Sermon: Barry McWilliams Christ Church 940612

"The Faith Healer" from Luke 8:40-56 [Mark 5:21-43]

This passage deals with two intertwined events. Jesus is dealing with people and teaching them how to have faith. Much of Mark - lessons in faith.

An important lessons for us. Where faith is there, no matter how small - he responds to it - where it is weak, misdirected, hesitant - he strengthens it. He calls us and challenges us to grow stronger in our faith.

Setting: Jesus had been away across the lake. Returning to his base in Capernaum. People waiting on the shore. People who had witnessed his ministry in the lives of others. People with needs of their own - that they believed Jesus could help them.

Two people in particular watched for his arrival. Both anxiously awaited Jesus' expected coming. How long? One a sense of urgency - his beloved 12 year old seriously ill. The other had carefully planned to be as lttle noticed as possible. Their stories intertwine.

Where a believer's faith is weak, Jesus will strengthen it.

I. Saving faith trusts in Jesus himself for answered prayer and salvation.

The Woman: Lost health / lost wealth A chronic problem, embarrassing as well - Mark said she had used up her money with dishonest Doctors/ Luke: defending his medical professions states she had an incurable affliction. Either way, she was ceremonially unclean under levitical law (Lev 15: shunned]

Applications

Faith is entering into a relationship with the person of Jesus Christ.Electric Lamp illus. No power without plugging into the socket. Faith is the cord that connects us in a relationship w/ Jesus

Importance of profession and public thanksgiving: A full circle is required here: Psa 50:15: "Call upon me in the day of trouble; will deliver you, and you will glorify me." cf. Romans 10:9

II. Strong faith has confidence in Jesus' power to give new life.

Jairus:His anxious waiting has been intensified by this delay with the woman. He was a ruler of the Synagogue in Capernaum. (The rulers of the synagogue were Laymen - in charge of maintainence and arrangements for services)

Application

The Purpose of God's working miracles is always to aid faith, not produce it.

Faith - trusting God for what we can't see. Nothing impossible. Moving mountains. He can do it.

III. The Lord lovingly rewards sincere faith with Growth.

Application:

What steps of faith is Jesus calling us to make? How is He calling us to exercise our faith in His power? in His will? To trust and act upon the assurance of His love and forgiveness?

The growth of faith. Each time we become stronger, are ready for even greater challenges. Faith can move mountains, if it draws upon the love and power of the Savior.


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