Faith For More
A new year brings new opportunities. It’s a chance to make fresh commitments and form new habits. For some, change may not be easy. It may even be painful. However, as Christians we have the opportunity to develop our faith by drawing closer to God. No matter what we face in life, we will have to exercise faith.
Faith is one of the most important topics in the entire Bible for these reasons:
- Jesus will be looking for faith (Luke 18:8).
- We walk by faith (2 Cor. 5:7).
- We live by faith (Gal. 3:11).
- We are saved through faith (Eph. 2:8–9).
- We can’t please God without faith (Heb. 11:6).
There are 3 ingredients of faith:
Galatians 5:6 says, “Faith which worketh by love.” First Corinthians 13:2 states, “And though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity [love], I am nothing.”
If we have no love, our faith is void. A requirement for faith to work is for us to walk in love.
James 1:3 states, “That the trying of your faith worketh patience.” (See also Romans 5:3; Hebrews 6:12; 10:36; James 1:4; 5:7, 10–11; 2 Peter 1:6; Revelation 3:10; 13:10.)
If we have little or no patience, then we can also have little or no faith. We will have many tests to develop our patience. Are we committed to stay with it, not waver (James 1:6–8), and not allow doubt to come out of our mouths? Time proves whether we believe God or not.
James 2:17 says, “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.”
James verse 16 says this about the poor and needy: “if one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?” If you don’t give them money, clothes, or housing, then your faith is dead. Your words mean nothing without your giving. “By works was faith made perfect” (v. 22). Faith needs to have corresponding action. Our mouth and our actions have to show we believe it.
Everyone’s faith is at a different level, and our faith needs to be exercised. We have all been given a “measure of faith” (Rom. 12:3). No one is given a greater amount. We all start off with the same amount. We can have:
- No faith (Mark 4:40)
- Weak faith (Rom. 4:20)
- Little faith (Matt. 6:30)
- Shipwrecked faith (1 Tim. 1:19)
- Don’t know where your faith is (Luke 8:25)
- Strong faith (Rom. 4:20)
- Great faith (Matt. 15:28)
- Unfeigned faith (sincere, genuine, without hypocrisy) (2 Tim. 1:5)
- Full of faith (Acts 6:5)
Acts 14:9 states, “…and perceiving that he had faith to be healed.” In other words, he had enough faith. But the converse would be, he may not have had enough faith to be healed.
How often many of us doubt, and then wonder why we haven’t received? We become double minded, as in James 1:8. We use the excuse that, “It must not be God’s will,” rather than admit our faith may not be as developed as it should. When the apostles asked Jesus why they couldn’t cast out a devil from a man’s son, He said, “Because of your unbelief” (Matt. 17:20). Jesus didn’t pull any punches. He wasn’t placing condemnation on them. He just let them know the truth. He wanted them to learn, and that is what we should be willing to do.
We should be able to receive correction from His Word. Jesus said over and over, “Your faith hath made you whole.” Look at the woman with the issue of blood in Matthew 9:20–22. What about blind Bartimaeus in Mark 10:46–52? What about the man who was let down through the roof in Mark 2:4? What about the woman from Canaan in Matthew 15:22–28? Look at the centurion in Matthew 8:5–10. And look at the story about Jairus’s daughter (Mark 5:23). In each case, it was their faith that brought the healing. The woman with the issue of blood didn’t even ask Him for her healing. She just said, “If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole” (Matt. 9:21). Jesus was pleased with her faith.
We are able to appropriate the blessings of God because of what Jesus has done. It is His faith that obtained the things of God for us. We simply receive them by exercising our faith in what He has done. Our faith is in trusting what He has accomplished.
God is not moved by our whining and begging. To have faith is to show we trust and rely upon Him, and not look at the circumstances. We simply ask Him in faith, trust Him, and thank Him for the victory. The reason the Bible says that we can’t please God without faith is because God is pleased when He can bless us. He can’t bless us unless we show Him faith. Now, it is obvious throughout the Scriptures we have to ask for things that are scriptural (1 John 5:14). That goes without saying.
So how do we acquire faith? It comes by hearing, by reading His Word, by speaking it out of our own mouths, and by listening to good Biblical teachings on the subject. There is no other way to acquire faith. Romans 10:17 says, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
What circumstance, problem or dream have you given up on? Are you willing to examine your faith, welcome God’s correction and receive His blessings in the New Year? Make the decision to renew your faith in 2018.
Excerpt from Bill’s book, Recession Proof Living
© Copyright 2007-2017 Soul Choice Ministries – All Rights Reserved
By Bill Wiese, author of 23 Minutes in Hell