The scene was set. The distraught father had brought his demon-possessed son to the disciples, hoping that they would be able to heal him. But the disciples were not able to do so.
Just then, Jesus arrived on the scene with Peter, James and John. The father approached Jesus and said, “I brought him, and they couldn’t help him. If You can do anything…”
The father, having already been disappointed, doubted Jesus’ ability to heal his son.
Jesus responded by saying, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Jesus shifts the responsibility right back to the father, letting him know that he had a part to play in the healing of his son. His part was to believe.
What most Christians fail to realize is that there are two sides to the coin of “all things are possible with God” (Matt. 19:26). One side of the coin says, “All things are possible with God.” But when you turn the coin over it says, “All things are possible to him who believes” (Mark 9:23).
All things are possible with God. All things are possible to the one who believes. God wants us to understand that we have a part to play.
You are probably familiar with the verse in Ephesians 3:20 which tells us that God is able to do exceedingly, abundantly, above all that we can ask or think. But the rest of the verse says, “…according to the power at work in us.” In other words, God has a part to play, and we have a part to play.
This truth is reinforced in 1 Corinthians 3:9 where the apostle Paul tells us that we’re fellow workers together with God.
If you and I want to see things change in our lives and circumstances… and in the lives and circumstances of those around us…we must do our part by believing and praying. Don’t just think that God is going to sovereignly intervene.
Now, certainly, God does sovereignly intervene at times in our circumstances. And it’s wonderful when He does. But you will find that most often God’s work is not just a matter of uninvited divine intervention. Instead, God moves in response to people praying and seeking His face.
That kind of prayer is what I call “possibility praying.”
Our part is to believe and to pray, and when we do, God responds to that. Both are parts of the equation. And when it comes to possibility praying, your thinking and your believing will either hinder you and hinder God, or they will set the stage for great things to happen.
Psalm 78:41 reminds us we can hinder God. In talking about the Israelites, it says, “Yes, again and again they tempted God, and limited the Holy One of Israel.”
The Hebrew word limited literally means “to mark something, to scratch it deep… to scratch a line.” The idea is that the Israelites created a border for God’s blessing. It’s like they took a magic marker to the vessel of God’s blessing, marked a line all the way around it, and said, “Okay, God, bless us, but only this far. We’re setting a mark as to how far You can go in our lives.”
Again and again they limited the Holy One of Israel. And we have to ask, are we doing that, too? Are we limiting God by not doing our part in believing and praying?
You have a part to play in God’s work in your life. You must believe… and you must pray… trusting God to then do His part. When you do, you will release the power of possibility praying in your life!
Answers with Bayless Conley broadcasts practical teachings of the Bible to its viewers in a non-religious way. For years, Bayless Conley struggled with drugs and alcohol while searching for answers. It was not until he was more than 20 years of age that a 12-year-old boy showed him the powerful reality of a relationship with Christ. Since 1979, the Lord has opened the television airwaves to the Answers program, which currently airs each week in more than 100 nations around the world.