Matthew 8:1-4

Worship a response to healing

There are many diseases in the world today that are doing away with man and beast. From the Ebola,  to Aids, and now to the Coronavirus we have been plagued with no end in sight. Now, some disease were, though they had the symptoms of a disease, categorized as uncleanness. And, an uncleaned person, unlike one with a disease was not supposed to see a physician, but a priest because there was no medicine to heal him; only an act of God would heal him. People who contracted leprosy were categorized as uncleaned and were supposed to keep away from society. The idea that someone or that person sin merited the contraction of the syndrome or illness (Jhn9:3). Leprosy was considered a God induced and God healed syndrome, in other words God was the one who plagued someone with the uncleanliness like he did with Moses sister Miriam (Nm12:10) because she rebelled against Moses, and he is the one who heals us. The bible teaches us that God with one hand disciplines us and with the other he heals us (Job5:18). The correct response to when something happens to us say like an illness is to drop on our knees and worship the Lord, even if he does not heal us. 

Matthew 8:1-4

When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him.And, behold, there came a leper and worshiped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.And Jesus saith unto him, See thou tell no man; but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them.

Jesus came down from the mountain with his three inner circle disciples where he changed himself to his majestic being, that is he took Andrew, John and Peter and went to Peter’s house. He found Peter’s mother in-law sick with a fever and took her by the hand, and immediately her fever left her and she began to serve him. The attitude after the healing was service from Peter’s mother in-law. Healing’s should be followed with worship, and serving is a type of worship. This leper man, when he saw Jesus he immediately dropped on his knees (barak- to drop on your knees and worship) and worshiped him. Within the worship time this leper man petition healing, and since God is seeking worshipers to worship him in spirit and in truth(Jhn4:24) this man was healed. Some people will not lift their voices to worship, because of their illness, but that is when the richness of worship takes place; when you can’t no more.

Reports of miraculous healing’s are causing rivals in China and other parts of the world with regards to the coronavirus. Healing’s should cause revivals in us. We should not be blind sighted to what God is doing in us just as were the nine lepers in Luke 17. When these ten men who were plagued with lepers noticed Jesus and from afar off they called upon him and he instructed them to go and see the priest. As they were on their way to see the priest their leprosy left, but only one of them recognized it, and went back and worshiped the Lord (Lk17:12-15). Sometimes, our negligence to notice God working, or healing, does not allow for him to heal us. God’s hand has not been shorten that he cannot heal (Is50:2), it is that our response with worship has not been there for God. 

 

 

King David promised God that he would build a temple for him, so that no more the Ark of the Covenant would be carried around and would have a stationary place to reside at. But, towards the end of the king’s life when he decided to erect this temple God resisted him and requested that one of his sons be the one to build this temple. It is a good thing that we build our homes in God, because our families need God. And, when we build our homes in God he promises to give eternal salvation to them as with Cornelius and his family(Acts11:13-14). King David’s son Solomon decided to take on the charge of building this house for the Lord and the specs of the house were “the inside ceiling was was 180 feet long, 90 feet wide, and 50 feet high. The highest point on the Temple that King Solomon built was actually 120 cubits tall (about 20 stories or about 207 feet)”. This temple had a porch which was overlaid with pure gold. To the front of the porch 2 huge pillars and unlike the other parts of the temple, the pillars had human names. The temple took 7 years to build. Solomon searched out the best material for this temple. Solomon ordered the people Jew or non-Jew to anytime they were going to pray to kneel towards the temple.

1 Kings 7:20-22
20 On the capitals of both pillars, above the bowl-shaped part next to the network, were the two hundred pomegranates in rows all around. 21 He erected the pillars at the portico of the temple. The pillar to the south he named Jakin[a] and the one to the north Boaz.[b] 22 The capitals on top were in the shape of lilies. And so the work on the pillars was completed.

Now, the two pillars that stood in front of the temple porch were named Jakin and Boaz and they were to symbolize those who keep watch on the house no other item or fixture had a human name. Each house needs a pillar to hold the structure of the house. Someone has to be the pillar. Now the name Jakin; the right hand pillar, means “He will establish”, and it attributed to three influential leaders, one was the 4th son of Simeon found of the Jachinites, a priest in David’s time, and a priest in Nehemiah’s time. And, Boaz; fleetness meaning swift or rapid, who married Ruth was in the direct line of descendants of the Messiah. Throughout time we have come across people who hold pillar position, such as Aaron and Hur, and Peter with the church. During the battle with Amalec each time Moses’ arms would get tired Aaron and Hur would pick them up allowing God’s people to have victory during the war (Ex17:11-13). Jesus told Peter out of his confession he was going to build the church (Mt16:18). Jesus also told Peter that he was one who had to feed the church (Jhn21:16), and as pillars we are the ones to nurture the foundation we are holding. As pillars, sometimes we will find ourselves holding on by ourselves making sure the foundation does not move. We are built into the pillarship of foundation of the Apostles, they held the foundation of the church (eph2:20).

 

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Worthy home “peace”

Matthew 10:9-15

9 “Do not get any gold or silver or copper to take with you in your belts— 10 no bag for the journey or extra shirt or sandals or a staff, for the worker is worth his keep. 11 Whatever town or village you enter, search there for some worthy person and stay at their house until you leave. 12 As you enter the home, give it your greeting. 13 If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you. 14 If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet. 15 Truly I tell you, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.

God supplies all our needs when we make it a priority to do his will!

One of the things that is rewarding is when you work on a project, say building a shelf, repairing a broken pipe, searching for that wanting item for the right price, or helping a child learn a school problem and achieving the desired outcome. It is a great feeling of accomplishment, when you set out to do something and it gets down the way you want it to. Jesus sent out his disciples with that same mindset, that they would accomplish that what he sent them to do. The disciples needs as they went out on their mission was going to be satisfied, whether they would need food, money, clothing or what ever they would need it was going to be done. When we ad-heed to the mission God has for us the same goes for us, he will provide everything we need to accomplish what we are commanded to do. We do have a mission! In Matthew 28:18-20 and it reads “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen”. And, in order for us to do what we are supposed to God promised that all our needs would be met. Paul said that God would supply all our needs according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus (Ph4:19). David said that the righteous is not forsaken nor do they beg for bread (Ps37:25). One of the things that qualifies us to having God supply our needs is our decision to do what he calls us to do, many have their needs met because of their efforts and chance in life.

But, when one is passion to doing God’s will they are classified as a worthy person to his kingdom. Now, according to the dictionary one of the definitions for worthy is weighing, having weight, having the weight of another thing of like value, worth as much. And, we become Christ like when we seek to do the will of the Father (Ro6:4). As Christ followers we weigh the same, we are all the same, and we are going to encounter others in Christ. Our homes need to reflect who we are in Christ, because it is one thing that we are worthy before the Lord and our homes are havoc. When we are out seeking to do the will of God it is when his peace rules our homes. The word peace in our text today means exemption from the rage and havoc of war, and if we notice today how many people are filled with rage it is astronomical. So, it is possible that while we are believers that our homes could be filled with rage and havoc. Jesus said my peace I give you not like the world I give you (Jh14:27). In order for much of the rage in our society to seize, the people of God have to rise to the expectation. We are peace makers, but before spreading peace to other homes are homes need to be in order (Mt5:9). 

 


Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27

 

Fear turns best of friends against each other. Fear limits the possibilities for one to achieve greater things in life. Fear changes who we are, what we are about and what we do. And, when someone prays, the responses God gives induce in us a bravery like no other. When the Apostles were threaten and harassed, the bible teaches us that after they had prayed; the earth shook, and they were filled with boldness (Acts 4:31). Prayer is a key component to defeating our enemies, it releases in us powers that for many they have never experienced before; such as boldness( Heb13:6), strength, trust, faith (Mk11:25). In Genesis Chapter 20 we find Abraham because of fear of Abimelech allowing the same to taking his wife Sarah away, and God shutting the wombs of every women in that town as a result. So, after Abimelech returns Sara Abraham prays for the women’s wombs to be reopen, and God does just that (Ge20:17-18). It is through prayer that we see results in life.

1 Samuel 23: 2-4
Therefore David enquired of the Lord, saying, Shall I go and smite these Philistines? And the Lord said unto David, Go, and smite the Philistines, and save Keilah. And David’s men said unto him, Behold, we be afraid here in Judah: how much more then if we come to Keilah against the armies of the Philistines? Then David enquired of the Lord yet again. And the Lord answered him and said, Arise, go down to Keilah; for I will deliver the Philistines into thine hand.

Now, the city of Keilah was being attacked by the philistines and it was being looted, and while David was trying to stay away from king Saul; who was after him to slay him. It came to David’s ear that this city of Keilah was being rampaged. David prayed unto God to grant him passage to go and defend this city; of which he did. When David brought this to his men fear was their response; they were soar afraid. In fact, the fear was such that David had to go and inquire from God again to make sure that God was going to deliver the enemy unto him. Fear will cause us to not trust God and question his judgement. But, when we pray we find assurance in God’s response (v4). God does answer prayer (ps65:5).

A key component of fear is that it will cause us to go against the very people that help us (1Sam23:10-12). David’s intuition said to him that he was going to be betrayed by the very people he had helped, because he understood that that is how fear works. But, he knew that God knows all things, and that if he prayed he; God, was going to reveal the response to his fear. In God there is no fear (1Jhn4:18). David was able to do what God had put in his heart because he prayed and to conquered fear. How many times have we shied away from something that God has put into our hearts because of fear?

Waking in the shadow of death is having the idea that you will die and that your time is getting closer. A terrible feeling that comes with the idea that we are going to die; your going to leave your family and they will stay alone, comes while one is walking under the shadow(ps18:4-5). This feeling progresses advancing with hopelessness to further deteriorating the soul. David said why are you so down casted oh my soul(ps42:5). Waking in the shadow signifies that something is trailing you wherever you go; especially in times when you are supposed to happy like in the morning. The bible tells us that dark times come when one walks in the night but that our joy comes in the morning (ps30:5). And, the other meaning of the shadow is being mentored it following someone else’s footsteps.

Job 24:17-18
For the morning is to them even as the shadow of death: if one know them, they are in the terrors of the shadow of death.
18 He is swift as the waters; their portion is cursed in the earth: he beholdeth not the way of the vineyards.

The Shadow of death influences anyone who adheres to it; those who either willfully are committed to it, or are targeted by the enemy with illnesses or infirmities. Job spoke of this place or state of mind and said that the light of it is as dark as darkness itself (jb 10:22); a place without order. This state of mind of the shadow of death is one that entails depression and fear. Job’s ordeal landed him in this valley of the shadow of death which he felt to his face (Jb16:16). David said in Psalms 23:4 that he was not going to fear even though he was going to go through this valley of death. At one point or another in our lives we will encounter this valley, and fear will be a key component that will induce terror in us, but we must not forget which God we have believed in. David understood that he was going to go through the valley of death, but was going to come out of it, because his faith in God gave him that assurance. God is in the business of leading his people out of the valley of the shadow of death (ps107:14). God with his marvelous light of his Son leads his people out of this valley (Is9:2).

Being a halfway Christian has its limitations. Sure, we have some knowledge; we know a couple of verses, a thing or two of eschatology, but we are not complete. Paul tells  us that we need to come to the fullness of Christ and that is by those of us He has called to exercise our calling (Eph. 4:11-14). It has become a way of Christianity, settling for a faith that is service delivered or when we attend church. And, to many it is what it is because of what the church is offering, a limited knowledge, a limited faith, a limited gospel a service driven life style. Attending service is essential to the building of ones faith, but it has its limitations these days because of what we are teaching and living. Today, we are teaching a doctrine that is half way nurturing and many are taking part and becoming settled. Jesus spoke of this type of people in Matthew 13:15 where he states “For this people’s heart has grown callous; their ears are hard of hearing, and they have shut their eyes; otherwise they might see with their eyes and hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn back- and I would cure them.” But, the gospel is full of power (Mt.22:28-30), the religious people in Jesus’ time tried to entrap Jesus with the topic of resurrection. They presented a situation where a woman married seven brothers and at the resurrection wanted to know whose wife

Acts 18:24-26

And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus. 25 This man was instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the things of the Lord, knowing only the baptism of John. 26 And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly.

Now, Apollos became a born again Christian who was powerful with the scriptures, especially with the Old testament and with Christ. He was of fervent spirit and, he came in the picture of the bible arguing and debating Christ with the religious people, but he had a limitation. He only knew the baptism of John and he did not know the power of Christ with us. He could have settled and continued with what he knew, but he did not. Aquila and Priscilla took him aside and laid out the complete gospel and he became more equipped. Throughout the bible we are encouraged to grow in the knowledge of Christ (2Pt3:18, Ro2:12), because that is what fuels the fire in us; growth. And, we need to desire growth in order for God to use us the way he wants to (1Pt2:2). Apollos became this mighty man of God whom helped the apostles and the church press forward.

Living your life to how you were purposed to is important and something that needs to be considered. When someone lives a life purposed nothing else in life matters, but is included and has equal importance. Purpose driven life by Rick Warren is a powerful book and has essentials for one to enjoy living to the fullest in God. There some who live a life somewhat purpose, but have not experienced the fullness of Christ as Paul mentions in Ephesians 4:13. Living a purposed driven life includes a worry free life style. There is no thought for religious activities, personal interest, because with a purpose driven life style a natural perspective takes precedence. David said that in this path of purposed driven life there is fullness of joy (ps.16:11). It is a state of rest the purpose driven life it was called the Sabbath. And, God commanded Moses to write it on the Ten Commandments and it numbered number 4(ex20:8). God thought it important for his people to walk in a state of rest that was continual.

Mark 2:23-28
23 And it came to pass, that he went through the corn fields on the sabbath day; and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of corn. 24 And the Pharisees said unto him, Behold, why do they on the sabbath day that which is not lawful? 25 And he said unto them, Have ye never read what David did, when he had need, and was an hungred, he, and they that were with him? 26 How he went into the house of God in the days of Abiathar the high priest, and did eat the shewbread, which is not lawful to eat but for the priests, and gave also to them which were with him? 27 And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath: 28 therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.

But, at times some things come to light of which we purpose ourselves too; a relationship, a job, a career, a place, and instead the things that are around us being purposed for us we become their purpose. Jesus was confronted by these people whom when they saw his disciples chopping corn from the stalk and eating, became offended. Their idea was that man was created to practice the Sabbath, because it was the 4th commandment. During the Sabbath no one is supposed to work except for the priests. The bible class us a royal priest-hood(1pt2:9) and that we should show forth the praises of him that called us out of darkness. So, Jesus brings to their memory the time when David, after he was being chased by king Saul that he and his men went to the house of God and ate of the holy bread. Now, the only condition for which the priest gave the bread to David was if the men were separate or holy, and David affirmed. When we are separated from this world we can participate of the Lord’s rest(he4:1-3).

Not everyone is a friend of God, many people are just acquaintances. In order to establish a relationships of friends with God that is progressive, it has to pass that of acquaintance. Abraham was known as the friend of God he established this relationship he believed God he called him. Believing God is a principal for establishing a friends relationship, like in any relationship. Friendships are established securely with trust.

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13

Friends; Greek texts and some literal English translations of the Bible differentiate between the two: philo (friend, loved or dear); hetairos (comrade, associate, companion, partner).

A friend is one for whom we have affection (phile). This type of friendly affection as “feeling” or “sentiment”.

Therefore a friend (philos) is one whom we love (phile); hence, a friend is one whom we do good toward from an affectionate conviction.

4 Levels of Friendship

  1. Acquaintance- This stage is all about getting to know one another better, but not divulging a lot of personal information or intimate details
    1. Examples-sharing some feelings and thoughts but only “positive” ones about non-controversial topics. You’re there to have fun, share a task or coffee together and you should keep conversation light and friendly.
    2. Other examples- coworker, some church members, even family members.
  2. Casual Friendship- discover common interests, activities, and concerns, you may be given freedom to ask more personal questions.
    1. discuss negative things as long as you spend more time talking about positive ones and leave on an upbeat, emotionally supportive role.
    2. Examples-spending face-to-face time at least once a week, willing share personal information,
    3. Other categories would be romantic friends and romantic lovers; wives and husbands.
  3. Close Friendship (Fellowship)-true fellowship requires that both persons share the same life goals.  This third level of friendship carries with it the responsibility to picture true achievement for one another, exhorting.
    1. Matthew 10:24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:
    2. Members are- friends, family, husbands, wives.

Is based in fellowship

1 John 1:5-7

5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
    1. This type of relationship strives to exempt lies from the relationship. It is based on truth.
    2. Walking with and in God is the basis of this relationship; because it requires one to walk in the light in order to have fellowship with each other.
  1. Intimate Friendship- The fourth, and deepest, level of friendship should be based on a commitment to generously invest in one another’s lives with the goal of helping each other mature in Godly character. Honesty, humility, and discretion are requirements of an intimate friendship.
    1. Freedom to correct, and admonish is evident.
    2. David and Jonathan reached this level. Jonathan made a soul covenant with David 1Sam. 18:3 Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.4 And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.

Friendship with God as well as every other relationship follows these four stages.

Leaving the things which pertain to the kingdom of God as secondary or for the last minute is a condition of which the church of God today is becoming accustom. We are aware that our inner man needs enriching. We understand that day after day we need satisfaction of life; family, friends, and work, and that there are things that we need to do to achieve such. Some things in life can wait, but not too long and there those things that cannot wait. That if we wait a little too long they; those things we procrastinate on, can have some detrimental effects on our lives. Take for instance the sloth; the slowest animal, and by nature he is a procrastinator unlike humans. We are not meant to be procrastinators. The bible tells us the a slothful person is related to a waster (prov. 18:9).  Doing things, especially those things that are not of interest becomes a drag and a pain in the neck, and a slothful person will have troubles making hast (Prov. 19:24, 26:15). A slothful person acquires penalties in life of which some one cannot recuperate (Prov. 10:4).

Matthew 25: 6-8

And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.

Jesus spoke of these ten virgin whose characteristics were equally divided between the diligent and the slothful. The rewards for the diligent are secure. Prosperity comes to one who is diligent. God’s favor is with those who press to faithfulness and he calls them “good and faithful servants” (Mt.25:21). But, what makes a last minute Christian? The five slothful virgins were not all that willing to building on their oil reservoirs. Building your oil reservoir takes some work and effort. For example, one has to practice exercising their faith in God when life unwanted moments come. Also, one has to engage in prayer, fasting and reading of the word when tired or discouraged. Now, it is easier to sloth it out then to build your oil reservoir. Risking that your light turns off has become a way of today’s Christianity. Many do not understand the effects of walking in this dark world with ones light off. In the parable of the five, two and one talents the person with the one became an unprofitable servant, because of his slothfulness (Mt. 25:24-25). God calls us to be fervent in spirit (Ro. 12:11).

In a moment of turmoil and of hardship; when every hope seems to be at a lost, God always has a way to shine through. No matter how dark the circumstance or how sticky things are turning out, the Lord always makes his entrance known. Take or instance when Jesus died at the cross his disciples found themselves in a room filled with sadness, hopelessness and confusion. All the promises Jesus had made to them were as if they never had been spoken. But, all hope was not yet lost it so happens that after Jesus rose from the dead he appeared to several people include two who were on their way to Emmaus and he opened the scriptures to them (Lk24:32).  The bible tells us that God is near to the broken hearted (Ps.37:14-20). Hopelessness is a state of despair where a remedy seems to be out of sight and out of mind, kind of like what job felt (Job 7:6). In order for one to come out of hopelessness there needs to happen signs of what one is expecting beyond a reasonable doubt something that will take ones faith to an escalated level as Luke describes in Hebrews 11:1; that faith is evidence of that which is not seen. God’s hand is not shortened, he still saves (Is. 59:1).

Luke 24:36

36 And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.37 But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit.38 And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts?

When Jesus appeared to his disciples that upper room it was as if they had seen a ghost; there hopelessness messed with their minds, and made them confuse the glory of God for something from the spirit world. And, the first thing Jesus says to the disciples is peace, now peace is the introductory agent to defeating hopelessness. Jesus appeared to the disciples as himself not as an angel or some other figure, so the disciples had no reason to think that he was a ghost. Despair allows us to see things not the way they are intended. Jesus gave his disciples that circumstantial evidence that they needed to get out of hopelessness; he had them touch his wounds and he ate in front of them (Lk24:39-43). Such demonstration crushed that spirit of hopelessness, Jesus’ resurrection power from the dead caused his disciples to regain their faith. But, to secure his disciples from ever feeling hopeless Jesus opened their understanding to the scriptures (Lk24:45).