Faith Like a Mustard Seed

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Trust in God and faithfulness to his Kingdom will surmount seemingly impossible obstacles.

How to cite this article:
Joshua N. Tilton and David N. Bivin, “Faith Like a Mustard Seed,” The Life of Yeshua: A Suggested Reconstruction (Jerusalem Perspective, 2022) [].

Matt. 17:20; 21:21-22; Mark 11:22-24; Luke 17:5-6

(Huck 126, 180, 201; Aland 163, 231, 275;
Crook 181, 279, 310)[1]

Updated: 21 December 2022

וַיֹּאמֶר הָאָדוֹן אִם אַתֶּם מַאֲמִינִים אֲפִילּוּ כְעֵין הַחַרְדָּל אַתֶּם אוֹמְרִים לְשִׁקְמָה זוֹ הֵעָקְרִי וְהִנָּטְעִי בַּיָּם וְשׁוֹמַעַת לָכֶם

But the Lord said, “If your trust in God is even like a mustard seed in size, then you could say to a sycamore fig tree, ‘Be uprooted and be transplanted in the sea!’ and it would do as you command.”[2]

A reproduction of our reconstruction in an ancient Hebrew script. Font, based on the Isaiah Scroll from Qumran (1QIsaa), created by Kris Udd.




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Luke’s version of Faith Like a Mustard Seed, which of all the canonical versions is probably closest to the original saying, makes a fitting sequel to Quieting a Storm. When Faith Like a Mustard Seed is attached to the end of Quieting a Storm, we see Jesus characteristically turning his followers away from speculations about his person and focusing their intention instead on how they can become participants in God’s redeeming reign over his creation.

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“Fe Como Semilla de Mostaza” (“Faith Like a Mustard Seed”) by “Goose friend.” Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

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  • Joshua N. Tilton

    Joshua N. Tilton

    Joshua N. Tilton studied at Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts, where he earned a B.A. in Biblical and Theological Studies (2002). Joshua continued his studies at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts, where he obtained a Master of Divinity degree in 2005. After seminary…
    [Read more about author]

    David N. Bivin

    David N. Bivin

    David N. Bivin is founder and editor of Jerusalem Perspective. A native of Cleveland, Oklahoma, U.S.A., Bivin has lived in Israel since 1963, when he came to Jerusalem on a Rotary Foundation Fellowship to do postgraduate work at the Hebrew University. He studied at the Hebrew…
    [Read more about author]

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