Luke 17, vs. ,”5 – And the apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.”
The subject on faith is very important, but what kind of faith? We need faith for sure, however we need faith that works. In this message we will look at the faith we truly need. The opening verse in chapter 17:1 reads, “Then He said to the disciples, “It is impossible that no offenses should come, but woe to him through whom they do come! “. I highlight the word “IMPOSSIBLE” because it sets in motion what kind of faith we need.
Here Jesus says it is impossible for offenses not to come, therefore it cannot be ignored. The response to it is what is important. People will offend and be offended. If offended, the action is to forgive and not once but always. This was hard a message for the disciples about offenses and the action in light of how easy it is to offend and be offended. With this hard to live up to message vs. “5 – And the apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” It almost sounds like they were trying to change the subject by asking the Master for something else. On the contrary, what the Master had said was impossible to accomplish without faith or greater faith as they thought. They did not ask to be given faith, they had that, but rather asked for their faith to be increased because this was one area among many they felt deficient in their walk.
In response to their request, vs. “6 So the Lord said, “If you have faith as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be pulled up by the roots and be planted in the sea,’” This meant, if they had the smallest amount or measure of true faith (seed) no instance of duty would be too hard for them to accomplish. This was also to say, they did not need more faith to believe, they needed to be assured they had enough faith to live, “the just shall live by faith”, Romans 1:17. This is working faith or faith that works. To make this faith clear, He gave them an example of a servant/slave who is humble, obedient in serving his master fulfilling his duties not to gain rewards but rather to demonstrate that faith is about faithfulness with the emphasis on faithfulness to the master and not the master’s faithfulness to his servants. The faith that is often thrown around is that the Master serves the servant.
“Faith in God’s pardoning mercy, will enable us to get over the greatest difficulties in the way of forgiving our brethren. As with God nothing is impossible, so all things are possible to him that can believe. Our Lord showed his disciples their need of deep humility. The Lord has such a property in every creature, as no man can have in another; he cannot be in debt to them for their services, nor do they deserve any return from him”, Matthew Henry
Most of our faith definition is having a greater belief, meaning more of it, increased so that the Lord can serve and meet our needs. True faith here turns the table to reveal the faith needed to be the kind of faith that serves the master as a duty rather than the master serving men. After he has served the master and the master’s needs are met then, in vs. 8 the servant sits and enjoys what he prepared provided by his master. Increase our faith should mean empower us to be faithful and as we become more faithful, the more we can overcome what is impossible in our living. Blessings Ev