But, I challenge that theme. Yes, faith is important, but it's not as important as we hear many proclaim. It's not what Jesus focused on. So, let me declare clearly that it's not critical how much faith you have, but there is something more important....and here it is from Jesus,
Luke 17:5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!”
6 He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.
7 “Suppose one of you has a servant plowing or looking after the sheep. Will he say to the servant when he comes in from the field, ‘Come along now and sit down to eat’? 8 Won’t he rather say, ‘Prepare my supper, get yourself ready and wait on me while I eat and drink; after that you may eat and drink’? 9 Will he thank the servant because he did what he was told to do? 10 So you also, when you have done everything you were told to do, should say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty.’”
Did you catch it? Did you see how quickly Jesus dismissed the request for more faith. His reply was basically this- you don't really need more faith, that's not the critical thing, but let me show you what is....and then he begins a seemingly unrelated story about servants, but it's not unrelated, it's the key to the request by the disciples!
Jesus told them this- you don't need more faith, you have enough, you have all that's needed to live for me, but what's critical is obedience. When I tell you to do something will you do it? Obedience is the focus for Jesus, not more faith. So, how have we missed that in our day? It's because we don't want to talk about obedience. We want to do as we please and simply "believe God" and see the world changed.
Jesus is declaring to his 12, as they request more faith, that he's more interested in obedience. But what glamour would there be in "The word of obedience" movement? We seem to like the glitz and glamour of "The word of faith" teachings because we can "be like God". But did anyone notice that when God showed up here he came as a servant? He washed feet, loved the lost, touched the lepers, he "always did what his father asked".
Obedience is the key to a growing believer, not faith. How wonderful to be able to say, when we see him, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty.’
So which is it? Which is more important to God? Faith or obedience? Clearly the victory goes to obedience. It's the life Jesus modeled and it's the life he asks us to live. *
*Let me clarify, lest I be called a heretic- without faith it is impossible to please God. Faith is essential, but after we have believed what does he ask of us? And that is the theme of this post.