How Long?

Then Jesus answered and said,

O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you?

How long shall I suffer you?

Matthew 17:17

Ash Wednesday begins the season of Lent,

a time of preparation for the celebration of the resurrection of our Lord.

 It is a time of reflection and repentance.

On this Ash Wednesday we are called to contemplate our faith.

We say that we believe but do our actions speak louder than our words?

In the Gospel of Matthew

Jesus has been on the mountain with Peter, James, and John.

He was transfigured before them as they stood there.

They saw Moses and Elijah with the LORD and heard God speak:

This is My beloved Son,

in whom I am well pleased;

Hear ye Him.

When they came down from the mountain to join the other disciples, a crowd had gathered around a distraught father whose son suffered seizures.

He had come to the disciples seeking relief for his son but they were unable to help him.

That is when Jesus spoke these words:

O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you?

How long shall I suffer you?

Jesus lived among them.

They heard him speak of God’s power, God’s mercy, God’s grace.

They saw how he lived.

They saw the dumb speak, the lame walk, the blind see.


There were those who chose not to believe.

Today we have the witness of the Scriptures,

God’s Holy Word.

We have the testimonies of the saints down through the ages.

We see lives changed,

broken homes restored,

broken bodies healed,


great and small.


There are those who choose to not believe.

How long?

What will it take to convince you?

We have just witnessed the events at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky.

We have heard the reports of those who were in that auditorium.

We have seen the spread to other campuses.

God is doing something!

And yet, there are many who dispute the sincerity of the claims.

They would rather believe it is manipulation of emotions.

To admit that God is acting in that building is to accept that they have a decision to make.

They would rather not.

When God tasked Ezekiel with His prophecy concerning the destruction of the temple,

the city of Jerusalem, and the captivity of Israel,

He told him:

Son of man, thou dwellest in the midst of a rebellious house,

 which have eyes to see, and see not;

they have ears to hear, and hear not:

for they are a rebellious house.

Many in the world today fit that description.

They have eyes to see but choose not to see.

They have ears to hear but choose not to hear.

They have hearts to believe but choose not to believe.

Jesus asks –

How long?