Quantity VS Quality Of Faith
Romans 12:3 (NKJV)
For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.
Further Study: Matthew 8:5-13 (NIV)
“Give me faith Oh Lord! Increase my faith!” Have you uttered such prayers? I have. I used to pray and ask God to increase my faith. I thought that with more faith, my belief in Him will grow deeper. I understood that faith is measured in terms of quantity, how much or little we have. But no! I’ve recently learnt that such understanding is not scriptural! God in His word from Romans 12:3 has clearly stated that God has given each one of us a measure of faith. Yes! You and I have a measure of faith, as the apostles and any great preachers or ministers have.
Since all of us have a measure of faith, why is it that Jesus uses different adjectives to describe the faith of His people? The answer lies in the quality of their faith. My Bible training instructor from Rhema@River, Reverend Jeff Weber, used rice to give an analogy of the different qualities of faith. As a Caucasian, he used to think that all rice is the same. But after residing long enough in Singapore, he has learnt that there are different grades of rice. Some rice is cheaper than the other. Furthermore, the taste and texture of the rice also differ according to its quality. Likewise, there are varying qualities of faith – little faith, weak faith, strong faith and great faith.
Our words, behavior and beliefs will affect the quality of our faith. Little faith refers to a low quality of faith. Worrying about the circumstances, fearing anything or anyone apart from God, doubting His words and using our own reasoning are the big four faith diminishing factors.
Weak faith occurs if we put our sight on the problem. The anonym of weak is strong.
Unlike weak faith, one with strong faith will keep praising and thanking God for the victory even before the answer comes. Psalms 106:1 teaches us to “Praise the LORD. Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; His love endures forever.“ Praises and thanksgiving keep our eyes on God.
Finally, great faith believes the spoken word of God and acts as it is so. In Matthew 8:5-13, Jesus described the Roman officer as one with great faith. The Roman officer believed in the power of Jesus’ spoken word and acted as if Jesus’ words had already taken place, even before he had seen it for himself. This Roman officer exercised his faith to help his servant move the mountain of physical suffering. His great faith has helped his servant to receive healing from Jesus.
Now that I’ve learnt these about faith, my prayer and my heart changed. No longer do I pray to God for more faith. Instead, I praise God and give thanks to Him even before the prayers are answered. I confess the word of God into the lives of others, believing and trusting that God brings the fulfillment of His promises in His due time.
What is the Holy Spirit speaking to you today about what you have learnt? Is it to stop worrying and start believing? Is it to keep your eyes on Him and not on the circumstances? Or is it to look beyond yourself, and use your faith to let others come to know and experience God? Listen to what He is saying. Act upon the change and exercise great faith from today onwards!
Join me in this prayer.
“Dear Heavenly Father, I thank You for helping me understand the different qualities of faith. When worry, fear, doubt or reasoning comes, I do not entertain those thoughts. Instead, I hold fast to the confession of my faith, that is in You. I keep praising and giving thanks to You. I commit to exercise my faith to let more people experience Your power and work in their lives, so that they may come to know You as their personal Lord and Savior. I pray all these in the most Powerful and Wonderful Name of Jesus, Amen.”