(Ver 1.2) This is Part 4 in a series of advanced Bible studies about the subject of Bible Faith. Today’s lesson will be a basic foundational definition to how to get Faith. There are many people in the world who claim to have faith and yet when pressed for a definition of what faith is to them, they cannot tell you. Then if you asked them how did you get this faith, again they cannot tell you. Therefore, we are going to explore the basic Bible subject of faith to help people understand what faith is and where faith comes from. Technically speaking you do not have to know how transmissions work, to drive a car and faith is the same way to some extent. You can drive a car by just automatically learning which gear to be in and press the gas and you are off and running. Salvation can be this way also. You do not have to know that it takes faith to use your faith to be saved, yet your faith is still the determining factor to whether you are saved or not. So we could liken your faith to be your spiritual transmission and God and His power and Grace to be the spiritual engine to the car. Without both of these two key components working flawlessly together in harmony, your spiritual car is not going to move. Hopefully you will understand this analogy better as we continue through this lesson. If you have not read this series of lessons from the beginning, I would recommend that you go back and read starting at “Part 1”.
In order to understand what faith is, let’s first find out how faith comes. If you did not know that faith comes then you did not read my first lessons very closely. In a previous lesson I described a verse found in Romans 12:3 that said that all Bible faith comes from God. This verse told us that God has dealt to every man (among you) faith. I explained that verse in that lesson, so I will not repeat the explanation here. Just read it and recognize that God has faith to give, so we as men and women must receive it. Also, in a previous lesson I taught that faith is measurable and quantifiable ranging anywhere from zero or none upwards to full of faith, the maximum that you can have. Remember that your faith can vary in that range of measurable numbers based upon something. Jesus would look at His disciples and rebuke them for having “no faith” and then for a few people that Jesus ran into, He would praise them for having “great faith”. Obviously there is a great deal of difference between those two ranges found on the faith value chart. We can conclude based upon the information that we learned in lesson 3 that faith comes in stages and can grow or increase up the chart to the highest levels. But, how do you get faith and how do you increase your faith that you already have. If you were a car, and your gas tank was empty you would simply go and fill it, does this simple concept also apply to faith? Can I go to the Faith station and fill my Faith tank? That is where we are at in the lesson today so let’s go to the Bible and see what God has to say to us.
Rom 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
God gives us a major revelation concerning faith in this verse of Romans. God ties the amount of faith that you possess to the amount of Words of God that you hear. Of course, it is much more complicated than that simple statement. If you could get faith by just hearing God’s Word, then you would just need to go buy the Bible on CD and play it all the time and you should have faith to move mountains left and right. Obviously it takes more than just hearing to get faith. But, hearing is where you faith lesson begins today to teach you about how to get more faith. Let me teach you the progressive steps to getting faith and then we will look at this in the scriptures to find if we can prove what I just said. Faith depends upon you doing the following steps and there are 4 possible reasons why faith does not come and only 1 instance where your faith actually grows. Read these 5 examples very carefully and see if you can see what God is teaching you:
Faith Comes by Hearing, but they:
- Don’t Listen or Refuse to Hear!
- Listen but don’t understand what is Said.
- Hear, Understand but don’t believe it.
- Hear, Understand, Believe and then don’t do it.
- Hear, Understand, Believe and then do it and finally they have faith that grows.
Wow, I do not know if you understood what I just said but it was good. These same concepts are how you learn things in school. You go to class, you either choose to hear your teacher or reject her words by closing your mind to them. Then you can hear her words, but not understand what was being taught. Right there is your opportunity to ask questions or remain ignorant. Next you can hear your teacher teach you about history and then not believe that it happened. Next, you hear your teacher teach you about algebra, understand it, believe it but just not do the work and you will fail that class. Finally, when you achieve to all of the first four requirements, hearing, understanding, believing and doing is when your faith will grow and increase and you can move to the next higher faith grade level. That was how faith works in a nutshell. It is the basis of how faith comes and how you put it to work for you. Let’s examine if we can find faith demonstrated to us in a Bible example that we are given and see if this is how it really works:
Mar 5:25 And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years,
Mar 5:26 And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse,
Mar 5:27 When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.
Mar 5:28 For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.
Mar 5:29 And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague.
Here is story of a woman who was diseased for 12 years. But, did you notice what the Bible says happened to this woman? I tried to underline some of the important parts for your careful consideration. It says in verse 27 that she had “heard” of Jesus. How does faith come? According to Romans 10:17 faith comes by hearing. So right there we know that this is the first requirement for having faith. She obviously heard something that gave her faith and it must have been the Word of God according to Romans 10:17. What did she hear? While we are not told what she heard directly, we can make an assumption based upon other scriptures that it had to be something from the Old Testament. Remember what Jesus did after being baptized by John? Jesus went into the synagogue one day and open the scroll of the prophet Isaiah and read from it “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me and He has anointed me” and then he continues to say “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing” (Luke 4:18-21). If you think that Jesus did this only one time, you would probably be making a wrong assumption. I personally believe that Jesus read this verse of Isaiah everywhere He went to build the people’s faith. So I believe that this woman with the issue of blood had heard what Jesus had said. Now right there she must have understood what was spoken and you clearly see that she believed it by what these verses in Mark 5 say that she does after hearing. Here is a woman that should not be out in public, but she has heard of Jesus and decides to get healed. She does not ask Jesus or anyone else if it is permissible to do anything; she simply presses through the crowds that were also touching Jesus, sneaks up on the back of Jesus and touches His garment surreptitiously. The Bible says that instantly she felt in her body the disease was gone. Immediately, Jesus felt power had flowed from Him and he turned to ask “Who touched me”. Wow, this is one of the best faith lessons in the Bible that I know of and it clearly demonstrates the principles that I have outlined. A woman hears about Jesus, understands what she heard, chooses to believe it and then acts upon her faith and goes and gets healed and Jesus did not know it was happening until after it happened.
Mar 5:31 And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me?
The disciples look at Jesus like He is crazy and say to Him, Master everyone is touching you. Here is a definitive clue to the difference between a physical touch and a spiritual touch. The crowd was touching Jesus physically, but this woman with faith touched Him spiritually and there is a major difference between those two realities. That is why I get some critics who write me and tell me how wrong I am and I get some people who have spiritual eyes to tell me “Wow that was good”. If I could make everyone see things the way God sees them, I would certainly do that, but I can’t and God won’t so we have what we have in the world today. Faith is a spiritual force and not a physical feeling.
Mar 5:33 But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth.
The woman was caught, but now that she is healed it is legal for her to be in public again, so she goes to Jesus and falls down before Him. She is obviously grateful and thankful and she tells him the truth.
Mar 5:34 And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.
Jesus confirms to everyone present and to us His readers that it was the woman’s faith that made her whole. You see if it was only up to God’s power, everyone would be falling down before Him thanking Him for their healing, but no one else present got healed. Jesus clearly tells us that it was her faith that was the determining factor for her healing. It was her faith that made her whole. The Greek word for “whole” is the word “sozo” and it means to “save” or to “deliver”. This is the word that is translated many times as “saved” or “salvation”. Faith as you can see was the cause for her salvation. People, who do not want to see this, claim that everything that happens to them is what God has caused to happen. If is funny that God does not say this in the Bible anywhere. Jesus could have told the woman with the issue of blood “Be of good cheer, my power has saved you”, but God does not say this. Are you able to see the truth? I pray that you do. So what does this story in Mark reveal to us that the woman did:
- She heard the truth.
- She understood the truth.
- She believed the truth.
- She acted on the truth.
- She was saved because of her faith.
That was faith in a nutshell again and it confirms what God taught you earlier. So did you hear it? Did you understand it? Do you believe it? What will you do with it? Faith comes by hearing and hearing comes by the Word of God. So if you want to increase your faith that is what you need to do. It technically means that you have to be an open and receptive type of vessel in order to hear. If you are not being open to the Word of God you will not hear it to begin with. So decide in your heart to be a vessel that is willing to change and then go and hear the word of God until you understand it. Next, if you believe what you have heard is the truth, then you are ready to take hold of the hem of His garment and receive the power of God for your answer. Your faith is the transmission that causes your spiritual car to accelerate and to go places. God’s Grace is the Motor that supplies the power to your spiritual car to change your location. You can keep your car in the garage and never use it to go anywhere in the world or you can do what Jesus taught “If you had faith as a grain of mustard seed, you would say…”. I hope that you enjoyed this basic Bible faith lesson and that you learned something that can be useful with your walk with God. Until next time, I will let you go and review this lesson and see if you truly understood it and then you can write me and tell me about how it worked for you. God Bless.
If you would like to continue reading in this series of lessons on faith, you can go to “Part 5“.