In this book, we would like to explain simply and clearly some of the great truths which we must know and understand if we want to grow in the Christian life. Peter said these truths were like pure, spiritual milk, 1 Peter 2:2. True believers have been born into the family of God through the work of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God, John 3:5; 1 Peter 1:23. God the Father wants them to learn more and more about the truth. At first they are like children, but God wants them to grow and develop into young men, and then into fathers, 1 John 2:12-14. It is very important that you read carefully all the verses mentioned in this book and ask God to help you understand. Then you will greatly profit from your study.
Let us think first about the great word Faith. The Bible says:
These are a few of the many verses in the New Testament which show that faith is very important. The last verse particularly shows very plainly that we must have faith in order to please God. So, we see that we cannot know God without faith.
Because faith is so important, it is necessary that we understand clearly what it is and how we may have it.
A person might agree that a certain fact is true, but not act accordingly. This person does not have faith. Agrippa was like that. He believed what Paul preached but he did not accept the Lord Jesus Christ as his Saviour, Acts 26:27,28.
Some people believe everything they hear, but this is not real faith either. Others believe anything that seems to be wonderful even if they do not understand it.
To have faith is to be sure of the things we hope for, to be certain of things we cannot see. Hebrews 11:1
Faith includes three things, and all three are necessary so that a person can have faith:
A person may know and believe the facts that God has revealed, but he does not receive salvation if he does not put his trust in Christ, and only in Christ.
As an example, let us think of Peter walking on the water, Matthew 14:22-29. The Lord told him to walk on the water and Peter knew that the Lord Jesus was the Son of God. He also believed that Christ was able to keep him from sinking in the sea. Then he acted according to what he believed: he got out of the boat and started to walk on the water.
Here is another example, Genesis 15:1-6:
Also think of Paul, Acts 27:21-25:
You and I believe many things and trust many people. For example, we take a certain medicine because we believe it will help us. We get on the bus to go to town because we trust the bus driver and believe he will get us to the place where we want to go. But this is not the kind of faith we need to be saved. How then can we get saving faith?
Romans 10:17 tells us that we get faith through hearing the Word of God. It is not necessary to hear the Word of God with our ears. We can read God's Word in the Bible or a book or tract. Otherwise, a deaf man could not be saved!
In the New Testament, we read about Simon Peter when he had only a little faith, Matthew 14:31; about a Roman officer who had great faith, Matthew 8:10; and about the faith of Abraham which made him strong, Romans 4:20. It is very desirable for a person to have strong faith like Abraham, but it is even more important that we place our faith in the right Person. It is much better to have a little faith in a good medicine than to have strong faith in medicine which is no good. The true object of our faith is the Lord Jesus Christ and we will be saved if we believe in Him, Acts 20:21; Colossians 1:4. If we trust completely in Christ, we are just as safe as God can make us. Noah and his family were safe because they were in the ark, not just because Noah had faith. Noah went into the ark because he believed and obeyed God.
The Bible tells us about many things that are the results of faith, but we shall mention only a few: