Summary: ...the Lord desires for us to respond, to do something, with the faith that He gives to us.
How to Develop Faith.
In the recent weeks, we have been asking the Lord to “INCREASE OUR FAITH”. This is in accordance to what the apostles had asked of Jesus in Luke 17:5. I would suggest this is a very simple request, but it is certainly one of the most important things we could ever ask of the Lord.
Truly it is (only) the Lord that makes the difference in how much faith we have. Likewise the Lord desires for us to respond, to do something, with the faith that He gives to us.
You have heard of being a “couch potato”, I am sure. Perhaps you have even been compared with a “couch potato” from time to time. Well (over the years) I have seen those who could pass for a “pew potato”.
What that means is - we choose to do nothing with the faith that the Lord has increased in our lives.
We have looked at several passages on how the Lord can and will increase our faith. Well, let’s take this to the next step. This morning I want to give to you several specific things that can help you to develop and mature the faith that you now have.
Text: Romans 10:17
Before we get started, let me take you back to the 17th century, when world travel and world business involved using large sailing ships. These ships would sail virtually all over the world. Many of them sailed from places like Great Britain. It is estimated that over 1,000,000 people traveled across the Atlantic Ocean in that century. Over 1,000,000 people left their loved ones behind as they faced the great adventure of traveling to the Americas. They all waved good bye and promised to return. Unfortunately, over 700,000 of them perished at sea. Your first thought may be that these 700,000 died in the fierce storms on the high seas. No, they perished due to Scurvy. Scurvy is a deficiency of Vitamin “C”. Oh, there was plenty of food on board and there was always plenty of fish to eat, but there was no way of getting Vitamin “C”. Dieing from Scurvy is not a very pleasant experience, and I will spare you the details. But there was one man, by the name of Captain Cook that solved the problem. Sauerkraut. It contains cabbage (loaded with Vitamin “C”) and could easily be preserved with in large drums of a salt solution. It would last forever. It never went bad. It was always fresh. But the only problem with this was that the English people hated the taste of sauerkraut. They refused to eat it. No matter what the captain of the ship told them, they refused and perished. Over 700,000 people died at sea all because they refused to eat sauerkraut.
This is the same problem with many people when it comes to the Word of
God. They don’t want to die and go to hell, but they just can’t seem to create a taste for God’s Word.
No matter what anyone tells them, they refuse to read or listen to the Word of God. Most people know the Word of God is all they have to save them.
Friend, let me give you some very sound advice from the Captain of the Ship you are on. Our Captain, Jesus, says that you will not survive without the Holy Word of God.
So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
That brings me to the first thing I recommend you do if you want to HOW TO DEVELOP YOUR FAITH.
1. Listen to the Word of God every chance you get. Constant attention and listening to the Word of God produces faith. We must receive the Word of God with an open heart and mind.
My son, give attention to my words… Do not let them depart from your eyes; keep them in the midst of your heart;
The book of Proverbs encourages us to constantly keep the Word in our hearts and to keep our attention on it.
What we listen to affects what we believe. If we listen to the TV more than we listen to the Word, we will believe the lies of the world more than we will believe what God says. When we constantly listen to the lies of this world, we will only learn and grow in the devil’s deception.
Eventually the mind will accept something if that thing is heard often enough and persuasively enough. That is why we should keep hearing the Word of God, through -
· Christian tapes,
· Confession of the Word,
This will cause us eventually to believe the truth planted within our hearts.
2. Realize that every believer has been given a measure of faith by God. This is according to Romans 12:3). God will often increase your faith by being near other believers. Many Christians would grow in their faith by simply spending more time with other Christians.