This gospel unveils a continual revelation of God’s righteousness – a perfect righteousness given to us when we believe. And it moves us from receiving life through faith to the power of living by faith. Romans 1:17 TPT
There is saving faith and changing faith.
The righteous live by faith and while saving faith cannot be doubted, perhaps with you or with others, there hasn’t been a lot of change.
Has your life changed since your initial faith in Jesus? Did it change radically and then slow down? Were you once striving earnestly and have now become lukewarm?
Saving faith is theologically known as justification, forgiveness, and eternity, once and for all, with no doubt, since it is based upon the cross. Changing faith is sanctification, a process, living life, growing, ups and downs, victory, and defeat – but we can stop changing.
Saving faith starts with confession while changing faith continues through obedience. Jesus as Savior saves, while Jesus as Lord leads. I’m not doubting your saving faith, but do you have changing faith?
My favorite changing faith passage is 2 Timothy 1:7:
For God will never give you the spirit of fear, but the Holy Spirit who gives you mighty power, love, and self-control. 2 Timothy 1:7 TPT
Fear is the weapon of this age. Used by the evil one, it paralyzes changing faith. Fear asks too many questions, rationalizes, and lives in timidity. The Spirit leads us to power, love, and discipline.
Jesus died and rose on the third day. He justified through forgiveness. Jesus taught that it was better for Him to leave so the Spirit could come (John 15:7). Easter emphasizes justification in Christ, while most followers have never been taught a theology of the Spirit.
Changing faith comes through following the Spirit. He leads, we follow, and we change.
Ask God to bring changing faith into your life. He will guide you in three areas. Change in power, love, and self-control.
Power: It takes faith to walk in power. Ask God to use you in praying for the sick. I have found that my ability to walk in power has a direct correlation to generosity. We admit in our culture that power has a lot to do with money. It is the same following Jesus.
Your first step with power will be to sell everything. Perhaps not literally, but maybe.
Love: Your faith will compel you to forgive. The ultimate mark of maturity is receiving forgiveness and extending it to others. The Spirit elevates Jesus, and Jesus was lifted up for our sins.
Your first step with love is to forgive.
Self-control: With the Spirit of the Lord there is freedom. Discipline in the Spirit is easy. Change naturally occurs. This change has power and is motivated by love.
Your first step with self-control is asking, “Jesus, what do you want me to do?”
Saving faith is transactional while changing faith is relational. We confess Jesus and are saved; we follow the Spirit and are changed. The relationship of changing faith means following the Spirit daily.
God’s Spirit takes a step, asking us to follow, and if we do, there will be freedom.