What Jesus Did! 'Unable to Meet the Need' — Mark 9:16-18

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

"What is all this arguing about?" Jesus asked.

One of the men in the crowd spoke up and said, "Teacher, I brought my son so you could heal him. He is possessed by an evil spirit that won't let him talk. And whenever this spirit seizes him, it throws him violently to the ground. Then he foams at the mouth and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid. So I asked your disciples to cast out the evil spirit, but they couldn't do it."

— Mark 9:16-18 NLT

Key Thought

Does this sound familiar to you? "They couldn't do it!" Ouch! Embarrassing! My mom and dad would not let any of their three boys say, "I can't..." If we did, they were quick to say, "Can't never could do anything!" As followers of Jesus, they raised us to think in terms of God's possibilities and not our personal limitations. As disciples, we seldom find out what is genuinely possible until we reach the end of our abilities and admit that for us the situation is impossible. However, rather than being discouraged, we know that the situation is impossible for us only because we haven't invited God into the middle of our mess to do the impossible for his glory.

Today's Prayer

Father, forgive me for my arrogance and thinking that I am somehow necessary in your work. I recognize that my only sufficiency for ministry comes from my weakness being offered to your service and empowered by your grace. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 2 Corinthians 4:7
  • 2 Corinthians 12:10
  • Isaiah 35:1-4


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Illustration of Mark 9:16-18 NLT — "What is all this arguing about?"

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.