You Can’t Believe Until You Have Faith

by Rex Rouis

Faith is the noun form, and believe is the verb form of the same Greek word. This makes believing the action side of faith, but you cannot act in faith until you have faith. Faith is the ability to believe, but that ability must be acted upon for it to work. Believing is the action of faith. Just having faith is not enough. James tells us that faith without corresponding actions is lifeless and dead.

You see that faith was working with his works, and as a result of the works, faith was perfected; James 2:22 New American Standard Bible

You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; James 2:22 English Standard Version

You can’t have strength without a muscle, and you can’t drive without a car. You can have a muscle and not lift a weight, and you can have a car and not drive it. Having them gives you the choice of using them. If you did not have them, you would have no choice. Without having faith in the heart, we are not able to choose to believe. Believing is only an option once you have faith in the heart. And faith only comes by hearing from God.

Many times we try to believe before we have faith. We may even fool ourselves into thinking we have faith and that we are believing. We call this condition mental assent. It means that we are only mentally ‘assenting’, or agreeing, to the promise of God and not fully believing it in the heart.

Faith is of the heart and faith comes from God. The Bible says that faith comes from God (Romans 10:17). It comes when the word on a certain subject comes alive in our heart. Now, if it comes, then there must be a time before it comes. One moment one does not have faith and the next moment they do have faith. You have faith or you don’t; it’s that simple. When one has received faith, James 2:22 says that, they must act on that faith by believing, if not it will become nonproductive. Believing requires faith, and faith requires the action of believing.

You can’t believe until you have faith, and you must believe once you do have faith.


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  2. Hmmmm…. Thomas had little faith and yet “chose” not to believe. We always have the ability to choose whether or not we believe. We may not believe because we have no faith but the choice is there because choosing to believe is a matter of the soulish realm–our intellect.

    Our “heart” is the whole inner man NOT just our spirit. If you believe that your heart is your spirit you will come out confused and many scriptures will not make sense. The heart is a combination of the soul and the spirit. When we line up our soul with what is already true in our spirits, then we have faith, or have a revelation.

    We are not waiting to get a revelation in our spirit. We have to renew our minds so that what is already revealed in our spirits gets through to our soul. When these two line up, then we “see” something from scripture.

    Bob Yandian has some excellent teaching explaining this.

    1. Author

      Gary – Welcome back. I agree with the first two paragraphs. Bob Yandian actually has a great article on the issue in the second paragraph. The spirit of man is the ‘Hidden Man of the Heart.’

      Does Pastor Yandian have teaching on the third paragraph? It sounds interesting. Please send me an email with a link if you can. My email is rex (at) hopefaithprayer (dot) com

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