The Faith of Jesus Christ!

Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified– Galatians 2:16. Justified means just as if I’d never sinned, being made free from guilt, and thus we present ourselves before God as those who are righteously acquitted of any wrongdoing. The faith of Jesus Christ has already given us our justification before God, rather than being justified by any of our works. The Greek word for faith is pistis and means believing. Our complete justification is given to us based not on works but rather on the believing faith of Jesus Christ himself, who gave himself for us.” ~LMJ~

Looking for God?

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

I recall one night when I was laying down on a grassy meadow that behind me was a forest of trees swaying in a summer’s night breeze and in front of me was a lake. The stars above were twinkling, and other than the wind there was a peaceful silence as I was grasping for the meaning of life. I was thinking and wondering why was I here, why was I breathing air, what is really the meaning of life (especially mine); was there a purpose or reason that I was even able to think these thoughts?!

I had no idea nor did any divine inspiration come to mind, and truly I was discouraged; I remember having similar thoughts for years without ever grasping any real understanding.

This may seem like a silly story but it is what put me on a course that eventually led me to my Savior and my God. When I was originally introduced to God in my early twenties I was literally shocked to see that His Word was actually His Word!

When anyone finds Jesus Christ in the Scriptures, simultaneously they will find God as their heavenly Father rather than as simply “the (unknown) man upstairs.” The quest for God and spirituality is a large part of the human experience that most people come to at one time or another. Some will seek Him in nature, others will look in other places, yet He only becomes personally induced to the searching heart as one comes directly face to face with His Word and truly finds Jesus Christ who is the way, the truth, and the lifeline to Him.

Acts 17:23 – {The Apostle Paul is addressing a crowd.} For as I passed by {on his way up to Mars Hill in Athens} and beheld your devotions {statues and other objects they worshiped}, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him {God} declare I unto you.

Then Paul begins to preach the Word of God to them. The reason that they had a statue addressed to the unknown God was just in case they accidentally missed one, because they tried to the best of their ability to worship everything under the sun. However, if they accidentally missed one, then they had an extra one to cover.

Today this may seem a little ridiculous, yet they were simply covering all the bases. Paul finding this one statue gave him an in to start helping them find the true God, it’s a great story to read sometime.

Let’s go to the conclusion of Paul’s teaching:

Acts 17:30-34a:
-30:  And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men everywhere to repent:
-31:  Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man {Jesus Christ} whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance {pistis} unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.
-32:  And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter.
-33:  So Paul departed from among them.
-34a:  Howbeit certain men clave unto him, and believed: . . .

The word “assurance” is the Greek word pistis and means the believing faith of Jesus Christ, for with his believing faith (Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith, Hebrews 12:2), we are enabled to perceive the spiritual realities of God. Christ’s faith is given to every believer at the moment of salvation.

Ephesians 2:8 records, “For ye are saved through faith.” This is not our faith but the saving faith of our Savior Jesus Christ, and with his faith he literally becomes our spiritual eyes, helping us perceive God in the genuine light that His Word shines into our conscious lives. Rather than God being unknown to us, or just out of our grasp, or trying to find Him Who dwells in eternity, we can learn the true joys in obtaining the realities of Him through knowing Jesus Christ.

Our Justification by Faith

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Galatians 2:16 – Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

The Church in Galatians was practicing the Law because they began to believe that their sanctification (their being set apart for heaven) was contingent upon their own actions and abilities. But in stark contrast, justified means “just as if I’d never sinned,” being made free from guilt, and thus we present ourselves before God as those who are righteously acquitted of any wrongdoing. The faith of Jesus Christ has already given us our justification before God, rather than being justified by any of our works. The Greek word for faith is pistis and means believing. Our complete justification is given to us based not on works but rather on the believing faith of Jesus Christ himself, who gave himself for us.

Romans 4:25 – Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.

Jesus Christ was delivered unto death for our offences, for our sins and shortcomings. However, he was raised from the dead so we may receive our justification. Jesus himself had the believing faith that his sacrifice would secure our own justification. Today we do not need to base our justification on our own works, but rather our justification is because of the absolute believing of Jesus Christ who died and was resurrected for us. This is why we are justified today and all that we have to do is believe on the work of Jesus Christ and his accomplishments.

Romans 5:1 – THEREFORE being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

Again, we are justified by faith, and this faith is the believing faith of Jesus Christ, and as a direct result of his faith we were justified. With the faith of Jesus Christ, we have a genuine peace with God. We are not at war with God, and contrary to some schools of thought, God is not at war with us, rather we are at peace with Him. Peace with God is something that we have received because we are justified by the faith of Jesus Christ. Peace is not something that we need to hope for but rather it is something received, something spiritually enjoyed, and something totally deserving to our souls because Jesus gave his life so that we will forever be justified and have continuous peace with our heavenly Father.

Faith, Hope, and Charity (The Shorter Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

In this study, we will be taking a look at faith, hope, and charity to learn how they work together. Our goal is to acquire a further understanding of their meaning in the Scriptures, for they are the footing on which the more abundant life rests. In this byte we will briefly look at all three and concentrate on each one in particular in other Bible bytes.

I Corinthians 13:13 – And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

Once, I was told by an individual that “charity was the best gift a person could receive from God,” and he got this idea from the verse above. However, the Bible doesn’t say that charity is the best gift, rather the Bible says charity is “the greatest.” Also, the Bible does not state “faith and hope are not really as good.” The reason that charity is the greatest is because it is a God-given master key for unlocking our own faith, and faith opens up to us and reveals “the hope of His calling” (Ephesians 1:18). So with charity, our faith and hope are energized.

“Faith” is the Greek word pistis, and means believing, believing faith. “Hope” is the Greek word elpis, and it means future hope, it is usually in the context of the hope men and women have for the return of Christ (still a future event). “Charity” is the Greek word agapee and means the love of God.

I Corinthians 13:12 – For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as I am known.

“For now we see through a glass, darkly;” means that today we do not know it all, even with all the abundance that God’s Word reveals to us. This phrase is in reference to our believing faith, “for we walk by faith {believing}, not by sight” (II Corinthians 5:7). The next words, “but then face to face” means when we meet Christ “face to face,” because of our hope in his imminent return. “Now I know in part;” is again in reference to our believing faith, to believe what we do know. “But then shall I know even as I am known” is again in reference to our hope, when we will receive all that we have hoped in because then we will have been perfected and will be enjoying our lives with God and with Jesus Christ in eternity.

Charity, the love of God we have will activate our faith, our believing faith to love as God’s Word encourages. Charity energizes our believing faith, and our believing faith will appropriate the revealed promises of God. Our believing faith energizes our anticipation in the hope of Christ’s return for us, and our hope is a necessary ingredient for living charitably. This is why all three are so wonderful and worthy of our taking the time to understanding them more clearly, and I am sure they will give you great inspiration, as well as great expectations.

The vehicle to help facilitate our believing and inspire our hope is charity, yet all three of these are important to living our lives in true godliness. “And now abideth {remains here for you} faith, hope, charity.”

Faith, Hope, and Charity (The Longer Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Through this study, we will be looking at the words ― faith, hope, and charity to learn how they work together. Our goal is to acquire a further understanding of their meaning in the Scriptures, for they are the footing on which the more abundant life rests. In this first study, we will briefly look at all three words.

I Corinthians 13:13: And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but {and} the greatest of these is charity.

Once I was told by an individual, “charity was the best gift a person could receive from God, and everything else was insignificant in comparison” and he got this idea from the verse above. However, the Bible does not say that charity is the best gift; rather the Bible says the greatest of these is charity. Jesus said, “my Father is greater than I” in John 14:28, and this is the same Greek word that is translated greatest, though no one would say Jesus is insignificant in God’s eyes! Also, the Bible does not teach “faith and hope are not really as good.”

Let us use the earth, the sun, and the moon for a parallel example; the earth supplies the substance that sustains our lives, but still without the moon and the sun, the earth would be about as barren of a planet as you could find. In truth, we need all three to sustain ourselves and flourish in our physical lives; it is the same truth with faith, hope, and charity, we need all three to sustain ourselves and flourish in our spiritual lives.

The reason why charity is called the greatest is because it is a God-given master key for unlocking our faith, and faith opens, reveals, and insures our inner souls of “the hope of His calling” (Ephesians 1:18), which is to be with Christ for all eternity. So with charity, our faith and hope are energized.

Faith is the Greek word pistis, and means believing or believing faith and without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6), so faith is significantly important.

Hope is the Greek word elpis, and it means future hope (Romans 8:24–25); it is usually in the context of the hope or anticipation that men and women have for the return of Christ (still a future event), and I Timothy 1:1 says that Christ is our hope. Only the believer has access to the hope of Christ’s return in order to patiently wait with joy to be eternally with our Savior in heaven. Hope encourages the Christian believer to continue standing for God even through any present adversity because the future has rewards for our believing and loving in this current time of grace, so hope is also significantly important.

Charity is the Greek word agapē and means the love of God. The word greatest in I Corinthians 13:13 above would be much better understood if it were translated as the first, or the elder, or the commencement, or the foundation, as this is the proper and greater meaning of the word, because God loved us from before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). God’s love for us has always existed while faith and hope both have a beginning in our lives, faith comes to the individual by hearing the Word (Romans 10:17), and man had no spiritual faith until he knew Christ (Galatians (3:22–29). And as well, our hope began growing in our hearts from the moment of our salvation when we became the children of God, a hope that we at one time were without (Ephesians 2:2; I Thessalonians 4:13). Thus, as (and when) faith and hope begin living in the heart of our understanding, then charity will magnify itself greater and greater in our lives as a viable part of the spiritual serenity we can enjoy walking with God.

Charity – being the love of God is a part of God Himself, and this part – His love – He has given to all believers (Romans 5:5; 8:36–39), while our hope and believing faith is something we learn to aspire to utilize in our daily living. We learn to believe in the promises of God through our believing faith, and we learn to hope more and more through knowing what the Word says regarding our Savior returning for us.

I Corinthians 13:12:  For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as I am known.

For now we see through a glass, darkly; means that today we do not know it all, even with all the abundance that God’s Word reveals to us. This phrase is in reference to our believing faith, “for we walk by faith {believing faith}, not by sight” (II Corinthians 5:7). The next words, but then face to face is in reference to when we meet Christ face to face, because our hope is in his imminent return. Now I know in part; is again in reference to our believing faith, to believe in what we do know from God’s healing Word. But then shall I know even as I am known is again in reference to our hope, when we will receive all that we have hoped in and anticipated, because then we will have been perfected (Philippians 3:20–21), and we will be enjoying our lives with God and with Jesus Christ through eternity.

Love – God’s love – motivates our endeavors, faith – believing faith – appropriates the promises of God, and hope – Christian hope – anticipates the return of Christ. These three form a complete whole and enhance Christian character in an individual’s life. “And now abideth {or ― remains here for you} faith, hope, charity.”

Philippians 3:20–21 (The Amplified Bible):**
-20: But we are citizens of the state (commonwealth, homeland) which is in heaven, and from it also we earnestly and patiently await [the coming of] the Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) [as] Savior,
-21: Who will transform and fashion anew the body of our humiliation to conform to and be like the body of His glory and majesty, by exerting that power which enables Him even to subject everything to Himself.

**Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE.
The Amplified New Testament copyright (c) 1958, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission.