Summary: Christ’s work did not stop with His departure. We are God’s agent of change in the lives of many who are crippled spiritually today. Let us touch lives, through faith in Christ’s Name.
For this crippled man, every day is the same.
• The same spot, the same crowd, the same scene, the same routine.
• Every day he would be carried and dropped at Temple gate called Beautiful.
• The congregation recognised him “as the same man who used to sit begging at the temple gate…”
He has become a permanent feature of that place.
• For him, today will just be like the day before, or any other day.
• For others, today will also be just like any other day, with the same beggar sitting at the same spot, probably in the same clothes, asking for the same thing.
• Nothing has changed. Nothing will probably change.
Have we gotten into such a mode?
• Day in and day out we find ourselves doing the same things, sitting at the same seat, facing the same people, going through the same routine.
• You end up letting time goes by without doing anything significant.
• God is not going to allow that to go on for this man. There is more to life than that!
• He is going to encounter God and experience a total change in his life.
I see two things that make it difficult for this man to expect a change.
• One, he is crippled. And it is from birth. He has never walked before. He has been in this way for over 40 years. 4:22 tells us that.
• Two, he has been begging probably all his life. He is a professional beggar, very accustomed to being carried to this spot every day.
• If there can be a change, if doctors can find a way to help him, it would have happened long ago. If someone can give him a decent job, he would have disappeared from the scene long ago.
For years his only means of survival is to beg. Everyday he begs. He lives only for the three meals each day.
• Frankly you do not need to be a crippled to do that. Many are living such a life today. They live only for their daily meals.
• They have no higher purpose than to get enough to feed themselves, or their families.
• That’s not the life God intended. We need a goal, a vision for our life, Rev Lee said. Every one of us needs to have a goal, a purpose in life.
What this man really need is not money. God knows better.
• Money can buy him 3 meals a day but not a meaningful purpose to life.
• He survived 40 over years begging, and would probably be able to survive for another 40 years the same way. This was not God’s plan for his life.
• He needs to know Jesus Christ. He needs an encounter with God and experience His grace and power. He needs a new life.
• That is what every one of us need – a relationship with Christ. It’s good to have money, to have a house, to have a stable job, to have a good education, but ultimately we need a relationship with God, an intimate one.
But things can change, and will change, if you allow God to.
• God is not going to allow this man to sit there for another 40 years.
• His disciples Peter and John will be walking by soon, and He is going to change this man’s life.
• God does not need any precedent. He just steps in and does His work.
• This man may be crippled from birth, but it doesn’t matter to God. He will make this man to jump up and glorify His Name.
He can do that for anyone who dares to put their trust in Christ, when given the chance.
• God needs no precedent. No matter how impossible your situation, how difficult, and for how long you have been in this problem, when God acts, He can surprise you.
• Eph 3:20 says God can do things "exceedingly abundantly above all that we can ever ask or think". So if you can ask it, that’s not it. If you can think it, that’s not it too.
• But can we really believe Him?
This man did. When Peter asked him to rise up and walk, verses 7-8: “Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the Temple courts, walking and jumping and praising God.”
• Although we cannot really see his heart, we can sense from the description here that this man did not resist nor ridicule Peter’s preposterous suggestion.
• He could have, if you have not walked for 40 years.