What is at the heart of a confident faith?
In John 1, after Jesus comes back from his 40 days of fasting and prayer in the Judean Wilderness (really a barren desert), He walks into the town of Bethany on the other side of the Jordan. John the Baptist sees him coming and declares, “Look, the Lamb of God!”
Here we find two keys to a confident faith:
First, we must know who Jesus is.
John the Baptist declares Jesus is the Lamb of God. He is “of God” and will be sacrificed for our sins.
Two of John the Baptist’s followers ask Jesus where he is going and, at His invitation, spend the rest of the day with Him. We know one of the two is Andrew because we’re told Andrew runs to get his brother Simon (Peter). The other is unnamed and likely John himself, the author. The fact that he recounts the time this happened, about the tenth hour, is a detail likely known and told by one who experienced the event personally.
As a result of his time with Jesus, Andrew confidently declares to his brother, “We have found the Messiah!” His faith was firmly planted in the knowledge of who Jesus was. Andrew believed!
Second, we must know who we are… in Christ!
When Simon met the Messiah, his identity changed. We don’t really think about the significance of this moment. Simon has lived his whole life being known by the name his father gave him. Now, from this moment on, he’ll be called Peter. That’s a normal name to us. But what about to them? That was the equivalent of giving Dwayne Johnson the nickname The Rock. Not a normal name at all, but rather a characterization of what you are (in Johnson’s case, rock hard physique). In Simon’s case, it was not a characterization of what he was, but of what he would become in Christ. He would become a Cephas, a Petros, a Rock… Simon Peter… Simon the Rock!
Jesus changes everything. For Andrew, for Simon, for you, for me. He gives me a new identity in Him. The more my faith is confidently rooted in the real Christ, the more confidently I will live out my identity “in Christ!”
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