Summary: There is a connection between POWER and PRAYER. When even limited faith is focused on the power of Jesus, He can do great things in your life.
“From Failure To Faith”
INTRODUCTION: We continue in our series on ‘Great Events In The Live And Ministry Of Christ’.
Jesus had just come from the mountain-top experience of the Transfiguration (last Sunday’s message). Jesus had allowed his glory to shine through, as He and the Disciples experienced a taste of Heaven.
NOW … they come down to the realities of earth. While Jesus and the 3 Disciples were up on the mountain, a man brings his son to the other 9 Disciples.. His son is demon possessed.
We find here a picture of ALL the lost. YOU … before you were saved. YOU … if you have never trusted Christ to save you.
“BUT” … you might say … “I was never like that … I was never demon possessed like this young man. I wasn’t a BAD lost person.”
EVERY lost person is under the bondage of sin. Satan has established his throne in your heart. Ephesians 2:2 – “in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.”
Nobody is “more lost” than anyone else. BUT … Some lost are worse than others. It’s like being a “little” pregnant … or a “little” dead. You either are … or you’re not.
I was saved when I was 11. I wasn’t “bad” … BUT … I was under the bondage of sin … and Satan had established his throne in my heart.
Some 11 year olds have been in & out of detention centers. Some have committed murder. Some can swear and make a sailor blush! I wasn’t like that. BUT … I was just as lost as they are.
If YOU were never living at the bottom of the sin-barrel … then thank God for that! BUT … just remember … ALL LOST are in the same boat. ALTHOUGH, some will live in better cabins than others … their DESTINY is the same … the Lake of Fire. There will be a lot of good, moral people in Hell.
9:14 – The Scribes were giving the Disciples a hard time. Jesus had been gone with 3 of His Disciples to the mountain-top, and the Scribes took advantage of His absence.
LESSON: Satan attacks you when you’re out of fellowship with Jesus. When you haven’t spoken to Jesus in awhile, the Devil will take advantage of it. When you miss church for a few Sundays, Satan will attack your faith. He knows when you haven’t been with Jesus.
9:14-18 – The Scribes are giving the Disciples a hard time:
“What’s the matter … this one too hard for you? If you can really cast our demons, do it NOW! That’s what we thought … you’re a bunch of imposters … hypocrites!”
When the world looks at you … WHAT DO THEY SEE? They see that you’ve got the same problems they have (you’re not immune). BUT … if they see that you don’t have the POWER of Christ in your life … you’re no better off than they are. BUT … when they see that Christ in your life makes a difference in how you handle your problems … they will see the power of Christ.
The Disciples were powerless to cast out this demon. YET … they had cast our demons before. Mt. 10:1, Mark 3:14-15. When Jesus was out of sight, He was out of mind … and they were out of power! Their former success made them forget WHY they were successful – JESUS! Pride had crept in. BUT … this time, they couldn’t do it.
9:16 – Jesus to the rescue! Like a knight in shining armor, riding on a white horse, Jesus comes to their rescue.
9:19 – “faithless generation” – Who was Jesus talking about? The Disciples … Scribes … Jews in general … crowd … father …?
I don’t think Jesus had anybody in particular in mind. We are ALL guilty of lacking faith.
Their lack of trust BOTHERED Jesus.
ILL.: “I don’t trust Ray Scott.”
o “Has he ever LIED to you?” NO … But I don’t trust him.
o “Has he ever CHEATED you? NO …But …
o “Has he ever … been UNFAITHFUL … UNTRUSTWORTHY … FAILED you …?” NO … But …
o “Just the opposite … he has been loyal … giving … unselfish … honest … BUT … I just don’t trust him.”
That would bother me … it bothered Jesus. After all they’d seen & heard … they didn’t trust Jesus.
o There would be no SALVATION – We aren’t saved BY faith … but THROUGH faith. Ephesians 2:8 – “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:”