Dr. Stanley tells us that everyone has some form of faith, and that it affects the way we live. A non-believer’s faith is self-directed while a believer’s faith is God-directed. Dr. Stanley explains how we can progress to a level of great faith so our Christian life will take on a stronger, more exciting purpose. For more messages from Charles Stanley, including this week’s broadcast, go to intouch.org/tv.

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in touch with Dr Charles Stanley

reaching the world with the Gospel of

Jesus Christ through sound Biblical

teaching next on InTouch levels of faith

in the life of the believer

when You Face difficulties and trials

and hardships in life how do you respond

you respond with doubt and fear and

anxiety and fretting or do you respond

by faith

and if you respond by faith what level

of Faith you say what do you mean by

what level of Faith that’s right what

level of faith

you say well how do you know what these

levels are we’re going to talk about it

how do you distinguish one from the

other what does it mean in my life how

does it affect my life speaking of

levels of Faith well we all operate on

one of three levels of faith and the

longer you live certainly the more faith

you and I ought to have and the higher

up these levels we ought to go in our

faith but some people will stay all of

their lives on the lowest level because

number one maybe they don’t even know

that there are levels of faith and


too afraid to launch out to too fearful

to trust God and so what happens is you

go through life and you miss his best

because you never grow in your faith and

that’s what I want to talk about in this

message and that is the levels of faith

in the life of the believer and it’s

very evident in Scripture that faith is

very very important in the eyes of God

and he sees Faith as very important in

our life and so what we want to talk

about in this message is this

how to raise your faith level

how to get in a position where you and

your relationship to God and the way you

trust him will position you listen to be

able to be blessed to the maximum of

your potential because

the way you trust him determines the way

the blessings come you don’t trust him

you don’t get blessed you trust him you

get blessed and the more you trust him

and the way that you’re able to walk in

these levels of Faith the greater the

blessings are coming your way think

about how absolutely essential and

important faith is and let’s think about

it in this life if you look at the life

of Jesus look at his ministry here’s

what you discover you discover that the

theme of Faith permeated the whole

Ministry of Jesus no matter what and I

want to give you a few verses of

scripture and I won’t have you turn to

all of these because I have enough of

you to turn to but I want you to think

about some of these verses for example

you find in the scriptures concerning

his Healing Ministry listen to what he

is continuously saying when he’s

confronting people whether they’re

paralyzed or they’re blind or or

whatever the situation may be listen for


in Matthew 9 he says to this lady

daughter your faith has made you well

then in Matthew 15 oh woman your faith

is great be it done unto you as you wish

in the fifth second chapter of Mark when

these fellas are

tearing up the roof of this man’s house

and letting their friend down by ropes

so that he can finally get to Jesus and

be healed Jesus said to him seeing their

faith my son your sins are forgiven

then he says in Mark 10 to Bartimaeus

the blind beggar go your way your faith

has made you whole and again he says

your faith has saved you receive your

sights your faith has made you well be

it done unto you according to your faith

all through the gospels Matthew Mark and

Luke especially what you find is Jesus

that theme of his relationship to these

people this needy people who have a

health problem whatever it might be it’s

always listen based on their Faith

remember he said on occasion he couldn’t

do any miracles in a particular place

because of their unbelief they didn’t

have any faith they wouldn’t trust him

and oftentimes you and I miss out on

God’s best blessings because we won’t

trust them we don’t believe that he

loves us we don’t believe that he will

provide our needs we don’t believe that

he’ll heal us we don’t believe that he

cares that much for us but if you look

at his ministry what was he continually

saying it was listen it was trust him

faith faith faith faith faith so if

that’s true in his ministry and his day

if it was so important that he magnified

the subject of Faith nothing’s changed

because you see in our lifestyle In Our

Lifetime and the culture in which we

live it makes no difference what

generation of what culture Faith

permeates every aspect of our life so

either we will live on this lower level

of Faith or we’ll graduate and we’ll

listen we’ll grow in our faith in our

understanding and what will happen is

your life’s going to change once you

move from level one and you begin to

operate on level two and on level three

your life’s going to change what are

these levels of Faith how do we

distinguish between them what does God

say about them that’s what I want us to

consider primarily so I want to give you

listen I want to give you a level then

I’m going to give you a word so you can

remember it and the first level listen

the first level in scripture of faith is

little faith little faith and I want you

to remember this little faith is

Restless faith little faith is wrestling

little faith for example is saying I

know he can but I’m not sure he will

little faith is struggling struggling


it’s a whole new perspective on on the

way we live

you remember what James said he that

waivers like like The Winds of the sea

blowing hither and yawn tossed to and

fro he says don’t let that person think

they’re going to receive anything from

God because God does not honor that kind

of Faith does this mean watch this

carefully does this mean that God will

never answer your prayers unless you

reach the third level of Faith no it

doesn’t mean that it means that your

lifestyle is going to change it means

it’s a relationship it means it’s your

request that it means that you’re you’re

fretting and your anxiety and your

questions and your doubts are going to

disappear and God’s going to do

something absolutely fantastic in your

life why because he wants the best for

you he doesn’t want us living on this

particular level but this is this is

level one

and I want you to listen carefully the

reason people stay on level one

wrestling faith that is struggling faith

laboring faith is because their focus is

on the circumstances and their focus is

on themselves their resources what they

think they can do and when you listen

when your focused

is on your circumstances and your focus

is on yourself your focus is on your

resources you’re not going to be able to

believe God for much it’s just not going

to happen because all of us have limited

resources whether it’s abilities and

talents and skills or finances and so as

long as you’re as long as you’re asking

and your belief system you’re on level

one it is the level of struggle

uncertainty doubts laboring and what

happens you’re going to find that what

you’re really looking for in life is

always seems to be a little bit beyond

you so what you have to realize is this

you have to ask yourself the question

where’s my focus

listen to this carefully God doesn’t

want you living on the level of little

faith struggling laboring wrestling over

at all will he maybe he will maybe he

won’t now here is a perfect example of

that and um

because if you look in the scriptures

they’re all kind of examples of how

Jesus operating people’s lives but look

if you will in Mark chapter 9 for a

moment here’s a perfect example of of

how this happens

thank you

you recall that In this passage for


that um

verse 20.

they brought the boy to him when he saw

him immediately that the spirit

threw him into a convulsion and falling

to the ground he began rolling around

and foaming at the mouth

and he asked his father

how long has this been happening to him

and he said from childhood now watch

these next couple of verses it’s been

happening all of his life

it has often thrown him both Into the

Fire and into the water to destroy him

watch this but if you can as a father

speaking but if you can do anything take

pity on us and help us and listen to

Jesus response

and Jesus said to him if you can all

things are possible to him who believe

this is not what Jesus said listen to

the tone of my voice

if you can all things are possible in

that’s not what he said he said if you

if you can help us have opinions and

Jesus said what do you mean if you can

all things are possible to him who

believes and immediately the boy’s

father cried out and said I do believe

help mine believe perfect example of

what kind of faith

come on wake up what kind of faith

little faith and little faith is what

kind of faith

wrestling Faith struggling faith

laboring faith he said Lord I do believe

help my unbelief now all of us have been

there at some point in time or the other

and this is not to say that you will

never hit a circumstance at which you

won’t maybe feel that there are

situations and circumstances that try

our faith and God understands that but

he doesn’t want us staying there we may

hit one of those but he wants us to do

what to move from Level number one of

struggling wrestling laboring Faith to

level number two and that is a perfect

example of being there immediately the

boy’s father cried out and said I do

believe help my unbelief what was he

saying he was simply saying you know I’m

believing you but I’m having a hard time

at it I’m struggling and God honored

that now watch this carefully so I want

to say again that does not mean that God

won’t answer your prayer when you are in

level number one struggling because he

understands why you’re there now the

truth is if you stay there then you

don’t expect God’s best that’s not where

that’s not where he wants you he wants

you moving up

which brings us listen to level number

two so think about this level number two

we’ve moved from little faith now to

great faith great faith is reaching

Faith great faith is not willing to stay

on level one

listen great faith is not willing to

state in that way you labor and wrestle

and you doubt and you fear and you’re

full of anxiety great faith is willing

to reach out it’s reaching Faith

reaching Faith now you say well what’s

reaching Faith well this is Faith

maturing faith is beginning to mature

now Faith now is listen beginning to

stand on the truth of God’s word

great faith is willing to believe what

God said because that’s what he said it

doesn’t need to prove if that’s what God

Said then he believes that God will do

it and this Faith listen is focused on

God not on the circumstances great faith

is focused on God not the circumstances

which means whenever you’re in a

situation or circumstance whatever it

might be your focus can’t be on the

circumstance how big it is how long it’s

been how bad it is how deep it is uh how

wrong it is that’s not the issue the

issues who is this God with whom I’m

dealing this God Is Bigger Than all my

circumstances this God has the power to

listen this God has the power to change

any circumstance in my life no matter

what it is great faith is Faith it’s

what it’s beginning to reach out now

let’s look at let’s look at a few

scriptures here because if you think

about this whole issue of great faith

where does he talk about great faith so

let’s go back to Matthew chapter eight

for a moment Matthew chapter 8 and let’s

look at a few verses here

eighth chapter of Matthew

and um

let’s look if you will

at this fifth verse the Centurion and

when Jesus ended capernauma Centurion

came to him imploring him and saying

Lord my servant is lying paralyzed at

home fearfully tormented Jesus said to

him I’ll come and heal him man that’s a

fantastic response I’ll come in healing

but the Centurion said Lord I’m not

worthy of you to come unto my roof but

just say the word and my servant will be

healed can you say that Lord Jesus just

say the word just give me a verse of

scripture just speak to my heart just

make it just say the word my sermon be

healed for I also my man under Authority

with soldiers unto me and I say to this

one go and he goes and to another come

and he comes into my slave do this and

he does it now when Jesus heard this he

marveled and said to those who were

following truly I say to you I have not

found such great faith

with anyone in this world he was saying

you know he’s Gentiles have more faith

than you Israelites and your sons and

daughters of Abraham

so he says I’m not seeing such great

faith turn to the 15th chapter of

Matthew and look if you will

and um

this um let’s go back a few verses here

this is the sirophenician woman let’s

look if you will in uh verse 22 and a

Canaanite woman from that region came

and began to cry out saying have mercy

on me Lord son of David my daughter is

cruelly demon-possessed but he did not

answer her a word and his disciples came

and implored him saying send her away

she keeps shouting at us

but he answered and said I was and only

the lost sheep of the House of Israel

but she came and began to bow down

before him saying Lord help me the Anson

said it’s not good to take the

children’s bread and throw it to the

dogs now that’s a pretty strong

statement because he was saying you know

I’ve come for my own people the Jews

testing her look at this but she said

yes Lord but even the dogs feed on the

crumbs which fall from the master’s

table then Jesus said to her o woman

your faith is great it shall be done for

you as you wish and our daughter was

healed at once you know why she didn’t

give up great faith doesn’t give up

great faith today does not listen to

people’s unwise counsel and Jesus was

testing her and so oftentimes we’re

going to get tested and what happens

either we listen to other people or we

go by our feelings or we go by our

reason or we go by sight God wants us to

go by his word great faith doesn’t give

up great great faith hangs in there no

matter what and great faith gets the

answer level two is christ-centered

level two is God oriented level two does

not focus on circumstances you said you

said that about five times right you

know why because that’s what the devil

wants to do get you focused on your

circumstances rather than on God level

number three

level number three is perfect faith

level three is resting faith not

struggling and laboring not reaching

resting Faith perfect faith says

it’s a done deal

we say that sounds rather presumptuous

no it’s not I want you to turn if you

will back to mark

chapter 11.

Mark chapter 11.

What’s Happening Here is that Jesus

cursed his fig tree and the next day

they came by and the disciples were

absolutely amazed and uh verse 20 says

and they were passionate by in the

morning and they saw the fig tree with

with it from The Roots up

and being reminded Peter said to him

Rabbi look the Fig Tree which you cursed

us with it and Jesus answered and said

to them have faith in God this isn’t

amazing how Jesus has these short terse

pointed Unforgettable inescapable

answers to something that we have these

big problems with what did he say said

have faith in God look at this things

think this thing is cursed from The

Roots up what’s happened have faith in

God now watch this truly I say to you

whoever says to the mountain be taken up

and cast unto the sea and there’s not

doubt in his heart but believes that

what he is saying is going to happen

it’ll be granted him now watch this next

verse he listened and say Amen

therefore I say to you all things

for which you pray

and ask

believe that you have received them past

tense and they will be granted to you

so that doesn’t maybe that’s a mistake

it’s not a mistake here’s what he says

level three is resting faith not

struggling and laboring not reaching

resting Faith level three brings you to

the to the level in your life where you

ask him

and you have you can stand on his word

in absolute Assurance you know God’s

will about that and you know what it is

perfect faith says this

not only can he

it’s a done deal it’s already done

no more fretting no more anxiety no more

worry no more no manipulation no more

trying to work it out figure it out

make it happen

perfect faith says

it’s a done deal with God

where does God want our faith to be


anxious trying to feel better getting

over depression is that we want you no

it’s not where he wants you I’ll tell

you where he wants you

he wants us moving from level one

to level two to level three will you

start out with level three most of the

time not but here’s what happens you

don’t stay on level one but a very brief

moment of time

you move to level two

and then as you grow in your faith you

know what happens you’ll be living on

level three most of the time you know

why because here’s what here’s the

reason because you have accepted that he

is who he says he is

he is as wise as he says he is he is as

powerful he says he is

he loves you unconditionally like he

says he does

and therefore you have no reason to


and you think about this you may not be

a Christian

that you realize

what you believe about Jesus Christ is

going to determine your whole Eternal

Destiny where you’re going to spend


nothing else but that determines it

that’s why it is so serious that you and

I consider our faith and for all of us

who are believers

our rewards in heaven you know what

what’s what they’re going to hinge on

our faith

that we trust him enough to believe in

did we trust him enough to take that

decision did we trust him enough to

follow him hey did we trust him enough

to take this challenge here did we trust

him enough to be obedient when it was

difficult all of our awards are going to

come ultimately by our faith because our

actions are a result of our faith

that’s why it is so important that you

and I examine our faith look at


have I trusted Jesus Christ as my savior

am I walking in faith am I struggling

down here cheating myself out of the

blessings that God has already stored up

for me

simply because

I’ve never passed the struggling

wrestling laboring faith

oh God take me to level number two God

take me to level number three you know

what he’ll do here’s what he’ll do he’ll

give you enough tests

grow up your faith

and then one of these days most of your

decisions will be

perfect faith

if you’ll trust him

all right