Keep faith and it will keep you and
all the other graces. You stand by faith; if that falls, you fall.
And where shall you fall? Under the enemy's feet. Thus, St. John
Chrysostom warns us: He who but partially pares away the image on a
royal coin vitiates the whole; so he who swerves ever so little from
the pure faith soon proceeds from this to graver errors, and becomes
Abraham had great faith because he
believed God though what was promised him was an impossibility.
Thus, he hoped against hope. From this we learn that if God promises
even countless impossibilities, and he that heareth doth not receive
them, it is not the nature of things that is to blame, but the
unreasonableness of him who receiveth them not, says St. John
Life eternal is the wage of Faith;
with faith, God seems, indeed, to be bestowing life eternal as if
repaying a debt, states St. Augustine. With such great faith, one's
belief is unfeigned and one's love is without dissimulation.
The sign of great faith is perfect
humility. So while the noble man found himself worthy to have Christ
as his guest, the centurion found himself unworthy to have Christ:
"Lord, I am not worthy that thou should enter my house. .
." Thus, the centurion, because of his perfect humility, showed
the greater faith. Without this perfect humility, there is no
faith. And this humility is attained through a life of prayer,
fasting and good works.
The Apostles also showed great
faith; shown by the sign that they left all things. To leave all
things, i.e. father, mother, brothers and sisters and lands, is
undeniably a sure sign of great faith. Nevertheless, the apostles
prayed to Christ: "Lord, increase our faith." Though they
had great faith, they did not have perfect faith.