|What Does It Mean To Believe|
"So Abraham believed God and it was credited to him as righteousness." Galatians 3:6 NIV.
Abraham received a promise from God that was impossible to humanly fulfill, it required a divine miracle. In spite of the impossibility of the promise Abraham believed God who esteems Abraham as being right with him.
The word, "believe," causes much confusion. To some it means just holding an idea, an intellectual assent or opinion. We must have a correct idea of what believe is and why it is important.
BELIEF IS IMPORTANT
The wrong idea of what believe is means we miss much of what God is trying to say to us about himself and us. Much of what God communicates to us in the Bible is in the terms of belief. If we miss what God is saying we miss more than an interesting message; we miss his blessing, life, and we may miss salvation.
BELIEF IS NOT JUST AN IDEA
Abraham used belief; for him it was an action. Belief was something he did, as far as Abraham was concerned God made a promise and Abraham considered his word good since God is able to keep the promise because of who God is.
THE RESULTS OF BELIEF
He was credited with righteousness. Credit is to have something given to you ahead of your ability to provide it, like receiving merchandise before you have the money to pay for it. Abraham was given the consideration of being righteous with God, before he was righteous.
We all need righteousness. To be righteous with God is to have no sin before God and to be accepted by him without judgment. Abraham was given this standing without earning it by any work but by believing God's word.
HOW DO WE BELIEVE
Trust, confidence, and faith help us understand what believing is. It is not just an understanding of a fact; it is a knowing that acts on the truth, like you believe the food is not poisoned so you eat it, you believe the car will start so you turn the key, you believe the bridge will hold so you cross. Believing has to be expressed in action.
The Bible says "Believing comes from hearing and hearing comes by the Word of God."* Being exposed to God's Word deepens our faith in God, many engage in a daily Bible reading plan for this purpose.
We may have the righteousness that God gives by believing his promise. "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son so that whoever believes in him will not perish but have eternal life." **
*Romans 10:17, ** John 3:16.
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