Faith is central to Christianity and a key theme throughout the Bible. God requires faith from His followers for several important reasons:
Faith shows our trust in God
Having faith in God means trusting in His character, wisdom and promises. When we have faith, we are demonstrating that we believe God is who He says He is and that He will do what He says He will do. Hebrews 11:6 says “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Our faith honors God by showing we take Him at His word.
Faith leads us into deeper relationship with God
Faith enables us to experience God’s presence and grow closer to Him. As we step out in faith, believing God’s promises before we see any evidence, our relationship with Him is strengthened. We come to know His faithfulness and the security of resting in His hands. Faith bridges the gap between our limited understanding and God’s unlimited power and wisdom. Through faith, we allow God to work in our lives in greater ways.
Faith is how we receive salvation
The Bible clearly teaches that we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9). Our good works cannot earn salvation – it is the gracious gift of God received by believing in Christ’s atoning sacrifice on the cross. Faith is how we say “yes” to God’s free gift of salvation. Faith is open hands gratefully receiving what Jesus has done for us.
Faith produces good works
While good works can never earn salvation, genuine faith will inevitably lead to good works as we seek to honor and obey God. James 2:14-26 explains that faith without works is dead. As we grow in faith, we become more like Christ and good works characterize our lives. Our faith fuels acts of love, generosity and service. Faith and works go hand in hand as the natural outflow of a changed heart.
Faith requires us to walk by the Spirit, not by sight
Faith means moving forward even when we cannot see the whole picture or what lies ahead. As 2 Corinthians 5:7 expresses, we live by faith, not by sight. God calls us to trust Him in uncertainty and to cling to His promises rather than what we can see or control. Faith requires humility, spiritual vision and often courage. As we walk by faith, we learn to rest in God’s steadfast love and sovereignty.
Faith exercises our spiritual muscles
Living by faith keeps our hearts attentive to God’s voice and helps us grow stronger spiritually. Like a muscle that gets stronger with exercise, our faith expands as we continually exercise it through steps of obedience and trust in God. Each act of faith, whether large or small, builds our maturity and endurance. Stepping out in faith brings victory and breakthrough when sustained through prayer.
Faith overcomes fear and leads to boldness
Fear and faith cannot reside together. Having faith in God’s power and promises enables us to move past fear, doubt and insecurity into courageous action. Faith is a shield that emboldens and equips us for spiritual battle (Ephesians 6:16). Genuine faith manifests itself in boldness, not timidity. As we lean on Christ, faith grants us godly confidence and authority to push back the darkness.
Faith is the evidence of things unseen
Hebrews 11:1 defines faith as “confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Faith grasps the reality of the spiritual realm even when it is invisible to the natural eye. Believing God’s Word means clinging to truth beyond what we can observe in the physical world. Faith operates in the realm of God’s Kingdom, which is eternal and more real than what our senses can perceive.
Faith pleases God
As mentioned earlier, Hebrews 11:6 declares that “without faith it is impossible to please God.” Our Heavenly Father looks for genuine, heartfelt faith that trusts in His character and believes His Word. Only through faith can we access the “abundant life” that Jesus came to give us (John 10:10). Our loving Father longs to pour out His blessings, but can only do so if we come to Him in humble, expectant faith.
Faith is the channel through which God works
God has chosen to set up faith as the means through which we experience His activity in our lives. He often waits for us to step out in faith before He acts, because He longs for us to draw close to Him and rely fully on Him. Faith positions us to receive from God and partner with Him in what He wants to accomplish on earth. Big moves of God start with bold steps of faith.
Faith opens the door for miracles
Miracles break natural laws and human logic, but they can happen when we have faith in the supernatural, miraculous God described in Scripture. Jesus commended people who exercised great faith in Him and rebuked those with little faith (Matthew 8:10, 14:31). He performed miracles in response to faith-filled requests (Mark 5:34). As we put our complete confidence in the wonder-working power of God, miracles become possible.
True faith transforms how we live
If our faith is authentic, it will impact every area of our lives. Genuine faith shapes our thoughts, words, behaviors, priorities, values and how we spend our time. James 2:17 reminds us that faith without action is useless. Bilblical examples like Noah, Abraham and Rahab demonstrate real faith by moving in obedience to God’s commands and calling.
Faith activates God’s promises
God’s many promises in Scripture provide firm ground for our faith. His promises are “Yes” and “Amen” in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 1:20). When we combine faith with God’s promises, we unlock His power and truth in our lives. As Hebrews 4:2 explains, unless faith is united with God’s promises, their full benefit is not realized. Faith claims Scripture’s promises until they become reality.
Faith leads to perseverance and maturity
The testing and stretching of our faith through trials produces perseverance and maturity (James 1:2-4). As God refines our faith through difficulties, we gain spiritual muscle and greater confidence in Him. Our faith is proven genuine and strong when it remains unshaken through storms of life. Persevering faith will be richly rewarded (James 1:12).
Without faith, it’s impossible to know God personally
The Bible makes clear that it is only possible to connect with God and know Him personally through faith. Jesus repeatedly emphasizes the need for faith to enter God’s Kingdom and receive eternal life (John 3:16, John 3:36). Faith forms an open passageway for us to encounter God and participate in what He is doing through Christ. Genuine faith starts an intimate friendship with our Creator.
Faith takes God at His Word
At its core, faith is taking God at His word and acting upon it. Instead of leaning on subjective feelings or human reasoning, faith stakes its hope totally on the truth of God’s objective, eternal Word. Hebrews 4:12 says God’s Word is living, active and able to discern our motives and thoughts. Faith treats the Bible as the flawless, reliable revelation of God’s nature and plan for humanity.
True faith starts and ends with God
While faith involves human choice and action, genuine faith originates from God and is focused completely on Him. Our faith is only possible because of God’s work in our hearts and His gracious gift of salvation through Jesus. Authentic faith glorifies God, not ourselves. Our job is to exercise the measure of faith God provides (Romans 12:3) in ways that honor Him.
Faith works in partnership with love
According to Galatians 5:6, faith works through love. The Bible ties faith and love together as the foundation for following Jesus (1 Timothy 1:5). Love springs from faith and flows out of hearts filled by the Holy Spirit. Faith and love unite us fully with God’s will and purposes. Both are essential to living out the Great Commandment (Luke 10:27).
Childlike faith demonstrates dependence on God
Jesus emphasized the need for childlike faith that exhibits humble trust and reliance on God. Just as children depend completely on their father, God wants us to have a simple, childlike faith that runs to Him for all needs great and small (Matthew 18:3). Childlike faith admits weakness and helplessness apart from God. This earnest dependence is precious to God.
In summary, God asks for faith from His followers because faith honors Him, deepens intimacy with Him, leads to good works, partners with His power, overcomes fear,pleases Him, evidences spiritual reality and miraculously transforms lives. Our awesome God is worthy of our complete faith and trust!