Pastor Thomas Smith   -  

“And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.”┬áMark 11:22, 23

These four words carry such profound meaning, “Have faith in God.” Anyone who has been saved for any length of time knows the importance of living by faith. We also learn that the life of faith is sometimes easier talked about than experienced. There are probably a multitude of reasons for that. We have been brought up in a world that relies heavily on the natural senses (sight, touch, hearing) and is not inclined to trust in God and His promises. Also, we have grown to depend on our abilities and resources rather than trust the Lord to work in and through our circumstances and us.

Our natural instincts seem to be to do all that we can to solve our problem before we turn to God. In other words, God is our last resort, not our first option. Whatever the reasons may be, we do not naturally live the life of faith that God commands of us. This is something we all must work on because it is one of the key components of the Christian life.

In our text, Jesus was following up on an incident that occurred the day before. He, being hungry, went to a fig tree to gather some fruit. Having found no fruit, Jesus said to the tree, “No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever”(4). The next morning as they went by this same tree, the disciples noticed that the tree was withered from the roots. Jesus used this occasion to teach the disciples about faith, and spoke the words of our text, admonishing them to “Have faith in God”(22).

We need to have a stronger, more active faith in God. Jesus had perfect faith. He always knew what the Father wanted to do, when it was to be done, and how it was to be done. One of the things that Jesus tried to get His disciples to understand was the role that faith played in His earthly journey. He lived in unity with the Father. He spoke words that He knew the Father was saying, and He did what He perceived the Father to be doing. He did not act independently of the Father, but in harmony with the Father. This is how He wants us to live, having faith in God.