Monday, October 06, 2008

The Outworking of Faith

I found this over on Kent's blog Faithfully Dangerous.

I love how Jacques Ellul describes the outworking of faith :

"Faith isolates; belief (Christian or otherwise) brings together. We find ourselves joined with others in the same institutional current, all of us oriented toward the same object of belief, sharing the same ideas, following the same rituals, enrolled in the same organization, be it social or religious, speaking the same language. Belief is quite useful for the smooth functioning of society. Belief is the key to the consensus we look for, the one long proclaimed essential of communal life. Faith works in exactly the opposite way. Faith individualizes; it is always an exclusively personal matter. Faith is the personal relationship with a God who reveals Himself as a person. This God singularizes people, sets them apart, and confers on each an identity comparable to none other. The person who listens to His word is the only one to hear it; he or she is separated from the others, becomes unique, simply because the tie that binds that individual to God is unique, unlike any other, incommunicable, a unique relationship with a unique, absolutely incomparable God. God particularizes, singularizes the person to whom He says, "I call you by your name" (Isa. 45:4). Faith separates people and makes each of them unique. In the Bible "holy" means "separated". To be holy is to be separated from everyone else, to be made unique for the sake of a task that can be accomplished by no one else, which one receives through faith."


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