ISSUE: #89


(Messianic Email Message)
Psalms 119:97 - 104
Seeking The Truth
MEM Index
Article Index

For His Glory!


I Believe - Help My Unbelief

Is there a simple definition of faith or belief? It seems there should be, however, there are many Scriptures on the subject that only cause us to seek His face all the more. Read on as this only touches on the heart of YHVH. (for more insight on trust click here) We are referring to our only hope; belief, faith, trust and confidence in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob - the Creator of heaven and earth - Yeshua (Jesus) the Messiah.

First it is a mystery:

1Tim 3:9 but holding to the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. (NAS unless noted; bolded words ours)

How important is faith?

  • the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls. 1Pet 1:9
  • And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him. Heb 11:6
  • …the righteous will live by his faith. Habakkuk 2:4
  • whatever is not from faith is sin. Rom 14:23
  • For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world -- our faith. 1John 5:4

Belief and faith, as used in 21st-century English, have overlapping meanings. In fact, in the several dictionaries I consulted, each term is used in part to define the other. But I think we can say that to recognize that God exists, that God is "there," is to believe in God. To recognize that God is "a very present help in trouble" (Ps. 46:1) - here-means having faith in God. (Quoted from The Christian Science Journal)

A man brought his son to Yeshua (Jesus) to have an evil spirit cast out:

Mark 9:23-24 And Jesus said to him, "'If You can!' All things are possible to him who believes." Immediately the boy's father cried out and began saying, "I do believe; help my unbelief."

The NJB reads: Mark 9:24 … ‘I have faith. Help my lack of faith!’

JFB: I believe: help thou mine unbelief--that is, "It is useless concealing from Thee, O Thou mysterious, mighty Healer, the unbelief that still struggles in this heart of mine; but that heart bears me witness that I do believe in Thee; and if distrust still remains, I disown it, I wrestle with it, I seek help from Thee against it."

Barnes: I believe. I have faith. I do put confidence in thee; though I know that my faith is not as strong as it should be.

Help thou mine unbelief. Supply thou the defects of my faith. Give me strength and grace to put entire confidence in thee. In our unbelief and our doubts we need his aid, nor can we ever put sufficient reliance on him without his gracious help.

We limit God in our lives because of our unbelief. The incident in our text (Mark 9 beginning in verse 17) is also recorded in Luke 9 and Matthew 17, surely indicating its significance.

Realizing the basis for belief and faith (that it is linked to being fully persuaded of a truth) will help us understand how this father could say he believed yet had unbelief.

Undoubtedly the father had heard of all the miracles being performed and may have seen some of the results. Wanting his son delivered he went to Yeshua’s disciples to have this deaf and dumb spirit cast out. However they were unable - this would contribute to his unbelief. Doubt, the enemy of faith, along with the scribes arguing with the disciples was the scene when Yeshua arrived.

Yeshua chastised the group for their lack of faith (unbelief) verse 19; after verifying the truth of the situation He cast out the deaf and dumb spirit (20-27).

The rewards of believing in YHVH start with hearing the truth; about being fully persuaded of His Sovereignty. The Apostle Paul understood this when he wrote:

Romans 10:11-14 For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed." For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call upon Him; for "Whoever will call upon the name of the LORD will be saved." How then shall they call upon Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?

Romans 10:15-17 And how shall they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings of good things!" However, they did not all heed the glad tidings; for Isaiah says, "LORD, who has believed our report?" So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

We read:

John 20:29-31 Jesus said to him, "Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed." Many other signs therefore Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these have been written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.

Believing - to have faith - requires our participation:

James 2:26 For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.

Hebrews 11:33 who by faith conquered kingdoms, performed acts of righteousness, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions,

When I Believe - consider the complexities of the simplicity of faith:

  • faith, belief and trust can often be used interchangeably
  • faith - logical minds do not understand it - it is foreign to the sin nature
  • faith - if you understood the outcome it would not be faith
  • faith is a heart matter; a gift planted there as a seed by the Almighty
  • faith is a matter of degree (little to much) grow it, water it, practice it
  • trust and believe in your head and your heart
  • faith is a mystery - if we had all the answers we would not seek God
  • believe - have a firm persuasion (being fully persuaded)
  • believe - to expect or hope with confidence (trust) in YHVH
  • knowledge is an essential element in all faith
  • the essence of faith is assent to the truth
  • faith accepts the truths revealed on the testimony of God (His word)
  • trust as a primary verb; to convince; to assent; to rely (by inward certainty)
  • faith will be manifest by attitudes such as justice, mercy, forgiveness, obedience and love; all with humility before YHVH and man
  • faith is reliance upon a God known to be trustworthy
  • the reality of faith is obedience

Faith is not a formula that you can follow - it is a choice - to believe despite the facts - it is a choice to live in a future that you cannot see in the present. To expect, believe and follow through on something that you cannot see. That is faith.

Scriptural definition of Faith:

Heb 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

To believe is acknowledging what you are persuaded about - faith is expressing that belief by mentally, emotionally and purposely (whole heartedly) taking action on that belief. When we are faced with the storms of life and are in despair do we wholly trust Yeshua Messiah? Or are we like the disciples in the wind and sea tossed ship thinking they would perish when Yeshua was with them (Luke 8:22-25)? To truly believe and have faith is to trust all things to our Savior. This will bring the peace, joy and the eternal life He has promised.

Be fully persuaded - here are some study notes on Belief and Faith.

How can one believe yet have unbelief?

G570 (Strong) unbelief
- Definition:

1. unfaithfulness, faithless
want of faith, unbelief
weakness of faith

Unbelief is the same as being faithless or having a lack of faith.

BELIE'VE, v.t. To credit upon the authority or testimony of another; to be persuaded of the truth of something upon the declaration of another, or upon evidence furnished by reasons, arguments, and deductions of the mind, or by other circumstances, than personal knowledge.

To expect or hope with confidence; to trust.

BELIE'VE, v.i. To have a firm persuasion of any thing.

[Verb,G4100, pisteuo ]
to believe," also "to be persuaded of," … not mere credence. COMMIT, TRUST.

[Verb,G3982, peitho ]
"to persuade,"; AGREE, ASSURE, OBEY, TRUST, YIELD.


Studying the word "faith" in the light of use and contexts, we find in the overwhelming majority of cases, "faith," as rendering pistis, the words "reliance," "trust," precisely fit the context as alternatives to "faith."

A Leading Passage Explained:

It is important to notice that Heb 11:1 is no exception to the rule that "faith" normally means "reliance," "trust." But the chapter amply shows that the faith illustrated, e. g. by Abraham, Moses, Rahab, was simply reliance upon a God known to be trustworthy. Such reliance enabled the believer to treat the future as present and the invisible as seen. - Handley Dunelm


Faith is in general the persuasion of the mind that a certain statement is true (Phil. 1:27; 2 Thess. 2:13). Its primary idea is trust. A thing is true, and therefore worthy of trust.

Faith is the result of teaching (Rom. 10:14-17). Knowledge is an essential element in all faith, ... Yet the two are distinguished in this respect, that faith includes in it assent, which is an act of the will in addition to the act of the understanding. Assent to the truth is of the essence of faith, and the ultimate ground on which our assent to any revealed truth rests is the veracity of God.

Faith is also an obedience to God's command to believe (1John 3:23 And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ…);

The Strong’s system shows that belief is linked with persuasion; maybe that is why Yeshua in Matt 13:58 … did not do many miracles there because of their unbelief.

G4100 believe, believed, believers, believing, commit, committed, made, trust,
- Definition:

- to think to be true, to be persuaded of, to credit, place confidence in

Which is from - Strong's: G4102; to have faith that is credit; by implication to entrust (especially one’s spiritual well being to Christ): - believe (-r) commit (to trust) put in trust with.

Which is from - Strong's: G3982; persuasion that is credence; moral conviction especially reliance upon Christ for salvation; by extension the system of religious (Gospel) truth itself: - assurance belief believe faith fidelity.

Which is: A primary verb; to convince; reflexively or passively to assent (to evidence or authority) to rely (by inward certainty): - agree assure believe have confidence be content obey persuade trust yield.

Our prayer should be:

Mark 9:24 … "I believe; help my unbelief!"

Luke 17:5 And the apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith!"


Proverbs 14:15 The naive believes everything, But the prudent man considers his steps.

Proverbs 22:19 So that your trust may be in the LORD, I have taught you today, even you.

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (AV)

For sure we do not want to be naïve. And how can we be prudent? Looking into the sure Word of God; by seeking His face and obeying the leading of His Spirit. If you desire to understand more about believing, read the Gospel of John asking for YHVH’s revelation.

Saying (s)

"The secret of happiness is not doing what one likes, but in liking what one does" James M. Barrie

We are often dissatisfied with our lot in life; especially in today’s materialistic society. Our basic philosophy has to change; if we put our faith in the Creator and seek His face He will change our outlook. Then it will not matter for we will be in His hands; great will be our joy.

Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart.

Psalm 16:11 Thou wilt make known to me the path of life; In Thy presence is fulness of joy; In Thy right hand there are pleasures forever.

Bible Quiz
  1. To whom did the angel say, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy"?
  2. Which Old Testament book and chapter teaches about tithing?
  3. Where did the Levites dispose of the unclean things found in the temple of the LORD?
  4. Who is the goal of the law so that there may be righteousness for believers?
  5. How long did Jacob serve Laban?
  6. Which woman did Eli accuse of being drunk?
  7. Who said, "Pick me up and throw me into the sea, and it will become calm"?


In our pursuit of humility: (Lesson from humility in daily life.)

[When] "Jesus has taken the place of self, and it is not an impossibility to forgive as Jesus forgave. His humility does not consist merely in thoughts or words of self-depreciation, but, as Paul puts it, in ‘a heart of humility,’ the sweet and lowly gentleness recognized as the mark of the Lamb of God. " Andrew Murray

The normal belief system does not understand the humility of Yeshua because it fails to replace the self with the Spirit of the Lamb of God. As a result we end up with divisions and resentments and un-forgiveness. The Spirit of God cannot work in our lives to produce its fruit because of a hard - unrepentant heart. Repent and accept the gift of faith planted within by the Spirit of Yeshua; work on growing that faith by seeking the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.


Understanding the precepts of prayer.

Our desire should be to know YHVH

Exodus 33:12-13 Then Moses said to the LORD, "See, You say to me, ‘Bring up this people!’ But You Yourself have not let me know whom You will send with me. Moreover, You have said, ‘I have known you by name, and you have also found favor in My sight.’ Now therefore, I pray You, if I have found favor in Your sight, let me know Your ways that I may know You, so that I may find favor in Your sight. Consider too, that this nation is Your people."

Moses is interceding for the people of Israel. This is just after they had built and worshiped the golden calf. The people were to humble themselves awaiting YHVH’s decision as to what He was going to do with them. Moses carefully approached YHVH to ask who would accompany them to Canaan. He uses his position of favor (grace) to have YHVH continue to be with them.

Exodus 33:15-16 Then he said to Him, "If Your presence does not go with us, do not lead us up from here. For how then can it be known that I have found favor in Your sight, I and Your people? Is it not by Your going with us, so that we, I and Your people, may be distinguished from all the other people who are upon the face of the earth?"

Moses eloquently identifies the need for YHVH’s presence - the only thing that identifies and distinguishes His people from all others. Are we "glowing" with the presence of YHVH from within?

Heart of God

How does God feel about issues we face today?
This new section "The Heart of God" will try to take some aspect of modern day life and address it from His point of view.

John 15:12 This is my commandment, That you love one another, as I have loved you.

We are told to love each other.  But do we really do this?  It can be easy to love someone if they love you too.  But what about when they ignore you, or even hurt you?  We know we are supposed to love our enemies, but this is not easy.  Only loving those who love us is selfish (loving them because we get something out of it in return).  Yeshua loved the world and died for all mankind.  Even those who crucified him.  When someone hurts us, we need to take this burden to God.  Pray for this person and speak blessing on them.  In this way we get our mind off ourselves and on God and the good for this person.  If we can do this quickly and consistently it can change our hearts so that we see others as God sees them, in love.  This is not saying to be foolish and remain in harm’s way, but it will help us handle difficult situations as they arise.

Matt 5:44 But I say to you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which spitefully use you, and persecute you;

Material in this section is based on various prayer diaries.

Did you know:

Did you know the custom of serving a slice of lemon with fish dates back to the middle ages? It was believed if you swallowed a fish bone the juice would help dissolve it.

The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving. – H. U. Westermayer

So what have we learned in 2,065 years?

"The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed lest Rome become bankrupt.  People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance."    - Cicero

55 BC - Hmmmmmm...???   Not Much!!


Some of the material contained in this section is for informational purposes only and has not been verified by us.

Lighter Side

Nothing in the world arouses more false hopes than the first four hours of a diet.

If you look like your passport photo, you in all probability need the journey.

[The following from a Jewish humor website.]

"I had the strangest dream last night," a man was telling his psychiatrist. "I saw my mother, but when she turned around to look at me, I noticed that she had your face. And you can imagine, I found this very disturbing, and in fact I woke up immediately, and couldn't get back to sleep. I just lay there in bed waiting for morning to come, and then I got up, drank a Coke, and came right over here for my appointment. I thought you could help me explain the meaning of this strange dream."
The psychiatrist was silent for a full minute before responding: "A Coke? That's a breakfast?"

Mama’s Law

Of the beasts of the field, and of the fishes of the sea, and of all foods that are acceptable in my sight you may eat, but not in the living room.
Of the cereal grains, of the corn and of the wheat and of the oats, and of all the cereals that are of bright color and unknown provenance you may eat, but not in the living room.
Of quiescently frozen dessert and of all frozen after-meal treats you may eat, but absolutely not in the living room.
Of the juices and other beverages, yes, even of those in sippy-cups, you may drink, but not in the living room, neither may you carry such therein.
Indeed, when you reach the place where the living room carpet begins, of any food or beverage there you may not eat, neither may you drink. But if you are sick, and are lying down and watching something, then may you eat in the living room.

Morris calls his son in NY and says, "Benny, I have something to tell you. However, I don't want to discuss it. I'm merely telling you because you're my oldest child, and I thought you ought to know. I've made up my mind, I'm divorcing Mama."

The son is shocked, and asks his father to tell him what happened. I don't want to get into it. My mind is made up." "But Dad, you just can't decide to divorce Mama just like that after 54 years together. What happened?"

"It's too painful to talk about it. I only called because you're my son, and I thought you should know. I really don't want to get into it any more than this. You can call your sister and tell her. It will spare me the pain."

"But where's Mama? Can I talk to her?" "No, I don't want you to say anything to her about it. I haven't told her yet. Believe me it hasn't been easy. I've agonized over it for several days, and I've finally come to a decision. I have an appointment with the lawyer the day after tomorrow."

"Dad, don't do anything rash. I'm going to take the first flight down. Promise me that you won't do anything until I get there." "Well, all right, I promise. I'll hold off seeing the lawyer until after you come. Call your sister in NJ and break the news to her. I just can't bear to talk about it anymore."

A half hour later, Morris receives a call from his daughter who tells him that she and her brother were able to get tickets and that they and the children will be arriving in Florida the day after tomorrow. "Benny told me that you don't want to talk about it on the telephone, but promise me that you won't do anything until we both get there." Morris promises.

After hanging up from his daughter, Morris turns to his wife and says, "Well, it worked this time, but we are going to have to come up with a new idea to get them here next time."

Have a good day!

Cause and Effect

God never promised He would spare us from trials; the only thing He promised is that He would be with us in our trials.

We have come to expect men of God to boast of their works, to glory in their own fame, and seek the honor and reverence of men. It was not always so, and we are the worse for it, for having lowered ourselves to praising men.

(Michael Boldea Jr.)


Everybody needs a hug…it changes your metabolism.

There is no failure except in no longer trying.

By the time many a man realizes that maybe his father was right, he has a son who thinks he is wrong.

If you are too busy to laugh, you’re too busy…period.

The Garden Corner

Garlic Mustard

Once upon a time, a long time ago, some well-meaning person brought a plant to the eastern shores of our great country. That plant thrived, flourished and began to spread. It has now invaded Michigan and is spreading through our meadows and forest edges, smothering out the native species. It was brought here as an herb for a garden and it went feral. Nothing will eat it here; it has definitely earned its name of garlic mustard. We have statewide contests through the Stewardship Network I am a part of to see who can pull the most pounds of this plant in each county. I have never participated before because I thought: it is just a plant, I am one person, we will never get it all, why bother. Yahweh had other ideas.

He was telling me about stewardship and caring for my garden and land. How the Garden of Eden was amazing and Adam’s job was to care for it. In the beginning it was easy as the plants behaved, but later when everything fell out of balance and sin infected the world, work was done with sweat and tears. My job is to care for my land and although it will never be a Garden of Eden, it was still my task to care for all parts, even pulling that stubborn Garlic mustard. Remember the tears and sweat?

Garlic mustard is a biannual plant. It grows foliage and a root system the first year, and flowers the second. If you just pull off the plant and not get the root, it will re-grow and bloom. If you pull the whole plant while it is blooming and just toss it on the garbage pile, the root has enough energy stored in it to set seed anyway and thus you have just moved the plant to another area. To kill this plant you are supposed to put it in a black garbage bag, tie it up and let the whole lot cook in the sun. This is a magnificently tough plant. If it weren’t so noxious we would have to admire it.

So I have been pulling buckets full for the past several weeks and found that if I pull the plant before it blooms, snap the root off and then discard the remains in my rubbish heap (not to be confused with my compost pile), it will die. There are so many applications here to sin that I am reminded of. If you don’t irradiate the root of the issue, it will not go away. Things in your life will always bear fruit, good or bad, if you do not take care of the issue. We have to be willing to be ripped apart before we die to sin. It takes a lot of work and effort to get rid of it all. I have gotten most of the second year plants out but the seedlings from last year’s batch are still coming up. It will take me next year yet to get it out of my woods and even then I have to be diligent as there is some in my neighbor’s yards. It is not a one time battle, weeding never is. You always have to be on the lookout for it and take care of it when you see it because you never get back to the right spot if you don’t do it right away.

Psalm Promise(s)

Psalm 50

Ps 50:14 "Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, And pay your vows to the Most High;

Ps 50:15 And call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me."

There are so many wonderful promises in the Psalms. Here is such a promise - however we must believe it to have the experience. Note the conditions - 1) each is to offer thanksgiving - 2) all your commitments to YHVH have been made - 3) you faithfully call on Him - 4) He shall rescue the one who calls - 5) and that deliverance has a purpose "…you will honor Me".

How do we honor Him? Ascribe to YHVH that wonderful deliverance (testify or witness).

Deuteronomy 32:3 Because I will publish the name of the LORD: ascribe ye greatness unto our God.

[ascribe] 1) to believe or say that something was caused by a particular thing - 2) to believe or say that something was originally written or said by a particular person - 3) to believe that something belongs to or characterizes a person or group.

Blessed be YHVH (Genesis 14:20 And blessed be God Most High…)

Quiz Answers

1. The shepherds - Luke 2:5-10

2 Malachi 3 - Malachi 3:6-12

3. In the Kidron Valley - 2Chronicle 29:16

4. Christ - Romans 10:4

5. Twenty years - Genesis 31:36-41

6. Hannah - 1Samuel 1:13-14

7. Jonah - Jonah 1:12