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Jump-Start Your Day

Thursday, January 5th, '18

All rights reserved © message by Kris Jackson

 

THE MISSING LINK: FAITH

"If you can believe, all things are possible to him that believes" (Mark 9:23)

"Lord, I believe; help thou my unbelief" (Mark 9:24)

 

The fateful night the angel of the Lord freed Peter from prison and his scheduled execution the whole church was at John Mark's mother's house all night long praying fervently for his release. But when Peter knocked on the door where they were praying, a teenage girl named Rhoda answered the knock and for joy left Peter standing on the porch and ran into the prayer meeting hollering, "Peter is outside, Peter is outside!" Those praying quieted her down and replied with doubt, "You're crazy girl. It must be his angel. Peter must already be dead!" (Acts 12:15 paraphrased) Think of that, going through the motions, praying, praying all night long, even praying with intensity, but not believing that God could perform the needed miracle. They had zeal without faith.

 

And the leper had worship without faith. Falling at Jesus' feet he "worshiped him, saying, Lord, if..." (Matthew 8:2) There are millions in the world worshiping Jesus this very moment who are not receiving anything from Him. Worship is great, don't take me wrong, but the Bible doesn't say "without worship it is impossible to please him..." The missing link is "faith" (Hebrews 11:6). His greatest pleasure is to be believed, which would imply that His greatest displeasure is to be doubted. "If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean". Need was presented but not faith. Of course, Jesus cleansed the leper anyway out of His rich compassion but it was not for any merit on the leper's part, because "if" is not the kind of language that moves heaven.

 

It is also possible to have crowds without faith. That happened frequently in the gospels. In one place "the power of the Lord was present to heal" (Luke 5:17) but no one got healed, not until four dudes tore a hole in the tiling and let a crippled man down by ropes into Jesus' presence. "When Jesus saw their faith" He healed the paralytic (Mark 2:5). When the woman with the issue of blood crawled her way to the hem of Jesus' garment there was a crowd around Him but no faith. When she touched, Jesus said, "...thy faith has made you whole". The missing link is always faith.

 

The Jewish scribes had knowledge without faith. They knew according to the Bible that Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem of Judea (Matthew 2:4-6) but did they go to Bethlehem to find Christ for themselves? No, it was wise men, foreigners from a far away land that brought gold, frankincense and myrrh, and they brought it "by faith". Peter said to "add to your faith...knowledge" (2 Peter 1:5) Faith comes first. Knowledge by itself just clutters the brain. Faith moves mountains.

 

Finally, the distressed dad of the lunatic lad had faith without faith. I know that makes no sense but he was trying to believe without really believing. "Lord, I believe, help thou my unbelief". We all have a little of that mixture in us. There is a natural faith and a supernatural faith. The natural believes God can; the supernatural believes God will. The father came to Jesus assured that He could heal the seizures but having, for so many years, seen the inner torture of his son as demons tried to throw him into fires and waters to destroy him (Mark 9:22), his faith, as we would expect, wavered. Every distraction has to be ignored. Faith locks on to its target. That dad finally did and a tormented child was freed from the enemy's grip. Make much of faith. Develop it, cultivate it, loose it, and it will bring miracles into your life.


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