Apologetics and FaithEncouragement and Faith

Be careful. Your faith can infect or inspire.

Even with the best of intentions, our faith can hurt others. In his Dynamics of Faith, Paul Tillich, the world-renowned, Christian philosopher, psychologist, and theologian, said, “Today the term ‘faith’ is more productive of disease than of health.” Have you noticed the word faith can mean almost anything?

When Mother Teresa gave her life in sacrificial work helping impoverished people in India, people said it was a result of her faith. When David Koresh, the Waco, Texas-based Branch Dravidian cult-leader, led his followers to massacre men, women and children, the news reported that his acts were motivated by his faith.

The best way to tell if we need to make changes to our faith is not to compare it to some definition, but to compare it to the faith-life of the one who is worthy of our faith—Jesus, the son of God. When people witnessed the kind of faith he had in his Father, they were inspired to put their faith in him. His faith was healthy and health-producing. It was never discouraging, degrading, or infectious.

Be careful. Don’t let pride or self-deception keep you from being faithfully encouraging, helpful, and faith-building.