His faith condemned the world, by Alan Ballou
What is faith? Ask a hundred people, and you will probably hear at least ninety different answers. However, the whole chapter of Hebrews 11 is full of examples of how to “have faith.”
The Bible says to test yourself to make sure that you are in the faith (2 Corinthians 13:5). Therefore, it would seem possible to believe that we have faith, even if we do not. Perhaps we should check.
Faith is described in Hebrews 11:1, but many of the newer Bibles have changed the wording, and that is one of the reasons why Christians would not answer the question, “What is faith,” in the same way.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. NKJV
If I was not quoting that verse directly, I would explain faith as being our assured hope in a promise that God has made us, in view of the things to come, which are predicted in His Word. Let me show you why.
Here is one of the examples found in Hebrews chapter 11 that explains faith. Noah used faith to save his family.
Hebrews 11:7 By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith. NKJV
Obviously, “the evidence of things not seen” was the information that God gave Noah about the coming flood, and what he would have to do in order to save his family; build the ark.
The “substance of things hoped for,” is also obvious. Noah hoped to “save his family.” Imagine this. If he was not 100% sure that God’s method of saving his family would work, he would not have built the ark.
Faith made Noah do two things. He received the warning given him as evidence of things not yet seen, and he followed the instructions, which were also given to him, in order to receive what he hoped for.
Also, notice that, according to Hebrews 11:7 above, Noah not only had faith in God, but his faith condemned the world. How did that happen, and can it happen again? Let’s see.
It’s not just Noah’s faith. Actually, there are people today who have faith, who will condemn those who do not. Read the following verses and let the scriptures explain itself.
Luke 11:31-32 The queen of the South will rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn them, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and indeed a greater than Solomon is here. 32 The men of Nineveh will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and indeed a greater than Jonah is here. NKJV
According to those verses and the ones that follow, people will be condemned by the actions (faith) of those who had the right response to the present situation. Think about that, and then ask yourself if it is worth checking your faith, to make sure that you have faith in Jesus?
Matthew 11:20-24 Then He began to rebuke the cities in which most of His mighty works had been done, because they did not repent: 21 “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, will be brought down to Hades; for if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 But I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment than for you.” NKJV
Luke 11:19 And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. NKJV
In light of those verses, I would say that our response to faith in Jesus Christ is very important. Wouldn’t you? Not only should we respond to faith in Jesus, but our response should be in-line with others who have truth faith in Jesus Christ.
Noah had faith, but can we say the same? Have we been divinely warned, and are we following the given instructions in order to receive what we hope for?
Our instructions tell us that if anyone comes to us and does not bring the doctrine of Christ, we should not even greet them.
2 John 9-11 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him; 11 for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds. NKJV
Those who do not abide in the doctrine of Christ do not have God (verse 9 above). Imagine that. Why would anyone come to us and not bring the doctrine of Jesus Christ? Well, why would the people who Noah’s faith condemned not want to get on the ark?
If we had faith in Jesus, what would we do? Read the doctrine of Jesus Christ below, and know for yourself just how far we have drifted away from what is actually written in our Bibles.
John 15:1-14 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. 8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.
9 “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. 11 “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. NKJV
How do we lay down our life, and love one another, as Jesus commanded us to do?
1 John 3:16-19 By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? 18 My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. 19 And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. NKJV
There is the warning, and there is the hope. Now imagine the people watching Noah build the ark without the slightest clue that what he was doing would condemn them.
As in the case of Noah, so it is today. We carry a Bible with the instructions written in it, but we don’t want to follow those instructions.
We not only greet those who reject the doctrine of Jesus Christ, but we put these false teachers in the seat of honor, declaring them to be ministers of righteousness (2 Corinthians 11:15). We glorify them as if they are following God’s instructions to the letter, and therefore, shall we escape being condemned?
Listen to what the Lord says. Luke 13:5 I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” NKJV
I’m Alan Ballou; a servant.