Monday, July 13, 2020
On Sunday Pastor Josh will be preaching on the subject of “Authentic Faith” from John 4:46-54. I would encourage you to study it this week. My devotional will be based on this same passage with insights God has given me, and then on Sunday we will learn more from Josh’s insights.
As Jesus travels from Samaria into Galilee, John tells us that the people welcome Him because they had been to the feast in Jerusalem and witnessed some of the works Jesus did. When Jesus arrived in Cana, where he had performed His first miracle, he was met by a man who had a very sick son who was near death. The man asked Jesus to heal him.
Obviously the man believed that Jesus was able to perform this miracle. But Jesus makes a statement that digs into the heart of faith. Do we have faith because we have seen, or do we have faith so that we will see. Jesus said,
Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe. John 4:48
It would do us much good to consider our own faith in light of this statement. Do we require signs and wonders so that we can believe? Is it possible that we demand to see something spectacular from God before we will place our faith in Him? Does the level of our faith in Christ change with the visible evidence of God’s work on our behalf?
Challenging questions to consider. Yet consider them we must. Faith cannot and must not be the product of seeing signs and wonders. In fact, the Holy Spirit tells us in Hebrews that faith itself is the assurance of things hoped for and the evidence of things unseen. (Hebrews 11:1) Faith doesn’t require evidence. Faith is the evidence.
To be honest, I don’t fully understand that. I need to spend time contemplating the difference between faith that requires more visible evidence to grow, and faith that grows without the need for evidence yet becomes its own evidence. It’s mind-boggling, but essential. If we don’t think about this, we will never know true faith. We will remain simple-minded people who will only believe if we see signs and wonders. Authentic faith requires no signs. We do not place our faith in the work God is able to do, but we believe in who God is, and that is always sufficient for us. Then we can say, as the man said to Jesus, “Sir, just come before my son dies.”