How Our Faithful God Makes His People to be Faithful

Faith in Christ is a gift of God (Eph 2:8–9). It is by His doing that one is in Christ (1 Cor 1:30), who is the author of every believer’s faith (Heb 12:2). Therefore, even the measure of one’s faith is determined by the Author who grants it (Rom 12:3; Phil 1:29).

In looking at the “hall of faith” in Hebrews 11, we must not ascribe faithfulness to those people referenced by the writer, but we must see that God is faithful (Dt 7:9; 1 Cor 1:9; 10:13) and that faithfulness manifests in His chosen people as a fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22).

The world cannot receive the Spirit of Christ (Jn 14:17); therefore, those without the Spirit are of the world (Rom 8:9). Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of Christ (Rom 10:17), which is preached by faithful men of God called to rightly divide the Word of truth (Rom 10:15; 2 Tim 2:15).

Sent by God to preach the Gospel of grace, these men proclaim Him who is faithful and true (Acts 20:24; Col 1:28; Rev 3:14; 19:11). Preaching Christ crucified is the mark of the Spirit-filled man of God, who heralds all that God has done to save His people from their sins (Mt 1:21). All that God has done for the benefit of His elect is called “grace.”

By God’s grace, vessels of mercy receive Christ, by the sovereign will of God decreed from before the foundation of the world (Jn 1:12–13; Rom 9:23). Faith manifests, therefore, in those predestined to adoption as sons of God (Eph 1:4–5), who were redeemed by Jesus Messiah at the Cross of Calvary (Gal 3:13). Having received the Spirit of adoption at the time of the Spirit’s baptism (Mt 3:11; Rom 8:15), the one born again of God is filled with the Spirit of truth, who now guides the man-made-new into all truth (Jn 16:13; 2 Cor 5:17). This includes the truth about God, Jesus, humanity, demons, and the world. The believer believes the truth, as it is in Jesus (Eph 4:21), who is the truth (Jn 14:6).

God loves His beloved children, as demonstrated by His giving them the truth. Not all have faith in the truth (2 Thess 3:2) because not all have the Spirit of truth (Rom 8:9). Here is the distinction between those people who are children of God and those who remain children of the devil (1 Jn 3:1, 10). It is the truth that sets free the captive to the devil and his lies (Jn 8:32, 44; 2 Cor 4:4).

Those blind to the Gospel truth are called “unbelievers.” They do not hear the voice of Christ, hence, they do not have the Word of life in them (Jn 8:47). There is no place for the Word because the life-giving Spirit has not given them ears to hear, nor eyes to see, nor faith to believe (Jn 6:63; 1 Cor 15:45). Jesus said to the Jews, “You do not believe because you are not My sheep (Jn 10:26).”

In order to belong to Christ (1 Cor 3:23), one must be given to Jesus by God the Father (Jn 6:37; 17:2, 6, 24). He or she must also be bought for a price (1 Cor 6:20; 7:23)…off the slave market of sin (Rom 6:6, 16–20).

The purchase came at the price of Jesus’ precious blood (Acts 20:28; 1 Pet 1:19), when He died as the Lamb of God slain (Jn 1:29; Rev 5:6, 12), for our transgressions and iniquities (Is 53:5). By the blood of the covenant of grace we have the forgiveness of sins (Mt 26:28; Eph 1:7) and without the shedding of Jesus’ blood applied to a person there is no forgiveness of sins (Heb 9:22).

Faithfulness means one is full of trust in the promises made, to do as was agreed upon. The unrighteous are unfaithful. They will not do right. God puts His faithful ones into service (1 Tim 1:2), and the objective is to be faithful in all things (1 Tim 3:11). Faith wavers under temptation, and sin crouches at the door, but God remains faithful (2 Tim 2:13). He always does right by the Word of His oath and covenant.

God is faithful and Jesus is faithful…perfectly. When the Christian trusts in the Lord Jesus, the Word of God, his or her actions manifest that faith. Knowing the temptation is to faithlessness, the believer desires a strengthened faith. Jesus’ disciples requested that their faith be increased by Him (Lk 17:5). Christ is the author of one’s faith, and the One who strengthens faith in His people.

When one considers those who were faithful in the Bible, it was the circumstances that proved each one’s faith. Days of testing were ordained and this included days of triumph and days of defeat. Pride — trusting in oneself — is a threat when triumph wins the day. Despair — trusting nothing at all — is the threat when defeat prevails.

The faithful ones press on regardless what the day may present for better or for worse. Persevering is a grace from God which glorifies Him for being the One who preserves them. His indwelling presence and faithfulness is the source of every faithfulness produced by the Holy Spirit. This is the very reason Christians bear witness of Christ Jesus and not themselves (1 Cor 1:29–31).

Faithful witnesses know the truth about Jesus Christ and the truth about themselves. This is why humility is merely an awareness of the truth about grace received and honestly acknowledged. Knowing Christ, therefore, is knowing this truth. To know Christ (Phil 3:10), the wisdom and power of God (1 Cor 1:24), is the way to increased faith and faithfulness. It is therefore a grace from God to even pray for His grace.

In conclusion, faith is evidence made manifest that God is at work in the life of the one made faithful. One’s witness serves as a recognition of the truth of who is really faithful and true (Rev 3:14; Rev 19:11). It is God who is faithful and that truth is what we declare. In this true declaration, the world sees and knows the faithfulness of God, as it is displayed in the ones who are acknowledged as faithful. Thus, we know the truth. He is faithful, and He makes His faithful ones to be that way.

David Norczyk

Spokane Valley, Washington

October 1, 2022

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Some random theologian out West somewhere, Christian writer, preacher

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David Norczyk

Some random theologian out West somewhere, Christian writer, preacher