About Jesus - Steve Sweetman
Will Be Done
Biblical faith in terms of ultimately being a passive activity.
Faith is not something we actively strive at doing.
I base my opinion on the meaning of the Greek noun
"pistis" that is translated as "faith" in the New
Testament and the Greek verb "pisteuo" that is translated as
words express the passive action of trusting, as in, "I trust Jesus
with my life." Faith,
then, means trust.
admit that the first step we take in trusting is an active activity.
By this I mean we deliberately decide, then actively take, the
first step to trust. It is
something we do, but once it's done, trust becomes passive. I
explain it this way. When I
sit down on my couch, the initial act to sit is an active action because I
am actively doing something, but once sitting, I am doing nothing.
I am resting, and resting is a passive activity.
I'm secure in knowing my couch will not cave in on me.
Similarly, faith in Jesus is ultimately the passive action of being
assured that I can trust Him with my life.
admit that as Christians we fail to trust at times.
We must, then, take another active step to trust, but in the end,
our goal in taking these steps is to passively rest in God's will for our
lives. Understanding Biblical
faith to mean trusting Jesus with our lives no matter the circumstances is
basic to living as Christians.
of us view faith in terms of an active, even aggressive, action.
If we could just somehow keep getting more faith we could join the
list of powerful people of faith seen in Hebrews 11.
Hebrews 11:32 through 34, and the first phrase in verse 35,
provides a summery statement of people of faith that space prohibited the
author to write about. The
what more can I say? Time is
too short for me to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David,
Samuel, and the prophets, who
by faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, obtained promises,
shut the mouths of lions, quenched the
raging of fire,
escaped the edge of the sword, gained strength in weakness, became mighty
in battle, and put foreign armies to flight.
Women received their dead, raised to life again."
listed above were powerful people of faith, but the summery statement does
not end with them. Verse 35
through 37 says this:
people were tortured, not accepting release, so that they might gain a
better resurrection. Others
experienced mockings and scourgings, as well as bonds and imprisonment. They
were stoned, they were sawed in two, they died by the sword, they
wandered about in sheepskins, in goatskins, destitute, afflicted, and mistreated. The
world was not worthy of them. They
wandered in deserts and on mountains, hiding in caves and holes in the
those in the first list, those in this second list were not noted for
performing the miraculous. They
did not even receive what was promised as stated in verses 39 and 40.
these were approved through their faith, but they did not receive what was
God had provided something better for us, so that they would not be made
perfect without us."
In the midst of horrific suffering the people in the second list rested in the assurance that God's will, even if it meant death, was best for them. This passive action of restfully trusting God in all things is the meaning of Biblical faith. Maybe my parents' generation of Christians said it correctly, when in an act of trusting God, they submitted to His will by saying, "thy will be done."