NOW FAITH IS THE SUBSTANCE
by Pam Clark (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Have you ever done a Bible study and been surprised thinking you understood something but you really didn’t? I’ve been around the Word of Faith movement for many years and I haven’t ever heard this preached like this.
Today this Scripture came into my head (at a time when I wasn’t expecting it) and so when something like that happens, I try to run with it if I can. Most of you know it, Hebrews 11:1: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
Now I have really plowed that thought into my head over the years, and felt I had some decent understanding of it – and I have heard it preached on a lot. In American English, I know what “substance” means. But I felt led to look it up since I knew God was saying something to me.
I found this online concordance and looked up the word and here is what it says that word “substance” means, which now makes a whole lot of sense, duh!
Definition of the word “substance” in that verse there: a setting or placing under, thing put under, substructure, foundation, that which has foundation, is firm that which has actual existence, a substance, real being, the substantial quality, nature, of a person or thing, the steadfastness of mind, firmness, courage, resolution confidence, firm trust, assurance.
So….. faith is the FOUNDATION of things hoped for, (a substructure), the evidence of things not seen. You know that buildings have to have a substructure in order to hold their place well. And Jesus said we need to build upon the Rock.
The definition of the word “evidence” in that verse there is: a proof, that by which a thing is proved or tested, conviction.
So obviously, and we knew this right? Faith is the foundation that needs to be proved in us, or proven out! Now I am not feeling a major correction over this, but more of an enlightenment. But maybe this is for more than just me!
Three things that abide are FAITH, hope and love, yes? They are Spirit. Faith is not necessarily “the glory” as I know some have thought. But some might think that by the word “substance.”
There is the “chabad”- (Hebrew word for) heavy weight of glory, which if you have experienced a “heavy presence” of God, you know how that feels. But we can’t judge everything by feelings, even though at times they help!
This understanding should help us in BUILDING our faith! Faith is the FOUNDATION of things that we hope for! I like that because it’s interactive! His Spirit of hope is drawing us to faith in His manifested Love. In this apostolic season, God is placing a strong emphasis on foundations and placements, His order. He is building His Church.
God is drawing us to Him with our hope, but we need the right foundations to mature that measure of faith He has given each of us. He has given us a seed, now we have to garden it, water it and nurture it and let it bring forth fruit. It’s unlimited!
A lot of people live and act like faith is separate from every day life. It challenges them as” a concept” rather than supporting them. It’s like Christians have one thing and real life is another. They are not seeing the Kingdom of God.
People believe that Christians have this “thing” going, like a “substance” they can barter with. Well, let’s get it understood right! Faith is the foundation for living. It’s right there for them, at hand!
There is a spirit of favor on the “chabad” (glory), and many people lust for that. There is no greater feeling than the sense of feeling cocooned in God’s love or the sense that nothing can ever go wrong and that we have access to never ending supply. BUT, if faith is not the foundation, we can be fooled by the favor!
The Presence of God can change things and we honestly need that. But that Presence comes because faith is being expressed. We can see and experience a better form of life because His Presence is here or near. But we need can only handle His strong power with certain protocols in place or it is too intense for us. But with those protocols, the dispersion of Life giving energy flow and power can be nurturing for all that is around it.
Another fruit (or evidence) of the Holy Spirit is self discipline or self control. He has that and He gives that to us. That is an evidence or proven thing of faith! (See Galatians 5:22-23 on the fruit of the Spirit.)
We have to know that what we hope for has the right foundation. It may not be seen yet, but in the Spirit, it will be, if it is on the right foundation! Then it is proven by the evidence. It is the evidence of a thing that was not seen yet.
Faith is not meant to be spooky, even though the encounter of His power can sober you! It can be sudden like lightning is, and get your attention. It can be as loud as thunder or as quiet as a smile or a nod. It can be forceful like a volcano erupting. But if we work our faith, our foundation, we can build and thrive, and bring forth the good in ever increasing ways.