Foundational Doctrines of Christ 2

Faith Toward God 

by Pastor John Hamel

JHM Home 

Live Table of Contents



Some Things the Bible Says about Faith

749 Instructions to Have Faith Toward God

God Is a Reputable Manufacturer

The Unfailing Law of Personal Faith

How to Develop Greater Faith Toward God  





"Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment." (Hebrews 6:1-2)


We have now come to lesson two in our Foundational Doctrines of Christ series.  In this lesson we will study "Faith Toward God."  


The Greek word for "toward" used by the Apostle Paul in the above Scripture is "epi." It means "to superimpose, to lay on top of something and to build upon."  The Apostle Paul is instructing us to superimpose our faith on God.  He is calling us to lay our faith on God and to build our faith in God and in God alone.


Nowhere in Scripture are we ever instructed to have faith in our faith.  Nor are we ever instructed to put faith in religious organizations and ideas, denominations, philosophies, theology or the textbooks of man.  True faith is personal faith in God through Jesus Christ. 


It is vital that every Christian develop faith in God by learning the Scriptures and having faith in the Scriptures.  It is impossible to walk with God and to have faith toward God apart from His precious Holy written Word.


Some people refuse to develop their own faith in God and His Word. They jump from Church to Church, Pastor to Pastor, person to person, gimmick to gimmick, looking for someone who has developed their faith and who can get their prayers answered for them.  I call these individuals "Piggyback Christians."


While other people's faith can indeed work for you temporarily while you are developing your own faith, if you plan on living that way, you are in for the surprise of your life. God will not permit this. God requires each of His children to develop faith toward Him and His Word for themselves.


"But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him." (Hebrews 11:6)


Refusing to develop faith in God's Word has resulted in modernistic, liberal-minded, unbelieving, doubt-peddling Preachers and Christians who deny the power of God for today.


Putting faith in things other than God's written Word always results in faithless Preachers and religious leaders who become satisfied living without all the wonderful things that God has plainly promised.  


Adam's fall in the Garden has left deep wounds of doubt and unbelief that only the written Word of God can heal.  We live in a world where we are surrounded by demonic principalities and powers, fallen angels, unbelief and wickedness that has dominated the Earth for 7,000 years. This, of course, deeply grieves the Spirit of God and is very displeasing to Him.


Therefore, in this study on the Doctrine of Faith Toward God, we're going to look into the Scriptures and discover how we can have the kind of faith that pleases God


Some Things the Bible Says about Faith


Many Bible scholars and theologians believe the Bible does not give an actual definition of faith.  This is a serious misconception. 


Let's look at another verse in which the Apostle Paul addressed the subject of "faith."


"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." (Hebrews 11:1)


The Greek word Paul used for "faith" in this verse is "pistos."  It means "to believe and to have confidence. To trust. Reliance."  


Here the Bible gives a clear definition of "faith."  Faith means to believe God keeps His Word. Faith means to have confidence in God's Word.  Faith means to trust in God's Word.  Faith means to build on God's Word with absolute reliance.


749 Instructions to Have Faith Toward God 


The word "faith" is found twice in the Old Testament and two hundred and forty-five times in the New Testament.  


The word "believe" is used forty-five times in the Old Testament and two hundred and sixty-eight times in the New Testament.  


The word "trust" is used one hundred and fifty-four times in the Old Testament and thirty-five times in the New Testament.  


By putting the pencil to the above equation we find that no less than seven hundred and forty-nine times in the Bible we are instructed to have faith in, believe in and to trust in God.  Even in the natural world a parent does not have to tell a child to do something seven hundred and forty-nine times before they get the message.  


God commands us to trust Him and to have faith in Him.  God commands us to go to the Bible and get His input before we make any decisions about anything at all.  God made us.  He lost us.  He redeemed us and now He owns us.  He has the right to insist that we first consult His Word and His Spirit before we make any of life's decisions.  


God Is a Reputable Manufacturer


God is a reputable manufacturer and a reputable manufacturer is always concerned with the good success of his product.  God is concerned with our good success, which is why He has told us seven hundred and forty-nine times in the Owner's Operating Manual that the first step to efficient operation is to trust Him.


Do you have sickness in your body?  God wants to change that for you.  Are you dealing with poverty and lack?  God wants to help you with that as well.  Maybe you need help with your marriage or on your job.  Possibly you are having difficulty with your family or at school. God wants you to trust Him to bring change in those areas as well.  It is never God's will for you to pray and go without answers.  


God is the Blesser, not the damner.  God is our solution in all things and He is never our problem.  


The greatest revelation in all of Scripture is found in the Gospel of John.


"The thief cometh not, but for to steal and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." (John 10:10)


In this verse of Scripture Jesus reveals that the thief, Satan, is the source of every human problem, not God.  


He also revealed that He, Jesus, and His Father and our Father, are the source of every problem's solution.  We like to say it this way, "If it's good it's God. If it's bad it's the devil."  


God is not refusing to answer our prayers.  There's nothing more that God wants to do for His children than to answer their prayers.  However, God's children must make application of their personal faith.  They must pray, fully expecting God to answer.


The Unfailing Law of Personal Faith


"And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing ye shall receive." (Matthew 21:22)


Here Jesus emphasizes the importance of not only praying, but believing God will answer our prayers.  We must have faith that He hears and that He answers.  


"Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe all things are possible to him that believeth." (Mark 9:23)


Here Jesus is addressing the father of a demon-oppressed boy who came to Him for help.  Jesus said, "If you believe" or "If you are willing to use your personal faith" all things will be possible to you. He was telling the man to have personal faith toward God.


"If ye abide in Me, and My Words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you." (John 15:7)


Here Jesus reveals the importance of abiding in the Word in order that we might discover what God has and has not agreed to do.  


He tells us that we may ask whatever we will, as long as it is based upon what God has agreed to do in the Bible. Then, and only then, will it be done for us.  


This is a major key to the successful operation of Christian faith.  We must study the Bible to find out where and how God has agreed to help us.  


Some Preachers have giant faith in the Word of God for salvation of the lost. This is because they are very acquainted with what God says about His will to save all who will come to Him. They can easily lead thousands to Christ because they know it is not God's will for anyone to perish. (2 Peter 3:9)  


However, because these same Preachers have never taken the time to find out about God's will to heal the sick and to prosper the lacking, they have no faith in these areas. Therefore, they speak against God's will in these areas and God is not able to bless them in these areas.


"Therefore I say unto you, what things soever ye desire, when ye pray believe that ye receive them and ye shall have them." (Mark 11:24)


Once again Jesus emphasizes the importance of the Christian making application of their own personal faith when it comes to answered prayer.  He said we must believe that we receive whatever we ask. We must believe by faith that He heard and that the answer will manifest. 


"But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord. A double-minded man is unstable in all of his ways." (James 1:6-8)


The Apostle James, Jesus' half-brother, learned something about faith having been around Him for approximately thirty years. James said whatever we ask of God, in this case he is referring to asking for wisdom, we must ask in faith without doubting. 


James specifically addressed the problem of double-mindedness, making it clear that double-mindedness results in unstable faith which is unable to receive answered prayer. 


Double-mindedness is a reference to believing God one minute and doubting Him the next. James is saying we must hold steady and have faith toward God and not entertain or speak forth thoughts of doubt and unbelief.


"This is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He heareth us: and if we know that He hear us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him." (1 John 5:14-15)


The Apostle John makes it perfectly clear, even as Jesus and James, that when we pray according to God's Word He hears us.  If we know He hears us as we pray according to His Word, we can know that He will grant us the petitions that we desire.  


God's written Word is God's revealed will.  When we pray according to the promises of His written Word, we are guaranteed answers.  But we must expect answers.  Otherwise, we hinder the answer.  


When we then try to blame God for our prayer failure, we say He's unfaithful and untrue to His Word. 


These Scriptures which we have just studied need no interpretation. They plainly promise that the Christian can have whatever they have faith for, as long as it is promised in the Bible.  


How to Develop Greater Faith Toward God


The following are some simple steps which will develop greater faith toward God for the Born Again child of God.


One: The first step to developing greater faith toward God is to read your Bible. Christians who read their Bibles a little have little faith.  Christians who read their Bible a lot have greater faith toward God.  This is a Bible principle.  


The Bible is unlike any other book in the world in that it is a living Book.  The Bible is unlike any other book in the world in that its Author is present whenever and wherever it is being read.  It is a supernatural Book in that when its words enter into the human spirit through the eye-gate and through the ear-gate, supernatural faith toward God comes.


"My son attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh. Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life." (Proverbs 4:20-22)


"So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God." (Romans 10:17)


Continual reading of the Scriptures not only increases ones faith toward God supernaturally, but it also helps the reader to understand what is and what is not the will of God.  We have no business praying when we have no idea what the Bible says God will or will not do.  We have no grounds for answered prayer if we do not know God's will by knowing God's Word.  


When we find Scripture where God has agreed to help us and stand on it, He will answer our prayer, as one Preacher once said, "If He has to slap Heaven and Earth together to do it."


Two: Never pray for more faith. 


Praying and asking God to give you more faith when He said we must go to His Word to get more faith is disobedience.  God will not violate His Word for any of His children, no matter who they are.  Faith does not come by praying.  Faith comes only by hearing, which actually means observing through the eye and the ear gates, the written Word of God.  


"So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God." (Romans 10:17)


When a Believer insists on praying for more faith and is too rebellious or lazy to get faith God's way, they are just going to have to go without answered prayer.  


However, the obedient Believer who goes to God's Word to acquire more faith will find themselves experiencing the joy of answered prayer time and time again.  


Three: Reject all preaching that denies God's power for today.  


The Apostle Paul said in the last days there would be many Preachers who would maintain a form of godliness, but deny His power.  


"Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." (2 Timothy 3:5)


What could be more clear?  Paul said anyone who denies the power of God in any generation is to be avoided like the plague.  Paul said, "From such turn away."  


It is just not possible to build faith toward God when one listens to Preachers who talk about what God does not do anymore.  Faith is stripped away where Preachers criticize and slander God's Word.  


Faith-killing, Spirit-quenching, truth-destroying, man-made traditions, clever sects, creeds, organizations and denominations that deny any of the Foundational Doctrines of Christ which we are studying in this series, must be avoided and renounced. 


Four: Listen to good solid faith preaching.


In order to develop faith toward God, it is important to lock into a Church where the only thing that comes out of the pulpit is obedience to God's Word, the integrity of God's Word, manna from Heaven, dividing the waters, fire from Heaven, raising the dead, healing the sick, defeating life's enemies, casting out unclean spirits, supernatural angelic assistance and prayer that brings results.  Remember, this is how faith toward God comes.


"So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God." (Romans 10:17)


Faith runs high when Preachers preach the triumphs of faith throughout the Bible. 


"Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come." (1 Corinthians 10:11)


The miracles of the Bible are recorded to inspire God's children towards faith in Him. Faith toward God builds when one makes a point of listening to Preachers who preach faith and not doubt and unbelief.


There are only two things Jesus marveled at in the Bible. He marveled at the faith of a believing Centurion. (Matthew 8:10)  He marveled at the unbelief of His townsfolk. (Mark 6:6) It is always wise to keep oneself in position to where Jesus is continually marveling at your faith.


Five: As faith begins to build, look for ways to release it.  


As faith toward God begins to rise in your heart by reading the Word and listening to faith preaching, look for ways to start using it to get the things you need from God.  God expects us to use our faith to have our needs met throughout our entire lives.


"For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith." (Romans 1:17)


Again the Apostle Paul makes the will of God perfectly clear - the just are to live by faith. 


In the natural realm, when we use our muscles they become strong and dynamic. When we neglect our muscles they become lifeless, they begin to atrophy and become useless.  


Faith is the same way.  When we use what little we have, we get stronger.  When we refuse to use faith at all, faith atrophies and could even die.  


In the physical world it is difficult at first to develop physical muscles.  It can even seem too hard, but when one starts with five pounds and is consistent, soon they are lifting twenty pounds, then forty and all the way up to one hundred and five pounds.  


This is how faith works.  Start using your faith to believe for extra gas money before trying it on bigger things. The more your faith is developed in this way, the more you will be able to have greater faith toward God for bigger things. 


Six: Walk in love.  If you are at odds with someone and there is something you can do to resolve that strife, you will want to take care of that immediately. 


"For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love." (Galatians 5:6)


Love is faith's empowering agent. When we do not have mountain-moving love it is impossible to have mountain-moving faith.  Strife and division are faith killers.


"For where envying and strife is there is confusion and every evil work ... and the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace." (James 3:16, 18)


Strife and bitterness are former luxuries that the Christian who desires answered prayer can no longer engage in.  Unforgiveness is like drinking poison yourself and expecting someone else to die.


"And when ye stand praying, forgive if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in Heaven may forgive you your trespasses." (Mark 11:25)  


It is not possible to harbor ill-will in one's heart and see answer to prayer.  Wherever possible, it is necessary that you go back and right your wrongs if you desire to conquer the problem of unanswered prayer.


"Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother has ought against thee; leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother and then come and offer thy gift." (Matthew 5:23-24)


God will simply not receive our praise or our petitions when we are at odds with someone and we rebelliously refuse to at least attempt reconciliation.  If, in attempting reconciliation with an offended party, we are not received, the problem ceases to be ours.  The ball is now in their court but God is free to answer our prayer because we did everything in our power to make peace even though we were not received.


In closing it is important to remember to always have faith toward God or "faith in God" and not faith in our own faith.  


Some people pride themselves in having more faith than others, comparing their big faith to another's little faith, and boasting of, "Look what my faith did for me." That is a lack of humility and it is a sure-fire way to block the spout where answered prayer comes out. 


Others build their faith and become so involved in selfishly using their faith to obtain material things, they forget all about the God of faith.  They forget about obedience to His Word and walking in love towards His family and towards the people of the world as much as it is possible.  


The secret of faith is having faith toward God.  


The secret of faith is not having faith in your faith, in your denomination, in the traditions of men or in Christian television gimmickry


The secret of faith is having faith toward God, and toward God alone.

Be Blessed ... John and Barbara Hamel



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