The faith of the Christ-ian believer can be described in many ways.
In 1 Corinthians 12:9, faith is said to be a gift by the Holy Spirit. In Galatians 2:20 the faith we enjoy is the very faith of Christ…I mean the very faith of Christ. The very faith wherewith He lived a perfect life, died a sinner’s death, and rose again as the Victor over sin and death. He had no need of His faith in Heaven so He sent it as a gift by the descending and indwelling Holy Spirit. Also in Galatians 5:22 it is listed as the (7th) seventh fruit of the Spirit. We learn that we are saved through the gift of faith in Ephesians 2:8,9 and again we find faith in Ephesians 6 being call the shield of the Christ-ian, “Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.” In Hebrews 11:1 it is written that, “faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” and through out the rest of chapter 11 we are reminded of the great exploits of our ancestors and that they were all performed “by faith.” In 1 Peter 1:5 we learn that we are “kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”
It would appear from Scripture that there are different types of faith. There is the faith of Ephesians 2:8-9 which allows all that are born again and will be born again to believe unto salvation. Then in other passages of holy Writ like 1 Corinthians 12:3 there is a faith that is given by measure to every Christ-ian. But then later in 1 Corinthians 12 faith is listed with the gifts of the Spirit which would seem to be a greater measure of faith than the faith mentioned in Romans 13: 3. The faith of Romans 12:3 would seem to be the faith that allows the Christ-ian to face the issues of everyday life with a joy and peace that glorifies God. The faith in 1 Cor. 12:3 is the larger measure that allows a believer to endure the greater hardships with the same joy and peace with faith to spare and to help others.
In Galatians 2:20 it is said that the measure of faith given to all believers and the greater measure given to some believers is the very faith that enabled the Lord Jesus to walk this earth engaging sinful man and yet remain separate from sinners and that is to say uncontaminated by sin. This is the very faith delivered by the indwelling Holy Spirit of Christ to all that believe as faith is no longer necessary in Heaven for faith has been made sight.
Later in the same book of Gal. faith is listed as the (7th) seventh fruit of the Spirit. This faith is grace that gives evidence and assurance to one’s salvation. It may be the same faith that is names in Romans 12:3 as the faith that is given by measure which, like fruit ripens or grows with time and exercise.
In Ephesians 6 faith is called the shield of the Christ-ians. The shield of faith appears to be the greater piece in our armory as the Spirit says, “Above all, taking the shield of faith…” This faith is the grace that allows us to engage this present evil world without being conformed or contaminated. This faith may be related or it may be the same faith that was the Faith that enabled Christ to remain unconformed and uncontaminated when He walked so victoriously on this earth.
Faith, in Hebrews 11:1, is said to be the substance of things hoped for (or expected) and the evidence of things not seen (or received yet). That is to say faith is the substance that allows the exercised believer to expect the things requested and it is also the evidence of things not yet seen. The believers faith grows each time God honours faith and therefore each time a saint uses faith to make request it is the evidence of God’s past faithfulness to the believers well places faith.
In the end whether there are many types of faith or simply two (2), One that allows a sinner to believe unto salvation and another that is given by measure and grows or ripens over time and use instead of different kinds or faith it demonstrates that God is good and God is faithful and we are above all others most blessed.
Therefore, go forth and exercise your ripening faith.