Summary: When dealing with opposition speak the truth in love.
A Messiah Who Deals With Opposition
Text: Matt. 12:22-32
1. Illustration: Sailors in the northern oceans have frequently observed icebergs traveling in one direction in spite of strong winds blowing in the opposite direction. The icebergs were moving against the winds, but how? The explanation is that the icebergs, with eight-ninths of their bulk under the water surface, were caught in the grip of strong currents that moved them in a certain direction, no matter which way the winds raged. In the Christian life, no matter how strongly the winds of passing opinion blow in opposition, the believer who has a depth of living in the currents of God’s grace should move toward righteousness.
2. One thing that is for certain in the Christian life is that there will be opposition. However, along with that certainty is an even greater certainty: Jesus gives us the power to overcome opposition.
3. In our text today we see:
4. Read Matt. 12:22-32
Proposition: When dealing with opposition speak the truth in love.
Transition: We deal with many of the same things that Jesus did. Sometimes we will see...
I. The Amazement (22-23)
A. The Crowd Was Amazed
1. One thing that is true about the power of God is that it amazes us.
a. It doesn't matter how old or young we are.
b. It doesn't matter how long we have been a believer.
c. When God's power affects our lives it is absolutely amazing.
2. In our text today we see "a demon-possessed man, who was blind and couldn’t speak, was brought to Jesus. He healed the man so that he could both speak and see."
a. The word "then" must not be understood here in the sense of "immediately after" but "in the same general period of time."
b. The opposition of the Pharisees was gaining momentum. The healing of a demon-possessed man now became an excuse for the Pharisees to accuse Jesus further.
c. This man was not only unable to hear or speak, he was also blind (Horton, 239).
d. Jesus opened up a whole new world to this man. Before he was in a world all his own. He could not physically able to hear, speak, or see.
e. However, he was not only physically in darkness, but he was even more importantly spiritually in darkness.
f. Jesus not only opened up his eyes, ears, and mouth, but he also opened his heart!
3. Notice the response of the crowd, "The crowd was amazed and asked, “Could it be that Jesus is the Son of David, the Messiah?”
a. Amazed: cause someone to be so astounded as to be practically overwhelmed (Louw and Nidda, Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament: Based on Symantic Domains).
b. They were totally overcome with the power of God. Jesus had taken a man who was totally overcome with darkness, both physically and spiritually, and brought him into the light.
c. The phrase "could it be" does not require a negative answer. In other words, they were saying "Jesus could be the Messiah," the one we have been waiting for all these years (Horton, 239).
d. These events not only touched the man who received them but also those who saw it happen.
1. Illustration: Once I had a church member from another church tell me that I shouldn't tell others, especially young people, about how I came to faith in Jesus Christ. My response to them was as long as their is a tongue in mouth and breath in my lungs I will tell everyone I meet what Jesus has done in my life.
2. The power of God in our lives is a testimony to unbelievers.
a. 1 Corinthians 14:22 (NLT)
So you see that speaking in tongues is a sign, not for believers, but for unbelievers...
b. You cannot refute a changed life.
c. You cannot debate a life that has been transformed.
d. People will see what God has done in your life and want it for themselves.
3. The power of God in our lives is a testimony against the devil.
a. Revelation 12:11 (NLT)
And they have defeated him by the blood of the Lamb and by their testimony...
b. Every time we tell someone about what God has done in our lives we give the devil a black eye.
c. Every time we tell someone about what God has done in our lives we remind him of what he has lost!
d. Every time we tell about what God has done in our lives we give Jesus the praise!
Transition: But for every one who is amazed there will be an accusation.
II. The Accusation (24)
A. From the Power of Satan
1. There is another certainty about the Christian life, and that is there will be opposition. If Jesus got it so will we!