Faith Comes By Hearing the Word of God—Romans 10:17
"Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ" (Romans 10:17)
We all have faith in something, but what our faith is in depends on what or who we're listening to. If we listen to the world then chances are we have faith in the world's system. We will let it dictate our thoughts, our actions and even our bodies. However, if we depend on the word of God and what he has spoken to determine our present reality then we operate in an entirely different realm, the realm of victorious faith.
Hebrews 11:6 says, "without faith it is impossible to please God..." so on this basis we can deduct that faith is what pleases God. The verse goes on to say, "because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him ( Hebrews 11:6 ). Believing in Jesus takes faith. In today's passage Paul tells us that faith comes through hearing the Word of God. Paul is talking about saving faith. The message of Christ is the only thing that can produces this type of faith. We must hear it, receive it, believe it and lastly confess it. This is "the word of faith we are proclaiming: if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved ( Romans 10:8, Romans 10:9 ). This marvelous miracle happens when you humbly receive the word of God planted in you that has the power to save you ( James 1:21 ).
The Word of God is a faith builder. The more you hear it, the more encouraged in your faith you become. The word of God is likened unto a seed that is sown into our hearts. If we receive and cultivate the soil in which it is planted, the seed will yield proportionally to what was sown ( Matthew 13:23, Mark 4:14-20, Luke 8:11-15 ). This is the law of harvest, what is reaped is not a 1:1 ratio of seed to fruit. One seed will bear much fruit if the conditions are right. And the fruit will contain more seed regenerating itself. In the same way, the word of God planted in your heart will bring its abundance into your life proportionally to what has been sown. And the fruit of these blessings will regenerate into the lives of others.
Planting the word of God into your heart is so important. Peter said, "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires" ( II Peter 1:3-4 ). Through Christ we have great and precious promises but these come through the knowledge of him who has called us. If we don't know what these promises are then we will never escape the corruption in the world. Paul told Timothy, "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work" ( II Timothy 3:16-17 ). The word of God equips us for this life. It is the breath of God and it is everything we need to live. Jesus said, the words I speak to you are life ( John 6:63 ). Above all else, we need the word of God planted in our hearts otherwise we will not grow in faith, because faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God ( Romans 10:17 ).
Are you listening to the world as your basis for living? Or, are you listening to God? Faith comes by hearing and if you are only hearing the negativity of the news then that's the faith you will have. If you're only taking in the chaos on the television, set then you will have disorder in your life. The seed determines the crop not the soil. If you don't like what's growing in your garden, then plant something else. "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control" ( Galatians 5:22-23 ). These fruits come by planting the word of God in your heart and letting it grow.
Reading the Bible and hearing the Word is a wonderful adventure. It is my prayer that you take these seeds of life and starting planting them. Meditate on today's verse until God makes it alive in your heart. When you do you will see your crops grow, first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head then you will know that the harvest has come ( Mark 4:28-29 ). May you be blessed in abundance, amen!