Jesus said, Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
– Matthew 5:6
Ask a Christian what the word “faith” means, and you’re likely to hear a quote from the Bible.
Most of us know at least part of the King James version of Hebrews 11:1, which tells us faith is “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
In a court of law, a conviction or acquittal is based upon the evidence brought before the jury. The Bible assures us our faith is the evidence of an unseen world and its promises. But faith itself has an ethereal quality about it, and we often simply equate it with the idea of believing. But faith is not just belief. It is the expression of our belief before God and man. In James 2:17, we learn faith without works is dead.
So then, what does faith look like?
In the next few weeks, we’ll examine some qualities painting the portrait of a believer. Since taking the first step toward God often comes out of a place of emptiness, this might be our first piece of evidence:
A thirst for righteousness.
In the beatitudes given to us by the Lord Jesus on the mountain, He called those “blessed” (happy, fortunate, blissful) who hunger and thirst for righteousness. The deep craving for a relationship with God drives us to the well that both cleanses and fills us. The search to know Him should be relentless and lifelong and revealed in what we think, say, and do.
This search will put us in direct opposition to the societal “norms” imposed today:
The pressure to fit in by dressing and talking like those we want to impress.
The relaxation of sexual inhibitions, mocking of those who choose to remain pure.
The assault on our values though today’s movies, television, social media, and music.
Choosing to run after God forces us to make choices putting our faith on display to others. It will reveal the unseen to the unseeing, and some will not like it. We may lose friends, family members, and more in the process. The first lesson we learn, then, is that faith is not without cost. But the gain far outweighs the price of discipleship.
But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith.
– Romans 10:7-9