Summary: The third step in the biblical process of Healing the Hurts You Don’t Deserve

Healing the Hurts You Don’t Deserve:

The Healing Path

Scripture Reading: Matt. 18:23-35, Matt. 6:12

It sounds like something out of a horror movie,

but it’s real.

In recent years,

scientists have discovered a kind of bacterial infection

called necrotizing fasciitis,

more commonly called “flesh-eating bacteria.”

Once this bacteria enters a human body,

it can multiply rapidly.

Within 24 hours, its victim begins to experience

flu-like symptoms, severe thirst, and an extreme weakness.

Within 3-4 days, the limb, or area of the body most affected, will begin to swell, and dark blisters filled with blackish fluid will appear.

At 5 days, the victim’s blood pressure wil drop severely and he or she will go into toxic shock.

If it’s not discovered early,

and treated quickly and aggressively,

it can consume a person’s health and well-being

from the inside out

and, eventually, take that person’s life.

Now, I know there’s one or two people here who, when you hear describe that bacteria, think, I’m feeling a little queasy right now. . . And you’re starting to worry that you might have it--but don’t worry, I won’t mention any names, JASMINE ISAACS!

But I know there are others among us who are breathing a sigh of relief, thinking to yourself, I may not be the healthiest person in the room--that would be Bob Holzworth--but at least I don’t have some bacteria eating away at me from the inside out! Right?

Well, don’t be so sure.

Oh, I don’t think any of us have to worry about necrotizing fasciitis. It’s fairly rare, probably less than a thousand or two cases a year.

But necrotizing fasciitis has its parallel in the spiritual realm,

and just like its physical counterpart,

this spiritual affliction can fester and grow, and

if it’s not discovered early,

and treated quickly and aggressively,

it can consume a person’s spirit and soul

from the inside out

and, eventually, rob that person of his or her

spiritual life and vitality.

I’m talking about the hurts that live inside you,

the personal, emotional, relational wounds,

the result of

something someone said,

something someone did,

something someone neglected to do.

And those hurts--

the hurts you don’t deserve--

if they’re not confronted and treated

and healed,

can eat away at your heart

and spirit

and even affect your physical well-being.

Good morning. My name is Bob Hostetler, and

this morning at Cobblestone Community Church we’re in the third week of a four-week series of messages from the Bible, entitled “Healing the Hurts You Don’t Deserve.”

Two weeks ago, we studied John 5,

and discovered step one in the healing process,

and that is “The Healing Choice,”

choosing healing over hurt.

Last week, we looked at John 11,

and discussed “The Healing Power” of comfort,

and the necessity of receiving comfort from God and from others as another important step in the healing process.

This morning, we’re going to look

at a story Jesus told in Matthew, chapter 18,

as we direct our attention to the third step in “Healing the Hurts You Don’t Deserve.”

So let me ask you to turn in your Bibles please to the Gospel of Matthew, the first book of the New Testament, as we concentrate on Matthew 18:23 35.

Now, if you worship here regularly, I encourage you to get in the habit of bringing your Bible with you so you can read for yourself

with your own eyes

from your own Bible

what’s being taught up here at the front.

If you’re here without a Bible of your own this morning, please feel free to use on of the copies we provide for you in the center of each table.

And if you don’t have a Bible of your own, we would love for you to take one of ours home with you.

So, having said all that,

please open your Bible to Matthew

the first book in the New Testament

--that’s page #_____ if you’re using one of the Bibles on the tables--

Matthew, chapter 18,

and we’re going to study verses 23-35 this morning and see what God’s Word, the Bible, can teach us about healing the hurts we don’t deserve.

Look with me at John chapter five, as I read aloud from the New International version:

"Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him. Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.

"The servant fell on his knees before him. `Be patient with me,’ he begged, `and I will pay back everything.’ The servant’s master took pity on him, cancelled the debt and let him go.

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