Over the past eighteen years, I’ve been teaching a preaching course at the School of Theology at Virginia Union University. 

On my syllabus, I list supplemental books, recommended books, and required books. 

Supplemental readings and recommended readings provide additional background information on the course material. Students don’t necessarily need to consult the supplemental readings or recommended readings. 

But in order to succeed in the course, it's essential that they read the required text. Students shouldn’t expect to excel without the required text. 

Faith is the required text. 

In Hebrews 11:6, the writer puts it like this: “Without faith it is impossible to please God, for whoever would approach God must believe that God exists and that God rewards those who seek God.”

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