Faith Equals Faithfulness
I was on a walk with a fellow Warrior one day, and she started teaching me about faithfulness. I was amazed. I had never really thought about the difference between faith and faithfulness.
“Yeah, Faith is the gift from God, but faithfulness is the fruit of the Spirit – it’s the fruit of Faith.” She went on to teach me what she had learned during her recent time with God on this topic. With her permission, I include it here. I know it will bless you as much as it did me.
**Faith-"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." (Hebrews11:1)
~ belief/trust in God's righteousness
~ a strong internal belief that is unwavering, something we know to be true in our heart
~ believing and trusting in God's Word as truth
~ trusting that God will provide for our needs
~ trusting that God will protect us from the evil one
~ believing that God is with us and lives in us, even though we cannot see Him with our physical eyes
~ believing that Christ's sacrifice paid the penalty for our sins, reconciling us to God
~ believing that through faith we have Christ's authority over evil powers
**Faith is a gift from God. Faith comes from hearing/soaking in the Word of God.
"Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ." -Romans 10:17
*** Faith is a spiritual gift and faithfulness is the fruit we produce. The gift of faith comes from God through the Word, but the fruit of faith is produced by the Holy Spirit. God is the author and perfecter of our faith-
"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart." -Hebrews 12:2
"There are different kinds of gifts, but the same spirit.......to one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another message of knowledge by means of the same spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit...." 1Corithians 12:4-11
***Because God is the creator of faith and because faith is a gift from God- we can ask Him to increase our faith.
".... I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief (increase my faith)!" Mark 9:24
"The apostles said to the Lord, 'Increase our faith!" - Luke17:5
*** Faithfulness is faith in action. When you produce the fruit of faithfulness, you are acting in accordance to your faith. You are doing/showing what you believe. Faith is both believing and doing. The two cannot be separated. You cannot say you have faith and believe but do not act accordingly. (James 2 is a beautiful chapter on this)
"As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead." James 2:26
"...faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action is dead." James 2:17
"Was not our ancestor Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that his faith and his actions were working together and his faith was made complete by what he did." James2:21-22
***Our shield of faith protects us from all of Satan’s attacks. When our faith is rooted deeply in God's Word and truth, the Devil cannot penetrate our defenses because "all of his flaming arrows are quenched by the shield." (Ephesians 6:6)
Faith based on God's Word is most powerful.
When we believe in something (good or bad) our belief gives it power to manifest in our lives. "Everything is possible for him who believes." Mark 9:23
So...We must be careful to believe in God's Word and not the Devil's lies, because when we do we are putting faith into the devil's lies and opening wide the doors for him to destroy us. This is "negative faith"- and we can give it the power, if we choose to believe the lies instead of God's truth. Our faith must be based the truth of God's Word!!
Satan wants most to destroy our faith in God and His truth. He wants us to quit and to give up when things are hard, instead of trusting that God will help us and take care of us. He wants us to believe his lies instead of God's truth. We must be alert and constantly in the Word and actively using our shield to destroy all that Satan throws our way. But we have to put faith in action... we have to show (produce the fruit of) faithfulness. This is pleasing to God -and He will bless us, He will reveal to us the "evidence of things unseen."
"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"- Hebrews11:6
"But my righteous will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him." Hebrews 10:38
"For the Lord loves the just and will not forsake His faithful ones." Psalm37:28
God says that all we need is faith the size of a mustard seed. He will and can grow that seed and increase our faith.
He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, be uprooted and planted in the sea, and it will obey you." Luke17:5
"It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his garden. It grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air perched in its branches." Luke 13:19
He replied, “Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, Move from here to there, and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." Matthew 17:20
We must remember that gifts are given, but spiritual fruit is developed. The fruit of the Spirit comes to us when we receive Jesus Christ as our personal Savior; however, it only comes as a small seed which must be nurtured and developed in our lives through prayer, by reading the Word, and by putting faith into action. If Christ is in us, then we should be Christ-like. The fruit of the Spirit is the display of the character of Christ. It is His presence within us that enables us develop the spiritual fruit in our lives.
"In addition to all of this, take up the shield of faith (actively do it), with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one." Ephesians 6:16
"Let us hold firmly to the faith we profess." Hebrews 4:14
Kristina Seymour loves to encourage and equip women through the Word and through community. She is the author of The Warrior Mom Handbook, The Warrior Mom Leadership Manual, and The Warrior Wife Handbook; they are available at Amazon.com. Kristina's Bible studies are for women who desire to live by faith in the midst of their everyday lives. She has learned that women can't survive on caffeine and animal crackers alone; women in the Word and in community are united and able to stand firm. To learn more about Kristina, please visit her website, https://kristinaseymour.com/. God loves to share His story of love and grace through us all, and Kristina believes that everyone has a story to tell.