A statement, an illustration from scripture, a conclusion.
Vance Havner some are called to comfort the afflicted, god called me to afflict the comfortable,
Sign in blacksmith shop, all manner of twisting and turning done here
We need to be challenged in our faith.
The greatest need of this day is for those who are saved to be transformed.
Darkness must become light, we must be salt.
This process is called transformation. From the Greek to change.
Romans 12:2 - And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
2 Corinthians 5:17 - Therefore if any man [be] in Christ, [he is] a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
2 Corinthians 3:18 - But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord.
Galatians 2:20 - I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
Philippians 1:6 - Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform [it] until the day of Jesus Christ
I Peter 1; 14-16 “ as obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lust in your ignorance: but as he which hath cll3d you is holy, so be you holy in a; manner of conservation. Because it is written, be he holy, for I am holy.”
but you say Rom. 3;23, 3;10, how is holiness possible, transformation
transformation is brought forth is Jesus miracle in John 5; why is this healing in the Bible? John states 20;30 “many other works did Jesus do that are not written in this book,” so why this one?
II. The healing of John 5
Intro; Jesus has returned to Jerusalem, He has been in the Galilee. As He enters Jerusalem, He does so through the sheep gate ,it would be this gate that the sheep for temple sacrifice would come into the city. Fitting for the one who would be God’s given and acceptable sacrifice for the sin of mankind. He has come to the place of five porches, Bethesda, the place of mercy (the number 5 is the number for Grace in the Bible : 5 porches). This is a place of congregating, here the halt, blind and sick and maimed wait for the storing of the water so that they might be healed. What a contrast, on one side sheep for the sacrifice to a Holy God who can do all things and on the other side the halt, blind and sick and maimed. Here in this contrast, lies a man, surrounded by many folk, who are all hurting. Many, like this man are lame. They are waiting of an angel to come and stir the water, the first one in got healed. This man had been lame for thirty-eight years, longer than Christ had been alive, yet Christ knew him and of his condition. How much of that thirty-eight years had been spent at this pool we are not told. However he had been there long enough to experience someone else getting in the water before him (vs. 7). Evidently somebody was getting healed, someone else had been getting made whole, or else he would have left the pool. It was here at this pool that he found hope.
I want to look at this passage under several headings:
I.The Setting of the passage:
A. He is surrounded by folk just like him. vs. 3-He is here because this is where people like him go. Your group, your association will define you. Birds of a feather flock….you will find your porch. Our tendency is to group ourselves with those who identify with us.
I’ll. A Blind man said , ‘I can’t see”, another blind man said, “I know what you mean.”
However there are problems associated with our grouping patterns:
1.When you surround yourself with folk just like you, you will find them competing with you not completing you. When the water was stirred, the race was on, everyman of himself.
2. When you surround yourself with desperate people and you get blessed, they are not happy of you. They question, why not me.
3. When you hang out with the crowd that is just like you, your actions are not that noticeable.
ill. If I use bad language in church everyone would be offended and I problem would be ask to leave, but if I’m with a crowd and everybody is cussing, nobody notices.
4. In your own life you will not change an area , your crowd is comfortable is with. (ie. Suzy, what do think of this?)
B. The place he is at , is a stagnate place-still water attracts contaminates. Infectious bacteria is attracted to still water. If you not moving, if you are perched and plateaued, you become an easy target for Satan and his demons. Idle hands are the Devils workshop! You need a christianity that moves you and you, as a christian, need to be on the move!
II The Situation of the Passage-vs. 7
A. his real problem was that he was stuck-he had a desire to be healed, he’s waiting(s. 3). He is doing the same thing the same way with the same results.
B. Not only is he stuck, he’s staring-he can see further than he can go. He watches as others get healed, yet he remains the same. Well it could have been me but…
C. He is stumbling-vs. 7-i'm trying-but i’ve got nobody to help. I’m helpless but still trying. I haven’t given up……38 years. Give him some honor, he has stayed the course, but he is non the better for it.
*** I believe most churches and most Christians have a desire to do something for the Lord. But their stuck watching the church down the road have revival and asking Why not us. Their staring at others getting right with the Lord and be made whole, their stumbling over what they have always done only to be passed over , by others who are willing to do what ever it takes. Churches are growing but not your church. I wander what they are doing ? Jesus said if I be lifted up!!!
III. The Challenge of the passage-vs. 6,8
A. the challenge- do you want a change, or do you want to stay the same?are u satisfied with your life? Ask a foolish question-not really. If he were healed, his life would change, his friendships, his outlook on life, his very purpose of living will change. The real question is not do you want to be healed, but rather do you want to be made whole?
Roy Benjamin wrote, “Being whole involved a lot more than being healed; it was going to require a radical shift in his entire life. It meant that every part of his being was going to be touched, his belief system was going to be shattered, and he was going to experience a transformation at the very core of his being. He was more in need of wholeness than healing. It was possible that he could have been healed but not made whole but when the process of wholeness takes place, it brings total wellness to the person who receives it.”
B. the command — you have the desire, now do something-take up your bed-
Every time Jesus commanded someone to do something, He gave them power to do what he commands. Lazarus, Peter, go into all the world and preach the gospel…
Conclusion: the transformation - will u be made whole?
Are you willing to leave your comfortable crowd, to take your cross, and follow Him?
True Christianity always involves a transformation, notice I said true Christianity. The reason being is that we have an enemy that if possible, will deceive the very elect of God.
Oh, I’m alright! I believe , James 2;19, “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.”