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Daily Devotion | Ulf Ekman

DAILY DEVOTION


2019-03-22

The Power of Unbelief

Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. And He marveled because of their unbelief.
Mark 6:5-6
Only a few minor healings occurred in the synagogue in Nazareth. The atmosphere was heavy with unbelief. The unbelief was so great that Jesus marveled over it. He had marveled in Capernaum, too, but then it was over the faith of the Gentile centurion. In Nazareth Jesus marveled over the lack of faith. Unbelief can place its dark and heavy hand over an entire church, an entire denomination or even an entire city. Where unbelief reigns, there is no sense of expectation of what God will do. God is reduced to some formula, a doctrine or a ritual and there is an absence of love, sincerity, fellowship and expectation of God. No wonder Jesus reproached His disciples for their unbelief following His resurrection. He was well aware how destructive unbelief, doubt and skepticism could be.

Some people consider doubt a virtue and almost brag about their skepticism. Jesus never did. He never complimented unbelief. On the contrary, He cured it. Everyone is plagued by doubt at some point, just as the disciples sometimes doubted. But they never accepted doubt as a lifestyle. The things Jesus did were always greater than and different from what the disciples expected of Him, and in this way Jesus constantly challenged them to grow in faith.

In Nazareth unbelief blew like a chilly draft through the entire society. And Jesus was unable to do any mighty miracles there. It is not written that He didn’t want to perform miracles; it says He could not. Jesus, the Son of God, come in the flesh, was hindered by the pessimism of the townsfolk! The same is true today. When carnal Christians are unwilling to trust in God because of other gods in their lives, it binds the hands of Jesus. Therefore, we must repent. Repentance brings about a change in the atmosphere, and faith and hunger for God are aroused. Then Jesus can do whatever He desires.

Prayer

God in heaven, create an atmosphere of faith everywhere Your Word is preached so that You are able to do everything You desire. In Jesus’ name. Amen.