Beware of Faith: The Truth About Faith

What is faith? Do you have it? Is it necessary? How much of your life is governed by faith, whether you realize it or not?



When you hear the word faith do you automatically associate it with religion or God?


If so, this is an example of how a word can become strongly entrenched with an idea, be it positive or negative.



Do you think it takes faith to believe that the sun will rise tomorrow?



Think about that for a moment because the answer will help you understand the true definition of faith. 🌞


Knowing the truth about faith will enable you to examine who and what you are putting faith in and whether or not, that person, idea or thing, deserves your faith. You'll also be able to examine your motives, why do you believe?



What is Faith?


One dictionary defines faith as "complete trust or confidence in someone or something."


In order to have complete trust in someone or something, we need to add a critical element...proof! You can't trust someone if you don't know them well nor can you have confidence in something that hasn't proven itself.


For example, say you have a good friend who never lies, not even "white lies" (I hope everyone has friends like this!). Now let's say someone accused this friend of lying. Who would you believe, the accuser or your friend?


Likely, you would believe the one you've come to know and trust over many years of friendship and experience. What if both friends have a reputation for honesty and there's no conclusive evidence to prove who's telling the truth?


You would need to decide which of the two you TRUST MORE. In order to so, you'd think about your past experiences or feelings towards those individuals. You may search for evidence to guide you or apply common sense or logic to the situation.


People make mistakes however and true faith is difficult to apply to imperfect people.


So let's back to the sun 🌞. It DOES take faith to believe the sun will rise tomorrow. No one goes to bed at night wondering if the sun will come up. We know it will, whether or not we live to see it. No matter what any science fiction movie, book or grim scientist tells us, the sun has NEVER given us a reason to doubt it.


Now that's true faith! Here's another example of faith, gardeners.



When my father plants tomatoes seeds he is absolutely certain (faith) that tomatoes, not peppers, potatoes or corn, will grow. If he sows eggplant seeds, he believes he will reap eggplant, even though he hasn't seen the plant grow yet. If this miraculous process were random, what would happen to life on earth? He may doubt the weather or the condition of the soil, but he never doubts the seed.


I like the definition of faith attributed to Thomas Aquinas, it resembles the one found in the bible (Hebrews 11:1). Click here for a biblical discussion of faith.



Faith involves believing in things we cannot see but hope for, based on evidence.


When we go to bed at night, the sun is on the other side of the earth so we can't see it. But we have faith that in the morning it will return because it always has.


When you buy a house, the first thing that is handed to you is a deed. That deed in hand is like faith because it guarantees you'll have a house to live in, even if you have to wait for it.


When you shop online and pay with a credit card, you have faith that your package will be delivered (unless you fall into the hands of a scammer).


(See article: 7 Tips to Protect Yourself from Online Scammers)


Consider the force of gravity. We don't doubt gravity because we understand, experience and benefit from its existence. Same with oxygen. We know what happens when gravity and oxygen are removed.




We rely on faith for so many things! Yet our faith can be shaken, tested or we can lose it altogether, especially if we've been taught lies.


Do You Need to Reevaluate Your Faith?



You can put faith in just about anything, real or imagined. What people or things are you putting faith in? Here's a list to consider:


  • Money

  • Science & technology

  • Medicine

  • God or Evolution

  • People (or ourselves)

  • Governments, armies & weapons

  • Leaders (politicians or religious)

  • A Cause or Justice

  • The universe or inanimate objects

  • Media (TV, websites, journalism)

  • Books (such as the bible or other holy books)


We have long-held beliefs about a number of things. Have you taken the time to consider if the things you put faith in measure up to the definition of true faith?


Do you dismiss new ideas without carefully considering them?


If new evidence comes to light and conflicts with what you believe, it's only natural to resist at first. But if logic and clear facts prove you wrong, do you hold fast to your beliefs because of pride or fear of ridicule?



Faith can and should change!



There's another kind of faith that is unhealthy and dangerous. It's often confused with true faith, it's called blind faith. Blind faith suggests you operate on the premise of hope without reason or (logical) evidence to back it up.


Blind faith would be like buying a car or a house without seeing it just because someone told you it was good.


I LOVE this funny video by a famous Italian comedian who jokes about blind faith. It's a great one-minute watch with subtitles.


Not even Jesus fell for this trick 🤣



What's the Point?


We started out asking the following questions:


What is faith?


Faith involves believing in things we cannot see but hope for, based on evidence.


Do you have it?

Absolutely! Every day you rely on things to be true and consistent based on what you have seen in the past. And you also hope for future things you haven't seen yet whenever you plant a seed 🌼, purchase an item online or wake up in the morning to face a brand new day 🌞.


Is it necessary?

Life would be random, chaotic and unpredictable without faith. Trust is the basis for a happy marriage and all worthwhile relationships.



How much of your life is governed by faith, whether you realize it or not?


Perhaps we have associated faith with religion or God. But it takes just as much faith to be an atheist, a scientist or an evolutionist!


It can be easy to fall into the blind-faith trap as well. We can develop a sort of blind-faith in certain institutions and ideas promoted in this world, simply because they sound intelligent, sophisticated and come from well-meaning people. Yet these very beliefs may defy evidence and logic.


It's amazing how people can gather the right evidence and still come to the wrong conclusions. Think of how many innocent people have been convicted because of "evidence" gathered against them.



Your Action Items


  • Examine and thoroughly understand your motives for believing the way you do. This way your actions will be consistent with your values. Faith is not based on emotion but on convincing evidence.


  • When your faith is being challenged, use the opportunity to reinforce your beliefs, or be humble enough to adjust your faith if convincing proof or logic is presented.



What are your feelings about faith? Feel free to leave a comment below.



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