Convincing evidence in the form of lack of influence and power, failure to minister to a modern generation and inability to overcome sin and evil demonstrates the church needs help for our unbelief. An unacceptable level of unbelief has resulted in Christians who are daunted in their quest for perfection. We have resigned ourselves to a merely mundane existence, excitedly expressing the truth of an all powerful God, while failing to seek Him for help for our unbelief.
In a 2007 edition of the Sydney Morning Herald there was an article which discussed the plight of rural farmers who were facing a severe drought in Hunter, Australia. Considering the farmers virtual state of ruin, the Rural Assistance Authority devised a plan which could help them make it through the difficult times, possibly enabling them to pass their farms on to succeeding generations. The plan was based on what was deemed exceptional circumstances.
These farmers who were facing exceptional circumstances would be eligible for federal and state financial assistance, along with family counseling. Although these land owners were under tremendous stress, there being a fear that some would commit suicide, very few stepped forward to ask for help. They were keeping a stiff upper lip in regard to the generous offer, possibly assuming they were better off than some others.
Members of the body of Christ today, like those farmers of Hunter, are forced to deal with some exceptional circumstances. And in the same manner, we are refusing to truly seek help for our unbelief. Unlike the man in Mark 9:14-29, who, although weak and lacking great faith, cried out to Christ for help. Church we must stop glossing over and denying our pitiful state and seriously begin crying out to God to help our unbelief.
Surely, some of you are objecting even now declaring that you have faith, that you truly believe. Well where is the proof of your belief? There must be a realization that meeting weekly, as some will do, reading the bible occasionally, and praying sometimes does not constitute a believing church.
The witness of 1 John 5:4-5, is “Whatsoever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcomes the world, but be that believes that Jesus is the Son of God”. Are you an overcomer, do you exercise conquering power in the parcel of the world in which you live? This is the test of belief; and we, the church, need help for our unbelief.
This man, of mark 9, brought his demon possessed son to be healed; but, he could find no help in the church. The deaf and dumb spirit was throwing his boy into the fire, and sometimes into the water. The man and his son found themselves in an exceptional circumstance. Yet, the church assembled could do nothing, leaving them disappointed and in despair.
People of God, our sons and daughters are confronting exceptional circumstances in this present era. They are thrown by Satan into the fires of undisciplined passion, peer pressure, and violence. Demons are attempting to drown them in the waters of fear, doubt, and anxiety. Where is our heartfelt cry for them? Lift your voices for them; crying God might grant help for our unbelief.
The church, in weakness and unbelief, like the man crying for his son, is resigned to “if” anything can be done. However, Jesus is saying to us, “what do you mean, “if”; all things are possible to him who believes”. The reason we remain in unbelief is because we are a faithless generation, refusing to trust God completely. Matthew 17, says, we are a “perverse generation”. We have become a people given to perverting the right ways of God. While sin and disobedience lies at the door, the church cannot be confident to exercise belief.
Help for our unbelief can be secured only when we come to an end of ourselves. The disciples were hardly men of sin above any others; they were persons who desired greatly to walk with God. Nevertheless, faults of pride, selfish desire and jealously arose among them. At this point, they failed to allow the life of Christ to fill them. Therefore, they could do nothing.
Are you seeking accolades within the family of God, do you want to wag your own tail, and aspire for recognition and high office in the church? We must understand, to do so means we are not abiding in Christ. We must come to an absolute end of self to obtain help for our unbelief. Paul declares in 2 Corinthians 4:10, “always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body”.
Becoming the people of belief means that like Paul, we must be “crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me”. Jesus was not on a fast; nor was he praying for the evil spirit to come out of the boy. He simply commanded that the spirit come out. He had ability to command such because His total life was saturated with prayer and abstinence from the world’s defilements. When the church begins to pray and abstain from the allurements of this world, we will get help for our unbelief.
Then, we will no longer cry out in weakness, as the man did for his son. We will assume a bold cry, even a shout like John, “prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God”. Then, “the eyes of the blind will be opened, ears of the deaf will be unstopped, the lame shall leap as a hart, and the tongue of the dumb shall sing. In the exceptional circumstances of our wildernesses, waters shall break out, and streams in our deserts. Indeed, the church will be a place where we find help for our unbelief.