Faith is the Key Matt 8:10 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus mentions great faith and little faith several times between Matt 8 and Matt 17. Looking at each of these instances shows us that faith is the key ingredient in the strength of our relationship with the Lord. Look at these examples:
The centurion with the sick servant – Matt 8:5-10 – the centurion sent men to Jesus to request the he would heal his servant who was sick of the palsy. When Jesus agreed to come and heal him, the centurion sent word that it was not necessary for Jesus to enter his house. He could just speak the word and his servant would be healed. Men under authority just speak the word and those under them do it. Jesus marveled at his great faith. The centurion knew who Jesus was and he believed his words, “I will come and heal him.” That’s the key.
The disciples in the ship – Matt 8:18, 23-27 – the disciples were commanded by Jesus “to depart unto the other side.” Following his commandment, they entered the ship. When the tempest arose, and Jesus was asleep, the disciples were fearful and said, “Lord, save us: we perish.” Jesus said that they had little faith. Why? Because they didn’t believe him and they didn’t realize who he was. He said, “depart unto the other side,” and they weren’t at the other side yet. They weren’t going to perish “in the sea.”
The man sick of the palsy carried by four – Matt 9:2 – these four men saw that there was no way to enter the house, so they tore up the roof and came through that way. They knew that Jesus would heal the man if they could just get to him. And so they didn’t let the crowd or the obstacle of the roof stop them. That’s great faith.
The woman with the issue of blood – Matt 9:20-22 – this woman believed that if she could just touch the hem off Jesus’ garment, she would be healed. She touched and she was healed. No one had ever done anything like that before. But they sure caught on after she did it [Matt 14:34-36]. Her faith was great because she knew Jesus and knew he had the power to heal her. The fact that Jesus was surrounded by a crowd and was on the way to Jairus’ house wasn’t going to stop her.
Peter walking on the water – Matt 14:28-31 – Peter fell into the water because his faith was little. He didn’t believe what Jesus had said. Jesus said, “Come.” And that was enough to get Peter in the water. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and doubted. Fear and doubt will work against faith every time. Peter should have just trusted what Jesus said and kept moving toward Jesus like these others who had great faith. We can’t let scary obstacles and doubt stop us. Faith is the key.
The Canaanite woman with the vexed daughter – Matt 15:21-28 – this woman knew who Jesus was. She called him, “Lord, thou Son of David.” She knew that he could heal her daughter. So, when he ignored her and when he brushed her off, she wouldn’t stop. He didn’t tell her, “No.” He just told her that he had come for the lost sheep of the house of Israel, and she was a Gentile. She knew that crumbs had fallen from the children’s table because many of the Jews had rejected him. She figured there was enough for her to get some; and she got what she asked for. Jesus said, “great is thy faith.” Great faith recognizes who Jesus is, believes what he said, and trusts what he can do. Obstacles are not a problem to great faith.
The disciples who couldn’t cast out the devil – Matt 17:19-21 – Jesus had to cast the devil out of this boy because his disciples couldn’t. When they asked him why they couldn’t, he said, “Because of your unbelief.” In Matt 10:8, he had given them the power and the command to cast out devils. But when they encountered this stubborn devil, they gave up. They had little faith.
Conclusion: in our walk with Jesus, we must remember that he is God, we must believe all that he said, and we must keep moving toward him regardless of the obstacles that we face along the way. Our faith must be great enough to keep fear and doubt from stopping us. Faith is the key.