Today's Foundations Devotional: Faith is acting according to the truth of God’s Word

By many, this attitude of accepting God’s Word as true in defiance of the testimony of our senses would be dismissed as mere foolishness or fanaticism. Yet the remarkable thing is that philosophers and psychologists of many different ages and backgrounds have agreed in declaring that the testimony of our physical senses is variable, subjective and unreliable.

If, then, the testimony of our senses cannot be accepted by itself as true and reliable, where can we find the correct standard of truth and reality by which the testimony of the senses must be judged? To this question neither philosophy nor psychology has ever been able to offer any satisfactory answer. Indeed, all through the centuries, philosophers and psychologists have echoed the question asked by Pilate as he sat in his judgement hall: “What is truth?” (John 18:38). For the Christian believer, however, the answer is found in the words of Christ to His Father: “Your Word is truth” (John 17:17).

The ultimate, unchanging standard of all truth and reality is found in God’s Word. Faith consists in hearing, believing and acting upon this truth.

In considering the relationship between faith and our physical senses, it is necessary to make a clear distinction between true, scriptural faith on the one hand and such teachings as mind-over-matter or Christian Science (falsely so-called) on the other hand.

The two main points of difference are as follows: first, teachings such as mind-over-matter or Christian Science tend to magnify and exalt the purely human element – such things as man’s mind, or reason, or willpower. Thus, these teachings are essentially man-centred. On the other hand, true, scriptural faith is essentially God-centred. It abases all that is human and magnifies only God and God’s truth and power.

Second, teachings such as mind-over-matter or Christian Science are not based directly, or even mainly, upon the Word of God. Many of the things they assert and seek to make real by the exercise of the human will are not in accordance with the teaching of God’s Word. In fact, in certain respects, they are contrary to God’s Word. On the other hand, scriptural faith, by its very nature and definition, is confined within the limits of God’s Word.

We need also to distinguish between faith and presumption. The line that divides these two is very fine, but it marks the boundary between success and disaster.

Presumption contains an element of human arrogance and self-glorification. It is the assertion of man’s will, even if it is cloaked in spiritual language. Faith, on the other hand, is totally dependent on God, and its outworking will always glorify God. It never takes the initiative away from God.

We come back to the words of Paul: Such faith is “not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast” (Eph. 2:8-9). Its attitude is summed up by John the Baptist.

A man can receive nothing unless it has been given to him from heaven (John 3:27).

Very simply stated, faith receives, and presumption grabs.

Father, thank You for Your Word, the only true and reliable standard. Help me, Lord, to understand the difference between faith and presumption. I want to be totally dependent upon You, Lord, to glorify You and help me to believe, and act upon Your Word. Amen.


Click on the link below for the Derek Prince book that these daily devotionals are based on:

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