What Does the Bible Say About Faith?

Kevin Zuber
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Faith is a biblical theme central to the message of Scripture. Here are some key Bible verses about faith:

John 3:36
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.

Acts 16:30–31
Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”

Romans 3:22
the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction

Romans 10:9
because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

Ephesians 2:8–10
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Hebrews 11:1, 8a
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen….
By faith Abraham obeyed

The Greek noun for “faith” is pistis and the Greek verb “to believe” is pisteuein. Thus, “to believe” is essentially “to have, or exercise faith.” Faith is not mere intellectual assent, nor a subjective aspiration (a “blind leap”) but involves understanding (see Heb.11:1), personal appropriation (see the metaphors of drinking and eating in John 4:14; 6:51), and commitment (e.g., the example of Abraham, Heb. 11:8). In John 3:36, the apostle John contrasts those who believe (and have eternal life) and those who “do not obey” (and so “will not see life”). Clearly faith includes the obedience the unbelievers lack. “Obedience is the inevitable manifestation of true faith.”[1]

This faith is a gift (“it is the gift of God”), as Paul makes clear to the Philippians (“For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake” Phil. 1:29, emphasis added), and Peter makes clear to his readers (“To those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours” 2 Peter1:1b, emphasis added).

[1] John MacArthur, The Gospel According to Jesus: What Is Authentic Faith? (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2008), 190.

For Further Reading:

The Essential Scriptures

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