Summary: For those who are worried about their salvation or any and every aspect of their lives Jesus can give the peace that the world cannot give and cannot take away, but for those who are comfortable with their sin and the sin of the world Jesus brings discomf
Gospel reading – Matthew 11:28
SERMON - Jesus came to comfort the Disturbed, and disturb the Comfortable.
One of the most well known verses in the Bible is Psalm 23 verse 4:
‘Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil for you are with me, your rod and your staff, they COMFORT me’ and God does not only provide comfort in times of bereavement,
He is always there to raise us up when we are down.
One of the greatest things about the Christian religion
is that it gives comfort to its members,
because we believe that God is with us at all times,
giving us peace for today and bright hope for tomorrow.
This comfort comes to us by reading and believing the Bible,
the revealed and inspired Word of God.
The Bible is God’s way of assuring us of His steadfast love and support,
and His willingness to forgive,
no matter how far we have ‘fallen short’ of His moral standards
and failed to follow the teaching and example of Jesus,
providing we repent as the Prodigal Son did,
and return to our Heavenly Father.
God has spoken to mankind through kings and shepherds, fishermen and prophets, and most of all through His son,
and today He speaks to us through these printed pages,
which are brought alive to us, and to the situation we live in,
by the Holy Spirit,
the supreme Comforter
Who Jesus promised he would send.
The Bible contains many references to people being comforted
and I’d like to share some of them with you.
In 1st Samuel 17 David went to take food supplies to his brothers
who were serving in the Israelite army
and ended up facing a 9 feet high soldier called Goliath
who everyone else, the Israelite king Saul included, was afraid of.
Like any mortal David would have been afraid and afflicted
but God comforted and strengthened him so much
that he faced up to the enemy of Israel and killed him.
God’s word says that He can and He will help us to face up to our enemies
even a gigantic enemy.
Then we have the story of the prophet’s widow in 2nd Kings 4.
She was so desperately afflicted financially,
that her 2 sons were going to be taken and sold as slaves to pay her debts.
But Elisha knew that one of God’s names or titles is JEHOVAH JIREH –
God will provide.
He told her to borrow jars from her neighbours
and fill them with oil from the one little jar that she possessed,
and by a miracle of God’s provision,
the oil kept flowing from it
until she had filled every jar she could beg and borrow;
and she was able to sell the oil and pay her debts.
How she, and Elisha, must have praised the Lord for meeting her need.
God’s word comforts us with the promise
that Jehovah Jireh will provide for us in our situation
if we ask Him for what we NEED in the name of Jesus Christ.
The wise man Job lost his seven sons and three daughters,
thousands of sheep, camels, oxen and donkeys
and all his possessions and was physically discomforted by boils,
but never gave the devil satisfaction by turning away from God,
and in the end God comforted Job
and gave him a new family and more cattle and possessions
than he had in the beginning.
God’s word gives us comfort,
assuring us that whoever or whatever we lose,
He will fill that emptiness with peace and hope.
Isaiah 40 verse 1 says:
‘Comfort, comfort my people’, says your God.
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem,
and proclaim to her that her hard service has been completed,
that her sin has been paid for’,
and we believe that as Christians we are part of the new Israel,
so these words should comfort us also.
Our sins have been forgiven.
The Gospels contain many accounts of Jesus bringing comfort to people
who were suffering in many ways.
He made the lepers clean, and made the blind see,
the deaf hear and the dumb speak.
He made the lame walk, and brought back from the dead, Jairus’ daughter,
the widow of Nain’s son, and Martha and Mary’s brother Lazarus
after he had been dead for 4 days.
Chapters 14, 15 and 16 of John’s Gospel
contain what is called ‘The Last Supper Discourse’,
the last big speech that Jesus made before he was betrayed,
arrested, tried and crucified,
and in these 3 chapters Jesus comforted them
and told them not to be afraid
for he would be with them forever,
either in the flesh
or in and through the Holy Spirit.
They didn’t understand, then,
but they would on the day of Pentecost.