Here are the notes from the sermon on Sunday:
The text for this sermon comes from John 5:1-9. The title of this sermon is: Do You Want to be Healed? This is week 2 in our series: FaithPoint Goes to the Beach.
I like car shows. Particularly the ones where an old car is brought into the shop and it doesn’t work anymore. It may or may not have all of its parts. Most of the paint is gone. The upholstery is usually torn or shredded. The tires are old and rotted. Rust has taken over and eaten away at parts of the car. It is no longer the pristine, powerful muscle car that it was designed to be. It is now just a rusted, shell of what it used to be.
Then the professionals step in. They have an image in their mind and then they draw that out on paper so that everyone can see what the car is supposed to look like. They get to work. They pound out panels and they weld new pieces together. The car is sandblasted to remove all old paint and they get to see what they are really working with. Who better to work on a car like this than people who know the intricate details of how a car is supposed to go together? This is not a job for the backyard mechanic and this goes way beyond a car wash and oil change. A new engine, new pistons, new transmission, new upholstery, new tires, and new paint. There is no sign of rust anywhere. The chrome sparkles. The engine starts. The exhaust roars. The car has been restored. It is no longer the rusted, heap that it used to be.
We are told in John 1 that Jesus is the Creator of the universe. He knows every intricate detail of everything that he has designed and created. He knows how it is supposed to work because he designed and created it.
In John 5, we find Jesus at the pool of Bethesda. John makes it clear to us that there are many people here who are invalids. He says that there are people here who are blind, lame, and paralyzed. People come here because once a year, the water in the pool is stirred and the first person in the water is healed of whatever condition has caused them to be an invalid.
These people are here in this place because something is not working the way it is supposed to be. Eyes, arms, legs, their body is just not working.
Jesus walks into this place and no one notices that he is there. Jesus is in the midst of all of these people and no one knows it is Jesus. When is the last time you really met with Jesus? They may have missed Jesus because they are more focused on their condition than they are Jesus who is right there with them.
Jesus approaches a man. This is not a random man. This man was made in the image of his Creator. He just didn’t realize that his Creator is standing in front of him.
How many times have you read the Bible, gone to a conference, been in a church service, sang worship songs and you have totally missed the fact that Jesus was there?
Jesus has told us that He is with us always. He is with us at conferences, at our church gatherings, when we praise and worship, when we read the Bible, when we have our best day or worst day. He is with us at work, when we are at home, he is with us in our marriage or as we are parenting our children. Jesus has promised that he will never leave you or forsake you.
The man has been there for a long time. Jesus already knew that. Jesus asks the man a question: Do you want to be healed?
Why would Jesus ask that?
Could it be that the man has had this condition for so long that he just assumed this was the way it was going to be for the rest of his life? Maybe he was so focused on his condition that he could not see his Creator. This problem had been in his life for so long that he lost hope. He did not expect that things were ever going to get better for him.
I believe that there are areas of sin, areas of unbelief, or inconsistencies in your life that are keeping you from being who Jesus has created you to be. Because of this sin, unbelief, or inconsistencies, you are not fulfilling your calling. You are not accomplishing the works that Jesus created you to accomplish before the foundations of the world. Only you and the Holy Spirit know what that is? Only you and the Holy Spirit know the areas of your life where you have let sin reign. Only you and the Holy Spirit know where you are in rebellion to Scripture. Only you and the Holy Spirit know the areas of your life you are only partially obedient – inconsistent. Partial obedience is still disobedience.
And Jesus asks you the same question: Do you want to be healed?
Then the man answers. I wouldn’t even call it an answer. He doesn’t really answer Jesus as much as he starts making excuses.
When you read the Bible or you hear a sermon and you know that you have been called to do something, you know when the Holy Spirit is prodding you or telling you that there is an area of your life that doesn’t conform to the image of Jesus. You need to repent, respond, or take action in what you know that you are already supposed to be doing. However, you just make excuses for why you can’t do what Jesus has created you to do.
That is the wrong way to think.
Stop thinking about what you can’t do and focus on what Jesus can do!
Jesus wants to do work in you and through you.
Stop thinking you can’t.
Stop thinking that it’s not for you.
Stop thinking that it’s somebody else’s job.
Stop thinking that you were not meant to be discipled or make disciples.
Stop focusing on what you can’t do and focus on what Jesus can do!
Then Jesus told him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.”
He wasn’t healed because he was obedient. He was obedient because he was healed.
The man was living in the house of mercy and goodness showed up in Jesus.
Jesus in his grace looks past the man’s inabilities. He looks past the man’s affliction. He doesn’t see the man as he is but as who Jesus created him to be.
Just like the car. The restorers don’t see the car as a rusted heap. They see the car as what it could be.
Jesus heals the man – the man didn’t ask to be healed, the man did not expect to be healed, the man was healed by Jesus – amazing grace.
The man was given a new opportunity to live the way that Jesus created him to live (mercy) and he was obedient.
Psalm 23:6 – Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.
If you belong to Jesus, you are followed by goodness and mercy. There is never a day where goodness and mercy is not there.
Jesus pours out his goodness and grace in your life on a daily basis. You are covered by mercy on a daily basis. Every. Single. Day. The goodness and mercy of Jesus is at work in your life.
The only response to goodness and mercy is thankfulness and obedience. You should be humbled by the fact that goodness and mercy is at work in your life daily and as a result, you want to do everything that Jesus has created you to do.
Jesus asks the question again: Do you want to be healed?
You don’t have time to think about it?
Do you want to be healed?
Jesus wants to heal you of what does not conform you to his image. Why waste another day?
Let Jesus work in you so he can do work through you.