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Faith vs. Trust

Matthew 17:14-20

14 As they came up to the crowd, a man approached Yeshua, kneeled down in front of him, 15 and said, “Sir, have mercy on my son, because he is an epileptic and has such terrible fits that he often falls into the fire or into the water. 16 I brought him to your talmidim (disciples/students), but they couldn’t heal him.” 17 Yeshua answered, “Perverted people, without any trust! How long will I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring him here to me!” 18 Yeshua rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, so that from that moment he was healed.

19 Then the talmidim went to him privately and said, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” 20 He said to them, “Because you have such little trust! Yes! I tell you that if you have trust as tiny as a mustard seed, you will be able to say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there!’ and it will move; indeed, nothing will be impossible for you!” 21 [a]

I'm almost afraid to write about these verses. Such controversy can be stirred up with what has been written here. Faith, trust, healing, no healing... So many things to "stir the pot." And then, if you notice it says verse 21 and has an [a] next to it. I investigated what that means and that could cause more questions. I don't claim to have answers on this subject. Written below is what I have found to be my thoughts for today.

These verses are sometimes used to condemn people that are not "healed" or used against people who are not able to "heal" others. These verses bring up questions like, "What does it mean to have faith?" "If I am not able to "heal someone" do I not trust enough?" "What if I can't 'see' demons and don't know how to cast one out?" "If I'm not healed do I not have enough faith?"

Some versions use the word "faith" instead of "trust" here. It would translate to saying that you have "faith as tiny as a mustard seed." Jesus would have told the disciples

that they have "such little faith."

I believe there is a difference between faith and trust. Faith is the "substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen." Faith is believing in something we CAN'T see (right now). This is why we have "faith" in God. We can't see Him, but we have faith, based on things that have been written and shared through the years, that He exists.

Trust, from what I can read and understand, is based on something that we CAN see or something that we have tangibly experienced. When we are children, we trust that our parent(s) will take care of us. We can see them and hear them. They are with us. We trust people at the bank to handle our funds properly. We might begin with faith, because we don't "know" the people at the bank when we first begin working with them. However, as time moves on and we gain knowledge of who they are it changes to trust.

In most situations, over time, faith in what we don't see turns into trust because we see tangible evidence.

The disciples were in this situation with Jesus. When they first chose to follow Him it was based on faith. They didn't really know WHO He was, but they knew He had something they wanted. As time went on, and they saw how He responded to people and situations, Jesus wanted their TRUST to grow. He wanted them to truly surrender themselves to Him. The disciples were blessed with the opportunity to BE WITH Jesus. They were able to WATCH Him heal and cast out demons, and I think this is the difference for us today.

We often want to "judge" or criticize people when they don't seem to have as much faith or trust as we do. The Word tells us that faith is a gift. I believe that some people do have a greater level of faith than others. Time, life experiences etc... will affect how faith operates in each of our lives.

What we need to remember is that we do not tangibly have Jesus with us. Yes, He left us Holy Spirit, but as a comforter. Trust may become more difficult for some people since we cannot tangibly see or feel Jesus. Trusting that He will do something might be more difficult for some.

Criticizing someone for having "less faith" or "not trusting enough" can be damaging. This is especially true when it comes to a relationship with Jesus and the Father. We need to be careful how we approach others. Jesus had the right to judge the disciples because He was the Father and could see hearts. We are not God and do not have the right to operate as God. We need to work with encouraging others and build their faith and trust, not discourage and tear them down.

There needs to be a balance as we walk out communication with people about faith, trust, healing, why people aren't healed... We need to challenge each other and spur each other on to build one another up, but we need to do it in such a way that their faith and trust are strengthened, not diminished.

I believe God can, and still does, heal today. I also know that everything happens in HIS time. There was a blind man that had been blind from birth for no reason other than to show the power of Jesus "at the right time."

God knows what He is doing. And when it is the right time our faith is strengthened and becomes sight, TRUST increases. Let's encourage one another and build each other up. As we LISTEN to Holy Spirit we will increase our understanding of when and how to spur each other on in this race of life.

Love and blessings,


PS I don't want to make this longer, but I do want to address the issue of "missing verses." There are various reasons why newer translations eliminate some verses. Sometimes they were written and part of another gospel's telling of a story and were added to writings of one of the other gospels, so not part of the author's original intent. Sometimes, as scholars are able to read earlier versions because of better technology, they realize that they were not included in early writings and became a part later. For each situation, we must not become upset when we see a "missing verse." The KJV did not always get it "right" and we cannot hold that to such high esteem.

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