The Desperate Dad

—Mark 9:14–29

  • David Campbell – June 18, 2023

Mark 9:14–29

The great message of this story

  • In spite of the fact the man asked Jesus to help his unbelief, there were four things in his heart which testified to the genuineness of his faith, even in the midst of the doubts he possessed.
  • For you and me, who believe but also struggle with unbelief, that is a great comfort.
  • Because if we have these things, even if we struggle with unbelief, God will help us.

God’s Plan

  1. He came in a motivation birthed in desperation
  2. He came in worship
  3. He came in honesty
  4. He came in trust
  • The hallmarks of genuine Biblical faith

One more vital detail

  1. “…this kind comes out only by prayer”
  • Faith comes out of the place of relationship and communion with Jesus, which is what prayer and fasting is.

Matthew 17:20

  1. Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?”
  2. He said to them, “Because of your little faith.
    For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed… nothing will be impossible for you.”

Little faith?

oligo pistian

Matthew 17:20 Paraphrase

  1. The disciples came to Jesus privately and asked, ‘Why could not we cast it out?’
  2. Jesus replied, ‘Because so have such a poor quality of faith; your faith is so weak. For truly I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, if it is of good quality even though it’s small, even if your emotions are up and down and your mind is all over the place, if you come like that, nothing will be impossible for you.”


  • Real faith draws us back to our relationship with the Lord.
  • On Galilee Peter ventured out of the boat
  • He began to take his eyes off Jesus
  • If Jesus had not reached out and grabbed him by the hand, he would have been lost.
  • But Jesus saw his faith and rescued him.
  • In the storms of life, he will rescue you and me too.


  • All we need is a very small amount of faith, as long as our faith is rooted in a relationship with Jesus
  • We don’t have to be superheroes of faith for God to meet us. We just have to be faithful.
  • And that’s possible for all of us

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