WHEREFORE neither thought I myself worthy to come unto thee: but say in a word, and my servant shall be healed. 8 For I also am a man set under authority, having under me soldiers, and I say unto one, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. 9 When Jesus heard these things, he marvelled at him, and turned him about, and said unto the people that followed him, I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. 10 And they that were sent, returning to the house, found the servant whole that had been sick.
What is Faith?
It is complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
A strong belief in God or the doctrines of a religion
What Does the Bible Say about Faith?
The Bible says that faith is confidence in what we hope for and the assurance that the Lord is working, even though we cannot see it. Faith knows that no matter the situation in our lives or someone else’s, the Lord is working in it.
The centurion in the passage had great faith in the ability of Jesus to heal his servant. He did not have any form of unbelief or doubt that it was impossible to do, even though his servant was not present where Jesus was. He believed that just the spoken Word of Christ would heal the man.
His type of faith was rare at the time and not a common way of life, especially with the Scribes and Pharisees antagonizing the preaching of Jesus, yet he showed great Faith.
Faith in Jesus Christ is not something that is concealed but is something that is revealed. It is always outwardly visible in the life of the person who truly has it.
Faith is like a switch. It is either on or off. And there are no dimmer switches with faith. You cannot believe 80% that there is a God. You either believe it, or you do not. If you are 99% sure, then you do not yet believe. You are not yet persuaded. You have not yet been convinced.
Faith can only come from a new heart, regenerated by God; therefore, faith is a gift from God. It is the unique way that God uses to bring salvation to his people. We strengthen our faith by reading the Bible and hearing the gospel. The more we immerse ourselves in truth, the more our confidence grows. Everyone who is saved has been gifted faith. It is the ability to believe God is whom He says He is, trusting Him in all things for all things. Faith also helps to combat unbelief and motivates us to do what God desires us to do. Not only do we grow our faith by reading Scripture and praying in our own time, but also by hearing the message in church with other believers.
What is the difference between great faith and little faith?
Great faith believes greater and more difficult truths than little faith. Great faith is fully convinced of the difficult promises and the hard-to-understand truths of Scripture. Little faith does not believe them. Little faith may believe the simple promises and the first-grade level truths, like “there is a God” and “Jesus gives eternal life to those who believe in him.”
Great faith has nothing to do with the size of your faith. Rather, it is about the difficult truths you do believe. This brings us back to the centurion and what he believed.
Jesus praised this centurion for having great faith. He says he has not found such great faith in all of Israel. This centurion believed something which very few believe. He believed something very difficult to believe. He believed one of the advanced truths which nobody else believed.
Examples of People in the Bible Who Had Faith and displayed it
Abraham had faith in God when he was called to sacrifice his only son as a burnt offering. He set out the next morning after God told him where to go. He had faith that God would provide.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had faith when they were thrown into the fiery furnace by King Nebuchadnezzar. They had no doubts that God would save them.
Esther had faith in going to the king unannounced and exposing Haman’s plan to kill the Jews.
Moses had faith when God asked him to lead the Israelite’s out of Egypt and across the red sea, away from everything they knew.
Faith speaks and acts. You cannot claim to have faith and not display it.
When we display our faith in God, Prayers get answered. From the examples above those who displayed faith in God, we also see their request and expectations met.
How to Grow in Faith
1. Ask God to increase your faith. If you are struggling in your faith, ask Him for more of it. He will be glad to bestow it through the Holy Spirit.
2. Focus on obeying God. No one is perfect, and we all make mistakes, but if you focus on following God’s Word and commands, your faith will grow naturally.
3. Spend time reading and hearing God’s Word. Spend time every day reading God’s Word and soak it into your heart and mind. If your lifestyle is busy, listen to a sermon or a Christian podcast. Putting His Word into your heart and soul will fortify your faith in the rough times.
4. Spend time with other believers. We are meant to worship together, pray together, and share our faith. Hearing about others’ journeys in faith can be encouraging. Also, study the Bible together, encouraging each other in godly disciplines.
5. Spend time in fervent prayer. Scheduling a specific time each day to spend with God in prayer makes a huge difference. This is your time alone with Him to discuss anything that is on your heart and mind. Be still and listen carefully, and your faith will grow in abundance.
We have promises in Scripture that Christ will make us more and more like Himself. He tells us that He will never leave us nor forsake us. He tells us that He will provide for all our needs. He tells us that He has given us everything we need for life and Godliness. He tells us that getting the Word of God into our lives will wash us and transform us into His likeness. His Word is sufficient.
This is the truth Jesus wants to pass on to his disciples. If you are His disciple, this is what He wants you to learn. Great faith in great promises leads to great results. If you want results, you first have to know the promises. You first have to understand God and how He works. You first have to know what He has said in His Word. Without knowledge and understanding of those things, you will never have great faith.
Romans 10:17 says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. Without hearing and understanding the Word of God, you will never have great faith. You will never even have little faith. And without faith, it is impossible to please God.