What Jesus Did! 'Just a Mustard Seed' — Matthew 17:19-20

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Then the followers came to Jesus alone. They said, "We tried to force the demon out of the boy, but we could not. Why were we not able to make the demon go out?" Jesus answered, "You were not able to make the demon go out, because your faith is too small. I tell you the truth. If your faith is as big as a mustard seed, then you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there.' And it will move. All things will be possible for you."
— Matthew 17:19-20
Illustration of Matthew 17:19-20 — "We tried to force the demon out of the boy, but we could not. Why were we not able to make the demon go out?"

Key Thought

Small mindedness is not the worst of things. Smallness in faith is the worst thing. Small mindedness keeps us from seeing the grandeur, the expanse, and the plan of God. Small in faith means we see little more than what we can pull off ourselves.
Jesus had said that he gave his followers authority to cast out demons and cure diseases. The issue is not whether they were capable or had the power. They simply had very small faith. Now I'm not sure if the problem was caused by Jesus' absence, the seriousness of the boy's condition, the hardness of their hearts, or all three combined. However, they lost faith that Jesus would do what he said he would do.
So many of us lost that faith. Jesus reminds us that it doesn't take a lot—just a mustard seed amount. If that's there, then incubated with faith it becomes powerful and mighty.

Today's Prayer

Father, I ask you to grow my faith stronger and bolder. I believe dear Father, but help me believe even more! I will seek to serve you trusting in your supply of power and strength. I ask you from the depths of my soul in Jesus' name. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

Jesus and the followers went back to the people. A man came to Jesus and bowed before him. The man said, "Lord, be kind to my son. He has epilepsy and is suffering very much. My son often falls into the fire or into the water. I brought my son to your followers, but they could not heal him." Jesus answered, "You people have no faith. Your lives are all wrong. How long must I stay with you? How long must I continue to be patient with you? Bring the boy here." Jesus gave a strong command to the demon inside the boy. Then the demon came out of the boy, and the boy was healed. Then the followers came to Jesus alone. They said, "We tried to force the demon out of the boy, but we could not. Why were we not able to make the demon go out?" Jesus answered, "You were not able to make the demon go out, because your faith is too small. I tell you the truth. If your faith is as big as a mustard seed, then you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there.' And it will move. All things will be possible for you." Later, the followers met together in Galilee. Jesus said to the followers, "The Son of Man will be given into the control of men. Those men will kill the Son of Man. But on the third day the Son of Man will be raised from death." The followers were very sad {to hear that Jesus would be killed}. Jesus and his followers went to Capernaum. In Capernaum some men came to Peter. They were the men that collected the two-drachma tax. They asked, "Does your teacher pay the two-drachma tax?" Peter answered, "Yes, Jesus pays the tax." Peter went into the house where Jesus was. Before Peter could speak, Jesus said to him, "The kings on the earth get different kinds of taxes from people. But who are the people that pay the taxes? Are these people the king's children? Or is it other people that pay the taxes? What do you think?" Peter answered, "The other people pay the taxes." Jesus said, "Then the children of the king don't have to pay taxes. But we don't want to make these taxcollectors angry. So {pay the tax in this way}: Go to the lake and fish. After you catch the first fish, open the fish's mouth. Inside its mouth you will find a four-drachma coin. Take that coin and give it to the tax collectors. That will pay the tax for you and me."

Matthew 17:14-27

Related Scripture Readings

Jesus asked the boy's father, "How long has this been happening to the boy?" The father answered, "Since he was very young. The spirit often throws him into a fire or into water to kill him. If you can do anything for him, please have pity on us and help us." Jesus said to the father, "You said, 'Help him if you can.' All things are possible for the person that believes." The father became very excited. He said, "I do believe. Help me to believe more!"

Mark 9:21-24

I may speak in different languages of men or even angels. But if I don't have love, then I am only a noisy bell or a ringing cymbal. I may have the gift of prophecy ; I may understand all the secret things {of God} and know everything; and I may have faith so great that I can move mountains. But even with all these things, if I don't have love, then I am nothing.

1 Corinthians 13:1-2

"And why do you worry about clothes? Look at the flowers in the field. See how they grow. They don't work or make clothes for themselves. But I tell you that even Solomon, the great and rich king, was not dressed as beautifully as one of these flowers. God clothes the grass in the field like that. That grass is living today, but tomorrow it is thrown into the fire to be burned. So you know that God will clothe you much more. Don't have so little faith!

Matthew 6:28-30

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.