Summary: This is my May devotional for my leadership team that examines the need for our obedience and faith to Christ’s calling.
Leadership Board Devotional
May 13, 2003
John Newton had received from the Lord some almost unbelievable answers to his petitions, and so he often engaged in "large asking." In support of this practice he would frequently tell the story of a man who asked Alexander the Great to give him a huge sum of money in exchange for his daughter’s hand in marriage. The ruler consented and told him to request of his treasurer whatever he wanted. So he went and asked for an enormous amount. The keeper to the funds was startled and said he couldn’t give him that much without a direct order. Going to Alexander, the treasurer argued that even a small fraction of the money requested would more than serve the purpose. "No," replied Alexander, "let him have it all. I like that fellow. He does me honor. He treats me like a king and proves by what he asks that he believes me to be both rich and generous." Newton concluded the story by saying, "In the same way, we should go to the throne of God’s grace and present petitions that express honorable views of the love, riches, and bounty of our King!"
Faith is to believe what we do not see, and the reward of faith is to see what we believe. Augustine.
Philip Yancey defines faith as: "Believing in advance in something that will only seem logical when seen in reverse."
27 As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed him, calling out, "Have mercy on us, Son of David!" 28 When he had gone indoors, the blind men came to him, and he asked them, "Do you believe that I am able to do this?" "Yes, Lord," they replied. 29 Then he touched their eyes and said, "According to your faith will it be done to you"; 30 and their sight was restored. Jesus warned them sternly, "See that no one knows about this." 31 But they went out and spread the news about him all over that region.
I. A request is made (Verse 27)
“Have mercy on us, Son of David!”
These two blind men came before Jesus with a direct petition but a vague request. Neither of these two men ask for anything specific other than mercy. Jesus could have answered their request in any number of ways. Why did they not specifically ask to be healed?
It becomes clear that both men had placed such a trust and a faith in Jesus that they believed that He would not only know their needs but also have the power to meet those needs.
II. A requirement of faith (Verse 28)
"Do you believe that I am able to do this?" "Yes, Lord," they replied.
Jesus asks a pointed and powerful question: “Do you believe I can do this?” Jesus wastes no time getting to the heart of the matter. He literally is asking them if they believe that He can do for them what He had done for others in the past.
Is today really any different? Has the fundamental question of Jesus changed? The answer is no. Jesus is asking the same question to us today both personally and corporately. Do you really believe that I can and will do what I have said that I will do?
The question may be the same but the areas of life might not be. Jesus is saying I can save your lost friends and loved ones. Do you really believe this? Jesus is saying I can provide all of the resources that you need. Do you really believe this? Jesus is saying I can bring revival to your church. Do you really believe this? Jesus is saying I can send the Holy Spirit like a mighty rushing wind. Do you really believe this?
Notice that these two blind men do not hesitate, they do not give a halfway answer, and they do not compromise. Their answer to the question of Jesus needs to be our answer too: YES LORD!
Do you believe that I can:
Use your church to build my kingdom: YES LORD!
Supply every spiritual need that the church has: YES LORD!
Supply every financial need that the church has: YES LORD!
Supply every emotional need that the church has: YES LORD!
Supply every personnel need that the church has: YES LORD!
We cannot afford to hem. We cannot afford to haw. We cannot afford to hedge. We cannot afford to be halfway. We cannot afford to halfhearted. We cannot afford to hesitate.
III. A Reward is given (Verses 29-30)
"According to your faith will it be done to you"; and their sight was restored.
Jesus rewards these blind men with healing because they believed; nothing more and nothing less. Jesus moved powerfully in their lived because they placed their complete and total trust in Him. It is just that simple. The same principle works in both our personal lives and in the life of the church. If we truly believe that Jesus can do something, He will do it.