How does one know their faith is genuine? How can one be sure it is not a counterfeit? The Bible warns against a false faith which it says is no better than the faith of demons. How can one be sure that is not all that one has? Today’s devotional will answer those questions clearly and helpfully. God bless you.
Because of Calvary,
Hebrews 11:7 (ESV)
7 By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.
“In this remarkable verse, remarkable for its fullness and terseness, seven things are told us about Noah’s faith, each of which we do well to ponder. The first thing we learn here of Noah’s faith is its ground, namely, God’s Word — ‘being warned of God.’ The ground of all faith which is acceptable to God is that which rests neither on feelings nor fancy, but on the naked Word…. A faith that does not rest upon the written word is mere credulity.
“The second thing mentioned in connection with Noah’s faith is its sphere. His faith laid hold of things ‘not seen as yet,’ that is, of things which pertained to the realm of the unseen. Believers walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). As Noah labored at the building of the ark, doubtless, the world looked upon him as an enthusiastic fanatic, as one who was putting himself to a great deal of needless trouble. What was there to portend such a calamity as the Deluge? Nothing at all. All things continued as they were from the beginning of creation. History furnished no analogy whatever. Not only had there never been any previous flood, but even rain was then unknown. What then could induce Noah to act in the way he did? Nothing but the testimony of God. Here then is an exemplification and demonstration of the nature of faith. Faith is the eye of the spirit. It is that which visualizes the unseen; it is that which gives tangibility to the invisible; it is that which makes substantial the things hoped for.
“In the third place we learn here of the character of Noah’s faith — it was ‘moved with fear.’ Faith not only relies upon the precious promises of God, but it also believes His solemn threatenings. As the beloved Spurgeon said….’I charge you who profess to be the Lord’s, not to be unbelieving with regard to the terrible threatenings of God to the ungodly. Believe the threat, even though it should chill your blood; believe, though nature shrinks from the overwhelming doom, for, if you do not believe, the act of disbelieving God about one point will drive you to disbelieve Him upon the other parts of revealed truth, and you will never come to that true, childlike faith which God will accept and honor.’
“Fourth, we see the evidence of Noah’s faith he ‘prepared an ark.’ ‘Faith, if it hath not works is dead, being by itself’ (James 2:17), which means, it is a lifeless faith, a merely nominal faith, and not the ‘faith of God’s elect’ (Titus 1:1)…. I profess to be a believer, how shall I justify my claim? By my works, my walk, my witness for God. Read through Hebrews 11 and it will be seen that in every case recorded there, faith was evidenced by works. Abel had faith. How did he display it? By presenting to God the Divinely preserved sacrifice. Enoch had faith. How did he manifest it? By walking with God. Noah had faith. How did he evidence it? By preparing the ark. And mark this also — faith expresses itself in that which costs its possessor something! The preparing of the ark was no small undertaking. It was not only a very laborious and protracted task, but it must have been a very expensive one, too. It has ever been thus; Abraham was the father of the faithful, and his faith found expression and resulted in that which meant personal sacrifice. To Abraham it meant leaving home, kindred and country, and subsequently the offering up of his well beloved son on the altar of sacrifice. What is it costing you to express your faith? A faith that does not issue in that which is costly is not worth much.
“Fifth, we see the issue of Noah’s faith — Noah ‘prepared an ark to the saving of his house.’… Noah’s faith then issued in the temporal salvation of ‘his house.’ Is not this written for our learning?…
“Sixth, we learn of the witness of Noah’s faith — ‘by which he condemned the world.’… There is a great gulf then separating between those who are members of the household of faith and those who are the children of the wicked one. We walk by faith, they by sight; we live for God’s glory, they for self-gratification; we live for eternity, they for time. And every Christian who is walking by faith, necessarily condemns the world. His conduct is a silent rebuke upon the course followed by the ungodly. His life is a witness against their sin.
“Finally, we learn here the reward of Noah’s faith — he ‘became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.’ Faith brings a present blessing: it wins God’s smile of approval, fills the heart with peace, oils the machinery of life, and makes “all things” possible. But the grand reward of faith is not received in this life. The inheritance into which faith conducts us is not possessed here and now. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob never did anything more than ‘sojourn in the land of promise.’ The children of God are ‘heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ,’ but the entering into their inheritance is yet future — we do not say the enjoyment of it, for faith appropriates it and revels in it even now. The Son Himself has been “appointed heir of all things” (Hebrews 1:2), and it is not until He enters into His possessions that we shall share them with Him. Meanwhile, we are, with Noah, ‘heirs of the righteousness which is by faith.’” [Arthur W. Pink, Gleanings in Genesis I, (Chicago: Moody Press, 1922), p. 83-87]