June 8, 2020
BY ROLAND F ST GERARD
Although many people don’t think about it, everybody has a measure of faith. Every time someone leaves their home or one location for another, they naturally believe that they will return home at the appointed time, and without harm. Not that they think they are invincible, it is that by default, they expect things to go according to plans. That’s a universal faith. Whether they have a belief in God, trust in the unknown, or confidence in some transcendence power, this person simply has an implicit faith.
You sit on the chair without thinking twice about whether it will crack down with you or not. You trust that the chair will uphold you and many more examples like driving, walking, and flying in airplanes. Those are general or universal faith.
The underlying meaning of faith is to believe in the unknown. But people with confidence do not merely believe in the unknown by chance. Because solid faith requires firm knowledge concerning the one in whom the person believes. Some people believe in particular spirits and pay allegiance to them. Some people acquire knowledge about these spirits they serve directly from their ancestors, from their parents, neighbors, relatives, and so on, that also serve these spirits.
I remember growing up as a little boy in Haiti, seeing older folks pouring out coffee or whiskey on the ground before they drank it. Naturally, since that’s the environment I grew up in and seeing that they performed these rituals over and over, so, when I got coffee too, I did the same thing. I poured it out to the ground. The adults might have known why they did, but as for me, I just acted out what I saw they performed. It was not until I became a Christian and from reading various books that I learned that the coffee, whiskey, or water they pour on the ground is called “libation.” It is like giving first place to the one they poured out the drink. It is a type of allegiance to the spirits. I did not understand the spiritual indication of my actions, yet I was pouring out a libation to spirits that I didn’t know.
Hence, to have faith in God requires Knowledge of God and in God, trust in His word, belief in His Son Jesus Christ, expecting to receive answers to your prayers when you pray. Moreover, three simple, yet profound acts will energize or stifle one’s faith. These actions are obedience to the word of God, thanksgiving when you pray, and forgiving others who have wronged you.
Along with the knowledge and understanding of God, His Word, and obedience, we will look into the definition of faith, various types of faith, how to build and apply God’s Kingdom principles. Most of all, know how to maintain confidence in Jesus Christ.