Preaching & Teaching

Jesus Deals with Weak Faith Gently

Do not worry, saying, “What shall we eat?” or “What shall we drink?” or “What shall we wear?” For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. Matthew 6:31-32 (NIV)

Jesus deals with weak faith gently: “A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out” (Isa. 42:3). That means you can come to Him as you are.

Christians do not come to Jesus to offer what they have to Him, but to receive what He has for them.

Since Jesus deals gently with weak faith, you should also do the same. “Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters” (Rom. 14:1). “Warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone” (1 Thes. 5:14).

No one has perfect faith. However much you may grow in the Christian life, your struggle with doubt and unbelief remains. John Calvin says it well in his book, The Institutes (3.2.18).

The godly heart feels in itself a division because it is partly imbued with sweetness from the recognition of the divine goodness, partly grieves in bitterness from its calamity; partly rests upon the promise of the gospel, partly trembles at the evidence of its own iniquity; partly rejoices at the expectation of life, partly shudders at death. This variation arises from the imperfection of faith, since in the course of this present life it never goes so well with us that we are wholly cured of the disease of unbelief and entirely filled and possessed by faith.

When and why do you worry? How does Christ’s gentleness give you assurance?

Colin Smith is senior pastor of The Orchard Evangelical Free Church, a multi-campus church located in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, and president of Unlocking the...

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