WHAT SOME MEN HAVE SAID ABOUT FAITH                                                                                                                                                                                  10/98

Throughout history, men of every persuasion have articulated their view of faith.  It is at this point that the thoughts of their hearts were revealed.  The following quotations provide excellent insights into the vanity of earthly wisdom, and the superiority of the wisdom that is from above.

“Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”  The Word of God,

Hebrews 11:1

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.”

Saint Paul, Apostle to the Gentiles

“It was the schoolboy who said, ‘Faith is believing what you know ain’t so'”

Mark Twain (1835-1910), American author

“‘Faith” means not wanting to know what is true.”

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900), German philosopher

“What is faith but a kind of betting or speculation after all? It should be, ‘I bet that my Redeemer liveth.'”‘

Samuel Butler (1835-1902), English author

“Faith. Belief without evidence in what is told by one who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel.”

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914), American author

“Faith declares what the senses do not see, but not the contrary of what they see.”

Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), French scientist, philosopher

“Faith begins as an experiment and ends as an experience.”

  1. R. Inge (1860-1954), Dean of St. Paul’s, London

“To believe only possibilities is not Faith, but mere Philosophy.”

Sir Thomas Browne (1603-1682), English physician, author


“Philosophic argument, especially that drawn from the vastness of the universe, in comparison with the apparent insignificance of this globe, has sometimes shaken my reason for the faith that is in me; but my heart has always assured and reassured me that the gospel of Jesus Christ must be Divine Reality. The Sermon on the Mount cannot be a mere human production. This belief enters into the very depth of my conscience. The whole history of man proves it.”

Daniel Webster (1782-1852), American lawyer, statesman.  Spoken on the eve of his death and carved as his epitaph


“The faith that stands on authority is not faith.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), American essayist, poet, philosopher

“It is the heart which experiences God, and not the reason. This, then, is faith: God felt by the heart, not by the reason.”

Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), French scientist, philosopher

“Reason is our soul’s left hand, Faith her right, By these we reach divinity.”

John Donne (c. 1571-1631), English divine, metaphysical poet


“Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable.”

  1. L. Mencken (1880-1956), American journalist


“It is as absurd to argue men, as to torture them, into believing.”

Cardinal John Newman (1801-1890), English churchman, theologian


“‘You say you believe,” said Count de X., an extreme Catholic, to the good Protestant minister.  ‘You people believe, but we know.'”‘

Andre Gide (1869-1951), French author


“I admire the serene assurance of those who have religious faith. It is wonderful to observe the calm confidence of a Christian with four aces.”

Mark Twain (1835-1910), American author


“Faith which does not doubt is dead faith.”

Miguel de Unamuno (1864-1937), Spanish writer, philosopher


“How many things we held yesterday as articles of faith which today we tell as fables.”

Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist


“Absolute atheism starts in an act of faith in reverse gear and is a full-blown religious commitment.”

Jacques Maritain (1882-1973), French philosopher


“When once a man is determined to believe, the very absurdity of the doctrine does but confirm him  in his faith.”

Junius (18th century)


“Comedy is an escape, not from truth but from despair; a narrow escape into faith.”

Christopher Fry (b. 1907), British playwright


“The great act of faith is when a man decides that he is not God.”

Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes (1841-1935), American jurist


“A miracle is an event which creates faith. That is the purpose and nature of miracles. Frauds deceive. An event which creates faith does not deceive; therefore it is not a fraud, but a miracle.”

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950), Irish playwright, critic


“That willing suspension of disbelief for the moment, which constitutes poetic faith.”

Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834), English poet


“If I repeat ‘My will be done,” with the necessary degree of faith and persistency, the chances are that, sooner or later and somehow or other, I shall get what I want.”

Aldous Huxley (1894-1963), British author


“It is easy  –  terribly easy  –  to shake a man’s faith in himself. To take advantage of that to break a man’s spirit is devil’s work.”

Morell, Candida, George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950), Anglo-Irish playwright, critic


“The modern theory that you should always treat the religious convictions of other people with profound respect finds no support in the Gospels. Mutual tolerance of religious views is the product not of faith, but of doubt.”

Arnold Lunn (1888-1974), British author


As you can see, a variety of opinions have been stated on this matter through the years. Some of them are the bantering or bitter sarcasm of unbelief.  Others are the probing of philosophy, bring no value to the soul. One thing should be abundantly clear, we do not want to turn to the philosophers and authors of the world to clear up the matter of faith. The question really is, “What do YOU think of faith?” And, have you “OBTAINED” it.?


2 Peter 1:1-2

1:1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ: 2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, KJV