Thursday, June 10, 2010

How strong is your faith?

A friend gave me a copy of Justification and Regeneration by Charles Leiter, and it is living up to the frequent recommendations. Here is a very helpful section on how justification is based on the blood of Jesus.

There is nothing in man that causes God to justify him, including his repentance and faith. Repentance does not pay for sin. A criminal's remorse for his crimes adoes not satisfy the just demands of the law. Neither does faith pay for sin! Only the blood of Jesus can pay for sin! Justification is based on the blood of Christ.

Could my zeal no respite know,
Could my tears forever flow,
All for sin could not atone;
Thou must save and Thou alone.
Augustus Toplady

This explains why a person can have a very weak faith and still be justified. Imagine two bridges crossing a chasm: One is very weak and untrustworthy; the other is very strong. A man may have a very strong faith in the weak bridge and confidently step out onto it. His strong faith will not keep him from plunging to his death. On the other hand, a man may have a very weak faith in the strong bridge and only barely manage with fear and trembling to venture forth upon it. The bridge will hold him securely, regardless of his weak faith. All that is necessary is for him to have enough faith to get him onto the bridge! When someone told Hudson Taylor that he must be a man of great faith, he replied, "No, I am a man of very little faith in a very great God."

When the Death Angel passed through Egypt on the night of the Passover, God was looking for only one thing--the blood on the doorposts. "When I see the blood, I will pass over you. (Exodus 12:13)" Those inside the house might have been full of fear and trembling, but it made no difference as long as the blood had been applied. (p 34-35)
So the question is not how strong is your faith, but how strong is the object of your faith? If that object is not Christ (John 14:6), and Christ alone (Acts 4:12), you will not make it across the bridge.

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Here is my testimony: mike