Men of all ages have continued to make this same request that the disciples of Jesus made in Luke 17:5 " Lord, Increase our faith". We have the same longing, a desire to grow and develop our faith in God. The fact that you are reading this is proof that you want to grow in your faith walk with God.
The hearing of faith:
He that worked miracles among you doeth he it by the working of the law or by the hearing of faith? Miracles and the ministration of the spirit are done by the hearing or faith (by believing what you hear).
How does faith come? There is only one answer and it is found in Romans 10:17: Faith comes by hearing, and hearing the word of God. This is most asked question with the simplest answer, clearly written out. Faith comes by hearing and hearing the word. The more you hear and hear the word, the more your faith will grow and grow. No hearing the word, no faith. This is simply how faith comes. If you need faith for healing, then you begin to pay attention to words on healing. If you need faith to walk in holiness, then you begin to pay attention to God’s word on holiness and awaken to righteousness. If you are having trouble tithing and walking in prosperity, then you begin to pay attention to words about tithing and walking in prosperity.
What is sometimes amazing is that people want to have faith to walk in health or healing or for prosperity and success or for whatever and they do the opposite. They hang around all the bad news about sickness and poverty and failure and of course what grows is there fear of not getting well. If you want a manifestation in your life, then begin to build your faith by staying around those things. Mark 4: 24 "Be careful what you are hearing, for the measure of thought and study you give to the truth you hear will be the measure of virtue and knowledge that will come back to you, and more besides will be given to you who hear.
What does the word virtue mean "It means essence which includes power, depth, substance, faith, depth, value”? Each time you want to increase power, depth, substance, value delivery, all you have to do is increase the quality of attention you pay to God's word in specific, and the time you spend in an atmosphere of God in general.
"Be careful what you are hearing". . . You know there are so many people who spend their time doing all the frivolous things that come to their mind, never paying attention to the word in any form i.e. reading, watching, listening etc, never creating an atmosphere of God around them and abiding in it and they still wonder why they have no faith or why their faith is not growing. You can't have faith in God and for the things of God if you don't pay attention and give your ears to the word of God, and create an atmosphere of God's presence around you. It is only when you sow to the spirit that you can reap life. He that sows to the flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption (decay, breakdown, erosion etc) (Gal 6:7-8) i.e. if you sow to the flesh words of sickness, poverty, on failure on immorality, that is what you reap.
See that scripture again, "The measure of thought and study you give to the truth word is the measure of virtue and knowledge that will come back to you" What are you giving thought and study to. That is exactly what virtue and knowledge you have. If you give thought and study to jesting and joking, un-holiness, you will have those virtues and knowledge coming back to you. If you give your thoughts and study to fear and evil speaking and doubt and death and negative things, then that is the virtue - doubt, fear, negative substances death, that will come back to you and with more besides to you who hear. But if you give your thought and study to faith, love, kindness, holiness, positive things, creativity, power, superior services, that is exactly the type of virtue and knowledge that will come back to you and more besides. Now you see why you are where you are faith-wise or fear-wise? "Be not deceived" Ephesians 6 says, "whatever a man sows that is exactly what he shall reap". You can't sow fear into your heart and reap faith, you can't sow negative and expect the positive to come out of it. Don't be deceived, he that walks with the wise shall become wise and a companion of fools shall be destroyed.
Our heart the ground, our heart the canvass.
Our hearts can be likened to the ground and the word, the seed. Anything you sow into the ground will grow up. If you keep sowing and cultivating it, long enough, it will sprout and grow and take over your life. I believe someone can sow so much faith, health and positivity and success into his heart that it will be difficult to fail. You just can't see failure or death, you can't see them. You see why you need to give your thought and study to faith, godliness and righteousness and positivity because that is what will grow out of it. Same way I have seen good people who have become extremely evil, angry and mean because they continuously sowed or allowed to be sown, evil words and thoughts in their hearts and mind. I know you have seen some. I have seen happy families bound together strongly, broken down into deep enmity because someone infiltrated them and began to poison their minds against each other. I have also seen people who lacked confidence, who were broken down, depressed and broke transformed because they began to sow good, encouraging and positive words in their heart. Whatever we sow into our hearts becomes our manifestation. Remember, our action or inaction which ultimately decides our success is a product of our thoughts. Our thoughts are a product of the things we constantly pay attention to either consciously or unconsciously.
Our heart can the likened to canvass and the word, the paint, and guess who the painter is – You. What you paint is what you see. What you give your thought and study to is what your life will reflect.
Deliberately create your own atmosphere.
How many of us will just enter our houses or offices and take whatever temperature there is there or how many of us will deliberately leave ourselves to the natural elements of the weather, absolutely no one. Every human being tries to manage his environment. We take control, we condition it, we keep trying to make it suite us. I visited Dubai for a holiday, the temperature was about 40+ degrees centigrade, but you couldn’t feel it. Every hotel, car, office, shop and even bus stop was air conditioned. Companies were mandated by the Government of Dubai to provide shades for their workers and to give them breaks. If none of us will abandon ourselves to the natural elements, why would we allow our minds and hearts to be abandoned to the natural elements of the eion? We need to take control of our environment, condition our environment and make it suite us to achieve faith and strength.
Notice it said "the measure of thought and study". What does it mean to study? It means to deliberately pay attentions so as to understand and learn and act on. What are you studying and to what extent. Study faith, study success. Study positivity, study healing
What does it mean to think? It means to allow go through your mind. What are you allowing go through your mind? Get a hold of it. It will change your life.
Do you know what the bible says about the good man, in Luke 6: 45 " The upright (honorable, intrinsically good) man out of the good treasure [stored] in his heart produces what is upright (honorable and intrinsically good), and the evil man out of the evil storehouse brings forth that which is depraved (wicked and intrinsically evil); for out of the abundance (overflow) of the heart his mouth speaks” he brings out of the good treasure of his heart both new and old treasures. He is so full of treasure, good virtue, he just brings them out. But the evil man, out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil things. If you are not paying attention to the word, you can expect to bring forth word of God impacts and changes.
The different classes of faith:
From the bible (the old King James Version) we see Jesus class faith with 3 different adjectives:
1. Little Faith: In Matt 6:30, Matt 8: 26, Matt 16:8, Jesus called the people “O ye of little faith: In the English language, each time the word "little" is put before a verb e.g. "faith", "confidence" etc. it is a polite way of saying someone lacks something e.g. when you say "I have little confidence in your work", it is a polite way of saying "your work is usually so bad, it can't be trusted" so we use this word all the time to politely, yet strongly show our disapproval and our lack of confidence in the person. So when Jesus said to them, "Oh ye of little faith" he was just saying politely, but boldly "You guys just totally lack faith". It was not a good remark; it was a rebuke to the people. And each of those times, Jesus will proceed to begin to teach them about God and His goodness so that they can believe. In Matt 16: Jesus was having a discussion with his disciples and he told them “beware of the Pharisees’ leaven, and then the people thought he was talking about bread, because they had none, and Jesus rebuked them and then began to remind them of how they fed 5000 with 5 loaf and 2 fishes and had 12 baskets left over, and how they fed 3000 with some loaves and fishes and had 7 baskets left. He began to build their faith by reminding them of the good thing God did in the past and how God could repeat it if need be. Let me say by the way, one way to begin to grow your faith is to begin to count what God did in the past for you. If he saved you, he will provide for you. If he healed your daughter, he will heal you. If He gave you a job, he will protect you from being fired else he will provide you another. Praise God.
2. Small Faith: Jesus loved men with small faith and each time Jesus saw a guy that had small faith, he encouraged the guy. Remember his speech in Matt 17:20 "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain move, and it will be done. Again he said in Mark 4:30 paraphrased "To what shall we liken the kingdom of heaven i.e.( God’s way of doing things), it is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth: But when it is sown, it groweth up, and becometh greater than all herbs, and shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge under the shadow of it". I say it like this, "the seed (our small faith) looks inconsequential in earth of the situation, but when it is sown, it will grow up and become". Small faith looks so small compared to the situation before it, it looks as if, "what can this small faith I have do to this so big situation" e.g. The bible says the prayer of faith will completely salvage the situation” I believe it, but here I am and the situations looks so big, the issue looks so big, and my faith looks so small, but Jesus said, just sow it, start applying that word on the big issue, if you do, it will move that big issue and salvage it. It will grow up and become.
A. Small faith can move mountain: It has nothing to do with the size. Faith does not consider size. They all mean the same thing – Mountain and stone, Storm and wind, $1million and $100million, big problems and little problems, lameness or pain in the leg, they all mean the same thing as far as faith is concerned. The same faith is strong enough, if applied to completely salvage it. The prayer of faith will completely salvage it, no matter what it is and where it is coming from.
B. Small faith can grow up: Praise God. Every small faith may look inconsequential. You can say, “How can this one word change this big issue”, When you sow it, and release your faith by applying the word on the issue, soon it will so grow, and all you see is the word “The prayer of faith shall completely salvage the situation”. “Oh”, they may say “it is the third day and it is just a mess”, You reply, “the prayer of faith shall completely salvage the situation” it stops mattering what the issue was, the word becomes so big inside you, so big, the mountain begin to look insignificant. The word grows so big, it takes over and becomes. Jesus also explained this behavior of small faith in Matt 13: 33 when he talked about the small leaven that leavens the whole dough. “A woman” he said, “take a small leaven and hide in a three measure of meal, until the whole was leavened”.
C. Small faith can”become": As it grows up inside you, and you keep applying it, it will become healing, it will become money, it will become success, it will become a good life, it will become the anointing. Go ahead and sow it. Remember the story of Paul when he was preaching on his missionary trip, and a lam man was listening, and the bible says Paul perceived that he had faith to be healed, and it became healing. Praise God.
3. Great Faith: In Matt 15: 22 – 28, Jesus said to the Syrophenician woman “Great is thy faith". God celebrates great faith. Great faith can get any job done. Great faith is a product of small faith that was sown and has grown and become. If great faith is a product of small faith, then it means that you also can have great faith. Selah!
Memory verse: "Faith Comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" Romans 10: 17