Acts 16:30–31 (ESV) — 30 Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” 31 And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
Faith is the last point that is involved in salvation. Faith is the most critical part of our relationship with God because without faith it is impossible to please God.
Hebrews 11:6 (ESV) — 6 And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
Faith has been denigrated to the point that it is considered as just wishful thinking. When faith is portrayed today in the media it is nothing more than hoping beyond hope that God will intervene. It is often portrayed as grasping onto a falsehood in the hope that the impossible may occur, but seldom does. That which the world views as Christian faith is very much non scriptural. The above verse demonstrates that faith is simply believing God.
Hebrews 11:1 (ESV) — 1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
According to the above verse, faith is the assurance of things hoped for. What exactly does this mean. Is it possible that faith is something more than the world view? Is it possible to actually have assurance that what you have faith in is the absolute truth? How is this possible?
We find then that the first thing we need to do is believe that God exists (Hebrews 11:6). There needs to be an object for faith or some one to believe in. That someone is God. The obvious question then is what God do we believe in? How do you know which religion has the correct God to put your faith in? Fortunately God has not left humanity guessing but has provided everything needed to make the correct choice.
Romans 1:20 (ESV) — 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
Hebrews 11:3 (ESV) — 3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.
Creation then is the first evidence we have that God exists. The evidence that God is the Creator is sufficient in and of itself to make man guilty of rejecting God. If you cannot believe that He exists then you cannot please him, and thus you cannot share in His salvation. The first thing we can do to understand who God is would be to open our eyes to what is all around us and recognize that it is because of the one who created that all this exists.
Romans 10:17 (ESV) — 17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
The visible world is not the only thing that God has given us as a testimony to who He is. He has also given us a complete record of His intentions in History. That of course is the Bible. The Bible is a written record that God has provided which gives us every detail of what will happen throughout history. It shows us the beginning and the end of history, and everything in between. From “ In the beginning God created the heaven and earth,” to “ and there was a new heaven and new earth.” or from Genesis to Revelation. So faith is nothing more than believing God and His revelations not only in the physical universe, but also His written word.
Ephesians 2:8 (ESV) — 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,
Faith then, is the vehicle by which we can be saved. When Paul told the Philippian jailer that in order for him to be saved he needed to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, he was saying to have faith in Christ and you will be saved. The last element of salvation then, is to believe in that which is revealed about Jesus Christ. This is what is revealed concerning Christ. That He is God and that He took on human form so that He could die on the cross to pay for mans rebellion against God. Having paid the penalty for mans rebellion, death, He rose from the dead and ascended into heaven where He is currently seated at the right hand of God. It is in this position that God can then offer mankind redemption through the blood of His Son so that anyone who believes who He is and what He has done may have eternal life.
The question to you is what do you believe? Do you believe that God is the creator? Do you believe Christ is God’s gift to mankind so that we can have eternal fellowship with Him. Do you believe that Christ died and was buried. Do you believe He rose from the dead and is alive today and seated at the right hand of God? Do you accept the Bible as God’s word? Believing all these things means that you understand that God exists and will reward you for the faith that you have placed in Him.