Biblical Faith 3

The aim of this devotional study is to grow in understanding of Biblical faith and to evaluate our lives in the light of Jesus’ life and teachings on faith.


Mark 9:17-29

17  And someone from the crowd answered him, “Teacher, I brought my son to you, for he has a spirit that makes him mute. 18  And whenever it seizes him, it throws him down, and he foams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid. So I asked your disciples to cast it out, and they were not able.”

19  And he answered them, “O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to me.”  20  And they brought the boy to him. And when the spirit saw him, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about, foaming at the mouth.

21  And Jesus asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood.  22  And it has often cast him into fire and into water, to destroy him. But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”

23  And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.

24  Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!”

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.”  26  And after crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse, so that most of them said, “He is dead.”  27  But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose.

28  And when he had entered the house, his disciples asked him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?”  29  And he said to them, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer.”


This text is another notable teaching of Jesus on prayer.  Read through the text again, making notes on the lessons in faith you can learn from Jesus’ teachings and actions:

  1. Note Jesus’ the interaction between Jesus and the disciples (v19, 28-29). How would you describe Jesus’ response to the disciple’s failure to deal with this situation?  And what was Jesus’ faith lesson to them?
  2. Note Jesus’ interaction with the possessed boy’s father. How would you describe his attitude with the father’s desperate request?  What was Jesus’ faith lesson to him?
  3. Notes Jesus’ interaction with the boy. How did Jesus exercise his faith in this situation?

Application and prayer

  1. Reading Jesus word’s to his disciples “O faithless generation… how long am I to bear with you?” – how do you feel? Can you associate with the disciples?  Spend time in prayer with God and talk to him about your measure of faith (cf Romans 12:3).
  2. Reading the father’s plea for help “I believe; help my unbelief!” – how do you feel? Can you identify with the father?  Consider a situation in your life where you acknowledge your unbelief; confess it to God and ask for faith in that area.
  3. Take 5 minutes and meditate* prayerfully on Jesus teaching “All things are possible for one who believes.”

*mediate here means to think about, speak about, pray about and repeat the phrase in prayer with God.  The idea is to internalize and consider the consequences of the truth.

  1. Grab your phone and encourage one person who needs to hear this truth today!

And here is a good anthem for the road today.  Sing along!