Archives from February 2020

The Miracles of Jesus: Jesus Heals a Man’s Ear

Sunday Sermon Series The Miracles of Jesus

Luke 22:47-51

This month we’ve looked at the healing miracles of Jesus. We’ve seen Him make the blind see, heal a paralytic, and cleanse a man of leprosy. Today we end our study of His healing miracles with a look at what is likely His last miracle before His crucifixion. 

When Judas led the enemies of Jesus to arrest Him in the Garden of Gethsemane, Peter drew his sword and cut off a man’s ear. Why did Peter do this (Luke 22:33-38)? 

When they were eating, Jesus told Peter he would betray Jesus. Peter said he wouldn’t do any such thing. Then Jesus informed His disciples that they would have to defend themselves in the future. He tells them to buy swords. Apparently they already had two swords and Jesus cut off the conversation when they mentioned it. So, we can see why Peter may have been quick to draw his sword.

Jesus healed the man’s ear. What does this miracle teach us? 

  1. Jesus is showing He cares about the little things in our lives.
    This injury isn’t life threatening and is pretty minor compared to the other miracles we’ve looked at. By healing this man’s ear, He shows us He cares about little things. We can bring the little things to Him in prayer because He cares. The night before He would die to save the world, He healed a man’s ear. 

  2. Jesus is modeling compassion for our enemies.
    This man worked for the priests who wanted Jesus dead and had the authority to do it with a little help from the Romans. Luke 6:27-28 shows us what Jesus thought about how we should treat our enemies. He says to love them, bless them, and pray for them. It can be difficult to treat our opponents with love and respect, but that is what we’re called to do. With election season coming,

  3. Jesus is emphasizing His kingdom is not built on violence or coercion.
    Jesus doesn’t want violence done in His name. He doesn’t want to coerce anyone into being a Christian. No one should be forced in any way to profess a belief in Christ. Christ’s nature is not violent. His kingdom’s nature is not violent. The Crusades sometimes push away people from Christianity because they can’t get behind a religion with such a violent history. Christians have certainly made mistakes and gone astray at times. Don’t let the imperfect people who follow Christ blind you from the perfect Savior of the world and His nature that is love. 

The other three miracles we looked at all had an element of faith from the one receiving the healing. Not this one. This time Jesus just healed the man. What could have gone his head that night as he led Jesus to His death after being the recipient of such a miracle? He had to know something was different about this Jesus? Did he wonder if he was doing the right thing? We’ll likely never know. But what we do know is that Jesus cares even about the little things and He treats His enemies with respect instead of violence. We also know He is the savior of the world. 

The Miracles of Jesus: Jesus Heals Leprosy

Sunday Sermon Series The Miracles of Jesus

Luke 5:12-15

Leprosy was a terrible disease that caused a person to be ostracized from society (Leviticus 13:45-46). 

Leprosy was the most feared disease of its time because of how contagious it was. People who contracted the disease were forced to live outside the city and give physical clues that they had the disease. If someone came close to them, they had to yell “Unclean!” to warn them. 

A leper came close to Jesus and asked to be healed. Jesus reached out and touched a man. Jesus touched a leper. That was a big deal. Touching a leper meant you also became unclean and would have to go through a process to become clean again. When Jesus touched the man, he was healed of his leprosy. 

One way to apply a Bible story to your life is to find yourself in the story.

How might you identify with the leper in this story?

Most of us have probably never had leprosy or known anyone to contract it. How could we possibly identify with a leper? Most of us have been ostracised or left out like the leper. We need to ask God to make us clean. Others may have never really felt that way. They’ve always felt included but we’re all unclean and need God and it’s better to come to God before we hit rock bottom. Come to God and ask Him to make you clean. 

How might you identify with Jesus in this story?

Wait. What? I’m not Jesus. That’s what you’re thinking, right? But consider that as Christians we are to become like Jesus. Throughout history lepers have gathered together in colonies and the people who most likely to go visit and help them are Chritians. Christians have been helping lepers for many years. Ever hear of Mother Theresa? She’s one of the well known Christians to go to these colonies where no one else wanted  to go. The Christians who went and took care of lepers went places no one else would out of their love for people through Christ. Christians do things like this because we follow Jesus and His example. Sometimes following Jesus means putting yourself at risk, putting your comfort aside, taking a pay cut for a job you are called to. Following Jesus isn’t supposed to be easy. Is there someone being ostracized you can go to and minister to, befriend?

The Miracles of Jesus: Jesus Enables the Paralyzed to Walk

Sunday Sermon Series The Miracles of Jesus

Mark 2:1-12

These verses tell of a time when Jesus was preaching in a house that was crowded. There wasn’t enough room when a group of friends brought their paralyzed friend to be healed. They couldn’t get through the crowd. But through faith, determination, and ingenuity these friends carried their paralyzed man onto the roof and made a hole in the roof and lowered him down. 

Jesus proclaimed the sins of the paralyzed man forgiven. Others in the house questioned this. Was this blasphemy? Can this man really forgive sins? Only God can forgive sins! Jesus knew their thoughts and answered them, asking if it’s easier to say “get up and walk” or “you’re sins are forgiven”? Jesus wanted them to know that He has the authority to forgive sins. The paralyzed man walked home. 

Are miracles possible? Don’t they contradict the laws of nature?

The laws of nature are orderly and structured. But so is a stop light. What happens when an ambulance comes towards a stop light with its lights and siren going? The rules change temporarily. Cars stop even on green and the ambulance goes through even on red. Once the event is over, normal order resumes. God, the creator of the universe surely has the power to temporarily change the laws of nature to perform a miracle. 

Does God still do miracles today?

Some sincere Christians believe God no longer does miracles, but others believe He does. Personally, I think He does. I’ve seen stuff that just has no other explanation. 

Should we pray for miracles of healing? (James 5:14-15)

It’s Biblical to pray for healing, so, yes, praying for miraculous healing is a good thing to do. 

Should we ever stop praying for a miracle of healing? (2 Corinthians 12:7-9)

Sometimes God reveals His glory through suffering. Sometimes He tells us that this is just something we have to live with and use as a way to glorify God through our faith and perseverance.

Why doesn’t God do more miracles? (2 Timothy 4:20; Acts 14:22) 

We don’t know. We don’t fully understand God.Sometimes He does miracles. Sometimes He doesn’t. Sometimes through suffering He is glorified. Sometimes He is glorified through miracles. Even when the miracles do happen though, we must realize that the miracle is a temporary fix. There is a more permanent fix that we need. We all need eternal salvation, which is an even greater miracle. 

The Miracles of Jesus: Jesus Enables the Blind to See

Sunday Sermon Series The Miracles of Jesus

Matthew 20:29-34; John 9:1-39

Last month we looked at miracles that showed Jesus’ power over nature. This month we’ll look at His miracles that show His healing power. 

In Matthew 20, Jesus 

Three reasons Jesus did miracles:

  1. To help people (Matthew 20:34). … Jesus loves people. He cares about people and has compassion. 

  2. To show He is the Messiah (Isaiah 42:6-7). … These are signs that Jesus is the Son of God. 

  3. To teach spiritual truth (John 9). … Jesus uses this blind man to illustrate to His disciples that suffering isn’t always a direct result of sin. He tells us that suffering can be used to glorify God. … Jesus heals the man and it happened to be on the sabbath. The Pharisees, of course, considered making mud to heal a blind man work. Some said that since He did work on the Sabbath, He is from the Devil. Others said that the miracles He performs shows that He isn’t from the Devil. … Later on, Jesus finds the man He healed and asks if he believes in the Son of Man. This time, a greater miracle happens and the man becomes saved by his belief in Jesus. He was no longer blind either physically or spiritually. 

Jesus said He came into the world that the blind will see (John 9:39). What does that mean? 

Jesus said He came into the world that those who see will become blind (John 9:39). What does that mean? 

In what ways might we be blind? 

  1. If we are lukewarm (Revelation 3:15-18). … Churchgoers can be blind when we are lukewarm. We become blind to the possibilities of what God can do. 

  2. If we fail to grow (2 Peter 1:5-9). … Even Christians who have this insight can become blind. We should continue to grow in all the qualities mentioned in the verses. 

  3. If we reject the Gospel (2 Corinthians 4:4). … Those who don’t believe in Jesus as the Son of God are blind. The Devil keeps them blinded from the light that is Jesus. 

The Miracles of Jesus: Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand

Sunday Sermon Series The Miracles of Jesus

John 6:1-55

We’ve seen a few ways Jesus has command over nature and today we see one more as we look at the only miracle recorded in all four Gospels, the feeding of the 5000. 

Jesus and His disciples decided to get away from the crowd and sailed across the Sea of Galilee to an uninhabited area. The crowd that was with them ran around the Sea of Galilee and crossed a river in an effort to reach the same place at the same time. Jesus and His disciples reached the other side and started praying and then the crowd arrived. When Jesus saw them, He asked the Disciples to feed them. They said it would take 200 days of wages to pay for enough food to feed the crowd. A boy just happens to have five small loaves and two small fish. Jesus has everyone sit down and then passes out the bread and fish. It multiplies as it gets passed along and there’s twelve baskets of leftovers at the end of the meal. The crowd then wants to forcefully make Jesus king. Jesus left before they could do so. 

That evening the disciples went onto the lake. Strong winds came and the water became rough in the night. Jesus walked out to them, walking on the water. 

When the crowd caught up with Jesus the next  day, He tells them how to be saved: Believe in Jesus. They asked for a sign and Jesus points out that if they haven’t read the signs He’s already shown them (such as feeding them the day before), then another sign won’t help. 

John 6:35 - The crowd was thankful for the bread but they wanted more signs, more miracles. They wanted to use Jesus a bit like a vending machine. It is good to be thankful for the blessings God/Jesus provides, but we need to realize that Jesus is the bread of life and He is our salvation and only hope. He deserves our faith and loyalty and love. 

John 6:53-55 - If you allow Jesus into your life He will come in and be your strength. Open your life to Him so He can be your strength, your everything, because He is faithful in all things.