The African impala can jump over 10 feet in the air, covering a distance of more than 30 feet. Yet these amazing animals can be kept in an enclosure in any zoo with a three foot wall. The impala will not jump if they cannot see where their feet will land.
Sadly, most people live by that same principle. They sense a nudge to launch from a safe harbor to the open sea, yet just can’t manage to believe beyond what they can see. Since faith serves as the only remedy for such a malady, let’s examine this key kingdom necessity.
Faith paves the way to Kingdom birth and growth. Paul writes, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith” (Ephesians 2:8). When he and Silas were asked by the Philippian jailer how to be saved, they responded, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved” (Acts 16:31). To the church in Rome, he penned, “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9).
Faith is essential, not only to be born as a child of God, but to mature as well. Scripture says, “My righteous one will live by faith. And without faith it is impossible to please God because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Hebrews 10:38, 11:6).
Noah, who possessed such faith, “when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family” (Hebrews 11:7). Despite clear skies, as well as obvious indifference and probable jeers from his neighbors, “Noah did everything just as God commanded him” (Genesis 6:22). God rewarded him by sparing his life and repopulating the world through him and his family.
One night a house caught fire and a young boy was forced to escape to the roof. With arms outstretched, the father stood on the ground below yelling to his son, “Jump! I’ll catch you.” He knew this was the boy’s only option for survival. The boy, seeing only flames, smoke, and blackness, was obviously terrified, as his father kept yelling, “Jump! I will catch you.”
“Daddy, I can’t see you,” the boy responded.
“But I can see you and that’s all that matters,” assured the father.
We can’t see God but He can see us ... and that’s all that matters. We can’t always trust our feelings because they are prone to deceive us. Too often they hinge on immediate circumstances rather than the eternal purposes of God. Facts are vital and helpful, yet they often push us into the realm of the natural, predictable, and explainable. Only faith, which puts us in the proper position to hear from the Lord and act according to His will, provides entry and growth in the Kingdom of God.