How many times have your heard it!… someone barks—‘Faith is blind.’ Usually, the person is well intentioned and actually trying to articulate a half-truth. What he means to say is that faith does not look at circumstances or obstacles. Notwithstanding, to say faith is blind is not only a lie, it stymies those who are trying to live by faith from achieving the biblical goal. Faith works by vision. If you vision is not defined, faith has nothing to produce. Too often the family of faith spends all of its time building faith without ever developing a clear vision for faith to produce. Vision is what puts faith into action. Look at the words of the ancient prophet Habakkuk. ~ “Then the LORD answered me and said: “Write the vision And make [it] plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it” (Habakkuk 2.2).
Hope & Vision
The Bible says that faith gives “substance” to that which is ‘hoped’ for. Let’s take a moment and look at the one scripture verse in the Bible that defines exactly what faith is and how it works. ~ “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11.1). It says that faith gives ‘substance’ to hope. The word ‘hope’ is referring to the ‘vision’ you have defined in your heart by the Holy Spirit. Now, what the prophet Habakkuk said becomes exceedingly easy to understand. He said ~ “Then the LORD answered me and said: “Write the vision And make [it] plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it” (Habakkuk 2.2).
The Law of Love
If you have a very serious need in your life, something that urgently must be resolved, get out a pen and paper and ‘write’ down exactly what you want God to do. There are two major reasons why serious prayer petitions should be clearly defined, or written down as Habacuc recommended. First, briefly let it be said that God has given to man authority1 in the earth, and God respects His own laws. God operates completely by the law of love, and He will not simply ‘force’ anything upon man. Until man has formally requested something from God, the need will go unanswered. Let’s look at an example of this concept in practice. In the gospel of Matthew, Jesus is seen opening the eyes of two blind men. ~ “So Jesus stood still and called them, and said, ‘What do you want Me to do for you?’ They said to Him, ‘Lord, that our eyes may be opened’” (Matthew 20.32,33). Of course, Jesus knew they were blind and that they wanted their sense of sight to be restored; however, He still had to wait until they made the request before He could heal them.
The Race of Faith
Now, why do you think Jesus, who already knew the thoughts of all men, would ask these two blind men what it was that they wanted? What do you suppose would have happened if the blind men had said to Jesus that they wanted to be healed of a grievous stomach flu? The second reason that one’s vision must be clearly defined is so that he can ‘run’ in his faith to receive the substance of his petition. Look at the words of the Apostle Paul. ~ “For we walk by faith, not by sight” (2Corinthians 5.7). In the same way the Bible teaches that a person can walk by faith, one can also run by faith, so that urgent needs can be met before it is too late. This is what Habacuc was saying ~ “Write the vision And make [it] plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it… the just shall live by his faith” (Habakkuk 2.2,4).
Running to Win
Both faith and vision come by the Word of God. When the word of God is presented to the senses, by reading, writing, or hearing; the word produces faith in the spirit and it produces hope, or vision, in the mind. Finally, as the wisdom of King Salomon teaches, when there is no clear vision, people lose focus and interest and soon all motivation is gone. This is what Salomon wrote when he said ~ “Where there is no revelation [vision], the people cast off restraint; But happy [is] he who keeps the law” (Proverbs 29.18). The word “revelation” in this verse is talking about a ‘vision’ and is actually translated ‘vision’ in the 1511 Authorized Version (KJV). So, Salomon is saying that without a clearly defined vision, people become undisciplined and unmotivated and eventually become confused and lose interest, abandoning their faith. Begin today to think about exactly what it is you want God to do for you, and then as things become clear to you, do what Habacúc said — and ‘write’ your vision making it very clear — you will soon be running with your faith instead of losing it, and your faith will ‘give substance’ to your vision.
For the vision [is] yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry… the just shall live by his faith.
1. Hebrews 2.8
© L. Jonathan Blais 2021 All rights reserved. Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission.