Despair and Doubt Can Wear the Guise of Faith

by Rusty Entrekin

1999 Marshall "Rusty" E. Entrekin.  All rights reserved.  The contents of this article may be reproduced for free distribution provided no changes are made to the contents and the URL to this website is provided.  Quotations must be referenced by the URL to this website.  No other use shall be permitted without written permission from the author.

A full preterist recently wrote to me, "Preterists believe in a kingdom coming 'not of observation' and 'not of this world' on faith alone. This is a good thing because it is impossible to please God without faith. Futurists require physical worldly manifestations. They expect a kingdom coming ‘with observation’ and ‘of this world’."

Is it really an exhibition of faith to teach that the promises God has made concerning this physical world will not be literally fulfilled?

Suppose an onlooker had told the blind man on the way to the pool of Siloam, "I have faith that you will one day see. Although you will never be able to see with those eyes in this world, when you die, God will give you new spiritual eyes to see with."

He would have answered, "Jesus led me to believe that I will be able to see in this world once I have washed in the pool. I have faith that it will happen as He said it would."

Suppose the stranger had countered, "You believe you have faith?  Your faith requires a miracle here and now. Mine does not. I believe God's promises to be true even though I think they will have no worldly manifestation. Therefore, whose faith is greater,  mine or yours?"

Would this onlooker have really been exhibiting faith? Or would it have merely been DESPAIR and DOUBT thinly disguised as faith?

Faith is the "substance of things hoped for." Faith is hoping for things which God has promised but we do not yet see. Faith is believing that the promises of God will literally happen just as He said they would.  That is the kind of faith that is pleasing to God.  God will reward such faith.