Jesus heals a boy possessed by an impure spirit

This is written by Matt Windsor-Richards. A smiler who loves Sadie + two boys he begat; Luke & Isaac. He loves the fun of playing with life, especially as actor alter ego Matthew Rutherford.

Mark 9:14-29

Jesus heals a boy possessed by an impure spirit
14 When they came to the other disciples, they saw a large crowd around them and the teachers of the law arguing with them. 15 As soon as all the people saw Jesus, they were overwhelmed with wonder and ran to greet him.

16 'What are you arguing with them about?' he asked.

17 A man in the crowd answered, 'Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech. 18 Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not.'

19 'You unbelieving generation,' Jesus replied, 'how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.'

20 So they brought him. When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth.

21 Jesus asked the boy's father, 'How long has he been like this?'

'From childhood,' he answered. 22 'It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.'

23 "'If you can"?' said Jesus. 'Everything is possible for one who believes.'

24 Immediately the boy's father exclaimed, 'I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!'

25 When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the impure spirit. ‘You deaf and mute spirit,’ he said, ‘I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.’

26 The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, 'He's dead.' 27 But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up.

28 After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, 'Why couldn't we drive it out?'

29 He replied, 'This kind can come out only by prayer.'


Our battle with Satan is a continual unavoidable struggle for both Christian and non-Christian alike.

Unsurprisingly, the emphasis will be to undermine our faith in God. Actors have to bring story/history with them into any scene they are playing, sometimes something immediate as well as something held deeper. Imagine the scene for some of the disciples just prior to our passage today, having come down the mountainside where they had just seen Moses and Elijah talking with Jesus in the transfiguration. Within hours of unforgettable elation and faith building brilliance, they are plunged into an equally real presence of evil. The beauty on the mountainside must have made the ugliness that followed seem even more brutal and it needed Jesus to intervene.

The passage ends with, "This (problem) can (only be solved) by prayer". Whatever we are facing, meeting in prayer with the creator of the universe will increase our faith in Him. He loves every single one of us equally without exception and delights in us. So when we allow the Holy Spirit to empower us in His strength rather than our own, we will be more than conquerors and are armoured to fear nothing. Faith is a gift from God that He keeps on offering out to us when we surrender ourselves to Him.
I have always loved the honest father's exclamation, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief". I forget that I need to pray for protection so that the inevitable attacks, or certain situations that are out of my control, will be met with a daily dose of faith. Faith freely given for me to take hold of and with the Holy Spirit's help, will overcome any unbelief.

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