Believing in Jesus: “Always believe! Never do anything else than believe!”

John6-29Last month we quoted from the first part of this meditation of Abraham Kuyper (“Doing God’s Work”), pointing out that he also had some good thoughts on the nature of faith and specifically on the relation between believing and working that are worth considering. So in this post I quote the next part of the meditation, where Kuyper describes how true, saving faith always acts. In a future post, we will return to the final part where he speaks to the relation between believing and working.

And if someone asks whether Jesus hasn’t expressly said: ‘God’s work is all about believing in Jesus!’ then we give the following answer. ‘Definitely, as long as you’re convinced of that and do so in the way he has prescribed.’

Believing …when it comes to knowing the truth. This means that I regard myself as a complete fool in order to honor Jesus as ‘the wisdom of God.’

Believing …with respect to atonement. This means that I cannot bring or offer as much as a grain of sand in payment of my debt, but that Jesus is the Alpha and Omega where the work of atonement is concerned.

Believing …in finding my way forward. This means that I don’t dare to put one foot in front of the other based on my own insight, but that I follow Jesus my faithful Shepherd closely, step by step.

Believing …when the seas are raging and the waves are crashing over my lifeboat. It means knowing with absolute certainty that I’m going to die and sink into oblivion if I have to depend on my own rowing and navigating. It also means depending only on Jesus, who calmly clamps his divine hand on the tiller.

Believing …where life’s struggles are involved. Then it means being convinced that I will fall and be totally defeated before I even know it if the outcome depends on me. It also means being absolutely persuaded that no arrow will pierce me and no spear strike me as long as my Defender leads me and his shield covers me.

So believing always has a different sense depending on the matter at hand, on what you happen to be facing, on what the issue is, and on what the discussion is all about.

Every situation in life poses the same question: ‘What now?’ To it there is always one and the same answer: ‘Believe in Jesus!’ Always believe! Never do anything else than believe!

honey from the rock-ak-2018Taken from the new translation by James A. De Jong of Abraham Kuyper’s Honey from the Rock (Lexham Press, 2018), pp.237-238.

This particular meditation (#74 of Volume 1) is titled “Doing God’s Work” and is based on John 6:29, “Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.”