1. Faith is a "spiritual substance" on the inside of you that can either grow or wane (decrease). The Bible says that:
"Faith is the SUBSTANCE of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1).
I believe that this verse is telling us that faith is literally a "spiritual substance" that operates on the inside of us and that it is capable of "growing or waning."
2. The Bible also tells us that we are all given a "measure" of faith in which to work with. The verse that tells us that is: "... God has dealt to each one a MEASURE OF FAITH ..." (Romans 12:3).
The best way to understand faith and how it operates on the inside of you is on a scale of 1-10. "10" being the most amount of faith you can have and "1" being the lowest amount of faith you can have.
Most people start out at the lower end of that range - in the 1-3 category. And that is just fine with God! One of the most amazing insights that I feel God has given me on this subject is the following:
I felt like this really came from the Holy Spirit. He said to me: "If the Bible says that faith the size of a mustard seed can move a mountain, what do you think faith the size of a golf ball could do? Or faith the size of a baseball? Or faith the size of a basketball?" This means that your faith is capable of growing or waning.
The mustard seed is supposed to be one of the smallest of all seeds. The above analogy tells us 2 things:
That your faith can "grow" with and in God over time - from a mustard seed size - to a golf ball size - to a baseball size - to a basketball size, etc. The verse that specifically tell us that our faith levels are capable of GROWING is:
"... because your FAITH GROWS EXCEEDINGLY." (2 Thessalonians 1:3) However, look closely at the above analogy. The Bible says that faith the size of a mustard seed can move mountains! That means we do not have to have faith up in the 5-8 category to get God to become active in our lives. All we need is a very small amount of faith to get the "show" going with God.
In other words, on a scale of 1-10, all you need is a "1" amount of faith to get God to start moving in your life - and just about everyone has at least a "1" amount of faith when they get saved. When you witness to others, explain this analogy to them. Explain to them that they do not need to have great or large amounts of faith to get God to become very active in their lives. God will take whatever amount of faith you have to start off with and He will start the building process with your life with just that small amount of faith!
How to Increase Your Faith
Now here is how faith is "built up" in the higher ranges over time. The Bible says:
"So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God." (Romans 10:17)
"Hearing" means that the Word is entering into your mind either through "reading" the Bible or "hearing" someone preach or teach about the Bible. Either way, the Word is entering into your mind where you receive it.
What the Bible is trying to tell you is if each person will spend some good, quality time trying to read and understand the Bible, then the low amount of faith that you have started out with will start to grow. Why?
Because your mind is receiving information and knowledge about God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit and all of Their ways. As you start to read all about God in the Bible and all of the miracles that He has done in the past with other people - your own levels of faith will start to grow and build up on the inside of you because you are actually starting to believe what you are reading. The Holy Spirit will also be bearing witness on the inside of you that what you are reading is real "God truth." The other catch on this is that I feel that it is really the Holy Spirit who will be the one to "build" up your faith on the inside and cause it to grow into the higher ranges. This is something He "magically" does for all of us. All of a sudden, your faith has just gone from a "1" to a "2."
Then a little further down the road, your faith will grow from a "2" to a "3" - and so on and so on. However, the Holy Spirit will not cause your faith to grow unless your are seeking after knowledge about God. And the Bible is the #1 source of knowledge that we have about God on this earth.
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