Sermons

Summary: Jesus teaches us how to live with a progressing and growing faith

The Progress of Faith

John 4:46-53

March 3, 2002

Introduction

John Q. Archibald (DENZEL WASHINGTON), his wife Denise (KIMBERLY ELISE) and their young son Mike (DANIEL E. SMITH) lead a relatively happy life despite their various financial problems that stem from John’s hours being cut back at the factory where he works with his friend, Jimmy (DAVID THORNTON).

When Mike is suddenly stricken ill and Dr. Turner (JAMES WOODS), the head cardiologist at Hope Memorial Hospital, informs the Archibalds that their boy needs a heart transplant or he’ll die, their world is shattered. It gets worse, however, when hospital administrator Rebecca Payne informs them that John’s health insurance doesn’t cover that operation and its related costs, and that unless they can come up with a $75,000 down payment on the total $250,000 amount, Mike won’t be put on the transplant waiting list.

To his shock, John learns that’s true, and so the two set out to raise the money any way they can, including sell most of their personal effects. When that doesn’t raise enough and the hospital announces it’s going to discharge Mike, John becomes desperate and takes Turner and a handful of other people in the emergency room hostage.

Taken from Movie Review at screenit.com

This morning we are going to look at the life of another desperate father. Turn with me to John 4:46-53

Body

I. Crisis Faith – Verse 46

46 Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum.

A. The knowledge of Jesus

1. Jesus has proven His power

a.) Cana was the location of the first miracle of Jesus and He was becoming very well known in that region

b.) Jesus was the source of a miracle and the official was in need of a miracle

2. Jesus had returned to Cana

B. The need of the official

1. The official’s son was sick

a.) The man was in great need because his son was near death

b.) The need was desperate. The need was total. The need was beyond the official’s ability.

2. The official needed a miracle

a.) The reality of human need

1.) No one is exempt from having some type of need

2.) Needs confront everyone from the powerful to the weak

b.) The need was beyond his control

Accidents happen illnesses come, diseases strike, suffering grips and death overtakes. Sooner or later everyone is going to have a need beyond their ability.

II. Calling Faith – Verses 47-49

47 When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death. 48 "Unless you people see miraculous signs and wonders," Jesus told him, "you will never believe." 49 The royal official said, "Sir, come down before my child dies."

A. The action of the official

1. The official takes action

He hears about Jesus being in Cana

He gets up and goes to Jesus

He begged Jesus to meet His need

2. The two requests

The man asks for Jesus to come to his home

The man asks for Jesus to heal his son

B. Jesus responds to the request

1. Rephrase the statement

a.) “unless I come and you see signs and wonders you will not believe. Is that what you are saying to me?

b.) What is Jesus driving at? Jesus is making the crowds and the man see that faith must come before miracles can happen

2. The power of Christ is the disposal of faith

a.) Matthew 13:57-58

57 And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, "Only in his hometown and in his own house is a prophet without honor." 58 And he did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith.

b.) There must be belief before Christ can do anything

c.) Do you believe that Christ can and will work in your life?

C. The official will not stop

1. The man does not stop

a.) The man is filled with determination and will not stop his plea

b.) The attitude is that the man would not take “no” for an answer

2. The plea becomes more urgent

a.) The official is showing the reality of his desperation

b.) Four examples of desperation

1.) He left the side of his dying son

2.) He traveled at least a day to find Jesus

3.) He begged Jesus for help

4.) He would not stop his plea for help

Q - When was the last time that you approached God like this?

III. Confident Faith – Verse 50

50 Jesus replied, "You may go. Your son will live." The man took Jesus at his word and departed.

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