– J.C. Ryle
The Faith of a Mustard Seed
Jesus once told His audience, “For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you” (Matthew 17:20), meaning that no obstacle can ever overcome the faith we have in God’s ability to move mountains. We can move mountains, but we can only do it one rock at a time. Trust or faith in God unleashes God’s power, for He moves mountains. We simply have to take Him at His word to do it.
The Faith of Deliverance
When Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego stood at the door of the fiery furnace and faced annihilation by fire, they simply put their trust in God and showed their faith by their words, saying, “Our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace and He will deliver us out of thine hand, O king” (Daniel 3:17). This is not a “word of faith” belief but a faith in the Word.
The Faith of Reward
In Paul’s very last letter before he was beheaded, he wrote some very heartbreaking words: “At my first defense no one came to stand by me, but all deserted me” (2 Timothy 4:16). But the Lord stood by me and strengthened me, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. So I was rescued from the lion’s mouth. The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen” (2 Timothy 4:17-18). Paul had faith in God, so he could say, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7-8). Face life or death with faith–it’s more potent than anything we’ll ever encounter.
I once heard a preacher say, “Speak to your wallet, speak to your spouse, speak to your troubles, and be it according to your faith.” That same evening at a child’s home, he went up to his cookie chair and actually said, “Speak to your cookie jar. Be full of cookies; you’ve never been so full of cookies in all of your life.” It would be humorous if not for this misleading message of “speak it into existence” type of faith claim. God alone honors our faith, and it is He Who moves mountains. Our only part is to believe Him.