Holding on to Faith

by Scarlett Stough

We live in a society that erodes faith. People entrust their savings to a company only to discover their pension or retirement savings were stolen. Couples marry and then cheat on one another. Children are abandoned by fathers who refuse to support them. Even mothers have been known to walk away from their families. Children become teenagers whose only experience with relationships have been temporary and unreliable. We are set up by our life experiences to distrust and to be suspicious. That nice man offering candy could be a threat. That church just wants my money. The person we thought was becoming a good friend was just using us. We can all write a long list of faith-killers.

How do we continue “holding on to faith” (I Timothy 1:19)? How can we “set an example…in faith” (I Timothy 4:12)?

The Bible acknowledges the betrayal that every person has in some form experienced: “Even my close friend, whom I trusted, he who shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against me” (Psalm 41:9).

Many of us may have to confess that we have been that “close friend” who proved to be faithless. The Bible counsels: “Do not put your trust in princes, in mortal men, who cannot save” (Psalm 146:3).

No matter how well intentioned we may be, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to follow through on our commitments--or that we will even be alive to do so. We are mortal. The death rate is 100%--with one exception: Jesus who lay dead for three days and three nights rose from death to life so that those who believe in him, those who put their trust in him, might also rise from death to life (I Corinthians 15:20-23). This is the faith we continue holding on to. Jesus is the One in whom we put our faith (Acts 20:21).

We set an example in faith by continuing to live the new life we are given through faith in Christ (Romans 6:4-15). We need to guard our new life from those who would sabotage our faith with their false teachings (I Timothy 1:18-20; 4:1). We need to guard the faith of others by not denying our faith in Jesus by word or actions (I Timothy 5:8). We need to pursue and continue in faith (I Timothy 6:11-12). We need to remember the men and women of faith as examples for our own (Hebrews 11). Above all else, we must keep in mind that our faith is anchored in our Lord Jesus.

Bible Study Guide: Set an Example in Faith
 
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