Live a Life of Faith

Yael Eckstein  |  June 15, 2023

woman praying at the Western Wall

See, the enemy is puffed up;
     his desires are not upright—
    but the righteous person will live by his faithfulness.
—Habakkuk 2:4

As we celebrate the men in our lives this month, enjoy these devotions looking at the defining characteristics of godliness that we can glean from the biblical men of faith—and how we can pass on those values to our children.

Benjamin Franklin famously wrote, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” As humorous as this statement may be, it’s actually a good description of what people worry about. How much of our lives do we spend dealing with our financial situations, trying to make ends meet? And who doesn’t worry about death?

When we look at the world through the lens of material concerns, we see death all around us. For many people, life is one continuous decline toward death. The pagan religions of the ancient world were obsessed with death. The Egyptians even called their book of beliefs, The Book of the Dead! And to this day, the tombs of the Pharaohs remain the lasting monuments to this culture.

The Bible, in contrast, tells us to “choose life” (Deuteronomy 30:19). This may seem like an obvious choice. I mean, who would choose death? But what the Bible means is that we must choose a life that is not focused on the material, dying world.

Live a Life of Faith

In the Book of Habakkuk we read, “See, the enemy is puffed up; his desires are not upright—but the righteous person will live by his faithfulness.” In Hebrew, the last phrase of this verse is tzaddik be’emunato yichye. This literally means “A righteous person who has faith shall live!”

By the rules of Hebrew syntax, the emphasis of the phrase is on the final word. So, the verse can be understood in two ways. The standard meaning, based on the first translation we quoted, is that the righteous person is always faithful in his dealings with others.

But based on the Hebrew, there is another lesson here, namely, that when we live in a state of faith in God, we are truly alive. No longer are our lives focused on the mundane earthly concerns of money and death. To live a life of faith means that I am connected to what is truly alive and eternal, not what is dying.

When we focus on what matters to God, we are truly alive.

Your Turn:

Let’s remember that what matters most is not our temporary material concerns. Let’s commit ourselves to truly live, to live by faith in the One who is eternal. Choose life!