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Hebrews 11:1

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Hebrews 11:1, ‘…faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.’

You’ve probably heard someone ask, ‘If God wants people to believe in Him, why not give us irrefutable proof?’ But that line of thinking misses the point entirely. The desire to have ‘proof’ is the desire to have specific evidence that satisfies *our* criteria for truth; it is the demand that God should bow Himself down and submit to the scrutiny of our own mind…it is the desire to hold, to master, to contain, to control…in other words, the desire to be God—even over the ‘God’ in whom we would profess to believe.

But faith will not allow that. The object of faith *cannot* be seen, cannot be grasped, cannot be made to bow to our mind’s demands—if it were to do so, it would not longer be a matter of faith. Rather, the object of faith demands that we relinquish control, demands that *we* bow to *it*, demands that we forgo our desire to hold with our hands and submit to be held in the hands of another. In this way, and in this way alone, will God be known.

And in this way the act of faith itself begins to conform our soul to the object of our faith. What do I mean? Well, the God in whom we believe is not generic ‘God,’ but specifically the God and Father whose identity is manifest in the crucified and risen Jesus. And to believe in this slain and risen God (who alone is God) demands that we ourselves die to every grasping, mastering, controlling inclination of our mind…it demands that we—with our Lord—open our hands on the cross of faith and confess: ‘into YOUR hands I commit my spirit.’ Only in this ‘death’ of faith’s entire self-relinquishment do we find ourselves ‘resurrected’ into the newness of life that is assurance of the truth of our God through union with the slain and risen Lord.

And so, may we refuse to grasp and hold our ‘God’—such is no faith and such is no God. Rather, may we be conformed to the true image of God through faith, ‘dying’ the death of whole-self surrender into His nail-torn hands and so rising with Him in the grace-given, soul-deep assurance that this one, and this one alone is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.