06/19/11 Help my Unbelief!

Posted by Pastor Steve Siegrist on Friday, June 24, 2011

Father’s Day

Text: Mark 9:14-29 (HCSB)

14 When they came to the disciples, they saw a large crowd around them and scribes disputing with them. 15 All of a sudden, when the whole crowd saw Him, they were amazed and ran to greet Him. 16 Then He asked them, “What are you arguing with them about?” 17 Out of the crowd, one man answered Him, “Teacher, I brought my son to You. He has a spirit that makes him unable to speak. 18 Wherever it seizes him, it throws him down, and he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I asked Your disciples to drive it out, but they couldn’t.” 19 He replied to them, “You unbelieving generation! How long will I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring him to Me.” 20 So they brought him to Him. When the spirit saw Him, it immediately convulsed the boy. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth. 21 “How long has this been happening to him?” Jesus asked his father. “From childhood,” he said. 22 “And many times it has thrown him into fire or water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” 23 Then Jesus said to him, “If You can?’ Everything is possible to the one who believes.” 24 Immediately the father of the boy cried out, “I do believe! Help my unbelief.” 25 When Jesus saw that a crowd was rapidly coming 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!” 26 Then it came out, shrieking and convulsing him violently. The boy became like a corpse, so that many said, “He’s dead.” 27 But Jesus, taking him by the hand, raised him, and he stood up. 28 After He went into a house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” 29 And He told them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer [and fasting].”

22 Jesus replied to them, “Have faith in God. 23 I assure you: If anyone says to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.” Mark 11:22-23 (HCSB)

Intro: Imagine being given keys that can unlock the problem you might be facing with Spiritual Immaturity and Powerlessness! Some of you are already thinking I don’t have that problem; I’m a great parent a good father (that might be your first problem.)

There is a chronic problem among believers: spiritual immaturity and powerless life and ministry!

1. Spiritual immaturity belittles and shames: vs. 14-18

14 When they came to the disciples, they saw a large crowd around them and scribes disputing with them. 15 All of a sudden, when the whole crowd saw Him, they were amazed and ran to greet Him. 16 Then He asked them, “What are you arguing with them about?” 17 Out of the crowd, one man answered Him, “Teacher, I brought my son to You. He has a spirit that makes him unable to speak. 18 Wherever it seizes him, it throws him down, and he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I asked Your disciples to drive it out, but they couldn’t.”

What an interesting intro here: an argument! Must have been Baptist.

Just imagine this scene. The child and father were right in the midst of a shameful experience. They were the subject of the questioning and ridicule. Imagine their embarrassment in being the focus of the crowd's attention, and their problem of demon possession, their having sought help from apparent frauds.

The child had not been healed because of weak faith. But it was not just the weak faith of the disciples; no one had faith enough to heal the child - not the father, not the disciples, not the religionists (Scribes).

“Jesus replied, “You faithless and corrupt people! How long must I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.” Matthew 17:17 (NLT)

It seems that there was a powerless ministry amongst the Disciples of Christ! They all lacked the power to help this father and his son; even the father couldn’t do it!

The world is full of people just looking for reasons not to believe or discredit the church and its Christians in the church. Three causes of embarrassment in this passage: a weak faith, a powerless ministry, and the boy's illness. Another interesting thought is present in this text: Jesus tells the father – “Bring the boy to me” That is the beginning of the cure dad, are you bringing the child to Jesus???

2. Spiritual immaturity Grieves the Lord: vs. 19-22 

Wherever it seizes him, it throws him down, and he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I asked Your disciples to drive it out, but they couldn’t.” 19 He replied to them, “You unbelieving generation! How long will I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring him to Me.” 20 So they brought him to Him. When the spirit saw Him, it immediately convulsed the boy. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth. 21 “How long has this been happening to him?” Jesus asked his father. “From childhood,” he said. 22 “And many times it has thrown him into fire or water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”

The faithlessness of men grieves Christ. There was not a single person present who helped the desperate child: not the father, not the crowd, not the disciples, and not even the questioning religionists. The father was unbelieving, the crowd was unspiritual and worldly, the disciples were ineffective and powerless, and the religionists were self-centered and critical.

The pitiful condition of a person's need grieves Christ. The son was helpless; the desperate plight of loved ones grieves the Lord. Jesus cared for the father just as much as He cared for the son. The father was hurting in his heart. It was his love for the son that drove him to seek Jesus in the first place. Jesus knew this, and Jesus knew something else. The father's faith was weak and needed strengthening, so Jesus asked the father about the history of the boy's illness. Jesus was not interested so much in the boy's case history as He was in getting the father to focus on his desperate need to call on Jesus who could meet his need who could help him to have the faith that is needed. This story had a happy ending because the father did see his need for Christ: But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”

Do you think there are some fathers today that might need to hear this message? Is it possible someone in this church might need to cry out for mercy and compassion from a God who has been waiting for them to do so? Our God is a loving and compassionate God; however, we must take the initiative and call upon the name of the Lord!

“Jesus replied to them, “Have faith in God. 23 I assure you: If anyone says to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.” Mark 11:22-23 (HCSB) Psalm 34:18 (NLT) “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.”

The same three things that grieved Christ should grieve the heart of every believer. We should be grieved to the point that we act and minister just as Christ did.

3. Spiritual immaturity must be acknowledged to Receive God’s blessings: vs. 23-27

23 Then Jesus said to him, “If You can?’ Everything is possible to the one who believes.” 24 Immediately the father of the boy cried out, “I do believe! Help my unbelief.” 25 When Jesus saw that a crowd was rapidly coming 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!” 26 Then it came out, shrieking and convulsing him violently. The boy became like a corpse, so that many said, “He’s dead.” 27 But Jesus, taking him by the hand, raised him, and he stood up.

Spiritual immaturity must be acknowledged by faith. The father's faith was immature. All things are possible to the Son of God. The power of God is available, but a person must trust in God's power. The great principle of prayer and faith was being taught to the man.

“You can pray for anything, and if you have faith, you will receive it.” Matthew 21:22 (NLT)

The man responded in humility and cried out with tears, "Lord I believe; help thou mine unbelief." He cried out for Jesus to help him even in his faith. He needed help even in believing; but he did the one essential, he cried out with all his heart and being, confessing that he needed help. “I do believe! Help my unbelief.”

Spiritual blessings are secured by Jesus' Word and power. It was the word of Jesus that healed the boy. It was His Word that broke the devil's power. Satan cannot stand before God's Word. Christ has spoiled the principalities and powers of evil. “In this way, he disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross.” Colossians 2:15 (NLT)
 
4. Spiritual immaturity can be Conquered; Spiritual power is available: vs. 28-29

After He went into a house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” 29 And He told them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer [and fasting].”

Immaturity can be conquered by seeking spiritual power. Immaturity can be conquered by prayer and fasting. Jesus pointed to one thing: the disciples were not living close enough to God. They were not praying and fasting enough, not seeking Him enough, not putting Him before food and other things. They were taking time for other things, taking time to eat, but not taking time for God. A man's heart must sometimes crave God so much that food and all else are set aside to seek Him.

“You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13 (HCSB)

Conclusion: Prayer & Fasting! We need more men today, fathers who are willing to stand in the gap and present the faith and power that is needed, Christ has the key to unlock this kind of faith & power. How many children are gripped by desperate needs both physical and spiritual? How many are trapped by sin? Where are the parents who are concerned enough to seek Jesus, not half-heartedly and haphazardly, but genuinely? Where are the parents who seek Him, persevering until He answers? Jesus is willing to meet the needs of our children, but where are the parents who seek Jesus with the fervency of the father? And where are the servants of God who can lead parents to trust Christ?

Spiritual immaturity belittles and shames: bring it to Jesus He can remove it!

Spiritual immaturity Grieves the Lord: cry out for mercy and compassion He hears the prayer of His child!

Spiritual immaturity must be acknowledged to Receive God’s blessings: acknowledge by faith this is the key!

Spiritual immaturity can be Conquered; Spiritual power is available: Spiritual immaturity can be conquered! By prayer and fasting!

SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR DAD?


Tags: "father's day" 
blog comments powered by Disqus
 

Tags

Make a free website with Yola