1 Corinthians 13:2
We have all heard it said that faith can move mountains, but how many of us have actually experienced this? What does it mean to have this kind of faith and how do we actually develop faith such as this?
What is faith? Hebrews 11:1 sums this up well, saying, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” This verse tells us that faith is the thing that reassures us that the things that we believe in but do not see are real. In other words, faith is a form of trust. It is a trust that extends beyond the five senses and the world that we experience around us at any present time.
How can we build up our faith? Paul makes it very clear in his letter to the Romans. In Romans 10:17, he says, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.” See, the Word of God doesn’t just contain ordinary words. The words in the Bible have power through the One who wrote them. Hebrews 4:11-12 says, “Therefore let us be diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall, through following the same example of disobedience. For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
So then, through the power which has been instilled in the word of God, we can develop faith. This happens through the revelation of God through the Scriptures. In the world of theology, the Bible is often labeled as “progressive revelation”. This means that as you read through the Bible, you learn more and more about God and His character. As the Bible is one large, true story, God chose to reveal more pieces of His nature as the story progressed. Thus, when we read the Bible, we begin to learn more and more about who He is and how He interacts with us and humanity as a whole, as well as with His creation.
As we learn more about who God is through interacting with Him in His word and in prayer, we begin to see His truth in the world around us. This whole process of discovery and relationship building creates faith that God is who He says He is. In fact, the best way to cultivate faith in God is to watch for Him to work in your life. As you begin to see what you’ve read in the Bible come to life in your surroundings, you will begin to develop a faith that can move mountains.
King James Version (KJV)
“And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.”
New International Version (NIV)
“If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.”
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
“And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.”
New American Bible (NASB)
“If I have the gift of prophecy and know all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.”
English Standard Version (ESV)
“And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.”
The Living Bible (TLB)
“If I had the gift of prophecy and knew all about what is going to happen in the future, knew everything about everything, but didn’t love others, what good would it do? Even if I had the gift of faith so that I could speak to a mountain and make it move, I would still be worth nothing at all without love.”