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I was at a state high school assembly once when the Deputy Principle told the assembled boys that it was better to have a faith than not have one. Maybe. Whether it is better to have a faith in nonsense than no faith, is a moot point. Faith in reality is good. Faith in wrong ideas is futile – although with the rise of populism faith in one’s own opinions, no matter how ill-informed has become a fad that results in the implosion of communities.


As Believers we are not invited to have faith in faith. Our faith is in the substance not seen and the reality that is Christ. Further, beneficial faith is belief in a real Christ and not a distorted one and faith in a true Gospel and not a deviant one.


A wholesome faith joins us to God as God is and our salvation as it has been won for us. Jesus stated that ‘eternal life was to be found in knowing God and Jesus Christ whom God has sent.’ ‘Knowing God in these terms is ‘knowing the God’ who has not been adulterated by mistaken thoughts and doctrines of demons. Having said this it is not our faith that saves us. It is our participation in God and the Belonging that He has given us that is life-giving.

Thomas Torrance observes that “We would be misconstruing [faith] if we thought of faith or belief as an autonomous, independent act which we do from a base in ourselves, for the biblical conception of faith is rather different. Faith has to do with the reciprocity, and indeed the community of reciprocity, between God and man, that is, [the interrelationship] between the faithfulness of God and the answering faithfulness of man.”

Jesus spoke a key truth when He stated, ‘Only the Son knows the Father and only the Father knows the Son.’ This intimate knowing between Father and Son is shared with each of us because Christ is in you and I. A genuine knowing of God and who God is for us, a true conception of Christ, without the accretions that portray a false christ, is revealed to us from within our being. Christ in us is the source of an accurate reading of scripture and the ability to distinguish sound teaching from misguided impressions.