What is Faith? – Guy Richard – January “Tabletalk”

What is Faith? by Guy Richard | Reformed Theology Articles at Ligonier.org.

TT-Jan-2015As we have noted here on Mondays this month, the January issue of Tabletalk carries the theme “The Good News.” That is, in a series of seven articles, it asks and answers the question, “What is the gospel?”

I read two more of these articles yesterday, the one linked above and quoted from below, as well as “What are Justification and Sanctification?” by Dr.Guy Waters. Both are profitable reads, although Richard’s article focuses more on the necessity of repentance than on the nature of saving faith, as you will see.

I leave you with this profitable quote from Richard’s article, encouraging you to follow the links so that you too may read them both in full.

One of the statements I have found myself repeating most frequently over the last fifteen years of ministry is J.I. Packer’s insightful comment that half-truths masquerading as whole truths are whole lies. Packer’s observation is a beautiful reminder that half-truths are just that: half-truths. When they are presented as though there is nothing more to say, the result is that the truth is compromised.

…My fear is that many of us in the church today may be dangerously close to violating this precept in our preaching of the gospel. There is no question that the call of the gospel is to believe in Jesus Christ, which is why our preaching must regularly call people to faith. But if our preaching stops there without ever calling people to repentance, it is dangerously close to presenting a half-truth as though it were the whole truth. Repentance and faith are inseparable. They are two sides of the same coin. Faith is the positive side of turning to Christ, and repentance is the negative side of turning away from sin. It is impossible to turn to Christ and to turn to sin, just as it is impossible to travel in two different directions at the same time. By definition, traveling east means not traveling west, and turning to Christ correspondingly means not turning to sin. Faith and repentance necessarily go together.

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