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Discipleship #9: Little Faith and How it Grows

Jesus continues His warnings and encouragements as he mentors His disciples  in Luke 12.  In verse 28 He addresses them as, “O ye of little faith”  and in verse 29 He refers to their doubtful minds. 

What is little faith?

How much faith does it take to board a plane?  The first time I boarded a jet airliner over thirty years ago,  my faith was very weak.  I was flying from Baltimore to Dallas. I knew in my head that it would probably be a safe, uneventful flight, but I was still nervous and pulled the seat belt tighter than I needed to and gripped the arm rests tightly as we took off.  I cannot say I enjoyed the flight. As we approached
Dallas we flew into a bad storm and the plane was battered some by heavy winds.  The flashing lightening did not add to my comfort.  But before long, we touched down safely in Dallas.   The flight was over and we had arrived safely.  

My faith was weak due to lack of personal experience  flying.  But in spite of my weak faith I arrived as safely as those around me who had total confidence in flying. That’s a picture of our salvation.  If you trust Christ for salvation, regardless of how weak your faith is, you will one day arrive in Heaven just as surely as  an old saint of God who has been a Christian for many years. 

You see, the thing that matters is not how much faith you have, but in whom your faith is resting.  If your faith is in Christ,  regardless of how weak your faith  is, you are saved.   The woman of Samaria, whose story we find in John 4,  had very little knowledge of Christ, but in spite of her little faith and her lack of knowledge,  she was saved and went throughout her town talking up Jesus and inviting others to come and meet Him. The bottom line is it takes very little faith in Christ to be saved.  What matters is that our faith is in CHRIST.  Thank God that those with little faith can be saved. However,  there are many people who have faith in Christ for salvation; but when it comes to trusting Christ for our present needs on earth, we find that our faith is indeed weak.   

Israel‘s faith

The Israelites had faith to follow Moses and be delivered from the bondage of  Egypt. They had faith to cross the  Red Sea on dry ground.  They were saved from Egyptian bondage as surely as we are saved when we trust Christ for salvation. The problem was that no sooner did they cross the Red Sea on their way to the Promised Land,  than they evidenced lack of faith. Exodus 14 tells of how when they saw Pharaoh’s armies advancing, their faith grew weak and they crumbled with fear chiding Moses that he should never have led them out of Egypt; that it would have been better to have died there.   They doubted God’s purpose in delivering them from Egypt. You remember the story of how Moses stretched his rod over the Red Sea and the dry path disappeared as  the waters returned to normal, drowning Pharaoh’s armies.  

No sooner did they get over that hurdle when in the very next chapter,  Exodus 15:23-24, we read of how they became thirsty. When they came to Marah, they found water, but it was bitter tasting.  So in their lack of faith, they complained again  to Moses as they doubted God’s provision. God showed Moses what to do and in no time at all the water was fresh and satisfying.  

Awhile later in Exodus 17:7  they came on further testings and doubted God’s presence. 

As Israel,  we so often tend to live under our circumstances.   We tend to moan and complain under our circumstances.  We fail to believe Romans 8:28 “that all things are working together for good”  for us.   We tend to doubt His promises and we fail to rejoice.  We fail to take the Bible seriously because we fail to spend much time in it.  We have enough faith to receive Christ as our Saviour, but that’s where our faith ends. Many Christians do not have the faith to trust Him as their Lord, or as their Good Shepherd See Psalm 23  or as their life. See Colossians 3:1-4   Because of lack of faith to live the Christian life, they remain immature babes in Christ and fail to move on to maturity.  In I Corinthians 3:1-3  we read about Christians who never move on to maturity. Why is it that we can trust Jesus for eternal life, but we lack the faith to trust Him to lead us and provide for us in this life? 

How can little faith be strengthened? 

  Stop looking at your weak faith and start looking to Jesus  who is faithful.  Hebrews 10:23   12:1-2 

 Spend more time reading and meditating on God’s Word.  Rom. 10:17  I Peter 2:1-3 Psalm 1  

Dwell on His love for you.  Romans 5:8-11  I John 4:19    Constantly be aware of His concern for you. I Peter 5:7  Understand that God has been and continues to be for you Romans 8:28-39 

Rest in His omnipotence.  Ephesians 1:15-23   II Corinthians 12:9-10  Isaiah 40:31 

As one who has been born again through faith in Christ, commit your life to Him. Psalm 37   II Timothy 1:12    Once you commit your life to Christ, you prove to yourself that God’s will is best.  Romans 12:1-2  Until you’ve made that commitment, you will never know that joy and assurance. Entrust your finances to God.  Obey Him and see how He blesses you.  Malachi 3:8-10,  Proverbs 3:9-10,  28:27  Luke 6:38  II Corinthians 9:7-8 

Welcome testings from our Heavenly Father. I Peter 1:3-8  Job 23:10 James 1:2-4

 You trusted Christ for Heaven.  Will you trust Him now for your earthly material needs?

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September 6, 2006 Posted by | Discipleship | Comments Off on Discipleship #9: Little Faith and How it Grows