June 30, 2011
INTRODUCTION – Review of concept of “kingdom” in gospel of Matthew John the Baptist – 3:2 – Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand Jesus – 4:17 same
Sermon on the Mount – chps. 5-7 – How to enter in and experience it: 1. brokenness “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven”
2. enduring persecution, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” 5:10
3. Greatness in the kingdom of God can be attained by obeying and teaching others to obey Christ’s commandments 5:19
4. Minimum requirement for entering: surpassing righteousness of scribes and Pharisees – 5:20
5. First request in teaching disciples how to pray in what some call the Lord’s prayer, but is really the disciples prayer – is “Your kingdom come, your will be done.” 6:10
6. Way to security and adequate provision in this life regardless of what the world’s economy does – is seeking first His kingdom and His righteousness – Matt. 6:33
7. Matt. 7:21, 22 – there will be some surprises when this age ends and we all appear before the judgment seat of Christ – – “Not everyone who says to me “Lord, Lord” will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.” Not about ritual prayers; or even about doing miracles or claiming to have done them.
For us to see His kingdom come and His will be done in our region and beyond through us as His instruments – – we need to know what He is about, and how He feels about things; and what things He cares about. Specifically from the two paragraphs we are going to look at today in Matthew ch. 15 – – there are two primary truths about Jesus Christ – that we must be more and more convinced of – – if we are going to be used by Him to advance His kingdom.
I. Jesus Christ wants to heal the sick. He always has; and always will until He returns – – And of course when He returns He will once and for will bring an end to sickness, sin and satan’s rule on this earth. Vs. 29-31
3 observations about what that has to do with us A. my internal conversation recently about all the instances of Jesus healing in the gospels; why so often? Isn’t this a bit redundant? Aren’t there other things that could be discussed? Answer: A huge part of the kingdom of God invading the life of an individual, or family, or community – is how the King feels about and deals with sickness. Few things in life hinder, distract and discourage us more than sickness and diseases.
B. All of these lame, crippled, blind, mute (and many others) were brought by friends or relatives to Jesus. Sometimes Jesus just appears to people. But more often people who already know Him introduce others to Him. We do that today by praying for the sick, by proclaiming who He is regarding sickness; and by encouraging such folk to cry out to Him for the miracles they need.
Yesterday with Peter M.
C. The result of all this healing was the crowds marveled and glorified God. How did they glorify Him? They ascribed to Him compassion for the sick and the power for healing, and the desire to heal. God is glorified when people see Him as He is and revel in His goodness and greatness.
He has always been this way you know. He revealed Himself to the Hebrews early on in their existence as “The God who heals”. King David said in Psalm 103:3 that He is a God “who pardons all our iniquities, and heals all our diseases.” And Isaiah the Prophet said in Isa. 53:4 “Surely our griefs or it could be translated “sickness” He Himself bore, And our sorrows or it could be translated pains He carried.” Later in that passage Isaiah wrote, “… by His scouring we are healed.”
But many people will not know that until they see Him in action, and until His instruments for such – explain where the power comes from.
David in Psalm 86:9 prophesied that “all nations whom You have made shall come and worship before You, O Lord, And they shall glorify Your name.” One of the ways that will happen is through the ongoing healing ministry of Jesus
At least 8 other times in the gospels we find that God is glorified by the healing ministry of Christ: – the paralytic in Matt. 9:2-8 – the deaf and dumb man in Mark 7:31-37 – the crowds in matt 15:30,31 – the multitudes in 19:2 – the widow’s son in Luke 7:11-17 – the woman bound by Satan – Luke 13:10-16 – one of the ten lepers, who happened to be a gentile by the way – Luke 17:11-19 – the man born blind in John 9:1-41 – Lazarus raised from the dead in John 11:1-44
Is it possible that one of the reasons our great God is not being glorified more in our coastal region – is because He is not being called upon to heal the sick more?
Was God not greatly glorified with the way He rescued and healed Alanna years ago after her accident; and with the way He rescued and healed Raya in more recent days?
Have time of prayer for the sick among us; the sick connected to us; and opportunities with the sick in our community God wants to run us into.
Last week we recognized that if we are to see the answer to our prayer and our theme for this year, “Your Kingdom Come” – – we’ve got to know our King better and understand His kingdom better.
Last week from Matt. 15:29-31 we discussed the truth that Jesus Christ wants to heal the sick today as much as He did 2,000 + years ago.
The second truth we see about Jesus Christ in the last paragraph of ch. 15 starting with vs. 32 is this:
II. Jesus Christ cares about the physical needs of the multitudes. He always has and He always will until He brings an end to this age where sin and Satan continue to wreak havoc in our society. Vs. 32-38
4 observations that can enable us to be His instruments in meeting the needs of the multitudes A. Our Savior abounds in compassion for the physical needs of people. This isn’t the first time Jesus fed the multitudes you know. If you go back to ch. 14, Jesus had withdrawn in a boat to process the disturbing news of his cousin John’s murder by King Herod. The crowds discover where He is and come to Him. Jesus comes ashore and the scriptures say He, “felt compassion for them and healed their sick.” Well the disciples being the perceptive bunch that they were – urged Jesus late in the evening to send the crowds away so that they could find food on their own. Jesus had met their spiritual and health needs and that was enough they probably reasoned. But Jesus saw their physical need and wanted to meet that as well.
In our passage for today – some time later, Jesus actually states to His disciples, “I feel compassion for the people because they have remained with Me now three days and have nothing to eat; and I do not want to send them away hungry, for they might faint on the way.”
When Jesus was with people –whether an individual, a family, or with the crowds – He took note of their needs, and His heart moved Him to do something about them.
B. When our Savior wants to meet those physical needs, He looks to His disciples to be His conduits of that blessing and provision. Vs. 32-34 Surely with all of the miracles we have seen Jesus do by this point in His ministry, He could have asked the Father to send down bread – – and He would have done so. But Jesus delights in working through His disciples.
C. Disciples are to bring Him or offer Him what they have; not complain or explain away His call because of what they do not have. And not wait until they have what they think they need to meet the whole need. Vs. 34
D. Jesus started meeting the overwhelming need of a huge crowd of people through His disciples before multiplying the food. In other words He multiplied it as it was needed; not in one lump sum beforehand. Vs. 35-37 Jesus Christ is not necessarily into this sense we often have that we have to have all of our ducks in a row before we launch out to meet a need. The critical question is not: do I have the resources. The critical question is: Is He calling me to meet the need.
E. These people were not necessarily poor and destitute. They just had a need in the present that Jesus wanted to meet. Could be opening up a room in your home for a person to live in for a period of time. Time of prayer for homeless feeding ministry and bread of life ministry and the needy in our coastal region
Call to Fall time of prayer for our nation: