Believing Believers

When Jesus came down the mountain after His transfiguration He met a father who had brought his convulsing son to Jesus for healing. The disciples who had remained in the foothills hadn’t been able to heal the boy, and Jesus lamented over such a “faithless generation.” To the father himself Jesus said, “All things are possible for one who believes,” and the father’s famous response was: “I believe; help my unbelief!”

I was thinking about this again after a repeated comment last weekend at the Grace Agenda conference. When it comes to enraging the culture, telling others the good and authoritative news of the Bible, calling them to salvation in Jesus Christ, it was observed that our first and biggest problem is not getting the unbelievers to believe, it is getting the believers to believe. We don’t believe that God is sovereign and that His Word is powerful and that His Spirit works. We are ashamed of the gospel. We fear being reviled and rejected. We back down and back off. We don’t believe God first.

This is true of Christians not only in evangelism and apologetics, this is true in marriage and parenting, in bill-sorting and job-searching, in health problems and home problems, in temptations to anger or impatience or fear or any sin that plagues us. We believers don’t believe God. There are times when I do not believe God.

But Jesus said all things are possible for the one who believes. While we may cry out, “I believe, help my unbelief,” we also ought to cry out, “I believe, forgive my unbelief.” Little faith does not honor the God of promise and power. We are saved by faith, so let’s live by faith.

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