What Does it Mean That God Increases? (2023)

What then is Apollos? What is Paul? Servants through whom you believe, as the Lord assigned to each. I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So, neither he who plants, nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building (1 Corinthians 3:5-9, ESV).

If you had ministered and shared the Gospel of Jesus Christ with someone for an extended period of time without immediate or visible fruit, would you be discouraged? Would you consider it a failure on your part?

God Increases Salvation

I recently attended a meeting where missionary work was being discussed, and in the meeting, a friend relayed a story told to her by a pastor of a church. This one simple story began a cascade of thought and personal introspection as a believer in Christ.

For more than a decade, this pastor had ministered to his next-door neighbor. He had shared the Gospel of Jesus Christ with her numerous times, inviting her to the church he pastored. But there was no response in the way of her attending a service or responding to the call of the gospel in receiving Christ as her Lord and Savior.

Then one day, this lady met another individual who, in conversation, shared the gospel with her and invited her to church. The lady had been born again in this conversation, and she did indeed attend a church service.

What is interesting is the church service she attended happened to be at the church where her neighbor pastored, the same neighbor who had ministered to her and shared the gospel for many years.

Surprised to see his neighbor, the pastor asked her why she decided to come. The lady told him about the individual who had spoken with her and had shared the gospel with her. She shared how she had been saved and was invited to church.


This may sound like a simple story needing no further explanation or ponderance. However, what struck me was not the telling of the story in this meeting but the question posed by one of the individuals listening.

The question asked was, “Did the pastor ever determine why he had failed in getting his neighbor to receive the gospel and to his church?” Honestly, this question bothered me. I did not see the pastor as a failure.

In fact, I wondered if the pastor was encouraged to know one of his congregants had been used by God to minister to his neighbor and that he had been effective in teaching and preaching the gospel in his church. It never occurred to me he was a failure.

But I wonder if that is how we look at ourselves when ministering to others and sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Perhaps this very reason causes some to not share faith in Christ with others. I hope we could all learn from this account to understand who actually saves people and to proclaim the good news regardless of the outcome.

Some Plant, Some Water

I say this not to argue or to belittle the question posed. I think questions like this are actually good because, as believers, they should drive us back to the Word of God for clarity. The Bible helps us to see who saves people and to encourage us in obedience to God rather than personal results.

The passage in 1 Corinthians 3 came to mind when thinking about the question of the pastor’s failure. In 1 Corinthians 3, Paul is addressing divisions in the Corinthian church taking place with people claiming allegiance to a particular individual rather than to Christ Himself.

According to Paul, the Corinthian believers were not spiritual people because they are still living in spiritual immaturity. We understand from reading 1 Corinthians that Paul has to correct many areas in the church, and division in following a particular minister was one of them.

(Video) IT IS TIME TO INCREASE IN YOUR LIFE - Apostle Joshua Selman

According to this author, Paul uses a metaphor to illustrate the role of believers in proclaiming the gospel. Paul compares himself and Apollos to field hands. Paul planted the seeds while Apollos watered them.

However, it is God who causes the crops to grow, and the crops are faith in Christ for salvation. “The two are not in competition with each other. They work together and both will be paid by the master.”

I believe this passage could also apply to the modern story here concerning this pastor and his congregant who shared the gospel with his neighbor. The pastor planted seeds along the way in his relationship with his neighbor.

His faithfulness to the Lord was not in vain nor was it a failure. His congregant came along and watered. Both were sent out to serve the field. Yet, it was God who gave the increase, salvation. It is God who saves people.

It is the Holy Spirit who convicts and softens hearts to confess with mouths that Jesus is Lord and to believe in hearts that God raised him from the dead (Romans 10:9).

When ministering to others and sharing the truth according to the Word of God, it is tempting for all of us to base success upon personal results. Many of us are data-driven; we want to see the fruit of our labor.

Success is based upon verifiable proof, and truth be told, we like to lay claim in such matters. However, salvation is not based upon what we do but upon what Christ has already done.

(Video) God Turned It Around - Tim Godfrey feat. Nathaniel Bassey and Tim Bowman, Jr.

This not only applies to our own salvation through faith in Christ, but it also applies when we are ministering to others and sharing the gospel according to Scripture.

Why Does This Matter?

If our salvation is not based upon our own merits, why would we think it to be any different for those to whom we minister? We cannot claim to save anyone. We can only claim obedience to the living God.

I hope you see this pastor not as a failure but as an obedient servant of Jesus Christ. I hope this pastor did not view himself as a failure but that he rejoiced in salvation coming to his neighbor in God’s timing and that God’s kindness drew her to repentance.

I hope that other pastors are encouraged when they hear of fellow sheep being shepherded, ministering to others, and seeing the kingdom of God increase.

I hope this pastor did not see himself competing with a fellow sheep or field hand because they both will be rewarded by the Master for their obedience without shame for Christ.

I hope it encourages both you and me to simply be faithful to God and to trust Him in His ways and in His Word. He is faithful to His Word, and it does not come back null and void, especially in the salvation of lost souls.

May our prayer be to glorify the Lord in all we say and do and to remember that God gives the increase when it comes to the saving of souls and increasing His flock. May He find us faithful even when we do not see the fruits of our labor.

(Video) What Does It Mean to Be the Image of God?

For further reading:

What Does ‘Greater Is He That Is in Me’ Mean?

What Does it Mean ‘He Must Become Greater and I Must Become Less’?

What Does the Bible Say about Growing Good Seeds?

Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/Dilok Klaisataporn

What Does it Mean That God Increases? (1)Dawn Hillis a Christian blogger known as The Lovesick Scribe and the host of The Lovesick Scribe Podcast. She is passionate about sharing the truth and pointing others back to Jesus Christ through the written Word as the standard of authority for Christian living and instruction while being led by the Holy Spirit into maturity. She is the author of NonProphet Woke: The Reformation of a Modern-Day Disciple. She is a wife to Nicholas and a mother to Anabel and Ephraim. You can follow her on Facebook and Instagram.


What does it mean for God to increase? ›

And then God blessed them, and He said, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion” (Genesis 1:28). The word multiply is the same Hebrew word translated as “increase” throughout the Old Testament. This wasn't merely a command to have children and begin to populate the world.

What is the meaning of increase in the Bible? ›

In the Old Testament, increase often refers to the reproduction of livestock and to the harvest (Leviticus 26:3-4; Deuteronomy 7:12-13 ). The promise of increase is contingent on Israel's fulfilling its covenant commitments. Increase is used figuratively for Israel as the firstfruits of God's increase (KJV) or harvest.

What does the Bible say about God gives the increase? ›

[6] I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. [7] So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. [8] Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.

Where in the Bible does it say God will increase you? ›

“May the Lord give you increase, both you and your children. May you be blessed by the Lord, who made heaven and earth” (Psalm 115:14-15).

What does it mean he must increase but I must decrease? ›

It is interesting to know that just because Jesus is Lord, He only becomes Lord of your life when you allow Him to do so. John the Baptist simply stated here, “He must become greater; I must become less.” If you allow Jesus to be Lord of your life, you are allowing Him to become greater.

How God increases our faith? ›

To be able to increase our faith we must obtain the words of God through study of the scriptures, and the writings of the prophets and apostles. Joseph Smith said: “Faith comes by hearing the word of God, through the testimony of the servants of God. …” Combined with study is the fourth fundamental – prayer.

What is the full meaning of increase? ›

: to become progressively greater (as in size, amount, number, or intensity) : to multiply by the production of young. transitive verb. : to make greater : augment.

What is increase example? ›

[+ object] : to make (something) larger or greater in size, amount, number, etc. They will soon increase [=raise] the price from $50 to $60. She increased her wealth substantially. The pilot increased speed.

What does increase in faith mean? ›

Increased faith implies increased sacrifice. It implies not only assent to God's will but costly action that corresponds to bringing about His will on earth as it is in heaven.

What Scripture says increase more and more? ›

May the LORD give you increase more and more, You and your children. May you be blessed by the LORD, Who made heaven and earth. The heaven, even the heavens, are the LORD's; But the earth He has given to the children of men.

What is the covenant of increase? ›

INCREASE means to make greater in number, size, strength, or quantity. It is a result of God's blessing on His covenant people. God has a covenant with His people to increase us and our seeds continually.

What Scripture says increase in number? ›

Genesis 9:7 In-Context

6 “Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind. 7 As for you, be fruitful and increase in number; multiply on the earth and increase upon it.”

What is divine enlargement? ›

Divine enlargement means supernatural increase. To be enlarged means to increase, to expand, to extend. In the name of Jesus you will increase spiritually, financially, materially, in power, in love for God in Jesus name.

Can God make something greater than himself? ›

Likewise, God cannot make a being greater than himself because he is, by definition, the greatest possible being. God is limited in his actions to his nature. The Bible supports this, they assert, in passages such as Hebrews 6:18, which says it is "impossible for God to lie."

What verse says God increase and I decrease? ›

John 3:30. “He must increase, but I must decrease.” It's John the Baptist talking about Jesus, saying his purpose in this world is to decrease. That's what he must do, and Jesus must increase. Meaning, John the Baptists purpose in this world was to exalt Christ, not himself.

What shall we say then shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? ›

Sin is what separates us from God. It's damaging, and for the unredeemed, it is damning (Romans 6:23). So, shall we then continue in sin that grace may abound? Paul replies with a resounding “God forbid” (Romans 6:2).

What does Luke 17:5 10 mean? ›

The apostles asked Lord for the increase of their faith. We cannot see God and our faith decides to have faith in Him. Faith can lead us to true happiness. Without faith things would not turn out right for us no matter what the situation might be.

What does the Bible say about growing in faith? ›

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8). We grow in faith as we meditate on God's word, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ” (Romans 10:7).

What does Jeremiah 29 11 mean in the Bible? ›

Christians facing difficult situations today can take comfort in Jeremiah 29:11 knowing that it is not a promise to immediately rescue us from hardship or suffering, but rather a promise that God has a plan for our lives and regardless of our current situation, He can work through it to prosper us and give us a hope ...

How to explain about increase? ›

increase in American English
  1. to become greater in size, amount, degree, etc.; grow.
  2. to become greater in numbers by producing offspring; multiply; propagate. verb transitive.
  3. to cause to become greater in size, amount, degree, etc.; add to; augment. noun.
  4. an increasing or becoming increased. ; specif., a.

Does Increase Mean gain? ›

A gain is an increase in something, especially something good.

What are two synonyms for increase? ›

synonyms for increase
  • boost.
  • development.
  • escalation.
  • expansion.
  • gain.
  • hike.
  • increment.
  • inflation.

How do I find the increase? ›

To calculate the percentage increase:
  1. First: work out the difference (increase) between the two numbers you are comparing.
  2. Increase = New Number - Original Number.
  3. Then: divide the increase by the original number and multiply the answer by 100.
  4. % increase = Increase ÷ Original Number × 100.

What is the value of increase? ›

Increased Value means the positive difference between Value and Base Value. Increased Value means the appreciation in the worth of a Deferred Stock Unit from the date of award up to and including the Valuation Date, as determined by the Committee pursuant to a Valuation.

What does it mean to increase by 2 times? ›

Two times a number is a 100% increase in the number.

How do you keep your faith growing? ›

How to Maintain Your Faith in a Seemingly Faithless World
  1. Regularly Examine Your Faith. Introspection is essential. ...
  2. Find Inspiration in Biblical Figures. ...
  3. Take Solace in Prayer. ...
  4. Connect with a Faith-Based Community. ...
  5. Do Good in the World. ...
  6. Show Compassion.
Mar 1, 2019

What is Romans 12 3? ›

ESV For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.

Who is the God of increase? ›

26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

What Scriptures say about unstoppable increase? ›

Gen 26:12 and Isaac sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundredfold. THE LORD BLESSED HIM, 19. The blessing that you give a man that causes his increase to be unstoppable – BLESS ME WITH IT NOW!

What are the three promises of the covenant? ›

The covenant between Abraham and God consisted of three separate parts:
  • the promised land.
  • the promise of the descendants.
  • the promise of blessing and redemption.

What are the four promises of the new covenant? ›

Jesus' new covenant promises assure that everyone who will not resist the continual drawing of the Holy Spirit on their hearts will be drawn to Jesus through repentance and faith, be reconciled to God, forgiven of their sins, and sanctified through the writing of His law on their hearts, resulting in an “obedience that ...

What are the four types of covenants? ›

There are several covenants in the Bible, but five covenants are crucial for understanding the story of the Bible and God's redemptive plan: the Noahic Covenant, the Abrahamic Covenant, The Mosaic Covenant, the Davidic Covenant and the New Covenant.

How can God increase us? ›

The Lord shall increase your love and passion for God. The Lord shall increase your love for righteousness and your hatred for sin. The Lord shall increase your love for people; for those in your family and for those not related or connected to you in any way (Matthew 10:37, 1 Thessalonians 3:12, Hebrews 1:9).

Why is 3 a holy number? ›

The number 3 biblically represents divine wholeness, completeness and perfection. If there ever was a desire to highlight an idea, thought, event or noteworthy figure in the Bible for their prominence, the number 3 was used to put a divine stamp of completion or fulfillment on the subject.

What number represents Jesus? ›

In some Christian numerology, the number 888 represents Jesus, or sometimes more specifically Christ the Redeemer. This representation may be justified either through gematria, by counting the letter values of the Greek transliteration of Jesus' name, or as an opposing value to 666, the number of the beast.

What are the promises of enlargement in the Bible? ›

Exo 34:24, “For I will cast out the nations before you, and enlarge your borders: neither shall any man desire your land, when you shall go up to appear before the LORD your God thrice in the year.” God will flush out anyone illegally occupying your space or portion and enlarge your borders in Jesus name.

What are the levels of spiritual growth? ›

Spiritual Growth and Progression

This gradual growth generally involves three stages of development: the purgative stage, the illuminative stage, and the unitive stage. While these stages are not perfectly linear, they tend to mirror the stages of our human development: childhood, adolescence, and adulthood.

What is the Hebrew meaning for enlargement? ›

Hebrew Base Word: רֶוַח

Part of speech: Noun Masculine. Usage: Enlargement, space. Definition: Room, literally (an interval) or figuratively (deliverance).

Is it true that God doesn't give us more than we can handle? ›

God is faithful; he will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able” (1 Corinthians 10:13 CSB).

Can God change the impossible? ›

God will surely turn the impossible to possible for you. So, you should be as bold as a lion and begin your day remembering God's promise, “Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine..” ( Ephesians 3:20).

What is God's power called? ›

June 2021) Omnipotence is the quality of having unlimited power. Monotheistic religions generally attribute omnipotence only to the deity of their faith.

What is the name of the Lord will increase? ›

The name Joseph is a beautiful tribute to the Lord. Meaning “God increases” or “God will add/increase,” the name brings no glory to itself. Neither Joseph in Jesus' life was meant to fully protect or provide for Him.

What does it mean to increase in wisdom? ›

Wisdom is a virtue that isn't innate, but can only be acquired through experience. Anyone who is interested in trying new things and reflecting on the process has the ability to gain wisdom. By learning as much as you can, analyzing your experiences and putting your knowledge to the test, you can become a wiser person.

What Scriptures say about increase in numbers? ›

Genesis 9:7 In-Context

6 “Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind. 7 As for you, be fruitful and increase in number; multiply on the earth and increase upon it.”

What scripture says about growing faith? ›

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8). We grow in faith as we meditate on God's word, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ” (Romans 10:7).

What are the two wills of God? ›

That is God's preceptive will, i.e., his will of precept or command. It is what God says should happen. Others refer to this as God's revealed will or his moral will.

What does it mean when God changes your name? ›

The name given by God is the name that will lead us to God's promises. God changed Abram's name to Abraham, Sarai's to Sarah, Jacob's to Israel and Simon's to Peter. Through those names God gave new beginnings, new hopes, new blessings. A name is a prayer.

What does Revelation 3 verse 12 mean? ›

Here in Revelation 3:12-13, the Word of God again graciously reminds us of God's perspective and reverses the paralyzing impact of false perceptions. Our Lord's words of promise and reassurance to those who persevere in faith have bolstered and buoyed our faith throughout the course of these seven letters.

What are the ways to increase wisdom? ›

5 Techniques To Develop Wisdom Over Time
  1. Be Open To New Experiences. As mentioned in the introduction, wisdom is gained through life experience. ...
  2. Show Compassion & Empathy. ...
  3. Don't Be Afraid Of Making Mistakes. ...
  4. Knowing When To Ask For Help. ...
  5. Set A Good Example.
Apr 12, 2022

What are the three levels of wisdom? ›

On the first level, there is analytical-rational wisdom, on the second level, there is intuitive-experiential sensitivity, and on the third level, there is actual philosophical wisdom.

What are the 5 characteristics of wisdom? ›

To date, five strengths fall beneath the wisdom umbrella in their research:
  • Creativity.
  • Curiosity.
  • Judgment.
  • Love of Learning.
  • Perspective.
May 27, 2019


1. 9 Signs God is Changing You (for the better) | the Fruit of Spiritual Growth | Melody Alisa
(Melody Alisa)
2. Something Biblical May Come in 2023.. God’s People Must Prepare
(AoC Network)
3. What is glory, and why is it so important to God? (Ask Dr. Stanley)
(In Touch Ministries)
4. INCREASE! God's Plan For Your Prosperity! w/Bishop Mark A. Moore, Sr.
(Indiana Avenue Pentecostal Church of God)
5. What do you have that God can use for your increase.https://youtu.be/_SE5gSBjZZI
6. God Will Give You A Miracle In 2 Minutes After Praying This Powerful Miracle Prayer
(Beyond Grace)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Dong Thiel

Last Updated: 04/03/2023

Views: 5503

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (59 voted)

Reviews: 90% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Dong Thiel

Birthday: 2001-07-14

Address: 2865 Kasha Unions, West Corrinne, AK 05708-1071

Phone: +3512198379449

Job: Design Planner

Hobby: Graffiti, Foreign language learning, Gambling, Metalworking, Rowing, Sculling, Sewing

Introduction: My name is Dong Thiel, I am a brainy, happy, tasty, lively, splendid, talented, cooperative person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.