On a day to day, moment by moment basis, how do we live our Christian lives?
To be honest, I often fall into living by my willpower and good works. I can easily gut out my obedience and then look at what I’ve done with pride. I think I’m strong.
Now, of course willpower and good works are not bad. In their proper place, they are all wonderful gifts that God gives to His children. But, if we live our Christian lives based on either one by itself, we are doomed to fail from the start.
Why? Because willpower and good works come by faith. In fact, everything that I need to live the Christian life springs from faith. So, if I try to do it all in my own strength, I eventually crash and burn. This is why faith is so crucial.
Consider how the Bible unpacks the wonders of faith:
- Faith is how the Christian life begins (Eph 2:8).
- Faith is how we see unseen, eternal realities, the primary reality being Christ Himself (2 Cor 3:18; 4:6).
- And when we see Him by faith, we immediately love Him and rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory (1 Pet 1:8).
- Our faith also works itself out through love, in the heart and in our deeds (Gal 5:6).
- All of our obedience springs from faith in Christ (Rom 1:5; Rom 16:26).
- So, the whole Christian life is summarized by this: we walk by faith, not by sight (2 Cor 5:7).
It’s not that faith itself is powerful. Rather, faith is the means by which we access power; the power of Jesus Christ in the gospel. And, to do this, we admit our total weakness to live the Christian life apart from Him and trust that what the gospel says about Him and His work is true.
And when we believe in Christ, He gives us power to obey from the heart all that He’s called us to. This is why Jesus said that apart from Him we can do nothing (John 15:5). But, with Christ, by faith, we can bear much fruit to His glory.