Faith Is the Foundation of Your Hope
Hebrews 11:1 says – “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
What the writer of Hebrews is saying to us in this verse is that faith is the groundwork or confidence for everything you are hoping for.
To explain it another way is to say faith is the roadway which your hope travels on towards your goal. Faith is the authority which one relies upon by inward certainty. It’s always the beginning of the request brought first to God.
Faith gives reality or substance of things hoped for.
Let’s expound on the meaning of the word faith by different commentators.
Strong’s Concordance says: Faith is the persuasion, i.e. credence; moral conviction.
Barnes’ Notes, Electronic Database says: Faith gives reality or substance to things hoped for.
Thayer’s Greek Lexicon: Faith is the conviction of the truth of anything, belief. When it relates to God, faith is the conviction that God exists and is the creator and ruler of all things, the provider and bestower of eternal salvation through Christ:
Adam Clarke’s Commentary: The word substance is that which a foundation becomes for another thing to stand on.
Matthew Henry’s Commentary: It is the substance of things hoped for. Faith and hope go together; and the same things that are the object of our hope are the object of our faith. It is a firm persuasion and expectation that God will perform all that he has promised to us in Christ.
The Wycliffe Bible Commentary: Faith is trust in the unseen. It is not trust in the unknown, for we may know by faith what we cannot see with the eye.
These explanations should give you a better understanding of the meaning of the word faith and how your life can be transformed on a daily basis if you are willing to take on the challenge of the perpetual journey of faith and hope in the only true God of faith.
The just shall live by faith or by faith the just shall live.
Habakkuk 2:4, Romans 1:17, Galatians 3:11 and Hebrews 10:38 say: “The just shall live by faith.” In the Greek it reads by faith the just shall live.
This means if we are going to go anywhere in God it will have to be by the faith of the Son of God, and Bible hope, to carry us through.
Now hope needs faith and faith needs hope to be operative.
From the word hope we also get the word trust and these two words are interchangeable in the New Testament. Hope is also to expect or confide, to trust.
Faith is the expectation of what God has promised the believer in Christ and hope presupposes it.
“But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.”
Perseverance is another word for patience, steadfastness, and endurance. This is what it is going to take to get our faith to another level.
Why is it so important for the believer to live by faith?
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
When we stop believing God to help us out of any test or trial we are saying to God, “You are not big enough to help me out of my situation.” He says, “Call upon me and I will answer you.” (Jeremiah 33:3)
Faith Comes By The Message Of Christ
In Romans 10:1 Paul says “My heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved.” In Vs 9 “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” 13 For “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.”
This whole chapter is talking about Israel’s salvation through Christ. Let’s read verse 17 out of different translations.
“So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Greek Christos). (KJV)
“So faith comes by hearing [what is told], and what is heard comes by the preaching [of the message that came from the lips] of Christ (the Messiah Himself).”(AMP)
“Yet faith comes from listening to this Good News – the Good News about Christ.” (TLB)
“So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.” (NAS)
“So faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes by the preaching of Christ.” (TRV)
The whole chapter of Romans 10 is talking about saving faith. Our original faith came through Christ and not merely by hearing the word of God, because many of us heard the Word for many years and were never saved, but the moment we heard the message of Jesus Christ, the God kind of faith was imparted to us and we were saved.
Jesus Christ is the author and developer or finisher of our faith. (See Hebrews 12:2) Don’t misunderstand, what I am saying is we must take the whole word of God in context. Romans 10:17 is talking about our original saving faith imparted to us when we received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
If you notice the pattern in every translation, all say faith comes through the preaching of Christ. The word God in verse 17 is translated Christos in the Greek meaning Christ “Messiah” (Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)
Faith is an action
But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. James 2:18
Faith is perfected by works
“21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? 22 Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect?” James 2:21-22
James 2:22 “[Seest thou how faith wrought] Here is a proof that faith cannot exist without being active in works of righteousness. His faith in God would have been of no avail to him, had it not been manifested by works; for by works-by his obedience to the commands of God, his faith was made perfect-it dictated obedience, he obeyed; and thus faith had its consummation. Even true faith will soon die, if its possessor does not live in the spirit of obedience.” (From Adam Clarke’s Commentary)
To carry through completely; to accomplish, finish, bring to an end:
(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)
Now, salvation is a free gift in Christ but the working out of it is the action that needs to be applied. We read in: Philippians 2:12 – “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.”
The gift is free but the maintaining and the preservation of this incorruptible seed comes by nurturing and watering on a regular basis to bring forth life and fruit. This brings us back to the point of faith being an action.
John 15:2 – “Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.”
God, the vine dresser, sees your fruit and prunes the tree, so that it will bring forth much fruit.
God, like any good father, wants to see His children grow and become strong in faith and trust Him, rely on Him and depend on Him so that we will be able to stand when the greatest tests come – that means we must be rooted and grounded in His word. Hallelujah!
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.