Summary: What spiritual problems can we have while still on earth and what is the solution?
Please open God’s Word to Mark 9….
A bit of introduction before reading our passage: We noted last week that the beginning of Mark 9 tells the story of the reality of God, Jesus Christ, people, and God’s Word. Jesus took 3 of the disciples to a mountain to see that reality. The remaining disciples were left at the bottom of the hill and we will note that the Jewish religious leaders ended up arguing with those disciples without Jesus present.
Let us remember that the Jewish religious leaders hated Jesus and have been trying to trap Him in some way. With these things in mind, read along with me now Mark 9:14-27….
Let us summarize the story…
v14: a large crowd and religious leaders surrounded the 9 disciples arguing with them!
Look again at v15…. It doesn’t tell us directly, so why do you think the people were amazed and excited to see Jesus??
Remember Moses after he came down from the mountain of God? It is possible that Jesus had a special glow about Him as He came down from the mountain. Since there was an argument, maybe they were excited to finally get an answer directly from Jesus? Or maybe, because they were arguing, the people were embarrassed to see Jesus? And so, Jesus asked them the topic of debate. (v15-16) But let us remember that Jesus is God and He knew their hearts. Jesus already knew the answer to His question; it was a teaching moment for all.
And so, what can we note from v17-18?
- A father had a boy who was demon possessed
- The disciples could not heal the boy
From v19, how did Jesus see the heart of the father and the crowd??
v19: the people still lacked faith in Jesus Christ as God!
And so, we don’t see a direct answer to Jesus‘ question. What do you think the crowd and teachers of the law were arguing about with the disciples??
Remember that the religious leaders have been trying to trap Jesus and the disciples could not heal the spiritually troubled boy! Likely, the disciples were confronted by the Jewish leaders with their belief in Jesus as Messiah since they could not heal the boy!!
A quick application question for us today: How should we Christians respond to people confronting us with our belief?
We can also note from v19 that Jesus was warning them to have faith in Him now because Jesus will not offer the truth forever. And since Jesus’ ministry on earth was not yet completed, Jesus asked for the boy with the intent of healing him to show that He is indeed God.
v20: The evil spirit immediately recognized Jesus!
Now again, we know that Jesus is God and knows everyone’s heart but we note that Jesus asked a question to the father. Knowing what the answer was going to be Jesus took the opportunity to challenge everyone (and this includes us today).
v22: tells us the lack of faith of the father
v23: Everything is possible with Jesus Christ!
And so, what do you think the father meant in v24??
We noted that Jesus confronted the father with his lack of faith; it is likely the father was asking for more miraculous signs before truly believing in Jesus as God!
In conclusion to this story, Jesus reveals His power over evil and death in v25-27!
Jesus indicated that He was losing His patience but yet still performed a miracle in public. Even after He died and rose from the dead, what are examples of Jesus’ patience with people??
So most of us know how patient Jesus was with His disciples and we will read some of it in future passages in Mark. Let us summarize the problems people had in Mark 9:14-27, including the disciples.
1. People lacked faith in Jesus Christ.
2. People lacked the power of prayer!
3. The father, representing many, was impatient with godly revelations.
But what do disciples of Christ today have that the disciples before Jesus ascended to heaven didn’t have??
We Christians today have God Himself within us and empowering us! 1 Corinthians 3:16 tells us this. God the Holy Spirit lives in every Christian!
And 2 Peter 1:3 states that God has given us Christians everything we need for life and godliness! We should not have the same problems as the people in our passage today right?
I know personally, I still forget to involve Jesus Christ in everything in my life.
I know personally that I still don’t pray enough.
I know personally, I get impatient with God.
How do we solve our problems?
The solution is right in front of us isn’t.
First of all, the start of a solution to any problem is to admit you have a problem.