FAITH OVERCOMES EVIL
Almighty God, sovereign of our nation, my heart is bursting with thanksgiving for the manifold blessings of life that we share.
Read MATTHEW 17:14-21
Jesus Heals a Demon-Possessed Boy
14 When they came to the crowd, a man approached Jesus and knelt before him. 15 “Lord, have mercy on my son,” he said. “He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. 16 I brought him to your disciples, but they could not heal him.”
17 “You unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.” 18 Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed at that moment.
19 Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”
20 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”  [a]
- Matthew 17:21 Some manuscripts include here words similar to Mark 9:29.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectIs there someone damaged and in need of deliverance who needs your prayers today?
The transfiguration would have been mind-blowing to Peter. What must it have been like for Jesus himself after thirty years embedded in our dusty, broken world? In a single day, he passes from sublime fellowship with his holy Father into direct confrontation with evil. It cannot help that the friends who are supposed to be on his side seemed to be so useless (v 17).
The disciples have failed – so far – to come to terms with several key ideas. First, Jesus reigns. He can stand atop a mountain, co-equal with God the Father. Second, this gives him absolute power over evil. He can deliver anyone, in the way he delivers the boy here (v 18). Third, as Jesus’ disciples, we can claim his power for ourselves. But fourth – and it’s a sobering reality – if we continue in perversity and disbelief, we can expect nothing. ‘Perverse’ is from a Greek word meaning ‘twisted about’.
Often, as we struggle with faith, we can get ourselves in quite a twist. In truth, all he expects from us is the simple trust of this father in verse 14. What then happens is not our problem.
God is merciful; he will always let us try again. The father of the sick boy does not overcomplicate things. When you pray, you might want to repeat his words from verse 15 a few times: ‘Lord, have mercy.’
Holy God, grant today that my attitude may be Christ-like and pleasing to you in every way.
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