What is Faith
Salvation is the unmerited gift of God’s grace, appropriated through faith. But what is faith? That is the question! Scripture provides the answer. Unfortunately, most Christians today possess a superficial knowledge of YHVH’s WORD. They’re taught to shun the front of God’s book, and start with the Gospel of John. A majority of those who think they’re saved never even finish reading that much. But they know they’re saved. They said the sinner’s prayer. A preacher pronounced them eternally saved.
Only, years later, nothing’s changed.
They’re still bound by sin, Biblically ignorant, and bearing bad fruit. Some attend church. Many do not. They can quote a few scriptures, out of context, to justify their still carnal condition. And should anyone suggest they keep the Father’s commandments, they’ll scream legalism. But they believe! They truly believe. They believe Yeshua, Jesus, is the Son of God and that He died for their sins.
Greek or Hebraic Faith?
Isn’t believing Yeshua is the Son of God, our Messiah, saving faith?
To a Greek mindset: yes; only the Holy Scriptures are Hebraic.
Hebraic faith is action. The just live by faith. It has substance. Evidence! (Heb 1:1). Without works faith is dead. And without faith it is impossible to please God. By faith, people do things! The book of Hebrews tells us that by faith Abel offered God a more excellent sacrifice. Noah built an ark. Abraham obeyed God and offered up Isaac.
The Hebrew word translated as faith is AMAN. It also means faithful. When one has faith, saving faith, one is faithful. That’s the Hebraic, Scriptural meaning of faith. When God says to do or not do something, because they LOVE HIM, because they believe Him, they don’t go looking for loopholes.
Now, to the Greek mindset, faith is mental assent. It is something you agree with mentally, but it is divorced from action. It is not saving faith! That’s why James writes “demons believe and tremble.”
This Greek view of faith originated with Plato and Aristotle. It’s pagan. Infecting the early Church fathers, who had a limited knowledge of the Old Testament, this heresy spread like wildfire. Justin Martyr hoped what he saw as similarities between the two belief-systems could be used to evangelize Gentiles as the Church spread westward from Jerusalem.
It led to compromise. Assimilation.
Starting with the Counsel of Nicaea in AD 325, then the Council of Antioch in 345, and culminating with the Council of Laodicea in 365, the Church broke completely from its Hebraic roots.
These Church Fathers changed YHVH’s Sabbath to Sunday and outlawed the Feasts (Appointed Times) of YHVH that He said were to be celebrated forever. They substituted the Pagan holidays of Easter and Christmas, flouting God’s command not to worship Him the way Pagans worship their gods. (Deu 28:14, Deu 18:14, Lev 20:23)
These so-called Church Fathers were either ignorant of, or in open rebellion to, the instructions given throughout the first ¾ of YHVH’s Word. They even began to disparage what comprised the bulk of Scripture, calling it the Old Testament. These breaks with God’s instructions were codified a short time later by the Roman Catholic Church.
Without benefit of the knowledge of Scripture and influence of Jewish believers in Messiah, the Church further mixed God’s seed, His WORD, with the seed of the Enemy—paganism and idolatry. Soon, only the Catholic clergy could possess a Bible. Miracles stopped! And the world plunged into the Dark Ages.
Since the Reformation, God has been slowly restoring His truth to the Body. But now–praise YHVH–things are speeding up. We have entered that time of refreshing spoken of in Acts 3:19-21. It is the final great move of God to restore all things, especially the Church’s Hebraic roots. Remember what Paul said, you do not support the root, but the root (of YHVH’s cultivated Olive Tree) supports you. (Romans 11:18)
Restoration of All Things
YHVH is in the process of restoring all the things spoken through His Prophets since the beginning. So, repent! Return to the old paths. Walk in them. If you are saved by (Scriptural) faith, if you are in the renewed covenant, if God’s Laws are written on your heart, they’re placed there so you will obey them. If He has given you His Holy Spirit, it’s to empower you to be able to fulfill the righteous requirements of His Law. (Rom 8:4)
He’s asking us to stop being conformed to this world. Be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so you can prove what that good, acceptable, and perfect, will of God is. If you love Him, keep His commandments.
Yeshua soon will return. When He does, will the Son of Man find FAITH on the earth?
Saving faith? Hebraic faith?
Your article sheds so much light on the understanding James was trying to shed in his 2nd chapter. In the Greek mind it makes no sense that faith requires action and that without action it is dead. James compares faith without works to a corpse. Dead faith cannot lead one to life. It’s impossible. It’s a corpse. It’s useless.
In examining Abraham’s faith, James concluded in his 2nd chapter verse 22 that faith produces the work and the work perfects the faith. One without the other just doesn’t work.
Thank you, Bryan. Blessings!
Yehovah says,if you love him keep his commands and love him with all your heart and all your being.
Hebraic Faith is the real deal. Praise YHWH, for his mercy endures forever.
saving Faith and Hebraic Faith are synonyms! Thanks for another great article, Chris.