The Catalyst of Faith
For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. – Hebrews 4:2
Several years ago, I took a boat building class in which we made fiberglass kayaks. The instructor guided the class through all the steps of preparing
the mold, cutting fiberglass fabric in the proper shape, applying resin to the fabric, and then layering the pieces into the mold. The last part
had to be carefully planned because of the limited working time once the resin was applied to the fiberglass.
I remember our instructor emphasizing the importance of one crucial step when all was ready—adding the catalyst to the resin. We used a polyester
resin that remains in a liquid state until a small quantity of liquid hardener is added. That hardener activates a chemical curing process. The
instructor stressed that the strength of the final product was entirely dependent upon thoroughly mixing in that small quantity of hardener to
achieve uniform curing. He told us in some cases a project had been done by someone who forgot to add the hardener at all. The result was a complete
In our focus verse, the writer of the Book of Hebrews was referring to the Israelites of Moses’ day. They had a problem that we still see in our day—people
who know a great deal about God but do not know Him personally. Many have been blessed with abundant access to God’s Word, instruction in righteousness,
encouragement in the faith, etc. These are all components of building a strong Christian life, but they must be “activated” by being mixed with
faith. Without the crucial ingredient of faith, all efforts toward spiritual growth will still result in a complete loss.
God has given to each one a measure of faith (Romans 12:3) and the smallest of measures can have great impact. But it must be thoroughly mixed into
our lives! Let us make sure that not only do we know about Him, but we also believe in Him and put into practice what we have heard and read in