Having the Faith of a Mustard Seed – Matthew 17:20

He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

Matthew 17:20 NIV

This is such an interesting and exciting verse. Want to be able to move a mountain; or spread your wings and fly; or go back in time to fix a mistake? All of us likely have things like that we would love to be able to do. And this verse seems to promise us that if we only had the faith of a mustard seed we should be able to do it. And yet the impossible always remains out of reach. Is it my faith? Or have I misunderstood this verse?

When you look at the context, you find the disciples asking about their inability to cast out a demon that had afflicted a boy. Jesus’ response to them is that their inability is due to their lack of faith. Casting out a demon was beyond what they could do on their own. But faith would connect them into a power source, God, that did have the ability to cast it out.

And what was true for the disciples then is true for us today. When we face mountains, or obstacles, in our lives today, how do we move them? Only by faith; trust in the one who made us and called us into his service. If we will trust in him, then nothing he calls us to do will be impossible. The journey may not always be as smooth as we would like, but faith in the one who called us to that journey will see us through to the end.

I can do all this through him who gives me strength.Philippians 4:13

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