Yesterday we learned that the Faith is a whole dispensation. Before faith came mankind was under the law, waiting on the dispensation of faith that would be revealed immediately after (Gal 3:23). In this dispensation of faith, the Gentiles (and the Jews) would have the opportunity to receive the Holy Ghost. However, prior to this, God's testimony of His people was that they were a people in whom was no faith (Deut 32:20).
We discovered all this simply from studying Old Testament faith. As we said yesterday, the word Faith is mentioned only twice in the Old Testament and both are prophetic. Let's look at faith mentioned in the book of Habakkuk.
4 Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith. - Habakkuk 2:4
The scripture above begins with a description of Jesus dying on the cross. His soul was lifted up on the cross, however, it was in death. This confirms Isaiah's testimony of Christ when He wrote;
10 Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand. - Isaiah 53:10
Isaiah 53:10 is teaching the exact same thing that Habakkuk is. Let's see how.
Both scriptures are speaking to the fact that Jesus died on the cross , but then they speak to His resurrection. Isaiah, made mention of the resurrection, by stating that though Jesus died 'he shall see his seed (produce children, by the Spirit), he shall prolong his days (His life will be extended)'. Habakkuk seems to agree with this, teaching that though Christ will die, the just (those that are justified) will live by Him; or rather His faith.
Paul agrees with this.
20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. - Galatians 2:20
Paul's testimony here is of His salvation.
1. Crucified with Christ - Through the Holy atonement, i.e. being baptized into an eternal Spirit, the Holy Ghost. He has been made a partaker of the death of Christ, and thus His sins are paid for. Sin then has no right to thrive in His flesh, because His sins have been atoned.
2. Nevertheless I live - Though the old man is dead, He has been raised in the newness of life, because His soul has been baptized into Christ.
3. Yet not I, but Christ liveth in me - It is Christ Jesus that is within Him. Christ receives the opportunity to live in Paul's body because Paul's sin caused Jesus to die on the cross and lose His own. He thus has the right to continue living through Paul's body, seeing He did not deserve to die. Paul's body thus became the body of Christ. The same is true for every son of God.
4. I live by the faith of the Son of God
The just shall live by the faith of Jesus Christ. In other words, we are justified by the faith of Jesus Christ.
20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin...
[The law was not powerful enough to justify us. What exactly did we need justification for? Life itself! We needed the right to live! The soul that sins shall surely die, however, Jesus as a sinless soul, died for our sins, and hence could not stay dead! He thus has the right to live forever. He now, through the Holy Ghost, gives us the opportunity to receive His life. When you receive the Holy Ghost, your soul is placed in His Spirit, and thus you are alive by Him. We are thus justified to live, because we lost our life to receive His and He will never die.]
... 21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; 22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
Jesus' faith is only given to those who believe, therefore it is more than just our personal belief. The faith of Jesus Christ, is the life of Christ. If we receive His life, then we will be immediately transformed from vile sinners into sons of God; who do by nature the righteousness of God.
For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. - Romans 1:17
Thus the just shall live by the Faith of Jesus Christ. The Christian faith (journey) that Jesus has determined to live out in our bodies is the only thing that can justify us. We must allow Jesus' faith to have it's way in us, that we may experience the eternal life we have already received. There is so much more to learn about faith, so stay with us as we continue to reveal the faith of Jesus Christ!