Help me overcome unbelief!
By: Ysrael De la Cruz
Anyone can claim to have faith in church or when things go well; but it is difficult to display faith when things get out of control, when there are trials and suffering. Your faith is evident during hard times, in the stormy moments of life, that is when you know how great your faith is. I think safe to say that the majority of us, at one time or another have struggled trusting God wholeheartedly; It’s hard to trust when things are out of our control; when you may not know the outcome; when you are not sure where God may be leading you. It is in these moments that we may doubt God; we may show lack of faith in him. How can you overcome these struggles?
Jesus took Peter, James, and John to a mountain and there Jesus showed them his glory. These three disciples literally had a mountain top experience. Jesus showed them something that the rest of the disciples did not get to see. This is called transfiguration (transformation). Jesus’ appearance changed and shone like the sun. Then Moses and Elijah appeared and talked with Jesus. Peter, John, and James were speechless. Peter did not want to go home. It was an awesome experience these three apostles lived that day. Jesus told them not to tell anyone what they saw until he had risen from the dead.
Meanwhile, when they came down, the other apostles were arguing with the teachers of the law (religious people). (v.14)
Jesus asked what the argument was about. A large crowd gathered around Jesus and a desperate father came to Jesus seeking help.
–The father had a son who was tormented by an evil spirit. (An evil spirit that kept the boy from speaking)
–The disciples could not cast out the demon (v18) Jesus had appointed the twelve to go out preach and have authority to drive out demons (Mark 3:14-15)
-Jesus reprimanded the disciples (v.19) “O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to me.” ESV
You faithless people (NLT)
How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.
Jesus’ interaction with the father of the boy (21-25)
How long has he been like this?
Since childhood. (v.22) It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. “but if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”
Here is the plea of a desperate father. Lord I have brought my son to your disciples for help, but they could not help us. If you can do something, please have compassion on us.
Jesus if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us. How often we approach God like this, God if you can, have mercy on us. This is obviously a prayer uttered by someone who does not really know Jesus.
We know that Jesus always admired people’s faith and many of the miracles he performed were a reward for their faith. “Your faith has healed you”
Here is the opposite, this man does not have much faith. You can tell in his request “But if you can, have pity on us and help us.”
Jesus said, “If you can?”(v.23)
Everything thing is possible for him who believes.
The boy’s father said: I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief (NIV). Help my unbelief (my faithlessness, distrust)
Perhaps this is where you are; you struggle with your faith.
You do have faith, but it is hard for you to trust God when things get out of control. When you feel helpless and do not know what to do. You are asking God to help you overcome distrust, unbelief, or doubts.
Jesus rebuked the evil spirit and gave the boy back to his father. (25)
And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You mute and deaf spirit, I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”
Why couldn’t we cast out the demon? (v.28)
The disciples asked Jesus why they could not cast out the evil spirit. Jesus said this kind comes out only by prayer. (v.29). Some manuscripts say prayer and fasting. The disciples of Jesus did not pray much or fasted during the time Jesus was with them. Prayer was the solution to be able to cast this kind of spirit.
If you can relate to the statement of the father. “Lord I do believe, help my unbelief”
How can you overcome your unbelief?
–Unbelief can keep you from seeing God’s power at work in your life.
– It will rob you of God’s blessing in your life. People forfeited God’s miracles due to their lack of faith.
-Unbelief steals your peace in times of trouble.
How do you overcome it?
-Getting to know Jesus better. This man had trust issues or faithless issues because he did not know Jesus very well. “If you can please…” Instead of approaching Jesus saying. I know you are able; I know you can do it..
–Unbelief or lack of faith shows that you do not know God very well.
–Getting exposed to God’s word, read it, study, memorize it and live it out. (Rom.10:17) Faith comes from hearing. Faith is the opposite of unbelief. If faith comes from hearing God’s word, then faithless attitude, unbelief will grow in you when you stop hearing God’s word. Knowing his word will remind you that He is able to do more than we can even think or imagine. His word will give you confidence even during dark times.
Do you want to truly trust Jesus and get rid of unbelief in your life? then get to know Jesus, the more you know him, the more will trust him and overcome unbelief, doubts, insecurities and fear in your life.
Let me pray for you this morning.