The earth has more faith than most people. Now, before you rush off in a huff, thinking I’m some Gaia-worshipping fanatic, hear me out.
When God sends rain or some other precipitation on the earth, does the soil have to work up some sort of justification for receiving it? Of course not. Do the seeds in the ground have to have some prophecy spoken over them or hear some Scripture before they accept the gift of sunlight from heaven? Whoever heard of such a thing? Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God (Hebrews 6:7, NIV).
Humans, on the other hand, are so limited in their faith. This was one of Christ’s most frequent complaints during His ministry on the earth. I count at least thirteen times in the Gospels that He said, “O ye of little faith,” either to His disciples or His audience in general.
Faith is the mechanism by which we take hold of that which our heavenly Father wants to give or do or say in, to and through us. It is the affirmation in our hearts that tells us, “This is yours, receive it!” Without it, we stand back feeling weak, timid and deprived, when God has promised abundance for His children.
Scripture has loads to say about faith. Here is a small sampling:
- Just a little faith can move great obstacles (Matthew 17:20, Luke 17:6).
- Faith to receive healing comes from Jesus (Acts 3:16).
- Faith requires obedience (Act 6:7, Romans 1:5 & 16:26).
- Righteous people live by faith (Romans 1:17, Galatians 3:11 & Hebrews 10:38, quoting Habakkuk 2:4).
- Faith in Christ, not adherence to a set of rules, saves us (Romans 3:26-28, Galatians 2:16).
- Faith comes by hearing the word of God (Romans 10:17).
- Whatever is not motivated by faith is sin (Romans 14:23).
- Faith is a better guide than human vision (2 Corinthians 5:7).
- Faith to receive salvation is a gift from God; without it, people can’t accept the Gospel (Ephesians 2:8, Hebrews 4:2).
- Faith helps us access the wisdom of God (Ephesians 3:8-12, James 1:5-8).
- Faith protects us from and helps us to resist evil (Ephesians 6:16, 1 Thessalonians 5:8, 1 Peter 5:9, 1 John 5:4).
- Faith grows (2 Thessalonians 1:3).
- Faith can be abandoned or pursued (1 Timothy 4:1, 5:8 & 12, 6:10-11 & 21; 2 Timothy 2:18 & 22).
- Faith does not require tangible evidence (Hebrews 11:1-3).
- It is impossible to please God without faith (Hebrews 11:6).
- Jesus is the source of faith—initiating and completing it (Hebrews 12:2).
- True faith expresses itself by doing good works (James 2:14-26).
It was no coincidence that Jesus compared faith to a mustard seed. According to Scripture, He plants this seed and makes it grow. As we see in Isaiah 55:10-11, God’s Word is like the rain that makes crops grow. As we spend time reading the Bible, especially if we read it aloud, it begins to sink in and make a difference in our lives. We are filled with God’s grace and wisdom and emboldened to take hold of all He desires to give us. As He supplies everything we need to do the good works He has planned for us (2 Corinthians 8:9 & Ephesians 2:10), we bring greater glory to Him and increase both our faith and that of others.
My prayer for you, as for myself, is that God will increase your faith in proportion to what He wants to do in, to and through you. May you “take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of [you]” (Philippians 3:12, NIV), so that He gets maximum glory through your faith-filled life.