People came to Jesus hungry, and they left fed. People came to Jesus sick and deformed and they left healed. People came to Jesus deep in sin and bondage and they left totally set free.
We also know, however, that not everyone who lived in Israel at the time of Jesus was healed. There were sick people. There were still some lame and diseased beggars near the temple. Some people who met Jesus did not get their needs met. Some remained still in the bondage of sin, poverty, and disease.
So, what’s the difference in these people? Why were some healed and set free from the bondage of sin and others were not?
The difference is that some believed, and some didn’t. Without belief, there is no faith. Without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6). Without faith, God’s promises do not apply. It takes faith to move God. He never responds positively to doubt and unbelief.
The Bible tells about two groups of people–both groups of people heard the gospel, but the gospel only profited one group. It was unprofitable to the other group. Hebrews 4:2 says, “For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.” Do you understand what that verse says? It says that faith is required to make the gospel profitable.
You may ask, “How can this be? Isn’t the gospel always profitable?”
In Mark 6, Jesus went to His hometown, and He did the same thing there He did everywhere else. He preached the gospel, the good news. However, something unusual happened in Nazareth. In every other town and village Jesus preached in, He not only taught the good news, but He performed great miracles and all who were sick were healed. But no great miracles happened in Nazareth. Verse 5 says He could do no mighty works there. We see why in verse 6. Jesus marveled at their unbelief.
Without belief there is no faith. According to God’s Word, without faith, the gospel will not profit us.
Hardly a week goes by without someone asking me, “What is faith?” Faith is simply believing that God has done what He said He would do and everything you say and do is based upon that belief. Even more simply, faith is believing, speaking, and acting on God’s Word. Isn’t that simple? Just read God’s Word and believe Him. Believe Him so much that you place all that you are on the line. There is no doubt. God is telling the truth.
When Jesus was in the town of Nazareth, the people did not believe that He was who He said He was. They only knew Him as the Son of Mary. They knew His brothers and sisters. They had watched Him grow up and because of this, they did not believe what He said. Because they did not believe Him, according to the Bible, no great miracles took place there.
So, will the gospel profit you? According to Hebrews 4:2, yes it will, if you mix it with faith.