for the forgiveness of sins the natural desire to continue in sin is changed. A new desire of holiness is ministered to the human soul by the work Holy Spirit. The faith of man and Divine Grace work hand in hand together in the realm of Gods Salvation and Holiness thus developing a Christ centered life.

In effort to more clearly define Faith and Grace I’d like to call you attention to two great men of God that are dead and gone on to be with the Lord now. They left a great impact on this writers life concerning mans faith and God’s Divine Grace. In 1989 and hungry for the knowledge of God I remember asking Brother Lindsey a great teacher of Faith and Holiness if he could recommend any books or writers on the subject of the holy heart and right living. I knew Hubert personally and outside of the Bible he was always leery to endorse or recommend any man’s writings. One day to my surprise Hubert mentioned a book called, “Binney’s Theological Compend Improved”. I purchased this rare 1904 publication from a used bookstore and reviewed it. Its broad and descriptive content became a treasure to me as a writer and minister of God’s Word. Amos Binney expounded on many Biblical subjects with great depth. His exposition on faith held my attention to the highest degree. Still to this day Brother Binney’s exposition on faith put far more depth on the subject of faith than this writer could ever offer. Here’s an excerpt from brother Binney’s Theological Compend and his description of faith.

The acts of faith are three. They are distinct, yet concurrent exercises of the mind.

1. The assent of the understanding to the truth of God in the Gospel, especially that part of it which relates to the death of Christ as a sacrifice for sin. (surrender)
2. The consent of the will and of the affections to this plan of salvation; such an approbation and choice of it as implies a renunciation of every other refuge. (consent of human will)(forsaking sin)
3. From this assent of the enlightened understanding, and the consent of the rectified will, the result is actual trust in the Saviour, and personal approbation of its merits. This must necessarily be preceded by true repentance.

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