Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Part of the series "Miracles in Matthew." Jesus can meet whatever need you may have, and will teach you something along the way.

Matthew 17:24-27

How many have heard of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs? This is the ordering of all the things we need to make life happy. They go from Physical Needs, to emotional needs and spiritual needs.

How many have some of those same needs?

Today we look at an interesting miracle story that demonstrates that Jesus Understands and provides for our needs. As we look at this story I want to you to notice several things with me. First…

He knows what we need before we ask.

When Peter came into the house, Jesus was the first to speak.

Peter is troubled. he’s defended Jesus to the critics and he doesn’t really know how to approach the subject with Jesus. he doesn’t want to accuse Jesus of tax evasion, but at the same time, if they don’t pay the tax it may reflect badly on Jesus’ ministry.

Jesus knows the turmoil within Peter before Peter even asks. In the same way Jesus knows your needs and mine before we even ask….

ILLUSTRATION: Longtime missionary to Zaire, Dr. Helen Roseveare is someone who understands that the Lord knows what we need before we even ask. She is still living today and loves to tell this story. "A mother at our mission station died after giving birth to a premature baby. We tried to improvise an incubator to keep the infant alive, but the only hot water bottle we had was beyond repair. So we asked the children to pray for the baby and for her sister. One of the girls responded, ’Dear God, please send a hot water bottle today. Tomorrow will be too late because by then the baby will be dead. And dear Lord, send a doll for the sister so she won’t feel so lonely.’ That afternoon a large package arrived from England. The children watched eagerly as we opened it. Much to their surprise, under some clothing was a hot water bottle! Immediately the girl who had prayed so earnestly started to dig deeper, exclaiming, ’If God sent that, I’m sure He also sent a doll!’ And she was right! The heavenly Father knew in advance of that child’s sincere requests, and 5 months earlier He had led a ladies’ group to include both of those specific articles." (TruthorFiction.com)

What needs did you bring here with you today? Physical, Spiritual, Family, Emotional? Jesus knows what you need even before you ask—even before you know what your need is.

You say well then why doesn’t He fix it? Well often I think it’s because, as Peter learned…

He uses our needs to teach us

When Peter came into the house, Jesus was the first to speak. "What do you think, Simon?" he asked. "From whom do the kings of the earth collect duty and taxes--from their own sons or from others?"

26"From others," Peter answered.

27"Then the sons are exempt," Jesus said to him…

The need for the taxes was an opportunity for Jesus to teach Peter something, first of all that He wouldn’t have to pay the tax but the more important point He’s teaching Peter is that rights are less important than relationships. It’s not OK to force your rights when it damages your reputation in someone else’s eyes.

He also again teaches something about His ability to meet our needs.

Often the point of our need becomes a “teachable moment” a time when we are especially able to comprehend new or deeper truth.

Bill and Gloria Gaither have written many wonderful Christian songs. One that Gloria wrote in the late 1960’s came while she was expecting a child. The couple was going through some terrible problems. Bill had been seriously sick, their music had been attacked as not being spiritual. On new years eve night, Gloria sat in a dark room experiencing a time of torment and fear. She said, “I sat alone in the darkness thinking about the rebellious world and all of our problems - and about our baby yet unborn. Who in their right mind would bring a child into a world like this?” She was at the height of her fear and then something happened. She said, “I can’t quite explain what happened in that next moment, but suddenly I felt released from it all. The panic hat had begun to build inside was gently dispelled by a reassuring presence and a soft voice that kept saying, ‘Don’t forget the empty tomb, don’t forget the empty tomb.’ Then I knew I could have that baby and face the future with optimism and trust for I had been reminded that it was all worth it just because He lives.”And she wrote: “How sweet to hold a newborn baby, and feel the pride and joy he gives; but greater still the calm assurance, this child can face uncertain days because He lives. Because He lives I can face tomorrow, because He lives all fear is gone, because I know He holds the future. And life is worth the living just because He lives....

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