Faith vs. Presumption
Jesus said, "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."1
I remember reading in Reader's Digest about a company who glued a mustard seed to a brochure that was advertising the product they were manufacturing. Beneath the mustard seed they had a caption that went something like the following: "If you have faith as much as a grain of mustard seed in our product, you will see a mountain of difference in what you are trying to achieve."
Some months later a customer wrote back to the company saying, "You will be interested to know that I planted your mustard seed and it has already grown into a very robust plant—bearing healthy tomatoes!"
For our purpose what kind of seed the advertiser used doesn't really matter, but for us to achieve anything worthwhile with our life, our faith needs to be genuine and based on reality, not on some grandiose fantasy.
Every one of us has a mountain or two in our life that we need to remove, be it a bad habit, an addiction, an impaired or toxic relationship, an unforgiving spirit, or whatever. To assume that God will remove these mountains without our accepting full responsibility for doing our part isn't faith—it's presumption—and presumption won't make it.
Sometimes, too, we want to do something strictly for our own end. To justify it we say it is God's will or God is leading me or told me to do such and such. When we do this with an impure motive, this too isn't faith but presumption.
Many people believe that if they do more good deeds than bad deeds, this will qualify them for entering God's heaven. Others believe that all religions lead to God and, if adhered to religiously, will qualify them for entering God's heaven. Unfortunately these are presumptions. The only way to qualify for God's heaven is to have faith in the way God has stated in his Word, the Bible, and that is through Jesus who said, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father [God] except through me."2
When it comes to life after death, presumption can be fatal—eternally fatal. Faith is crucial but it needs to be in the right "seed"—and that is, in the saving gospel message of Jesus Christ. For help see the article, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian," at: www.actsweb.org/christian.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please deliver me from the fatal folly of presumption and help me to always have faith in your ways as found in your Word, the Bible. Sometimes I feel like the man in the Bible who said, 'Lord I believe. Help thou my unbelief.' Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
1. Matthew 17:20 (NIV).
2. John 14:6 (NIV).