When someone tells you about his faith in God based on his personal experiences, simply ask him the following question:
How do you really know you have faith in God?
You will be surprised to discover that not only can that person not tell you how he knows he has faith, but worse, that that person has no faith at all.
First and foremost, what is faith?
According to the dictionary: “Complete trust or confidence in something or someone”; in a religious sense: “strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.”
Now, if we look up in the Christian Bible:
According to Hebrews 11:1 “Faith is is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
In the same passage, there are many references of what faith really is about; for example: ” By faith the children of Israel passed the Red Sea as by dry land… By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days.”
Furthermore, in James 2:26, explicitly, it is said: ” Faith without works is dead.”
Saying you have faith in God is actually meaningless, and the only way you can say you have faith is by acting first and then concluding: “By faith, I did this, by faith, I did that”, while no other logical explanation stands, as mentioned above.
The problem anyone claiming faith in God has, is that the only references of what faith really is, are those mentioned in Hebrew 11.
In other words, what do the people saying they have faith in God today do by faith? “Nothing” No one does anything by faith; please note here that I am being absolute in reference to what Faith is, not to what it is not, such as a “try” to see if something works. When we know the laws and technology, having faith should disregard the logical explanations of events and make them happen, for example let’s say: “By faith, I am going to have my car driven without combustible; by faith, I am going to make a phone call when my cell phone has no charge, or is dead; by faith, we are going to build roads, bridges, hospitals, schools, etc. By faith, we are going to eliminate cancer; by faith we are going to have our countries well developed; by faith, no one is going to die from malnutrition, from cancer, from not having access to health care where it is lacking (i.e., Haiti…)”
If someone tells you he has faith in God, just ask him what has he done by faith that should never be obtained otherwise. The truth of the matter is, the only way to say that one has faith is by showing what has been done by faith; if someone is not living a life based on faith, then tells you he has faith, you know he is either lying or he doesn’t know, or he never learned, what having faith means.
By the way, sometimes, we hear people referring to unique coincident scenarios as a proof of faith, such as: “I had nothing to eat, I prayed, and someone brought me food” or “My car broke in the middle of nowhere at night, and all of the sudden someone came to my rescue because I prayed.” And why not: “I had a terminal illness, my doctor said I had 6 months to live, I prayed, and 6 years later, I am still alive”; I was abandoned by my family, my friends, and I called upon God by faith, then He rescued me and now I can tell you my story”; “My family is not broken because of my Faith in God, I have a job because of Faith”, etc…
I believe if we could live this life abundantly by faith, that would be great, and I would not only take advantage of it, but also make sure the whole world, meaning those having nothing on this earth, does the same as well. But the evidence we have for the known period of human history as of today, doesn’t align itself with that imaginary probability.