“So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ” (Rom. 1:17). If there ever has been a saying that irritates me, it is “Faith is blind!” Some people use that as the foundation for their faith in God, and I understand what they are trying to convey. God is indeed transcendent and visually invisible as a physical entity. We cannot see and touch Him, so they tell unbelievers who question their faith that they do not need to prove everything they believe. In their quest to explain what they mean, they quote Heb. 11:1, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” I have even heard people say that faith in God is similar to love. We know it exists because we feel it, but we cannot see it or even describe it entirely – it just is.
“faith is blind” is a dangerous argument because it allows attackers of the Christian faith to use that very saying against us. The atheist Christopher Hitchens once wrote, “Faith is the surrender of the mind; it’s the surrender of reason, it’s the surrender of the only that that makes us different from other mammals.” Saying our faith is blind is handing a weapon and the ammunition to the enemy of God’s Word and then being forced to defend what we believe. And worse, it moves us into a position of explaining our faith as something that we absolutely cannot prove. Possibly the most famous of all modern-day atheists, Richard Dawkins, had this to say about faith, “Faith is the great cop-out, the great excuse to evade the need to think and evaluate evidence. Faith is belief in spite of, even perhaps because of, the lack of evidence.” Once again, you can see the danger of telling opponents of the Christian faith that we have no evidence for what we believe.
When we relegate our beliefs to only a subjective understanding of something we have no proof of, we are automatically in defense mode, and that is a dangerous place to be. While defending our faith is just and noble, saying it is blind is inaccurate. Our faith is not a blind, emotional response to a desire for a belief in something greater than ourselves. God Himself might be invisible, but that does not mean we do not have overwhelming evidence to prove His existence and, subsequently, our faith. Rom. 1:17 dispels that incorrect assumption by confirming that our faith comes to us from hearing the words of scripture. All the evidence we need is in the Good Book. But our scripture for this morning is not the only place that defends proof for the existence of God and thus our faith in Him.
Romans 1:20 reads as follows, “For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” He may be invisible, but His attributes and evidence for His existence are not – it is in the complexities of life, the position of the sun and the moon, the moral standard derived from His Word, and countless other things. Thus Heb. 1 is the assurance that in spite of Him being physically invisible, the conviction exists. But that verse is not claiming that faith is blind. Almost daily, new archaeological evidence is found confirming what was once thought to be a myth. Moreover, the Bible contains a plethora of facts that indisputably prove the reliability of scripture, and thus the existence of God. Your faith is not blind if you look for evidence.