Summary: Things that control us, by the power of Christ, we can control.
“Then They Came”
- The Bible is full of real and imperfect people. Noah was a drunk; Abraham was too old and a liar; Sarah laughed at God’s promises; Isaac was a daydreamer; Jacob was a liar; Leah was ugly. Joseph was abused; Moses had a stuttering problem and a short fuse; Miriam was a gossip; Gideon was afraid; Samson had long hair and was a womanizer; Jeremiah and Timothy were too young. Naomi was a widow; Job went bankrupt; David started off too young, then his armor didn’t fit, then he had an affair; Solomon was too rich. Elijah was burned-out and suicidal; Isaiah preached naked; Jeremiah was depressed; Jonah ran from God; Amos’ only training was in the school of fig-tree pruning; Hosea’s wife was a prostitute. John the Baptist ate bugs; Martha worried about everything; the Samaritan woman was divorced, more than once; Peter denied Christ; the disciples fell asleep while praying; Thomas doubted; Zaccheus was too small; John Mark was rejected by Paul; Paul himself was too religious, plus, he was a murderer, as were Moses and David. And of course, Lazarus was dead! (Sermon Central contributor)
-It is inconceivable to think we too could not be used. To think that God too could not use us or our situation to bless another no matter the level of severity. God wants you to surrender and fulfill His purpose for your creation.
-“Then THEY came” I find it very relevant that all the attention and focus was taken off the many that were listening to Jesus, intently focusing on every word, and was placed on 5 individuals.
-Remarkable to me that Mark was not describing what Jesus was teaching. Remember this is the Person that when He was 12 captivated the religious leaders with what He said, during His ministry hundreds of people crowded around Him to hear what He had to say, Jesus would have to get in a boat and push away from shore to be able to speak to people because of the crowds that were LISTENING, yet Mark doesn’t tell us what He was saying but just that “they arrived”.
-An unbelievable course of events takes place that could not go undescribed.
-Let us not forget all those involved, Jesus, religious leaders who had their mind read by Jesus, 4 with faith, 100’s watching, and a paralyzed man. But my thoughts this morning is on this bed.
I. His bed controlled his destination
A. The bed can be found in the Bible as a place of rest or a place of bondage.
1. The reference several times is that of a place of restoration of strength whether of illness or fatigue.
2. Through Jesus’ ministry though many were brought to Him in their bed, representing a place of bondage, as is the case we look at today.
B. He went nowhere his bed did not take him.
1. A constant reminder of his condition.
a. His condition was that of a paralytic.
b. Countless days spent lying without motion; days and nights spent praying that there would be opportunity to conquer this bed, maybe even hate that had grown toward this cradle that had him captured due to his condition.
c. Depravity of experiences; fathering a family, working for a wage, standing in the Temple to worship, even following this Man that had been proclaimed as the Messiah, these were not to be his, but this bed was.
2. Places he went were determined by this bed.
a. No one to carry him, nowhere to go.
b. Notice he was not allowed initially to enter Christ’s presence, not enough room.
3. Represented his inability
C. There are very real destinations that are controlled this morning.
1. Eternal destinations
a. Peace is experienced by those who have found themselves in the presence of Christ due to placing their faith in Him as the Lord of their life.
b. A very real hope is given to their eternal inheritance.
c. Likewise there is suffering by those who have not come to Christ through faith.
d. Despair due to the condition of sin in their life Romans 6:16 (NKJV)
16 Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?
2. Experiential destinations
a. Some may have come to Christ through faith and yet their day to day experience with Him, relational, has barriers, deterrence from knowing the full joy found in complete obedience to Him.
3. Physical destinations
a. God has purposes for your life that require surrender.
b. For some this means ministry in a church, and yet for others ministry outside the church.
c. Yet we find ourselves incapable of finding it due to our negligence to surrender. Philippians 3:7, 8 (NKJV)