by the Rev. Henry Huenemann
Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth (Mark 9:23).
14And when he came to his disciples, he saw a great multitude about them, and the scribes questioning with them.
15And straightway all the people, when they beheld him, were greatly amazed, and running to him saluted him.
16And he asked the scribes, What question ye with them?
17And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit;
18And 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.
19He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him unto me.
20And they brought him unto him: and when he saw him, straightway the spirit tare him; and he fell on the ground, and wallowed foaming.
21And he asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child.
22And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us.
23Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.
24And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.
25When Jesus saw that the people came running together, he rebuked the foul spirit, saying unto him, Thou dumb and deaf spirit, I charge thee, come out of him, and enter no more into him.
26And the spirit cried, and rent him sore, and came out of him: and he was as one dead; insomuch that many said, He is dead.
27But Jesus took him by the hand, and lifted him up; and he arose.
28And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out?
29And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.
Once Jesus marveled at the faith of a man. This man was not a Jew diligently instructed in the word of God but a Gentile, a Roman centurion. He had said to Jesus "Lord I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed." "When Jesus heard it, he marveled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel." How aften did not Jesus say to his disciples, O ye, of little faith! And when here in our Scripture passage they could not cure the child possessed with a devil, He said to them "If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed" (a very small seed). But they did not even have that much faith. If they had, they could have removed mountains. But now they could not cure the child because of unbelief. The father of the child said to Jesus, "If thou canst do anything, have compassion on us and help us." Jesus said, "If thou canst believe." There was not a lack of power on Jesus' part; but was there faith in the father? The father cried out and said with tears, "Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief." And oh the mercy of Christ! He rebuked the devil and the child was cured from that very hour. How great is our faith?
Mv faith looks up to Thee, Thou Lamb of Calvary, Savior divine!
O God, for the sake of Jesus Christ Thy Son, have mercy upon us. Let not unbelief rule in our hearts. Grant us a childlike faith to believe Thy precious promises. May Thy Spirit assure us from day to day of Thy divine pardon and help us to live grateful lives, showing forth Thy praise, and magnifying Thy grace. Shield us against the onslaughts of the devil. When doubts and fears assail us, graciously speak peace unto our souls. May our faith fail not in the conflicts of life nor in the hour of death. Grant us a glorious entrance into life eternal. For Jesus' sake. Amen.
Scripture in Devotional: Matt. 8:8, 10; 17:19, 20: 17:18.
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