- Religion and Philosophy
Belief vs Faith
Belief vs Faith
I will just get straight to the point, believing is not having faith and having faith is not believing. "But I thought they were one and the same." I hear you say. No, sorry they are not, and I will tell you why they are completely different but essentially connected.
All people believe one way or the other. It does not matter if you are religious or not, believing is an integral part of our make-up. All our decisions are made because of what we believe. Even if what you believe is false. Let's look at it in a court of law environment.
A man commits murder and ends up in court. A jury of twelve hear all the evidence and arguments presented. What they don't know is if the evidence is true or not. At the end of the court case they have to make a decision based on the evidence that has been presented to them. They have to make a decision to send him to prison or let him go free based on if they believe him to be guilty or innocent. But they first have to have information based on evidence, whether false or true, to formulate a belief. Once a belief is formulated a decision can be made.
The act of believing in something is a choice. A very, very powerful choice! The choices we make in life are based on what we believe. The reason we make choices is because we believe that was the best course of action to take. One thing that is very important to remember is that we often believe something that is not real, right or the truth. Believing is choosing to side with information. There is no spiritual power in believing because it is all active in the soulish realm or the mind. It is a process of thought.
Believing in God is not having faith in God. The Apostle James says so in James 2:19,"You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe - and tremble."(New King James Translation) Believing in God is great, but it wont change your life. Believing in God is great, but it will not save your soul. There are millions upon millions of people around the world that call themselves Christians because they believe in God and Jesus Christ. Believing is good but it is only the beginning!
Jesus, in Mark 11:22, says we should have faith in God because according to Hebrews 11:6,"..without faith it is impossible to please Him..." Believing in God is passive, it doesn't move you one way or the other. Believing is only an acknowledgement of received information. Let me give an example: I believe with all my heart that multi-level-marketing can make me millions of dollars because I have evidence of people who have become millionaires through multi-level-marketing. But I am not one cent richer because I believe in a multi-level-marketing. But as soon as I start applying a certain multi-level-marketing strategy or system, I have moved from believing in it to putting faith in multi-level-marketing.
Belief with corresponding action is called faith. In Mark 11:22-24 Jesus says we should,"have faith in God," and then continues to tell us what our actions should be and what results we will have. Believing in God will change your situation as much as it changed the situation for the demons. James continues to say that faith without works is dead or you could say faith without works is just believing. So to move from believing to faith you have to act on what you believe.
But you cannot have faith without first believing something. You cannot believe something without first receiving information. Romans 10:17 says,"So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God." The more we hear and see the Word of God the stronger our belief will be. The stronger our belief the stronger our faith can be.
In conclusion: The belief you act upon is an act of faith and it pleases God!
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