Text Size: Zoom In

Does Anyone Have Faith to Move a Mountain?

Jesus said that by faith his disciples could move trees and even mountains (Luke 17:5; Mark 11:22-23).

His words remind us of other things we find in the Bible.

If we start with Genesis and read through to Revelation, we see some pretty amazing miracles. Moses lifts a stick, and the Red Sea parts. The people of Joshua make a lot of noise and the walls of Jericho fall down.

So is the problem that none of us have a big enough faith?

No that can’t be the problem. Jesus said that if we have faith even the size of a mustard seed (tiny to the extreme) we can do landscaping without a shovel (Luke 17:5).

Here’s the only way I can make sense of the faith-that-can-move-trees-and-mountain’s principle.

The issue is not the quantity of our faith, but the quality.

Jesus can only be talking about the kind of trust that relies on God to do what God wants to do– in his wisdom, time, and unlimited power.

Such faith is not only a virtue– it is a grace and thereby a gift.

The Bible shows us in so many ways that God is powerfully responsive in behalf of all of those whose gift of trust combines with his own timing and purposes. When he wants to move a mountain, or separate a large body of water, or raise someone from the dead– what counts is the grace he gives his people to trust him.

So how do we apply this today? Yesterday we talked about praying to pray and believing God could enable us to do so. In the conversation about tree-moving that Jesus had with his disciples, the subject was about having the faith to believe what he was saying about forgiving those who kept wronging them while repeatedly apologizing (Luke 17:1-5). (I don’t think Jesus was talking about the kind of forgiveness that indulges criminal or abusive behavior. That’s another subject.)

Even though we don’t get the blank-sheet-of-paper-promise we were hoping for, the answer has to be that with only a small amount of the right kind of trust we can do or say whatever God wants us to do or say.

Could that involve literally saying to a tree, “Be removed and thrown into the ocean?” Yes, definitely, if that’s what God wants to do.

My guess is that our Lord is probably more interested in helping us live today as people who speak with grace, act with wisdom, and love with generosity, in our desire to honor the one who has died for us.

But those are just my thoughts. I’d love to hear what you’ve been thinking about the faith that can move mountains.

Vote on whether you think this post is something you'll be thinking about:
Vote This Post DownVote This Post Up (+31 rating, 33 votes)

16 Responses to “Does Anyone Have Faith to Move a Mountain?”

  1. brownsfan1642 says:

    I suspect that there are times when it would easier to move the Alps than to change our own hardened hearts. The mountain of pride or self-absorption that would need moving is a much more significant problem, and only the power of God’s grace can accomplish that—especially when I might actually want my heart to change.

  2. hal.fshr says:

    As is so often expressed in Scripture, the tension between God’s sovereignty and human choice once again has surfaced (Philippians 2:12-13). I agree with Mart’s insight: “Jesus can only be talking about the kind of trust that relies on God to do what God wants to do– in his wisdom, time, and unlimited power.” Yet the tension is still there about discerning what God’s will may be in a certain situation. I think the best attitude to have is a growing confidence in God’s ability to do all things according to His will as revealed in Scripture. Yet we should be humble enough to realize that the out working of that will may seem at times mysterious and even contradictory in our limited perspective.

  3. Ika says:

    Hi everyone!

    “The issue is not the quantity of our faith, but the quality.” >> i really agree with this. How good the quality of our relationship with God sometimes determine how many trust we put on Him. And grace does matter. When He pour His grace to us, we could be a faith believer, not a “talk only” believer.

  4. desert rose says:

    When Jesus said “the faith of a mustard seed” would it not represent a word picture and a promise to us His children. A mustard seed is extremely small, so we should not feel inadequate or think that we must have a large amount of faith when we pray.

    When we pray, we trust as well – and God only asks that our faith be as much as that little mustard seed. What a beautiful illustration for us. Little is much when God is in it.

    The simplistic teaching of the Bible is the foundation for us as His children.

  5. paul bishop says:

    Faith comes by hearing and hearing the Word of God
    ( Living and Written Word ). How big is your God.

  6. pegramsdell says:

    We were all given a measure of faith to believe. Otherwise we never would have believed that Jesus is God’s son, or that He rose from the dead.
    He gave us that faith to begin with.
    Doubt and unbelief can be mountains in our lives, and we have need to speak to the mountains in our lives and tell them to go. Because God would never give us doubt or unbelief, so it is His will to have them removed from our hearts.

  7. poohpity says:

    Matthew 21:22 says, “If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer”. I know and trust that Jesus said this and it is true because it is written in the Bible.

    When we talked about this yesterday I prayed about it and wrestled with it I came to the conclusion if I do believe the Bible with all my heart then it is true. I have been praying for something for a very long time and it has not happened YET but today I believe it is going to happen and trust me it will be like moving a mountain.

    Sometimes it seems when we talk about different issues of our faith that the Lord will provide the answers we seek. At times my faith gets weak and it is usually because I am looking at the only thing I can see and that is me. All of the folks in the Bible said things like “who me?” or “send someone else” or “you want me to do what?” or “I will never deny you”. God who we only have a glimpse of just asks us to trust Him and He will do what He says He will do. He said, “If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer”, then that is what is going to happen. He also understands how it is hard for us to trust especially in this day and age but obliviously He works with us through everything.

  8. GodsBride says:

    This did something powerful for me: “The issue is not the quantity of our faith, but the quality.
    Jesus can only be talking about the kind of trust that relies on God to do what God wants to do– in his wisdom, time, and unlimited power.
    Such faith is not only a virtue– it is a grace and thereby a gift.”
    I can truly say that God is speakingly expressly, fervently to me about faith–that RADICAL faith (believing above and beyond); the kind that may be small, but it covers ALL. I recently asked a bunch of people if anyone had the kind of faith in God that would believe for the manifestation of what man calls “the impossible”. Only two responded. It’s not always easy–I WILL NOT lie. But God is ALWAYS faithful. I’m so glad that He can’t deny Himself. All He asks is that we trust Him; no matter what, trust Him. Oh, and Tish, your response magnanimously blessed me!

  9. daisymarygoldr says:

    MDH: “Does anyone have faith to move a mountain?”
    Answer: NO!
    MDH: “So is the problem that none of us have a big enough faith?”
    Answer: NO, the problem is that none of us have any faith!

    In Luke 17:5 the disciples are saying “We have faith, but we need you to increase it,” and Jesus’ answer to their request is: “Well, even if you had little faith you can easily get rid of the mountain of your unbelief, you don’t need me to strengthen it.” Jesus was telling that the issue is not about little faith; it is actually about them not having any faith.

    The ‘mountain’ refers to the hurdle or barrier of human unbelief, skepticism, cynicism relating to (pride, self-absorption and hardness of our hearts- brownsfan1642) that prevents us from trusting God’s answer (may not match with ours) to our prayers. Jesus himself wondered: “When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”

    Faith is related to promise and the promise is Jesus Christ. It is God who gave us that promise; it is He who also gives us the faith to believe that He will deliver us from- sickness, cancers, poverty, trials, troubles and all imperfections of this present world.
    tish, I’m deeply touched and greatly encouraged by your ‘faithful’ comments even as I am grappling with my own supposedly ‘turbulent issues’.

    All those Biblical heroes grasped by faith the promises of something not yet seen but guaranteed by the blood of Christ, a promise of something so much better than this world could ever offer. These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised(Heb 11:39)!

    Thought for the day: It is human nature to Minus God and make a Mountain out of a Mole hill(i.e. boulder in pic:)

  10. daliadina says:

    If you have faith like a mustard seed you can move mountains. Unfortunately most of the time we take the Bible words as separate sentences while in fact it should be in the same spirit of the whole bible, so this should be taken in the light of “Thy will be Done” also. The new generation gets discouraged when then what the promises fulfilled as they are without searching for the spiritual meaning behind it. I think you put it very well by combining faith and God’s will. Thanks.


  11. Gale L. Jarvis says:

    Good Evening everyone, Mart, i go along absolutely with paul bishop, FAITH comes from the bible, and there is enough there for anyone to move a mountain if needed.
    Our problem, including my own is I do not desire many times to stake my life on what God says.
    As i have mentioned before God has promises for us that are there for the taking, if i will just obey what He says.
    I believe such promises as Romans 8:28 is a promise that will move any mountain that comes in my path, if ( IF ) i will just love God.
    Learning how to love God, not just say I do was not something natural with the new birth, at least for me.
    I am like so many i have heard from on this blog, I believe satan has been given the okay to sift me as he did peter the last few years, but God has proven to me several times the different things satan has put on me have worked out for good.
    I have been able for different reasons to lift the Lord up to many other people because of the things that have come into my life, that is just one good thing.
    Proverbs 3:5,6 is another mountain mover if i desire for God to prepare my path for me, I may or may not see the mountain move, but i do know satan puts all kind of obstacles in my path that only God can remove if i give Him the okay to move them.

  12. dejean33 says:

    Faith is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen, and w/ out faith it is impossible to please God, because we must first believe that He exsist and that he is a rewrder of them who deligently seek him ( Hebrews 11:1,6 )

    Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God ( Romans 10:17 ).

    In a Nut Shell: SHEER VOLUME ( read the scriptures until you can’t stay awake, and then take a power nap – get up and go right back to where you left off ) !!!

    The Spirit of God, ( whom lives in every person who believes in Jesus Christ ( His, Life His Death and His Reserection ) — lives in you …. John 14 – again) – He wrote the bible, He will give you understanding — when you and He are both ready.

    Read, read, read, it taste like honey ( Psalms 119:103, ( and other locations )) !!!

    By the way …. He choose us, we did not choose Him ( John 15:16.

    Thank You Father !!!

  13. Basil Smith says:

    DaisyMary is right. Not big or small faith, but actual faith. In the Mark 11 passage the words …’and shall not doubt in his heart’. Matt.21:22 emphasises this by the insertion of the conditional word ‘believing’.
    Faith in the head does not qualify, only faith in the heart, the work of the Spirit, confirmed by the inner witness, so that we know when we should or should not venture in prayer. When the Spirit leads it is the faith which works (effectively) by love – not by (legal) obligation Gal 5:6. So we walk in the Spirit?

  14. xinyi says:

    the problem here is believing and trust in the lord. here is the real example that occured in my life. Althought my bf and i love each other very much but God decided to separate us after i undergo deepression because he was not at my side each time i had troubles. After separation through my prayer, i realized that my ex still love me much more than last time and more caring toward me. I dont know what GOD plan to do about us but i have faith in HIM that one day i will be with my ex when the proper time come.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.