Summary: Four requests for spiritual help we need from the Lord.

Lord, We Need Your Help!

Matthew 16:1-12

Sermon by Rick Crandall

McClendon Baptist Church - Feb. 8, 2009

*Do you ever feel like you need spiritual help? -- Oh yeah! -- Especially when I am struggling or see people I love struggling with faults and weaknesses.

*If you don’t feel like you need spiritual help, let me tell you: You need a lot of spiritual help. You may even be lost. But all of us can cry out to the Lord. And we can use this Scripture to help us do it.

1. The first prayer request is, “Lord, help us see Your signs.”

*In vs. 1-4 some hard-hearted Jewish rulers could not see the Lord’s signs:

1. Then the Pharisees and Sadducees came, and testing Him asked that (Jesus) would show them a sign from heaven.

2. He answered and said to them, "When it is evening you say, `It will be fair weather, for the sky is red’;

3. and in the morning, `It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ Hypocrites! You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times.

4. A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.’’ And He left them and departed.

*Some other scribes and Pharisees had asked Jesus for a sign back in Matt 12.

-There in vs. 39-40 He told them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. -For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”

*God surely gives signs. He still speaks through the still small voice of His Holy Spirit -- urging us to do the right thing at the right time. God still speaks through our circumstances. Sometimes He speaks to people through dreams. (Sometimes He hits us over the head with a 2-by-4!) Most of all, He speaks to us through His Word.

*God gives signs. But here Jesus said, “A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.”

*Why did the Lord say that? The reason why is because there were never enough signs for those hard-hearted, unbelieving people.

-No generation has ever seen as many signs as that generation had seen!

-Those Pharisees and Sadducees had heard the reports. Some of them had seen the miracles first hand.

*Up to this point in Matthew, we see at least 18 reports of miracles, involving thousands of people.

*In Matt 8 Jesus healed a leper. -Then with just a word He healed a Roman soldier’s servant who had some kind of paralyzing disease.

-Jesus also healed Peter’s mother-in-law of a fever by touching her hand.

-He cast out demons with His word, calmed the wind and the raging sea, then cast out a whole legion of demons from two men.

*In Matt 9, Jesus healed another paralyzed man and forgave his sins.

-Then He healed a woman who had been bleeding for 12 years, and He raised Jairus’ daughter from the dead!

-Jesus also healed two blind men by touching their eyes.

-And He cast out a dumb demon, enabling the possessed man to begin speaking.

*In Matt 12 Jesus healed a man who was both blind and mute.

*In Matt 14 Jesus fed 5,000 men plus thousands more women and children with five loaves and two fish.

-Jesus also walked on the water of a raging sea.

-And He made it possible for Peter to walk on the water.

*I like the story Ken Davis told about a 4-year-old boy. His name was Jonathan.

*One summer day, Jonathan’s mom came out on the patio with his lunch. And she found him taking the water out of his little pool. With great determination, Jonathan was draining it one small bucket at a time.

*Mom set his food on the picnic table and asked what he was doing. And her frustrated 4-year-old replied, “I was trying to do like Jesus and walk on the water. -- But this water doesn’t work.” (1)

*It would have worked for Jesus! He can walk on any water.

*In Matt 15 Jesus cast a demon out of a Canaanite woman’s daughter.

-Then He healed many people who were lame, blind, dumb and maimed.

-And He fed 4,000 men plus women and children with seven loaves and a few fish.

*John 21:25 tells us, “There are also many other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.”

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