How Many Do You Have?

Wood Rings

If you have been around Christianity any length of time, you will no doubt have heard the following phrases used in various teaching circles:

Line upon line.

Which comes from:

For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:” – Isa 28:10 KJV

Also,

From glory to glory”

Which comes from:

But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” – 2 Co 3:18 KJV

And without a doubt, you probably have also heard:

Put on the whole armor of God,

Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” – Eph 6:11 KJV

These three phrases and quotes have a great similarity.  When we study out the subject matter and context, on the surface, they don’t appear to be talking about the same thing.  However, in actuality, they all address a single concept.  This concept is called ‘Layering.’

When we are instructed by the Bible to put on the whole armor of God, it is not a physical suit that we are to put on, but rather it is the armoring of our faith.  The Bible is not telling us to go through the physical motions of putting on some imaginary suit either.  The Lord is showing us through His Word that as we put on faith through His Word and the knowledge of Christ, that we are putting on spiritual armorments that will protect us from the tricks, plans, and traps of the enemy.

Every time you hear the Word, every time you read the Word, and every time you are obedient to the Holy Spirit, more layers of faith, understanding, and fortifications are added to your spiritual armor.  The Bible tells us about ‘layering’ with this simple and eloquent statement:

So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” – Rom 10:17 KJV

The more we hear, the stronger our faith becomes.

Consider the humble tree. You can imagine whatever variety you like. One attribute common to all trees is that if you were to cut them in a cross-section, you would discover rings in the wood.  The rings are indicative of the layers of growth that that particular tree has experienced.   The number of the rings shows the age of the tree.  One could say, the rings show the ‘maturity’ of the tree.  It is the same way concerning your faith.  If we were to do a cross-section of your faith, how many layers of hearing, reading and operating by faith would your spirit man show?  How many rings are on your tree? How many layers does your spiritual armor have?  Clearly, the more layers or rings that we have, the stronger we become.

As we go through vicissitudes and toxic scenarios, it is important to fill and replenish any thinning layers that may have been worn away by the frictions caused by the battles of life.  It is so important to repair any holes in our faith and understanding that may have appeared.  The Word of God admonishes us:

We should not stop gathering together with other believers, as some of you are doing. Instead, we must continue to encourage each other even more as we see the day of the Lord coming.” – Heb 10:25 GW

The House of God is not supposed to be a social club, a series of lectures or exercises in the pretentious facades of religion but rather, it is a place of prayer, communion with God and a place to restore your armor of faith.  It is a place to put on another layer of wisdom, understanding, and revelation in the Knowledge of Christ.

Consider the legendary Samurai swords.  Samurai swords were highly prized because of their combined strength, flexibility and durability in battle.  If a sword was strong but not flexible to some degree, it would break n the heat of battle. Obviously, that would be a fatal flaw.  If a sword was too flexible and but didn’t have enough strength, then it would not have been effective. If the edge dulled easily from repeated strikes, it was ineffective as a weapon. The good Samurai swords were made by experts that knew how to properly forge the metal through the continual process of heating, beating and re-folding the metal upon itself.   The more folds that a sword had, the stronger it became.  In other words, it was the art of layering of the folds of metal, that gave it its strength, flexibility, and ability to keep its edge sharp even in the heat of battle.  It was all of these qualities that gave it its legendary status.

The Lord wants us to be both strong, flexible and durable. The Lord wants to sharpen us in our skill and how we use The Sword of the Word.  He wants us to keep our edge despite the situations of life.  Like the tree or the sword, (feel free to pick whichever analogy you prefer), the Lord wants to add to us more layers of faith and more layers of agreement with Him and His Word.

At the risk of sounding as if we are making light of our relationship with God (which definitely is not the case!), we invite you to consider the following concept.  The concept is this: The layering your faith is in actuality a numbers game.  It works like this:

The more layers of interaction with God, His Word and His Ways that you have, the stronger your faith will be.  The less that you have, the weaker your faith will be.

We have the ability through freedom of choice to increase our interaction with God, His Word, and His Ways anytime that we choose. He waits patiently for us to seek His Face. He desires to talk and interact with us daily.

Consider this… whatever is your focus and also where your time and energy is spent will determine the area where your faith will grow. In other words, if you spend your time and energy focused on cartoons, then your faith and expertise will be in cartoons.  If you spend your time on negativity and complaints, then your faith will build up the expectation that negative things will happen.

Now that we understand the concept of layering, should not it behoove us to heap upon ourselves as many layers of faith as possible and as fast as we can?  We owe it to ourselves to listen to the Lord, read, study and be obedient to His Will.  Every time we do, it reinforces our armor plating. Every time we are obedient to our Godly leadership, every time we participate at church or help someone in obedience to the Lord, it makes us stronger. All of these acts add new layers to our armor. Even the simple act of reading this blog post just added another layer to your faith.  Every action towards God, regardless of what form it may come in, strengthens and improves us.  And just to take things up a notch, consider this… every deed is a seed that ultimately produces a harvest. (But then that is a subject for another day.)

So, the next time you feel your armor wearing thin, stop and take the time to fortify your armor. Take the time to add another ring to your tree.  Take the time to add another fold in your sword.  And while you’re at it, learn to play the numbers game well and take the time to add on several extra layers today just for good measure!

We leave you with this:

As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him: Rooted and built up in Him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.“  – Col 2:6-7 KJV

 

May God’s Grace Abundantly Rain In Your Life!

Apostle Ric & Prophetess Kathy Steele


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