13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. (1Corinthians 13)

Paul after enumerating the three pillars that constitute a relationship with God goes on to say that the greatest of them is love. Have you wondered what makes love the greatest? Let us look at each of these elements in a little more detail.

What is faith? No description of faith can match that given by the author of Hebrews.

1 Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. 2 This is what the ancients were commended for. 3 By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. (Hebrews 11).

In v3 we see how the visible world in which we live is built on an invisible foundation. We see that in the formation of the world when the seen things came into being out of the unseen Word of God. We see it in the operation of the world wherein the unseen elements including our thoughts, decisions and emotions make the visible things a reality. Every action in the seen realm originates in the unseen realm of our minds. We see the workings of the spirit realm-again unseen, but affecting the events around us. So it is not unreasonable to say that the finite man needs to apply faith not just to get a grasp of the infinite truth but also to orient himself to the structure of the world we live in- a seen reality built on the foundation of the unseen.

So what is faith? Faith is not just recognizing this above fact but being certain of it, certain enough to base our life decisions upon it. Every other person believes in God, but how many will go the distance in obedience to the unseen God? Unless faith has grown to maturity, enough to make him certain of the unseen, man would not sacrifice all on the altar of obedience to God. And that is the faith that the ancients were commended for, that is the faith that is required of one who believes in and follows God.

We will look at hope and love in the next post.

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