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

Sunday, August 15, 2021

Afterward the disciples asked Jesus privately, "Why couldn't we cast out that demon?"

"You don't have enough faith," Jesus told them. "I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it would move. Nothing would be impossible."

— Matthew 17:19-20 NLT

Key Thought

Small mindedness is pretty bad, but small faith is much worse. Small mindedness keeps us from seeing the grandeur, the expanse, and the plan of God. Small faith means we see little more than what we can do ourselves.

Jesus had given his followers authority to cast out demons and cure diseases. The issue was 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 through them.

So many of us lost the faith that Jesus will do what he promised. Jesus reminds us that it doesn't take a lot of faith — just a mustard-seed amount. If that's there, then through Jesus, 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, strength, and guidance. I make this request and this commitment from the depths of my soul, in Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Matthew 10:1, 8
  • Hebrews 11:1-3
  • Hebrews 12:1-2


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Illustration of Matthew 17:19-20 NLT — "I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it would move. Nothing would be impossible."

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.