Summary: Jesus wants us to believe...
Believe! (Part 2)
Sermon by Rick Crandall
McClendon Baptist Church - Sept. 16, 2007
*I remember when I first believed in Jesus. It was a fall night in 1975. We were on a retreat with McClendon’s Young Adult Choir. (Thank God for a choir director who was wise enough and compassionate enough to allow a lost guy to sing in the choir!)
*People were giving testimonies as we sat around the fireplace that night. Mary and I were strategically seated by ourselves on the second row of the group, probably because Preacher and Georgia knew that I didn’t have a testimony. The front row went around the circle almost to the end, and Jimmy Posey was giving a tearful testimony about his twin brother who was not saved at the time. In that moment it was like a light went on in my mind. I remember thinking, “This is real. Jesus is real. What the Bible says about Him is true!” I believed in Jesus, and He has changed my life forever.
1. Jesus wants us to believe that He can fix the worst problems.
*This was His challenge to the two blind men in vs. 27-28: “When Jesus departed from there, two blind men followed Him, crying out and saying, ‘Son of David, have mercy on us!’ And when He had come into the house, the blind men came to Him. And Jesus said to them, ‘Do you believe that I am able to do this?’ They said to Him, ‘Yes, Lord.’”
*Jesus Christ wants you to believe that He can fix the worst problems you will ever face in life. This does not mean that Jesus will always heal us, like He healed the blind men, because this world is not our home, all physical healing is only temporary, and God in His infinite wisdom may have another way to help us. But we must believe that He is able and willing to do all things well.
*Besides, the biggest problem we face in life is not a physical disease. It is spiritual death. The worst problem we face in life is not sickness but sin.
*Billy Strayhorn reminds us of this with a Dennis the menace cartoon. Good old Mr. Wilson and his wife are standing at the front door. In the distance Dennis the Menace is waving good-bye. Mrs. Wilson tells her husband, “(Dennis’ mother) says he was such a good baby.”
*Mr. Wilson replied, “Obviously he got over it.” And Billy Strayhorn said, “While it is very true of Dennis the Menace, it is also very true of each of us.” We may be cute babies, but we are born with the sickness of sin in our hearts. “Somewhere along the line we experience our own fall. And we’re never as good as God intended.” But God knew this ahead of time, and He planned the way for us to be saved. Jesus Christ is the way for us to be saved. (1)
*God’s Son came to earth as a man, lived a perfect life, died on the cross for our sins and rose from the dead. Now Jesus will give everlasting life to all who trust in Him. Speaking about Jesus in Col 1:15-23, Paul said:
15. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
16. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.
17. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.
18. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence. 19. For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell,
20. and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.
21. And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled
22. in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and irreproachable in His sight
23. if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard, which was preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister.
*Believing in Jesus is the only thing that can fix our worst problem. Faith in Him will take you from spiritual death to everlasting life. Dr. Lewis Chafer was the key founder of Dallas Theological Seminary. One day many years ago, Dr. Chafer was walking down the street when he noticed a flagman sitting in a little house at a railroad crossing. He saw that the man was reading a large Bible, and though a sign on the door said, "No Admittance," Dr. Chafer went boldly in and greeted the man. Then he asked the railroad man if he read the Bible a lot. The man said, “yes.” Then Dr. Chafer boldly asked him a second question: “Are you saved?”