You’ve heard and read it time and time again:
Faith is the “…substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1).
And it’s true—that is exactly what faith is. But there’s a big difference between having the intellectual knowledge of what faith is and the spiritual knowledge of knowing what it is to have faith.
Did you get that? Read it again. Now do you get it?
It’s one thing to know the definition of the word faith, but it’s something bigger and better to experience faith.
It’s the difference between knowing Pike’s Peak exists and standing on top of it actually looking out at everything you can see from its position in God’s creation.
The remainder of this article is going to take you on a hike, so to speak, one that will enable you to experience faith from a position that puts you closer and more intimately connected with God. By looking directly into God’s Word, the Bible, you will gain an even deeper understanding of what faith is, as well as:
- Why faith is necessary in order to have a relationship with God
- When we should have faith
- What happens when we have faith
- How to have faith
- Where we have to go in order to get more faith
Are you ready? Then let’s get started…
“So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
Our initial leap of faith comes when we choose to accept the truth of God. But faith that God is real is just the beginning. Our faith grows and intensifies when we get to know him on a more personal level and that only happens when we spend time in the Word and in prayer.
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
You cannot please someone you do not know and you cannot know someone you don’t believe exists.
“By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days.”
We all have ‘walls of Jericho’ in our lives. Broken relationships, financial difficulties, health issues, emotional walls we’ve built to protect us from everyone and everything we are afraid of dealing with—these are our walls. But faith in the Almighty, Holy God will reduce these walls into a pile of rubble.
“So Jesus answered and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but also if you say to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ it will be done.”
Faith WITHOUT doubt allows us to do more than we can imagine. Why? Because when we have this type of faith we are completely and wholly submissive to God’s authority.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”
Faith, which is knowing that you are a sinner in need of salvation and that the only real salvation comes through Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection on the cross, and all that entails is the only way to spend eternity in heaven.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”
Read this article for an explanation of this verse.
“And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.”
Belief or faith of this kind doesn’t ask for cars, a big house, more money, or things like popularity and revenge. The faith that receives whatever it asks for asks for only those things that will bring them closer to God and those things that will benefit his kingdom here on earth. God always answers our prayers when what we pray for will bring us closer to Him.
“For with God nothing will be impossible.”
This verse doesn’t need any explanation: God is all-powerful, and nothing is impossible for Him.
1 Corinthians 2:5
“…that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.”
While we all need spiritual mentors and while learning from the teachings of preachers and those who are knowledgeable in the Word, NOTHING or NOBODY should take precedence over God and what he has to say.
2 Corinthians 5:7
“For we walk by faith, not by sight.”
Faith isn’t faith if you have to have physical, tangible proof.
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord.”
Faith, like everything other good thing we have comes from God. Ask God to give you faith…ask him to give you opportunities for your faith to grow and he will.
“And the apostles said to the Lord, ‘Increase our faith.'”
“The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.”
Faith is getting out of God’s way so he can do his job and work His will for your life in you.
“Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.'”
Faith is trusting and believing as a child does in those who love and care for them because that’s what we are—God’s children.
“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
2 Timothy 4:7
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”
Faith isn’t something you do. It’s who you are—a way of life.
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.”
Faith makes us bold and gives us the strength and courage to live and speak the truth of God to anyone and everyone we meet. Again, it goes back to faith being a way of life—not just something we do when it suits us.
“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”
1 Peter 3:15
“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.”
Faith gives us hope for an eternal future with God in heaven. Faith should also give us the will and desire to know God’s Word so that we can share it with others by actually speaking it, living it, and by sharing it with others.
“But someone will say, ‘You have faith, and I have works.’ Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble!”
You don’t buy a car to sit in your garage and take up space. You buy a car so you can use it for its intended purpose—transportation. The same holds true for faith. Unexpressed and unused faith isn’t faith. It’s belief, and like the scriptures tell us—even Satan and his demons believe.
“He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.”
Faith is about obedience—believing enough to do whatever is asked of you. Scripture tells us that Jesus is the way, truth, and life, and that no one can come to the Father except through him (John 14:6). Coming to the Father through Jesus means we have faith in Jesus enough to do whatever he commands of us in order to get there. (Matthew 28:18-20).
1 Timothy 6:12
“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”
A life of faith here on earth is rewarded by an eternity spent in the presence of the Almighty God and the Son, Jesus, who died to make it all possible.
2 Peter 1:5-9
“But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge,to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.”
That first seed of faith that is planted is just the beginning. Just like seeds turn into flowers and food when planted, cultivated, and fed, faith turns into all of these things when we are cultivated and fed by the Word and by our service and worship with our brothers and sisters in Christ.
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
“Now He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief.”
We cannot expect to see God, hear God, or feel his presence in our life if we don’t have faith that says it is possible and that it will happen.
“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?”
What more can a person ask for? If you believe Jesus died on the cross for your sins and mine, what can’t you believe God can and will do for you? Think about it!
“And behold, a leper came and worshiped Him, saying, ‘Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.'”
Notice he didn’t ask if Jesus He asked if Jesus would.
“And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.”
How the LORD will raise someone up or where he will raise them to, is not always on our agenda, but real faith knows that we (or our loved one) will be healed.
2 Corinthians 12:7-10
“And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Faith that knows God will take care of us, provide for us, and sustain us no matter what our physical condition or resources are is a faith that makes even the worst of times and circumstances bearable.
“Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown.”
Faith is the victory that overcomes this world and takes us to our reward in heaven.
1 John 5:4
“And this is the victory that has overcome the world – our faith.”