Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:16 (KJV)
Matthew and Mark both record Jesus casting the devil from a child. It is a heartbreaking story. Since birth the child had been vexed. The evil spirit would throw the child on the ground, into the fire and in the water. The child gnashed his teeth, foamed at the mouth and couldn’t speak.
Oh, the anguish of the child’s father who seemed helpless. The disciples had not even been able to cast the devil out of the child. When Jesus approached, the scribes were questioning them about it and there was a crowd of people. Jesus basically rebuked the disciples, bringing into question their faith. In Matthew 9:23 (KJV), Jesus said to the father, “If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.” Sounds simple right? Jesus commanded the dumb and deaf spirit to leave the child and enter him no more.
When the disciples had Jesus alone, they asked him why they had not been able to cast out the evil spirit. In verse 29 (KJV), Jesus gives the disciples his answer, “This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.” Talk about a stronghold. The devil had tormented the child since birth. We could associate this with a devastating habit, debilitating disease or life threatening situation. Jesus had told them, you must have faith. You must pray AND fast.
The devil’s hold was strong. He was vicious in his attack and he was fighting for the life of the child. I am so thankful I know The One with greater power. I am thankful I can run to the Lord. He is my fortress and my refuge. “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world,” 1 John 4:4 (NIV).
Bible Reading: Mark 9:14-29