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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.

Exceedingly Growing Faith

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We are bound to thank God always for you brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth”—2Thessalonians 1:3


The word “exceedingly” is from the Greek word, ‘perissos’ meaning—Superabundant in quantity or superior in quality. And by implication, it means to be excessive.


In the context of our opening text above, exceedingly growing faith refers not to faith growing in superabundant quantity. But rather, it refers to faith growing or manifesting in excessive or superior quality.


The above conclusion is drawn from the biblical fact that every believer in Christ Jesus already has the superabundant quantity or measure of faith given to him or her at salvation…


When someone accepts Jesus as his Lord and personal saviour, he receives the same quantity or measure of faith as every other believer before him (see Romans 12:3).


So in the context of the opening text, when the Apostle Paul talks of exceedingly growing faith, he is not referring to growth in terms of increase in size or quantity…


 Because every believer already have the mountain moving size or quantity of faith, deposited in him at salvation. Even though many believers have not yet realized this scriptural truth.


When the Apostle Paul refers to exceedingly growing faith in the lives of the Thessalonian believers, he was referring to the super abounding or excessive manifestation of their God given faith at salvation…


Because it’s not every believer with the super abounding quantity of faith, that actually have their faith growing (manifesting) exceedingly.


For so many believers, their faith manifests so very little. While for some others, their faith grows or manifests normally. Then for some other Christians their faith grows or manifests exceedingly.


Now let’s take a practical analogy to better understand this scriptural concept of exceedingly growing faith…


Now I can have an electric bulb of a particular Watt power. This bulb has all the capacity to produce as much light as any other bulb of the same wattage. But yet it could be producing lesser illumination than it is supposed to…


Then at some other time, the same bulb could also be producing normal light that it is supposed to produce. While at some other time, the same bulb can also produce excessive illumination. All these variations in the quality of light produced by this electric bulb can easily be traced to the voltage of electric current it receives per time.


Exceedingly growing faith can also be likened to the electric bulb example above. Every believer in Christ Jesus has the mounting moving faith given to him at salvation…


Yet some believers can only move little pieces of stones with their faith (little growing faith). While some other group of believers can also with the same measure of faith move big rocks (normally growing faith). Then some other group of believers can as well engage the same measure of faith to move mountains…


 The believers that can engage their measure of faith to move mountains or great mountains can be referred to as having exceedingly growing or manifesting faith.


But however, unlike the electric bulb with excessive illumination or light, which can be traced to only the voltage rate, exceedingly growing faith is a function of a number of scriptural keys. These keys to exceedingly growing faith will be discussed in another post.


In this article, we’ll be exploring the features that make up or constitute exceedingly growing faith. We want to study and understand the attributes or attitudes of a believer who is said to be having exceedingly growing faith. So we may engage our faith to receive such attributes as well…


Why? Because such attributes are commendable godly attributes as we can understand from the opening text.


The Features of Exceedingly Growing Faith


A believer with an exceedingly growing faith is not the one that doesn’t face any hard time or difficulty in life or his spiritual walk. But rather, he can be recognised by how he handles hard times or adversity that comes his way per time.


Here is exactly what the Apostle Paul says concerning the believers with exceedingly growing faith:


“We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth; so that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure”—2 Thessalonians 1:3-4


From the above scripture, it is clear that we can recognise a believer with an exceedingly growing faith, by his patience and faith amidst persecutions and tribulations.


A believer with an exceedingly growing faith is not identified by how many scripture he quotes, or how much faith he professes when everything is going well or rosy. He is not identified by how much zeal or excitement he displays when everyone is in harmony with him.


 But rather, he is recognised by his affirmation, profession, attitude, patience, perseverance, tolerance and confidence or assurance in God amidst strong oppositions or afflictions.


Many Christians can believe a number of truth from scriptures, and profess them with all fervour, but when they face some serious persecution or adversity, they waiver in their profession, and eventually give up on the faith they have zealously professed amongst so many witnesses.


Then in the extreme cases, some even give up completely on God and become renegades or agnostic.


Scripturally, attitudes of the woman with the dead baby (with Elisha), Daniel, the three Hebrew boys and Jesus in the face of death, are good instances of exceedingly growing faith.


Remain Blessed!


Emeke Odili.


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