The Faith of Jesus

 We have been faithful to the Scriptures concerning the kingdom of God in several articles. And the question seems to come up about:

 Gal. 3:26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.

 You get into the kingdom by faith in Jesus Christ. While the Scripture says “sons,” the implied meaning is children of God “through faith in Christ Jesus.” The way people become part of the God family is through faith, not through righteousness or anything else.

 What does it mean by faith in Jesus? Why is it in Jesus? Can we have any other kind of faith connected with Jesus, as some Scriptures say? How do you have faith in a person? You trust that what he says or what he promises will happen. In other words you trust his veracity and integrity. That being so, why would we put faith in Jesus, why would we trust in Jesus’ veracity and integrity?

 To help clarify, some Scriptures talk about the faith of Jesus. Few talk about the faith of Jesus, just faith in Jesus. If we have the faith of Jesus, we need to have the mind of Christ.

 1Cor. 2:16 For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, THAT HE WILL INSTRUCT HIM? But we have the mind of Christ.

 What is the connection is there between the mind of Christ and faith in Christ?

 To begin with, Jesus had faith in God.

 Heb. 10:38 BUT MY RIGHTEOUS ONE SHALL LIVE BY FAITH; AND IF HE SHRINKS BACK, MY SOUL HAS NO PLEASURE IN HIM.

 Obviously, “my righteous one” refers to Jesus, who indeed, lived by faith. We do not often think about Jesus as living by faith. We think about Noah, who had faith, indeed the first person of faith in the Bible. Of course, the ultimate premier example of faith is Abraham, who believed God and was considered righteous for believing what God said, i.e., His promises. Abraham demonstrated a whole picture of faith as the underpinning of righteousness because he trusted what God said, and that trust led to acting and behaving according to God’s commands and will.

 Faith leading to righteousness is the whole point because righteousness without faith has no effect. When we trust someone, when we have faith in him, we have a relationship with Him. Therefore, when we trust God, believe what He says, we adhere to His way of life imbedded in the creation and in our interaction with Him, i.e., living up to His standard of conduct formed in us at mankind’s creation, delineated in the creation, and articulated by God’s Word. Abraham and all true believers trust that God’s promises will happen and act upon that trust with loyalty and righteousness. Specifically, Abraham believed God could and would give him a son even though it seemed impossible since Sarah was past the time in life where she could conceive much less bear a child.

 Nonetheless, Abraham’s faith never wavered because God is the Creator; look at the stars in the heavens. He who created these stars could and would provide a son as promised. On the other hand, God tested Abraham’s faith by putting off the promise to see if Abraham would continue to trust Him. Instead of leaving it to God to provide the promise, Abraham, as we know, begot a child through Sarah’s servant at her request. Even after Isaac’s birth, God made Abraham prove his fidelity by his attempting, at God’s request, to sacrifice his son. This time Abraham proved perfect in consenting to God’s will, i.e., trusting Him in all circumstances.

 Therefore, after conceding that God could do what He promised, the question becomes will He do it and under what circumstances. Using the Abrahamic example, God turns the question around without answering directly. First, He tells Abraham to make the sacrifice of several animals, which he does. Then, as said above, He tells Abraham to sacrifice Isaac. Why tell Abraham to sacrifice him? Part of the reason is Abraham’s attempting to circumvent the promise by having a child, not by Sarah, but by Hagar. God knows that Abraham, and other people, realize His is willing to keep His promises. What God wants people to demonstrate is whether they choose to demonstrate their belief in God by acting exactly according to His will. He is not going make a promisewithout preconditions a show of faith, if you will. Like a contract or a covenant, both parties must fulfill the conditions. If God were to make Abraham the Father of His people, Abraham must fulfill his part of the agreement, i.e., accept the fact that Sarah will, in time, well a long time, conceive and give birth to Isaac. Instead Abraham acting on Sarah’s suggestion had a son by Hagar. Then to prove his faithfulness, Abraham had to sacrifice Isaac because Abraham’s part of the bargain, was to allow God to provide a son through Sarah. The only way Abraham could prove his trust in God’s promise was to sacrifice Isaac and allow God to raise him from the dead; thus, leaving all the power of the promise resting with God. As we know, God seeing Abraham’s willingness to trust God implicitly and completely by his attempting the sacrifice, stopped him before he could complete the act.

 Trust and deference to God make up part of man’s part of any bargain, contract or covenant with God. How does this relate to Jesus?

 The Greek for faith, pistis, can also be translated as persuasion or be persuaded depending on context.

 Heb. 10:38 BUT MY RIGHTEOUS ONE SHALL LIVE BY FAITH (or persuasion);
            AND IF HE SHRINKS BACK, MY SOUL HAS NO PLEASURE IN HIM.

 Faith defined:

 the credence or moral conviction of a religious truth or the truthfulness of God.

 Faith further defined:

 Conviction of the truth of anything, belief; in the New Testament of a conviction or belief respecting man’s relationship to God and divine things, generally with the included in high gear of trust and holy fervor one of faith and conjoined with it. When it relates to God, pistis is the conviction that God exists and is the creator and ruler of all things, the provider and bestower of eternal salvation through Christ.

 Jesus lived by the truthfulness of God. He lived by God’s Word so much that he, in essence, became the word of God, the living Word. God’s Word existed in his mind, which controlled and enveloped his entire being. The experience of being entirely controlled by God’s Word has yet to completely happen to us, but even in our incomplete willingness to give up our willfulness against God’s will; it still exerts enormous control over our being. We have God’s Word in our mind and the full control is available whenever we allow ourselves to be ready to fully accede to God’s will. We have God’s word in our mind, the full control is there, if we are willing to accept and use it.

  So it’s a moral conviction of religious truth and of the truth of God with a special reliance upon Christ.

 Remember:

 Heb. 10:38 BUT MY RIGHTEOUS ONE SHALL LIVE BY FAITH (or persuasion)...

 Jesus relied on God; he trusted God that his doing the things that God wanted him to do would bring about the desired result. Through God’s power Jesus healed and preached the gospel of the Kingdom. This is what God had in mind from the very beginning that his righteous one imbued with faith, would be the first one in the history of mankind that would carry out God’s plan in the creation for mankind. This first righteous one would be filled with, and act upon, the word and who would be the first one to trust God to the point of not trusting himself any more.

 Jesus relied on God completely and utterly; he had faith in God. Nobody talks about that; it’s partly because they have a different idea of whom Jesus is. They do not think of him as the adopted Son of God, but some kind of word-being. A word-being conceived in Mary’s womb would be “God” and not need faith in himself because he is “God.”

 As we know, the Greek word for faith is pistis rooted in the word pitheo:

 4102.piösti§ pistis; from 3982; persuasion, i.e. credence; moral conviction (of religious truth, or the truthfulness of God or a religious teacher), especially reliance upon Christ for salvation; abstractly, constancy in such profession; by extension, the system of religious (Gospel) truth itself:

 3982. peiöqw peitho,; a primary verb; to convince (by argument, true or false); by analogy, to pacify or conciliate (by other fair means); reflexively or passively, to assent (to evidence or authority), to rely (by inward certainty):

 From peitho, we get the word pithy in English, which means to speak tersely or sparingly. Furthermore it means to convince by argument, whether it is true or false as the serpent convinced, “peithoed,” Eve of things untrue by a false argument. The serpent’s argument was convincing but false. By obeying the demon, she suffered the consequences of disobeying God.

Jesus assented to God’s authority; he not only believed God and believed his promises, he also assented to his authority. How often do we assent to those in authority; God, as the ultimate authority, and it is through Him to all others in a position of authority, whom we are to obey, except when they or the government has laws contrary to God’s like the demon above, liking making people work on the Sabbath or enforcing murder and stealing. At that point a person must obey God and take any consequences for disobeying authority.

Outside of immoral laws, we must obey those in authority, such as law enforcement personnel and others that Paul talked about. Jesus assented to their authority, as well; he just gave in to whatever God wanted him to do. God’s Word completely overpowered Jesus by assent, not by force, fear, personal gain or egotism. Jesus lived by the Word; he had complete and utter faith in God beyond Noah, beyond Abraham, beyond Moses or David. And yet without a Noah, Abraham, Moses or David to whom Jesus was related he could not come into existence as his genealogy shows.

 Having faith in God means that we will trust him and that he will work things out according to his plan for salvation, which is indeed for our benefit. “All things happen for good....” Jesus had the kind of faith that he knew by sacrificing himself for our sins would bring benefit to God, to himself and especially most importantly to mankind. Obviously his sacrifice would redound to us that we could become sons and daughters of God through faith in Jesus’ name, and furthermore, he would become, among other things, King of King and Lord of Lords.

 Jesus’ primary motivation, his underlying faith, was to be enveloped by God’s mind, His plan for salvation through His love of mankind. Jesus followed God’s purposes completely and utterly and disregarded as unworthy anything he wanted to do that was not in line with what God wanted. This gives us some understanding of Jesus’ faith.

 In Habakkuk says it this way:

 Hab. 2:4 “Behold, as for the proud one,
            His soul is not right within him;
            But the righteous will live by his faith.

 Hebrews quotes part of this verse:

 Heb. 10:38 But my righteous one shall live by faith;
            and if he shrinks back, my soul has no pleasure in him.

 The Hebrew word for faith here is:

 530. hënwmTa emunah [53c]; from 539; firmness, steadfastness, fidelity:
 530. hënwmTa }emuwnah, em-oo-naw«); or (shortened) emunah, em-oo-naw«} feminine of 529; literally firmness; figuratively security; morally fidelity

 539. NAmDa aman [52d]; a prim. root; to confirm, support:
 529. NwmEa emuwn, ay-moon«; from 539; established, i.e. (figuratively) trusty; also (abstractly) trustworthiness:
 539. NAmDa aman, aw-man«; a primitive root; properly, to build up or support; to foster as a parent or nurse; figuratively to render (or be) firm or faithful, to trust or believe, to be permanent or quiet; morally to be true or certain.

 The emunah has linguistic connections to the ahab and the amen, for example.

 So, Jesus had that firmness and steadfastness and fidelity, i.e., perfect faith in God shown by his loyalty and trust in God and his plans. He not only trusted God completely, utterly and entirely with his whole mind and body (shown in his body language) but also his faithfulness and loyalty to God are the examples which develop his kind of faith in God in us. God was number one completely and in everything that he did and said. Nothing came before God and His Word in Jesus’ life, not even his death. To emphasize it again, he had complete faith in God. His loyalty was nonpareil.

 Jesus’ faith in God came from his utter reliance on God’s Word permanently etched in his mind. When Jesus laid hands on someone, he healed because the power of God enveloped his entire being. Jesus trusted God that that person would be healed, depending on the person’s faith. He trusted God that the person who would come to him in faith would be healed. He trusted God in everything that he said and did from his earliest days as shown, for example, when as a youth he stayed talking with the elders as his parents were returning home because, even then, he was concerned with God’s business. He trusted God in every step of the way, everything that he did he trusted God: walking on the water. Jesus showed how powerful faith is by giving us the example of the marvelous things he did.

 All this stemmed from his perfect loyalty toward God beyond everything. This is the faith of Jesus, not just faith in Jesus because when we have faith in Jesus, we have to believe the gospel because faith comes by hearing. When we believe the gospel, believe the things that Jesus did, we get the mind of Christ. When we have the mind of Christ we have the faith of Christ. This is why Jesus said that the things that I will do you will do greater because I go to the Father. He further said that whatever you ask for in my name, i.e., his authority given to him by his loyalty to God, it will be done.

 This is what Jesus had – Jesus had faith in God beyond everything. That same faith has been given to us, and we are expected to be as loyal to God as Jesus was and is.

 Amen.