The Christian faith has two completely different movements.
1.The Christian faith looks backward. We look back into the past to read about the work of God, particularly in his son Jesus. There is this fundamental element of trust in the Bible and the teachings about God. A believer looks back and says, “I believe that this happened and that the records are true.” This leads us to read our Bibles, studying the stories, dissecting the teachings and developing a theology based on what we understand.
2. The Christian faith looks forward. We trust that God will show up in our actions that we do for him. Faith allows us to pray to an unseen God and then to trust him to act. Faith believes that my work done for him will produce an eternal result. Faith keeps me moving forward in trust not knowing how everything will work out.
These two directions are inseparable in the life of a believer. We must have faith that God acted in the world through Jesus Christ. Also, we need to take the knowledge of what God did and apply it to every day of our life.
There are a number of people out there who have the first one of these faiths. They believe the Bible, they trust Jesus and are grounded in the idea of God.
People in the second group are harder to find. This requires deliberate action that can defy explanation. We step out into the unknown and wait for God to work. The response may be immediate, or it may take a lifetime. We might not even see a result, but we trust that we are doing the right thing.
One of the questions that faith repeatedly asks is, “Would my life be any different if I had no faith in Jesus?” Asked another way, “How is my belief in the past shaping my present?”
If you are not continually remolding your life today given what God has done in the past, then you are fooling yourself into believing you have faith, when all you have is a little historical knowledge.