One of my favorite experiences when rereading the Bible, is discovering new truths and insights in stories you’ve read and heard a million times.
Mark 6:14-20, we see Jesus perform a miracle by casting demons out of a boy.
Jesus looks to two different types of people to have faith.
We have the disciples, who have been with Jesus, learned from Him, seen His miracles, and we have the father of the demon possessed son. This man may have heard of Jesus’ miracles, but he is essentially a desperate man hoping in any way to save his child.
In response to this father’s desperate plea, Jesus says, “Anything is possible for one who believes.” (v. 23).
The man claims, “I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief” (v.24).
Then we have the disciples. They were unable to cast the demon out of the child, all 12 of them failed in this.
The disciples do not understand why they failed, so they ask Jesus, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” (v. 20).
“This kind can only come out by prayer.” Jesus replies in verse 24.
So here we have very different hearts and responses.
The disciples relied on their own knowledge and experience in this situation.
My study bible says, “they had taken for granted the power given to them. They had forgotten their power of demons came from trusting In Jesus and his power.”
Essentially, the disciples had become arrogant. They forgot who taught them. They forgot who they were there for. They forgot who was Lord, so they failed.
Yet we have the father on the other hand. He lacked the knowledge and experience with Jesus that the disciples had. And even he wasn’t fully sold over to 100% belief, but he responds with humility and reliance on God. Even in his unbelief, he gives the trust and power over to Jesus.
Which one are you in your walk with God right now?
I am so much like the disciples. I’ve been going to church and doing ministry for so long, sometimes I think I am doing it with my own strength, my own skills, and yet that’s the path to failure.
Let us all be like the father and approach Jesus with a humble and desperate heart, praying “help me overcome my unbelief.”