Faith is Believing what the Bible says and doing it

We opened up the day by talking about “Faith” from the 30 Character Qualities and Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (NIV). We defined faith, compared it to believe (such as believing some things can lead to doubt instead of faith), talked about the relationship between faith and believe and also some of the circumstances surrounding these two words such as James 2:18-19.  Aliyah’s devotion testified to these truths in Scripture.

Life would be almost impossible without faith. The biblical definition of faith, which comes from Hebrews 11:6 says, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” This means being sure of what you hope for, and being convinced of what you have not seen. Also in the song “That’s what Faith must be” by Michael Card, faith is expressed as “hearing with your heart, seeing with your soul, being guided by a hand you cannot hold, and trusting in a way you cannot see.” Many times throughout the Bible, faith is expressed by God’s people. Some examples of faith are Joseph, when he faced many trials and knew that God would still be faithful. Abraham, when he was asked to sacrifice his only son though he was promised a great nation. And the story of the fiery furnace where God showed how he can deliver even when it seems life is over. Luke 17:6, Matthew 17:20, and Matthew 21:21 say “if you have faith the size of a mustard seed you can move a mountain.”.  2 Corinthians 5:7 says “We live by faith, and not by sight.”. Faith is an important component in everyday life. It’s an important not only to believe that Christ died on the cross to pay our penalty or that he resurrected, but that we rely on His death as payment for our sins. Faith is believing what the Bible says and obeying it. Hebrews 11:6 says ” Without faith it is impossible to please God.”.


Who is Archimedes?

For Research History of Science:  Students did an amazing job on their Archimedes reports. It is evident the care that each student took as they researched, prepared, and thoughtfully shared their reports.  Here is a clip from each report.

Jacob: “Who is Archimedes?  Archimedes was a remarkable man with many talents.”

Aliyah:  Which mathematician and scientist determined the exact value of pi and discovered the principle of fluid displacement? Archimedes!”

Christopher: “Archimedes threw a fit like a child and cried, “Please! Let me finish this math problem!”

Sebastian: “While drawing a complicated math problem, a Roman soldier almost stepped upon his work.  Archimedes said, “Don’t disturb my circles.”

Alejandro: “After studying in Alexandria, he [Archimedes] returned to Syracuse to pursue a life of thought and invention and to find solutions to the problems that vexed the king.”

Emma: “During the end of his life he [Archimedes] invented machines of war like the Heat Ray and the Claw of Archimedes which literally grabbed enemy ships out of the water and shook them to bits.”

Ellie: “Archimedes once said, “Give me a lever and a place to stand and I will move the earth.”  Even thought that is physically impossible, I find that his words did move some of the earth.”


For Rhetoric Formal Logic:  I asked students to “invent a stipulative definition for the word “ploff” (See Introductory Logic, Exercise 1, #4, Exercise 1).  Each student put their all into this and their answers were spectacular, diverse, and yes! funny.  Answers like… (I had to share these with you) …

Ellie: “Ploff”—when someone decides to squander their money by purchasing unnecessary objects.

Jacob:Ploff”—it means to say “I’m better than you.”

Alejandro:Ploff”—a not so loud sound like an explosion but a little quieter.

Aliyah: “Ploff”—A stew or gumbo of a darker color.

Christopher:Ploff”—Directed excess and distraction clouding the truth.

Emma: “Ploff”—the art of sledding into an upright pole.

Sebastian: “Ploff”—Put on “Ploff” or deodorant.

Sin Destroys; Righteousness Brings Life

Clip from Challenge B, Week 3, Semester 1: We had an awesome day and it all began with Jacob sharing a few words with us about virtue (moral excellence) from the 30 Character Qualities and First Corinthians 6:19-20, “Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirt, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body” (NLT). Jacob gave some great insights specifically ones that pointed us to the impact that sin and righteousness has on the body. Sin destroys, righteousness brings life. “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23 HCSB). Thank you Jacob!


Speak faith over…Math

We opened up our Math time with a quote from Keith Kressin’s book Understanding Mathematics: From Counting to Calculous. He writes, “Math…is a subject which is often either loved or hated. If the subject is hated, it is not the math, but the failure to understand the math that gives considerable frustration to the student” (page 1, section 1-1). This quote came on the heels of some pretty profound words spoken by one of our students when I asked a question to draw our hearts toward the word “faith” (our character quality for the day). Jacob answered something to the effect of, “We want to speak faith over our mind regarding Math.” Yes! Talk about perspective! Faith-filled.


Current Events from a Christ-Centered World View

“Why is viewing current events from a Christ-centered worldview important?” Here are some responses from Challenge B students (8th and 9th graders)…

Christopher: “So we can look at it through the eyes of God rather than the eyes of the world.”

Aliyah: “Our worldview decides what our reaction/action will be to the event and helps us to carry out God’s commands through it.”

Alejandro: “By seeing things from Christ’s world view, we will not lose faith through the hard times.”

Ellie: “You can stop worrying about the future, knowing that it’s in God’s hands and you can defend what you believe in because you stand in the truth.”

Jacob: “We will not become distracted by what’s happening in the world if we view current events through the eyes of God rather than the eyes of the world.”

Emma: “It is important to have a biblical perspective on current events so that we can decide for ourselves what is right and wrong and form our opinion based on the Bible.”

Sebastian: “It is important because the world is corrupt and a Christian view makes it easier to know how to help.”

Grasp the Reality

In Math, first week of Challenge B, we compared real numbers with imaginary numbers. Although, imaginary numbers cannot be measured on a number line, we know they exist (Understanding Mathematics, page 19 & 278). It is the same with God’s love,  although it cannot be measured on a number line (yet He gives us the Cross—as a plumb line—in Ephesians 3:17-18), we can still grasp the reality of His love through His Spirit.
“And I pray that you being rooted and established in love, may have power together with all the saints to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge that you may be filled to the measure with all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:17-18).
Recap: Math, Challenge B, Week 1, Semester 1