Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate.  Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach.  For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.

 
 
 

Going to Jesus

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Thought for the Morning
2-05

The Elect: Responses continued

Pastor John:

Faith is a fruit of the spirit of God, and it always moves people to do "the works of God" Faith moved me to receive the spirit of God. Faith caused me to understand the gospel. Faith causes us to do the works of Abraham. How can we say demons have faith? Demons "believe" and tremble. Not demons have "faith" and tremble.

G. D.

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Dear G. D.:

As a result of your response, I did some Scripture study on the word "faith". Initially, I was intrigued by the fact that there is no Scripture that refers to "false faith", or even "faith" in other gods. At first, just as you suggested, faith did appear to be a phenomenon unique to God's kingdom.

You said in a previous email to me that "belief" is not "faith" and that "faith" is only found in God, while belief can be found practically everywhere. But the difference between the words "faith" and "belief", I found to exist only in the English language. The words "faith" and "believe" are very different in English but are identical in Greek, except that one is in a noun form and the other is in the form of a verb.

The ancient people who believed in many gods did have faith in them, G. D. And those who believe in the true God have faith in Him. It is the same thing. "To have faith in" and "to believe in" are absolutely interchangeable in the original Scriptures. The "gift of faith" mentioned in 1Corinthians 12 could also be called the "gift of believing". It was simply the writer's choice as to which phrase to use.

What I learned by my study, G. D. is that "faith", or "believing" is found both inside and outside the kingdom of God. Apparently, you have either assumed or been taught that faith in the living God is the only "faith" that exists since it is the only "faith" mentioned in the Scriptures, and that is true in the King James Version. But from that, we cannot conclude that faith in the true God is the only kind of faith that exists. Faith in the living God is a fruit of the Spirit, but there are other spirits out there inspiring faith in other things besides God.

Faith is only as good as its object, just as believing is only as good as its object -- because faith and believing are the same thing. I looked up every verse in the Bible where the Greek words for faith (pistis) and believe (pisteo) are found, and what I am telling you will stand up in court. So, even though at first I was excited that maybe I had learned something new about faith, when I took a careful look at all the evidence, I could not justify changing what I had written: Demons who tremble at the thought of God, do so because they have more faith in Him than the man who does not tremble before God.

I am very thankful that you questioned what I wrote. Your questioning it caused me to "search the Scriptures to see whether those things were so" that you were telling me, but I have come to the conclusion that what I originally said is justified by the Scriptures.

Pastor John

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