How can I increase my faith?
Beginning our journey of faith with God requires that we immerse ourselves in His Word (Titus 1:13-14). We must learn about His love, His justice, His mercy, and His plan. We must form a relationship with Him, so that we can know Him personally through His Son, Jesus Christ (John 17:3). We should ask Him to reveal Himself to us and change us. The Bible promises that if we seek God, we will find Him (Matthew 7:7). And if we allow Him to, He will transform us into new people who can know His will (Romans 12:2). We have to be willing to die to our old selves and let go of the pride and selfishness that kept us from Him for so long. As God changes us, we will learn to develop the fruit that comes from the Holy Spirit, who dwells in all Christians (Galatians 5:22-23; John 14:17). As we walk in the Spirit, allowing Him to control our lives, we will begin to trust in Him. “Let your roots grow down into him and draw up nourishment from him, so you will grow in faith, strong and vigorous in the truth you were taught. Let your lives overflow with thanksgiving for all he has done” (Colossians 2:7).If our trust in God is going to grow, we have to learn to step out in faith, moving out of our comfort zone and taking chances. If we believe that God will sustain us for that day, we can be free to carry out His will, regardless of the consequences. Whenever we face temptations, God will always provide a way out so that we will not be overcome (1 Corinthians 10:13). We need to look for that way out, and praise God when we find it. First Peter 1:7 says He will use trials to test our faith and to make us stronger Christians; we will be given much honor if we can stand strong and not waver. “Yet faith comes from listening to this message of good news – the Good News about Christ” (Romans 10:17)
Answer: All Christians want, or should want, to increase their faith. But those who have given their lives to Christ have come to realize that success does not come from our own human attempts; we always fail. First Corinthians 4:7 reminds us, “What makes you better than anyone else? What do you have that God hasn't given you? And if all you have is from God, why boast as though you have accomplished something on your own?” Without God, we are left to our own resources, which plague us with pride, stubbornness, indifference, insensitivity, and failure. The only one we can count on who absolutely will not fail us is God (Hebrews 13:5).
What does the Bible say about faith?
Question: "What does the Bible say about faith?"Answer: Hebrews 11:1 tells us that faith is “being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Perhaps no other component of the Christian life is more important than faith. We cannot purchase it, sell it or give it to our friends. So what is faith and what role does faith play in the Christian life? The dictionary defines faith as “belief in, devotion to, or trust in somebody or something, especially without logical proof.” It also defines faith as “belief in and devotion to God.” The Bible has much more to say about faith and how important it is. In fact, it is so important that without faith we have no place with God, and it is impossible to please Him (Hebrews 11:6). Faith is belief in the one, true God without actually seeing Him.Where does faith come from? Faith is not something we conjure up on our own, nor is it something we are born with, nor is faith a result of diligence in study or pursuit of the spiritual.Ephesians 2:8-9 makes it clear that faith is a gift from God, not because we deserve it, have earned it, or are worthy to have it. It is not from ourselves; it is from God. It is not obtained by our power or our free will. It is simply given to us by God, along with His grace and mercy, according to His holy plan and purpose, and because of that, He gets all the glory. Why have faith? God designed a way to distinguish between those who belong to Him and those who don’t, and it is called faith. Very simply, we need faith to please God. God tells us that it pleases Him that we believe in Him even though we cannot see Him. A key part of Hebrews 11:6 tells us that “He rewards those who earnestly seek him.” This is not to say that we have faith in God just to get something from Him. However, God loves to bless those who are obedient and faithful. We see a perfect example of this in Luke 7:50. Jesus is engaged in dialog with a sinful woman when He gives us a glimpse of why faith is so rewarding. “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” The woman believed in Jesus Christ by faith and He rewarded her for it. Finally, faith is what sustains us to the end, knowing by faith that we will be in heaven with God for all eternity. “Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls” (1 Peter 1:8-9). Examples of faith. Hebrews chapter 11 is known as the “faith chapter” because in it great deeds of faith are described. By faith Abel offered a pleasing sacrifice to the Lord (v. 4); by faith Noah prepared the ark in a time when rain was unknown (v. 7); by faith Abraham left his home and obeyed God’s command to go he knew not where, then willingly offered up his only son (vv. 8-10, 17); by faith Moses led the children of Israel out of Egypt (vv. 23-29); by faith Rahab received the spies of Israel and saved her life (v. 31). Many more heroes of the faith are mentioned “who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies” (vv. 33-34). Clearly, the existence of faith is demonstrated by action.Faith is the cornerstone of Christianity. Without demonstrating faith and trust in God we have no place with Him. We believe in God’s existence by faith. Most people have a vague, disjointed notion of who God is but lack the reverence necessary for His exalted position in their lives. These people lack the true faith needed to have an eternal relationship with the God who loves them. Faith can fail us at times, but because it is the gift of God, given to His children, He provides times of trial and testing in order to prove that our faith is real and to sharpen and strengthen it. This is why James tells us to consider it “pure joy” because the testing of our faith produces perseverance and matures us, providing the evidence that our faith is real (James 1:2-4).
What does it mean that Jesus is the author and perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:2)?
Question: "What does it mean that Jesus is the author and perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:2)?"Answer: Jesus is described as the author and perfecter, or finisher, of our faith in Hebrews 12:2. An author is an originator or creator, as of a theory or plan. The Greek word translated “author” inHebrews 12:2 can also mean captain, chief leader or prince. Acts 3:15 uses the same word: “And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses” (KJV), while the NIV and ESV use the word “author.” From this we can deduce that Christ is the originator of our faith in that He begins it, as well as the captain and prince or our faith. This indicates that Jesus controls our faith, steers it as a captain steers a ship, and presides over it and cares for it as a monarch presides over and cares for his people.The Greek word translated “perfecter” in this verse appears only this one time in the New Testament. It means literally “completer” or “finisher” and speaks of bringing something to its conclusion. Putting the two words together, we see that Jesus, as God, both creates and sustains our faith. We know that saving faith is a gift from God, not something we come up with on our own (Ephesians 2:8-9), and that gift comes from Christ, its creator. He is also the sustainer of our faith, meaning that true saving faith cannot be lost, taken away or given away. This is a source of great comfort to believers, especially in times of doubt and spiritual struggles. Christ has created our faith and He will watch over it, care for it, and sustain it. It is important for us to understand that God in Christ is not only the creator and sustainer of our saving faith, but He is also the sustainer of our daily walk and the finisher of our spiritual journey. For if God in Christ is not the author of our new life, and if Christ is not the finisher and perfecter of our faith through the Holy Spirit's indwelling power, then we are neither born again nor are we a true follower of Christ. “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” “In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory” (Philippians 1:6; Ephesians 1:13-14).