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Prayer

Jesus has to step in to solve a very real problem. That is the way of Jesus. He just doesn’t leave us hanging. Jesus has my back. Now that is powerful and that is very good news.

Jesus has our backs. Hallelujah!

Seeing that the crowd was forming fast, Jesus gave the vile spirit its marching orders: “Dumb and deaf spirit, I command you — Out of him, and stay out!” Screaming, and with much thrashing about, it left. The boy was pale as a corpse, so people started saying, “He’s dead.” But Jesus, taking his hand, raised him. The boy stood up.

After arriving back home, his disciples cornered Jesus and asked, “Why couldn’t we throw the demon out?”

He answered, “There is no way to get rid of this kind of demon except by prayer.” 

Source: Mark 9:25-29 (The Message Bible)

When our Master and His three friends returned to the other nine disciples, they found them involved in a dual problem: they were unable to deliver a boy from demonic control, and the scribes were debating with them and perhaps even taunting them because of their failure. As always, it was Jesus who stepped in to solve the problem.

The boy was both deaf and dumb, and the demon was doing his best to destroy him. Imagine what it would be like for that father to try to care for the boy and protect him!

Jesus had given His disciples authority to cast out demons, and yet their ministry to the boy was ineffective. No wonder the Lord was grieved with them! How often He must be grieved with us when we fail to use the spiritual resources He has graciously given to His people!

Since the disciples had failed, the desperate father was not even sure that Jesus could succeed; hence his statement, “If you can do anything”. However, the father was honest enough to admit his own unbelief and to ask the Lord to help him and his son. Jesus did cast out the demon and restore the boy to his father.

The main lesson of this miracle is the power of faith to overcome the enemy. Why had the nine disciples failed? Because they had been careless in their personal spiritual walk and had neglected prayer and fasting.

The authority that Jesus had given them was effective only if exercised by faith, but faith must be cultivated through spiritual discipline and devotion. It may be that the absence of their Master, or His taking the three disciples with Him and leaving them behind, had dampened their spiritual fervor and diminished their faith. Not only did their failure embarrass them, but it also robbed the Lord of glory and gave the enemy opportunity to criticize. It is our faith in Him that glorifies God.

I must be careful to cultivate a life of faith with the discipline needed to glorify Jesus.

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