It’s not the value of your faith that matters, but the object of your faith
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Read 1 Cor. 1:26-31
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Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 61
Q. Why do you say that
by faith alone
you are right with God?
A. It is not because of any value my faith has
that God is pleased with me.
Only Christ’s satisfaction, righteousness,
make me right with God.
And I can receive this righteousness
and make it mine
in no other way
than by faith alone.
If you find yourself in the market for a new job, you’ll likely create or update your résumé. You’ll want to put your best foot forward and include all of your top skills, projects you’ve been a part of, and any degrees or certifications verifying your competence for the open position. During the interview, you’ll want to play up your strengths, minimize your weaknesses, and mention any connections that might help you stand out.
In the opening chapter of Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, he reminds them that their standing before God has nothing to do with their résumé, background, or connections. In fact, he tells them that they are not a group that will win any debates with their wisdom nor impress their fellow citizens with their lack of nobility or influence. After this teardown, they may have been ready to shout, “Who does this Paul think he is, anyway?”
Except Paul showed them, their poor résumé was part of the good news. They were just the kind of group God would choose to display His glory. Using the weak, the foolish, and the lowly are His specialty. The beginning of 1 Corinthians shows us how much the cross of Christ turns the world upside down. God does what he pleases and shows his power by adopting a people—not based on their own merits or their standing in this world—but solely on his love and good pleasure. “For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God” (1:18).
Knowing Christ also means we know ourselves and who we truly are. John Calvin begins his Institutes of the Christian Religion with, “Nearly all the wisdom we possess, that is to say, true and sound wisdom, consists of two parts: the knowledge of God and of ourselves.” Correctly understanding ourselves will lead us to understand God and ourselves properly. If we examine ourselves, we begin to see our shortcomings, failures, and dissatisfaction and know what we need God for.
His power to save us is not based on the strength of our biography and what we think we can impress others with. The weaker our résumé, the more it reveals God’s power! And using weakness, God displays all the more His strength. The only resume that matters is that of Jesus Christ and if we claim His satisfaction, holiness, and righteousness as our own by faith alone. So Christians should be humble and grateful, resting in the power of God.
It is not the value of your faith that makes the difference, but the one whom you put your faith in, the perfect Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: The God whose power to save is found in Christ crucified;
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Boast in what the Lord has done for you in Christ;
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED:
Read the New Testament in a year, a chapter a day - Ephesians 3