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From Your Perspective, What is "Faith" ?


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According to the dictionary,

 

Faith is " strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof."

 

 

According to the Scripture,

 

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1 (KJV)

 

Why do some people appear to have great "faith" while others have little?

Is "faith" just a grandiose term for hopefulness or wishful thinking ?

Is "faith" a supernatural gift from a divine presence? I read a description once that said faith is an attribute given by the Spirit of God that enables one to reach into God's invisible world and take possession of that which we cannot see.

 

Is faith alone enough to guarantee salvation?

 

 

If you would, please speak on the subject of faith. Just what is it to you?

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Faith is the central loyalty that gives purpose and direction to my life. Christian faith is grounding my life in the living God as revealed especially in Jesus the Christ. First and foremost, faith is trusting. To be a person of faith is to rely on God, to know that “the Lord is my shepherd” (Psalm 23). It’s to rest confidently in the power and care of the living, loving Lord who’s revealed in the Bible and in our own experience. Faith is to give ourselves to the movement of God’s Spirit in our lives and in our times, not knowing where it will lead. I think for me trusting God is the hardest aspect of faith. I'm definitely type A personality, the oldest in a family of 4 and very independent. Although as I've grown in my personal relationship to God, my faith has increased.

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Hebrews 11:1 is the definition of faith that I would go with, but the rest of Hebrews 11 gives real life examples of "being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see."

 

I cannot 100% prove the existence of God or the salvation that comes through Christ, but I firmly believe these things to be true. I was brought up in a home where such faith was and still is practiced, but have also investigated the tenets of Christianity on my own. I certainly cannot dot every "i" and cross every "t" and I have a lot of questions about God, His will, etc. Regardless, I am still certain of what I hope for and certain of what I do not see.

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If you have to ask, you don't have it.

 

That may be so and may not, but it is diffucult for some to get ther arms around. It is a legitimate question that has been debated for years and probably will be debated for years to come. I realize some people may want to jab at those that have it, but there are others taht grapple with it.

 

The vague answer that "if you have to ask, you don't have it", just places more doubt with those that are truly looking for it.

 

I have struggled with this for a long time. I believe I have faith, but I am not certain. But now what I thought I had, I robably don't according to the statement.

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That may be so and may not, but it is diffucult for some to get ther arms around. It is a legitimate question that has been debated for years and probably will be debated for years to come. I realize some people may want to jab at those that have it, but there are others taht grapple with it.

 

The vague answer that "if you have to ask, you don't have it", just places more doubt with those that are truly looking for it.

 

I have struggled with this for a long time. I believe I have faith, but I am not certain. But now what I thought I had, I robably don't according to the statement.

Faith isn't something you have to seek out. The more you search for it, the less likely you are to find it. Faith to me is something individual to every person, but the only thing I have found to be universal about faith is that no one seems to know how to describe it.

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Faith would have to be the central theme of all religions in the world, wouldn’t it? I’m sure every religion worldwide has faith that their beliefs are 100% right and everyone else’s beliefs are 100% wrong.

 

Yes, central indeed. Prof, how much of "faith" do you think is tied into wishful thinking? I think that people believe a lot of what they believe because of the "want to" factor. They want to believe it to be true. We can see that with things on the news all the time. We see people believing things that are outlandishly untrue, I believe, because they want it to be so. We want to believe in ET's, Bigfoot, etc... We see people vulnerable to believing crazy fake news stories because they want to believe it. I wonder if that happens in regards to God, heaven, etc... We really have little reason to believe in the supernatural , other than we want it to be true. I think all of us would WANT it to be true. Of course, WANTING something to be true doesn't make it true. I'm sure you and I both WANT there to be everlasting life(who wouldn't?), but why do we have a harder time wrapping our minds around that while others accept it without apparent difficulty? What makes some folks "faith" so strong and others much less so? I can see where a strong faith in an afterlife would be very comforting. But how does one get to that level of faith? Maybe someone can tell us where Professor and I can get

to that rock solid level of faith.

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Is faith a spiritual gift?

Yes, I think it is. Faith does not happen overnight. It’s a journey. There are ups and downs — and sometimes long flat stretches where I seem to be stalled in my journey. But little by little, I've deepened my relationship with God.

 

In part, this growth in faith is a gift. Through my participation in the community of faith, through my openness to God’s love, I have received this marvelous gift. But faith is also a choice I made, a decision to put God first in my life.

 

I can't say that some people are “ahead” in the journey of faith and others “behind.” Faith is not something we possess by degrees. The journey is complex and different for each person.

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Yes, I think it is. Faith does not happen overnight. It’s a journey. There are ups and downs — and sometimes long flat stretches where I seem to be stalled in my journey. But little by little, I've deepened my relationship with God.

 

In part, this growth in faith is a gift. Through my participation in the community of faith, through my openness to God’s love, I have received this marvelous gift. But faith is also a choice I made, a decision to put God first in my life.

 

I can't say that some people are “ahead” in the journey of faith and others “behind.” Faith is not something we possess by degrees. The journey is complex and different for each person.

 

Thank you. I really admire those, like yourself, who are TRULY sincere in their faith and live it each and every day. I have a colleague whose faith is so strong and so sincere. I may not always agree with her views, but I admire that she lives what she preaches. Same for you.

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A rare mamaw sighting!!!! Missed you , my dear.

 

Thanks! Been recuperating alas from another surgery, hope that will be all. Nice to know I was missed in the great galaxy of BGP. Looks like I checked for December skies just in time. Going to try to get Papaw outside for December's display, hope for clear skies. After telling him how amazing the meteor showers are, and the fact that he no longer has to get up all hours of the night for wrecker calls, I think I can coax him out to join me. ;)

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Thanks! Been recuperating alas from another surgery, hope that will be all. Nice to know I was missed in the great galaxy of BGP. Looks like I checked for December skies just in time. Going to try to get Papaw outside for December's display, hope for clear skies. After telling him how amazing the meteor showers are, and the fact that he no longer has to get up all hours of the night for wrecker calls, I think I can coax him out to join me. ;)

 

Good to hear from you. I've thought a lot of about you the last few weeks. I've truly missed hearing from you in the astronomy thread. In addition to the Geminid meteor shower that peaks mid-month, make sure you and pawpaw check out the Supermoon this Sunday evening.

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