“What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it? It is like a mustard seed.” Mark 4:30
I’ve had these words spoken to me. “If you just have faith ~ faith the size of a mustard seed, then your miracle would happen.” The implication was that my faith and a few spoken words of scripture would always bring the miracle I was seeking. If nothing happened, the reason was my faltering faith. Oh, what pressure! Oh, what guilt when nothing transpired.
Does standing in scripture move mountains? Yes.
Can standing in scripture bring a wayward child home, or resurrect a dying marriage, or cure ailing health? Yes.
But are there times when the wayward child remains wayward, the marriage remains impaired, and illness remains incurable? Yes.
How does all this fit together? Why have faith if the outcome is uncertain? Why pray scripture if my loved one could end up rejecting Jesus at the end of it all? Because I don’t know what the outcome will be and because I can’t predict who, through prayer, will have the eyes of his heart opened to bring about repentance. Every situation needs the power of the spoken Word to do its intended warfare against an enemy who is working overtime to keep a kingdom result from happening.
I often illustrate it like this when teaching Prayer Mapping. The unbeliever never makes a decision to reject God apart from the enemy’s interference. Every person, before salvation, is being worked on. The enemy actively blinds their minds to the glory of Christ. He whispers lies and accusations that will trip up their ability to trust Jesus. He distorts the scripture that they know. He stirs up the memories of life-gone-bad and assigns the blame to God. The Gospel is life-saving, yes, but it comes to them against the backdrop of great satanic activity. How needed is the warfare of the saints who use scripture as a sword!
When I speak the Word over another person who needs Jesus and who has not yet bowed his knee to Him, what happens? I am mobilizing, through the power of the Word, the forces of heaven to fight the battle for his soul. My faith, and my God given authority through the use of scripture, get the enemy off his back so that his internal world quiets to a whisper. In this interim, God’s call to salvation can be discerned and the lost person will have a rational period of time to make his decision for or against Christ. Because I stand in the gap, an environment is shaped to allow him to hear the Gospel clearly without competing demonic voices. Will he believe? He may. And, he may not. But he needs the opportunity to see the glory of Jesus, to deal with his own belief or unbelief.
If I do not sow the seeds of scripture, I’ll never know if change was possible. I’ll miss the many miracles of seeing mountains move. And for each mountain that didn’t budge, for each loved one who failed to embrace Christ, I must know that it was never God’s fault. Faith was not futile, Scripture was not impotent, and my investment was not in vain. A person’s failure to believe just underscores Jesus’ words that the road to heaven is indeed narrow and ‘few there be that find it’. Ah, but how many in the category of ‘the few’ are waiting for me to speak words of life over their souls in prayer? Many.
And the final caveat is this ~ every single time I exercise my faith and speak the Word of God, I am also changed. I am declaring before the god of this world and all the angels he took with him in his mutinous act against God, that I stand in God’s Word no matter what, even in the mysteries I don’t yet understand.
I leave all mysteries with You, Lord, knowing that it is not Your will that any perish. Amen