FROM MT. IMPOSSIBLE TO MT. FAITH
20 And He said to them, “Because of the littleness of your faith; for truly I say to you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.”
As a husband, dad, employee, employer, or son, life hands us many opportunities to either exercise faith in God or give in to worry and fear. You and God know the situations and circumstances you are encountering right now. Some of those are difficult and some may even be labeled, “impossible.” In Matthew 17:20 Jesus promises that if you have faith “nothing will be impossible to you”. Since faith is the key, it is vital that we understand what faith is and how to apply it. The disciples could not cast out the demon from a young man. The boy’s dad approached Jesus and told Him, “I brought him to Your disciples, and they could not cure him” (Matthew 17:16). That is a picture of what lack of faith won’t do. Simply put, faith is taking God at His Word, believing He will do what He said He will do every time. Consider these truths:
I. Faith Doesn’t Ask “HOW;” it Focuses on “WHO”
Faith doesn’t focus on how, when, where, or what—only WHO. A living God is at work all around you. Faith makes a transfer from your hands to God’s. Faith looks singly upon our God Who has all power, is present everywhere at all times, and knows everything past, present, and future.
II. Faith Acts in the Now
Jesus said, “If you have faith…” (Matthew 17:20). Faith is making God’s past promises present tense. What God said thousands of years ago could be updated in the now. Faith is proactive. You first have to believe God before you can see God work. While the world wants to see it first, then they will believe it; faith believes it first and then keeps believing, knowing God will reveal Himself.
III. Faith Makes the First Move
Notice that faith precedes the mountain moving, it doesn’t follow it. You make the first move. God has promised so you do something. You dare to believe God. You believe not based upon what you can see, but based solely upon what God has said.
IV. Faith Grows
A mustard seed grows, it doesn’t stay tiny. The idea is that you have faith but your faith grows. The more you exercise faith the bigger it becomes. If you do not believe God for bigger and bigger things in your life, your faith is not growing as God intends.
V. Faith Doesn’t Give Up
A mustard seed will find a way to grow. The kind of faith that moves mountains is a hang-in-there, stubborn kind of faith. It refuses to give an inch on what God has said. Faith keeps on believing what God said regardless of the circumstances.
VI. Faith Stands on What God Said
You either believe what God said or you don’t. Faith is firmly grounded upon, “Thus saith the Lord.” The foundation that faith is built upon is Scripture. “Confronted with Jesus you have to say, ‘I believe that or I don’t.’ It’s very powerful” (Actress Patricia Heaton).
VII. Faith Agrees with God’s Word
Notice that in this verse the word “Say” is used twice: once by Jesus and once referring to you. Faith acts on what God said by agreeing with Jesus. Faith keeps coming back to “But God said, But God said.”
1. Faith Looks at the Size of God, Not the Size of the Mountain: The mustard seed is tiny, yet this seed has been known to lift large paving stones an inch or two from the earth. Inside that seed is the potential for something big. So how big is your God? Is He bigger than the impossibility facing you?
2. Faith Takes Time: A mustard seed planted doesn’t shoot up immediately; it takes time. Once you have faith it is then on God. He has this timing thing down perfectly. God wants to teach you some things while you wait on Him to do what He promised He would do.
NAME YOUR MOUNTAIN AND DO WHAT JESUS SAID TO MAKE IT MOVE
Is Jesus saying that literal mountains will move? No. That would be a show of the flesh. That would be a performance where man gets the credit. He is referring to the size of the problems and obstacles. A mountain is big, it’s obvious, and it’s there. Jesus said, “This Mountain.” You have to admit you have one and that you are helpless to do anything about it on your own. Give your mountain a name—“Mt. I Don’t Know What I’m Going to Do,” “Mt. Financial Need,” “Mt. Broken Relationship,” “Mt. Debt,” “Mt. Disappointment,” “Mt. Disease.”
Jesus gives us four Mountain Moving Principles:
1. You Must Believe That God Can Do Something About It
Do you really believe God can handle what you are facing? Until you do, nothing will change. Jesus gives the reason the disciples could not cast this demon out of the young man—their faith was too small.
58 And He did not do many miracles there because of their unbelief.
Notice the phrase, “Say to this mountain.” Say means to break the silence, to call upon God. Prayer dares to ask God to intervene. Prayer may change you so you can see how to move your mountain. R.G. Lee said, “When we pray, we link ourselves with the inexhaustible power of the universe.”
3. Let God Do the Moving, and Don’t Try to Tell Him How
“…you shall say to this mountain ‘move’ from here to there; and it shall move.” The word move means to change, to pass. In other words it gets out of your way. It will no longer hold you back or hinder you. But you must let God decide how to move your mountain. Stay out of the “How Department.”
4. Wait On God and Something WILL Happen
Jesus promised something would happen. If you follow what Jesus said, something is going to happen. How exciting! God will do something in His time. It is important to release the timing to God. You must trust God enough to let Him control how your mountain is moved out of the way. Vance Havner said: “Faith will not always get for us what we want but it will get what God wants us to have.”
May your faith begin to move your mountain right now and your “Mt. Impossible” become “Mt. Faith.”