81. Jesus perfects our faith.
'Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith ...'(Hebrews 12:2) We considered the two aspects of faith, the certainity or evidence of things not seen and the surety or substance of things hoped for. If we have only the certainty of the existence of God but not the surety of his promises, then the remedy is to listen to the words of Jesus because 'faith comes by hearing the message and the message is heard through the word of Christ.'( Romans 10:17) Listening to the words of men who speak with human wisdom will not instill faith but listening to the words of Jesus will, because he is the author and perfecter of our faith! Martha had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. (Luke 10:39-40) Mary's faith in God grew but not Martha's. When their brother Lazarus died, Martha had faith that he wouldn't have died had Jesus been there but had no hope that her brother could be raised again before the resurrection at the last day. Martha had the certainty of the future but no surety of the present ! Therefore, she objected to the stone being removed but Jesus rebuked her unbelief: "Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?" (John 11:40) Mary too had faith that her brother wouldn't have died had Jesus been there but also had the surety that her brother could be raised to life now and therefore made no objections. It is interesting to note that when Jesus saw Mary weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit that he wept but he was not moved by Martha's words. ( Vs 33-35) His heart was in sync with those who believe and is mindful of their hurts. But we like Martha are 'worried and upset about many things but only one thing is needed' and that is to be at the feet of Jesus, listening to his words. Therefore Jesus said: "Mary has chosen what is better and it will not let it be taken away from her." (Luke 10:41-42) Jesus values the time we spent with him because he gets to perfect our faith. Amen.