The Sufficiency of Faith

Posted on July 12, 2013

0


Faith SignAuthor: Andrew Kerbs

I heard a pastor make the statement once (I don’t remember who he was quoting) that made a powerful point so I share it with you here.

“God is not waiting for the Seventh-day Adventist church to keep the Sabbath better, to widen and enrich its understanding of the sanctuary, to more firmly entrench itself in its understanding of Daniel and Revelation. He is not waiting for it to finally give up its beloved dairy products and caffeine as it paradoxically proclaims to have a health message. He is not waiting for people to pray that extra hour each day, or to read that extra five chapters of the Psalms each day either.

What He is waiting for is surprisingly simple. He is waiting for His people to put away their sins.”

I liked the pastor’s sentiments, but even here we are in danger of straying if we are not careful. Is God waiting for us to catch our second wind? Is He waiting for us to take another deep breath, clench our fists and go at it one more time in the battle with overcoming self?

No.

But God is waiting for His people to put away their sins. Only He needs them to realize something. They can’t. Faith is the only way for a man to be right with God and it is the only way for man to be cleansed from his sins. (Jn 3:16). Only those who believe is the risen Savior can be found worthy, and this not of their own merit, but of that of He who was beaten, crucified, and lives—who lives to make intercession for them!

The world is going to be judged according to their works (Rev. 20:12).  This is a biblical fact. Yet the works of all are inadequate (Rom. 3:23). Thus, humans find themselves in a quagmire where they need works to be saved, but are utterly incapable of performing them. Some make the mistake here of creating a theology that proclaims faith, while deeming works inconsequential. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Works are not inconsequential. They are absolutely essential. However, the works of man, we already know, are inadequate. The works we are seeking as God’s works. This is not to say we will work harder in pursuing God—that is still man’s foolish way.

Genuine faith will produce acceptable works that glorify God, but the works can never be the focus for man, lest he fall short and wind up again attempting to save himself through his own efforts. The people in Christ’s day faced this same dilemma when they asked Christ how they could work the works of God.

Jesus’ answer was simple: “”The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” (Jn. 6:29)

Truly, the “just will live by his faith” and whatever is not of faith is sin. To attempt to add more to the gospel by establishing parameters of what a man must do to be saved is heresy. Faith is all that is necessary.

And faith and works are always mutually inclusive. True faith creates acceptable works by default of that faith. A man will be changed—he could not help but be changed, however he will be little conscious of it. All man must do is believe and keep his eyes fastened up Christ Jesus.

Faith