We often think of accepting Jesus as a “leap of faith”. That you can learn all you can about him, but eventually you have to decide if he is true. You have to decide if Jesus is worth trusting, following, and believing in. We often call this in Christian circles a “leap of faith”. And I agree in all of that.
The thing I don’t agree with is the term “leap of faith”. It’s not that it’s wrong, or that we don’t need to do it. It’s that – that term or phrase is so misunderstood that it leads us down the wrong path. It actually can stop discipleship and confuse the whole process. So I’d like to replace that phrase with a new one. To no longer think of following Jesus as a “leap of faith” but instead as a “leap of action” because that is what true trust requires.
Following Jesus isn’t about becoming so mentally certain in Jesus’ salvation, divinity, or truth that we don’t have any disbelief. It isn’t about having a rational and intellectual leap of faith where we overcome all doubt and believe all the right doctrine about Jesus. Faith, in the biblical sense, is about so much more than that. To have faith in someone is to trust and follow them. It’s not about becoming intellectually certain of key convictions (though that is important). Faith is about becoming certain enough to follow, trust, and obey. And through trusting, following, and obeying Jesus, we become more certain as we experience faith in action and Jesus’ transformation.
Faith is much more about a “leap of action” than just a “leap of thought, belief, or faith”. Because as we know true faith and trust results in change in our lives. The point isn’t just to change what we know; it’s to have a deep change in who we are because of Jesus Christ.
So my point is simple. Following Jesus does require a leap of faith, but this leap of faith needs to lead to a leap of action. The point of faith isn’t to become convinced about Jesus, it’s about becoming changed by Jesus. So from now on I doubt I’ll use the phrase “leap of faith” but I might be using the phrase “leap of action”. Because what I’ve discovered over my years is that as I practice trusting in Jesus practically…my convictions on who Jesus is deepen dramatically…