The Face Value of Faith

face-value1

This picture is supposed to represent how we shouldn’t take things at “face value” but that we should investigate everything.  While I believe that as a student of His Word we are to study, I study from a perspective of discovering MORE truth….assuming that His Word is true, but just wanting a deeper revelation of the truth that I already believe exists.

The past few weeks I have been led to study faith.  And today I have been studying about repentance and the heart…maybe I will share that later, but today while I was studying about the heart I got on http://www.ancient-hebrew.org/ which although I do read from time to time I don’t agree with everything he says of course.  Something he said regarding the translation of Hebrew words really jumped out at me, which was this:

“Ex. 17:14 And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua

This is a Greco-Roman translation of the Hebrew which literally reads, “and YHWH said to Mosheh, write this remembrance in the scroll and place it in the ears of Yehoshu’a.” Notice the difference? The literal translation of the Hebrew has Mosheh placing the scroll that was written upon, into the ear of Yeshoshu’a. While this is not meant to be taken literally, but figuratively, it clearly demonstrates how the Ancient Hebrews thought and wrote, from a concrete perspective.

One of the major differences betwen our own Greco-Roman thought and the thought of the Ancient Hebrews, is that we commonly use abstract terms and thought while the Ancient Hebrews did not, but instead, thought and used terms that are concrete in nature. The following verse will easily demonstrate this difference

KJV Habakkuk 2:4 Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.

The word “faith” is an abstract word. The Hebrew behind this word is “emunah.” If we examine other passages that use this Hebrew word, and the context that it is used in, we can find its original concrete meaning.

KJV Exodus 17:12 But Moses’ hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.

I already knew that Mr. Benner takes issue with the way the English Bible translate the same Hebrew word using several different English words, which I also find frustrating some times too.  But I guess it is just another reason why we are supposed to be STUDYING the Bible and not just READING it like a newspaper *sigh* 🙂

After the last couple weeks of my own studying on emunah, I really appreciate what he is saying about emunah/faith being a concrete thought and not an abstract thought – That when I say I have faith in Adonai that it is not some abstract idea a weak person needs to make it through life, but it really is a concrete tool or weapon or gift that Abba has given me THE measure of – that faith really is this thing that is so sure and strong.  Faith can be strong in Abba or faith can be strong against Abba.  Realizing that faith is a REAL thing and not just some abstract thought is so encouraging.  I mean, I KNOW my faith is real, but considering faith from a linguistic point of view is like discovering another facet in an exquisite diamond.  …the flawless just became even flawless-er 🙂

One of my favorite loves about Abba is that I can take Him at “face value”.  That He is literal, and He gave us a literal language that communicates how HE thinks about things.  I understand what Mr. Benner is saying about taking the passage in Exodus figuratively, but I love the way Abba says, “Hey, take this scroll and put it in his ear”  I mean, how can you not get how important this is to Him.  He doesn’t want there to be any confusion in what He expects from us, and so He creates this language of Hebrew with its incredible letters and numbers that so interconnected and full of meaning and then resurrects it from the dead because why? Because He wants to communicate with us in a concrete, literal way.  He doesn’t want to confuse us or mislead us; He wants to share the Good News with us.  The same with emunah. It’s like He is saying, “Don’t be confused about what faith is! I’m telling you what faith is! It’s steady! It’s a sure thing! It’s something that stays in place.  It doesn’t waver. It doesn’t move…..if it did it would not be emunah! It would a different word with a different meaning” Ok, Abba, yes sir! Got it:)

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