Below is the concluding chapter of my master’s thesis entitled An Examination of Faith in the Gospel of Matthew. My entire thesis is linked at the end of the post.
If you are Charismatic you should read the following because it will deepen your understanding of faith, doubt, and healing.
If you are not, you should read the following because Christians need to wrestle with what Jesus taught on faith.
Faith in Matthew’s Gospel
In Matthew, faith is relatively simple–in most of the miracle accounts it is no more than coming to Jesus for help. Held defines the activity of faith well as “an activity of the believer, an energetic, importunate grasping after the help of God.”[i] There are different aspects of faith presented in the miracle accounts of Matthew, but one constant is that it is active, not passive belief. Even ones with great faith did not receive what they desired until they came to Jesus. The method of healing varied. Jesus usually healed by touching, but sometimes without. Sometimes he proclaimed their healing, and sometimes he said nothing. Most of the time the person healed was present, but sometimes they were not. In a few instances it is not even clear that the person healed had faith, as in the cases of Peter’s mother-in-law (Mt. 8:14-15) and the few who were healed in his hometown (Mt. 13:58). This shows that Jesus was in control of the healing process, in control and willing to help. Continue reading