Summary: Examining the disease of sin and the fact that there is a cure!
There Is A Balm In Gilead
Cancer... what a horrible disease! I venture to say that each person here has been impacted one way or another by this sickness. Many of you have fought it and beat it. Some of you here today are still fighting it. And most all of us have lost a precious loved to as a result of Cancer. There are countless physicians and scientists in laboratories all over the world trying with all their might to find a cure for this disease. And in recent years there has been some progress in the areas of treatment and prevention. But as of yet there is no miracle drug to completely eradicate this disease. Let's imagine for a moment that someone has created a pill that would completely wipe out every cancer cell in your body. Wouldn't you be willing to go to the Dr. and take that pill? Suppose they also came up with a vaccination that would completely prevent you from ever getting cancer. Wouldn't you be willing to take that shot? If this were to happen it would dramatically increase the lifespan of countless individuals. It would be unthinkable for someone with a terminal cancer diagnosis to be offered this drug and say... no thanks, I think I will just continue to suffer and take my chances. You would think that that person was crazy!!! (and you would be right!!!)
But some of you have a disease far more serious than cancer. And it is a disease that not only has a terminal diagnosis, but eternal consequences! I come bearing good news... there is a cure for this disease and the cure is in abundant supply. It won't cost you a dime and it doesn't just increase your lifespan... it gives you life eternal! I am talking about salvation thorough the precious blood of Jesus.
But sadly, many of you have been offered this eternal cure and you simply say "no thanks!" "...not today!" This was an issue for the people of Judah many... many years ago. They were suffering greatly, they needed a cure, they had unlimited access to the cure... but they refused to take the medicine. There was a "Balm in Gilead" that could solve all their problems. But they refused this Balm.
Gilead was a mountainous region east of the Jordan River. There was a rare medicine that was produced here that is called "The Balm Of Gilead". This was an ointment made from the gum of a tree. This balm became symbolic for the power to soothe and to heal. Our key verse for today is - Jeremiah 8:22 Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?
There indeed was a Balm for God's people then and there is still a Balm in Gilead today! There is an old spiritual that says:
"There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole"
"There is a balm in Gilead to heal the sin sick soul"
If you are here and you are living with the spiritual disease that I speak of...I want you to know that there is a cure! There is a limitless supply, but this balm will do you no good if you refuse to accept it. ---- J. C Philpot said - “There is more in the balm to heal than there is in guilt to wound; for there is more in grace to save than there is in sin to destroy.”
I would like to look at the sinful condition of the people of Judah in the book of Jeremiah. Then I would like to look at your sinful condition and I would like to show you that there is a cure for your disease. Let's look to the scriptures and see that "There Is A Balm In Gilead". And if you are sick and suffering, I pray that you are healed today!
In order to fully grasp the extent of Judah's suffering we must look back to Jeremiah chapter 7. At this time in History Judah had turned from the Lord and begun to worship false idols. The Lord in His great mercy sent Jeremiah to the Temple with a message for them. The Lord gave them an opportunity to repent. If they would turn from their idols and back to the Lord they would be able to stay in their own land. God warned them not to be fooled by the lying prophets. The Jews falsely thought that because their temple had been chosen by Jehovah as His peculiar dwelling, it could never be destroyed. Here In chapter 7 the Lord gives them the conditions of His mercy. - v6 if you do not oppress the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place, or walk after other gods to your hurt, 7 then I will cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers forever and ever.