What did Jesus mean when He said you can move mountains?

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The meaning of moving mountains is contextual. Jesus said that His followers can move mountains in response to an incident where His disciples failed to perform a miracle of healing. A certain man asked the disciples to heal his epileptic son who was suffering severely but the disciples, couldn’t. Jesus said to them, “…Bring him here to Me.” And He rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour (Matthew 17:14-18).

The disciples asked Jesus privately, “Why could we not cast it out? (v. 19). He answered them, “for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you” (Matthew 17:20 also Matthew 21:21; Luke 17:6).

Jesus, here, was speaking of figurative mountains of trials. For He Himself never moved literal mountains, nor did He intend His followers to do that. Christ spoke of the great problems that the disciples will face in their lives as they went out on His great commission to preach the good news to the world. And the Master assured His disciples that no difficulty, will be too great for them to overcome (Isa. 45:18; 55:8–11). For “With God all things are possible” (Matt. 19:26).

The mustard seed may be small to begin with, but hidden within it is the power of life, and, once given the right circumstances, it will grow. The possession of faith, Jesus says, is not a matter of quantity but of quality. It is not so much the amount of faith, but its truthfulness. Either a person has faith or he does not have faith. The very smallest amount of faith is enough to accomplish the impossible (Mark 11:23).

Too often the reason a Christian can’t experience God’s strength in his daily life is that he is “fearful” and has “little faith.” Christians  need to cast away their trust in themselves and depend totally and completely on God’s power (Matthew 8:26). As Christ calmed the winds and the waves of the sea, so He is able to banish the storms of life that so often blow over the human soul.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team


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