Romans 4:20-21 No unbelief made him (Abraham) waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, 21 fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.
Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go … And he went out, not knowing where he was going.
Abraham has ample reason to discount God’s leading to go to a place he did not know. He had considerable wealth and security, he was almost 100 years old and his wife was 90 years old. He could have thought about the dangers that they might face, the idea of living in tents for an extended number of years, and thought, “Surely, if God loves us, he would not want us to give up all the comforts we have now at this time in our lives, in our present health, and start all over.”
But Abraham had ‘no unbelief’. How? Because he recognized God for being God and gave him glory for his attributes and supreme power. And, because he did not have faith in his own ability to create wealth, nor safety, nor health, nor comfort; in other words, in himself. His focus was on God and he was ‘fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.’ This combination of giving glory to God as God and believing or being ‘fully convinced’ that God can fulfill his promises was the engine of faith for Abraham.
Too much of what is taught and preached today about faith is foolish. It is not uncommon to hear words like, “if you have enough faith within you….”, or “if you just believe hard enough…”, or ‘God has put himself in you so that you can name and proclaim ….”. In every one of those cases, self is the ‘hidden’ source and object of faith. It is a form of self-deification and worship, and therefore completely anti-God, idolatrous, and far from the concept of biblical faith.
“Our agony comes through the willful stupidity of our own heart.” Oswald Chambers
Christians do not have faith in and of themselves, and do not believe in their own ability to gen-up belief; they recognize God as the source and giver of their faith. It is a gift from the God who is God. Faith is believing that God will do what God has said he will do. Small faith in God’s integrity and promises is mountain-moving, life-changing faith, and it is not dependent on human will, not deterred by formidable circumstance.
“Continually revise your attitude towards God and see if it is a ‘going out’ of everything, trusting God entirely. It is this attitude that keeps you in perpetual wonder…Suppose God is the God you know Him to be when you are nearest to Him…. Let the attitude of the life be a continual ‘going out’ in dependence on God, and your life will have an ineffable charm about it which is satisfaction to Jesus. You have to learn to ‘go out’ of convictions, out of creeds, out of experiences, until so far as your faith is concerned, there is nothing between you and God.” (Oswald Chambers)
Make the God of the Scriptures the source and object of your faith, find his promises for you, and God will never disappoint you.