You Gotta Have Faith

Whenever I hear the phrase “You Gotta Have Faith”, I think of the George Michael song from the 80s, Faith. Some of you probably remember that video, but some of you are now starting to realize just how old I am. It was George Michael dancing with an acoustic guitar and nothing else. The song was a huge hit, topping out at #1 on the Billboard charts for four weeks, and was called the number-one single of the year. Needless to say, the song was a monster. Charting at number-one in ten countries, and it was all about faith. Ok. Not really. It was anything but that. The song was actually about breaking up with someone you are growing apart from. Let’s just say that’s not what we’re talking about today. The kind of faith we’ll be talking about is the kind you find in Hebrews 11.

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the people of old received their commendation. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.
Hebrews 11:1–3

Most times, when people read about faith, they only read that first verse, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” That is a great definition of what faith is, but the next two verses give us scope. Verse two tells us it was through faith that those we read about in the Old Testament were commended by God. It was their faith that made them giants in Biblical history. It wasn’t necessarily their accomplishments. Instead, it was their faith. Even in many of Jesus’ miracles, He tells the person being healed that their faith healed them.

And Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him on the way.
Mark 10:52

This would lead us to think that faith has power. Sometimes, we look at it as just belief, but believing something and having faith in something are two different things. 

You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!
James 2:19

It is entirely possible to believe there is a God and work directly against Him while never putting your faith in Him. The one who does put their faith in Him, however, will find a life that pushes limits, accomplishes great things for the Kingdom, and finds satisfaction in that work. Hebrews 11:2 gives us a scope of understanding of how faith shapes us into the kind of disciples that God wants following His Son: people who believe, trust, and follow in any circumstance or situation.

Hebrews 11:3 then gives us the scope of WHO the God we have put our faith in really is. We see the ultimate power and creativity of a God who surpasses any god that man could create in our minds. This is where the Hebrew writer says, “By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.” Literally, God created everything we know with His Word. He said it. It happened. To this day, I don’t think we always realize the amount of power that would have to exist to be able to simply speak things into existence, but that’s our God.

Faith not only says we believe that He exists but that we trust Him to have our best interests in mind. We have faith that He is a loving Father who will provide for our needs. We have faith that Jesus is His son and died and rose again to give us hope and fill the canyon we had placed between ourselves and God through our sin. We have faith that He sent His Holy Spirit to lead us, guide us, and empower us to live lives that are a daily worship service to Him and are striving to make disciples. Without faith, we cannot do His work, lead others to Him, or have hope. Even the smallest amount of faith can achieve incredible things.

Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” He said to them, “Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.”
Matthew 17:19–20

The adversary of faith is doubt. The disciples tried to cast a demon out of a young man, but they were ultimately unsuccessful. They couldn’t comprehend why they couldn’t do what they had seen Jesus do, but Jesus knew the answer. Their faith wasn’t strong enough. We also see another example of this with Peter. The disciples are in a boat on the sea as a storm rolls in. The waters begin to get rougher and the waves start to rise. The men look out and see Jesus walking on the water toward them, and Peter does something amazing….then not so amazing.

And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”
Matthew 14:28–31

It was Peter’s faith that gave him the supernatural power to walk on water, but when he saw the danger involved, he doubted, and that power went away. How many of us can identify with that? We have faith that God will come through, but when we see the world around us and the danger involved, do we crumble? God wants us to have a faith that ignores the waves. He wants us to have a faith that calls us to action; a faith that trusts God when He calls us to do the hard things. Jesus tells us to trust Him. He has made the way.

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
 John 16:33

This life isn’t easy. There will be trials. There will be hard times. People will let you down. You will lose loved ones. Thankfully, we serve an amazing God who has set us up for success in this crazy world. He really only asks one thing of us, and that one thing will lead us to believe, follow, and obey a creator who wants nothing more than to spend eternity with you. It just comes down to one thing. To quote George Michael, You Gotta Have Faith.

No Comments