“Lord, I believe, help thou mine unbelief” (Part 2)

The blog title is taken from Mark chapter 9 verse 24; an extended extract is hereby provided for the convenience of the reader.

17 And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit;

18 And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not.

19 He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I suffer you? Bring him unto me.

20 And they brought him unto him: and when he saw him, straightway the spirit tare him; and he fell on the ground, and wallowed foaming.

21 And he asked his father, how long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child.

22 And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do anything, have compassion on us, and help us.

23 Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.

24 And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.

Here we read of an occasion when despite the best efforts of the disciples of Christ a young boy’s condition remained intact. The father doesn’t give up instead he brings his son to Jesus who delivers the boy from an evil spirit that wanted to destroy him.

Leading up to the deliverance of the boy the father said to Jesus “if thou canst do anything, have compassion on us and help us”.

Notice, whilst the father brought his son he says if you can do anything; he compounds the matter by adding by inference, if you can have compassion, then help us.  

Going to Christ with if is not a good idea. When we ask we must anticipate a good outcome. When we come we must expect good results. If the farmer can sow his seeds into the ground and patiently wait for harvest time based solely on the law of sowing and reaping then why can’t we believe God when we ask him and it’s in accordance with His will.

The father soon found out that his faith was far from perfect, it was intellectual. So often believers have faith until it should be exercised then the true colour of unbelief is seen.

The bible says the father cried out in tears, “Lord, I believe, help thou mine unbelief”. The father knew that his faith was not really there despite his protestations.

Jesus went on to deliver the boy and all was well but as believers we must learn from this example.

The coronavirus is real and potentially fatal. It has killed people all around the world and it is not finished yet. We must pray and act upon our faith by not hiding away because we have reached a certain age. The world needs to see that our faith is not without works or action. The world is scared, it’s panicking and it needs to see their neighbours, work colleagues and family members trusting God that He will keep us safe for many are His promises to His children. Being wise is also important for the two are not mutually exclusive. Listen to the advice of scientists and clinicians and cooperate with government but also live by your faith in God.

The writer of Hebrews defined faith as: “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”. Hebrews 11:1. If you are in the vulnerable age group remember the words of God and act accordingly for “God is not a man that he should lie nor the son of man that he should repent”.

Let me in closing invoke Psalm 91 and verse 15 & 16.

“He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation”.

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The Lord’s servant

Lloyd Denny