If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you may remember I ask God to choose a word for me at the beginning of each year (it’s called My One Word). This year my word is crucified. (I often create artwork to remind me of my word.) Galatians 2:20 is my theme verse: “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (NIV).
Many translations of this verse are similar, stating that we live by faith in the Son of God. But I have discovered that other translations, such as The Passion Translation and even the King James Version, say our new life is empowered by the faith of the Son of God; a few others say we live by the faithfulness of Christ. The distinction is important as the one translation can lead to reliance on the self and trying to have enough faith to live a crucified life. Believing we live by his faith does two things – it takes the pressure off to try to have more and more faith, and it frees us to trust him more, without worrying about how much faith we have or don’t have.
As David Torrance said in a You’re Included (gci.org) interview, most modern translators have altered the Greek in this verse to say “faith in Christ.” He also said our faith is a response to the faith of Christ. Our faith doesn’t save us, sanctify us or justify us – and it certainly hasn’t moved any mountains! But the faith of Christ does everything. It changes everything. It helps me live the crucified life I so long to live.
As he lives in us, he imparts his faith to us, which means we don’t need to beat ourselves up (or anyone else) for not having or believing we don’t have enough faith. He has all the faith we need – and more.