Video “Inspector Clouseau and the dog”
I love this video clip. I thought it would be a good introduction to the topic of “asking the wrong question.” Inspector Clouseau thought he was asking the right question, but quickly found out that he wasn’t!
-Sometimes we find ourselves asking questions, but oftentimes they are the wrong questions.
-Remember the story Jesus told about the Good Samaritan? Most of you are familiar with the story so I won’t bother going through it here. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. made a good point about the questions asked in this story.
– The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: “If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?” But…the good Samaritan reversed the question: “If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?” – Martin Luther King, Jr. Both the priest and the Levite were focused on how their actions would affect them. The Samaritan was focused on how his actions would affect the victimized man. It is natural to look out for ourselves. It is supernatural to look out for others and to put their needs in front of our own.
Video “Why Millennials are leaving the church by Jon Jorgenson” (show first 4:15) @ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMXeFcvvC88
-In this video Jon Jorgenson points out the following: Perhaps the question shouldn’t be “What is their problem?” and should be “What are we doing to reach out to them and to help them?”
-This not only applies to Millennials, but to other groups that churches have wrongly cast stones at. Just because a lot of church people have had this attitude certainly does not make it right. If we are truly Christ-followers, then we should be modeling our attitudes and behaviors after Jesus, not after our contemporaries.
A Couple of Thoughts About the Broken and Hurting
But the thing is, the broken and hurting were the very kind of people that Jesus was constantly reaching out to. At one point He said that He had not come for the healthy but for those who were sick. Jesus gave them hope, and healing. When Jesus touched someone’s life, there life was never the same again. Can anyone of us say that we have touched someone’s life so profoundly that they are no longer the same? I believe that, as humans, we do not have the ability to do that. But wait, there is SOMETHING we can do… Although we don’t have this power of change within us, we can introduce others to the One who DOES have that power. Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. That means that He can still help and heal the broken and hurting people that we run into everyday! “But what does that have to do with me?” you ask. The answer is that it is our right, our privilege, our joy, to introduce Jesus to these people and let them know what He can do for them and how He can do it.
So “what does this Jesus have to offer the broken?” you may be asking. I’m glad you asked! When most Christians think about what Jesus does for people today, many think only of getting people to heaven and avoiding hell. If that’s your best answer, then you are really missing out. Heaven and salvation is just the beginning. Actually, that is more of the a peripheral benefit. The main benefit is to have a real, true, close relationship with our heavenly Father, God, and His son Jesus. Every other benefit is an extension of this. Other things that Jesus can do for us today include: peace, joy, healing (both physical and mental), deliverance, to name a few. So why haven’t we been spreading the word to those hurting, broken people who desperately need to hear it? We have great news for them; news about how Jesus can pull them up out of the dark pit they are in. He can take their baggage they have been carrying for years. He wants to show them how beautiful and valuable they are in His eyes. He loves them so deeply and they don’t even know it! If Jesus has done any of these things for me (and He has), then I need to let other people in on the secret. Freely I have received, now freely I should give.
Jesus has done so much for me in my life, and I have seen Him do a lot in other people’s lives as well, and I can tell you this, “there is no better feeling than seeing Jesus set someone free.” The only way that is going to happen is if I, if we, introduce them to the life-transforming Jesus. I have personally seen Jesus set people free, completely free, from severe depression, PTSD, cutting, self-loathing thoughts, addictions, anxiety, fear and other things. He can deliver those suffering from these dark torments in a powerful and complete way. It is important that we get the word out. Seeing people suffer from such things breaks our Heavenly Father’s heart. His heart is heavy when He sees the ones He loves hurting and tormented. He wants them to be set free. Free to live in peace and joy; free to pursue a relationship with Him. That is why I am so passionate about helping people get set free and healed by the Jesus that has helped me and has set me free.
Now let’s look at Jesus’ ministry in a little more detail…
From The Book of Luke (what Jesus does)
Jesus sets a man in the synagogue (church) free from demons
[Luke 4:31-36 NASB] 31 And He came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee, and He was teaching them on the Sabbath; 32 and they were amazed at His teaching, for His message was with authority. 33 In the synagogue there was a man possessed by the spirit of an unclean demon, and he cried out with a loud voice, 34 “Let us alone! What business do we have with each other, Jesus of Nazareth? Have You come to destroy us? I know who You are–the Holy One of God!” 35 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be quiet and come out of him!” And when the demon had thrown him down in the midst of the people, he came out of him without doing him any harm. 36 And amazement came upon them all, and they began talking with one another saying, “What is this message? For with authority and power He commands the unclean spirits and they come out.”
-Notice that they were amazed at His teaching because His message was with authority (not like the other religious leaders and teachers of the day). The religious leaders and teachers carried the message of the Law; the letter of the law. They were all about rules and technicalities. Jesus carried the message of the Law; the spirit of the law. He was all about the attitudes and intentions of the heart.
-Isn’t it interesting that the men in the synagogue didn’t recognize the deity of Jesus but the evil spirits did. Hmm…
-Is it just me or does it seem a little odd that in nobody in the synagogue (or church in today’s terms) seemed bothered by the fact that a man who had been worshipping with them for years, one of their own, had been carrying evil spirits around all that time? They didn’t even seem particularly overjoyed for the man who was now free and his life was changed for the better in a major way! They were most impressed that Jesus had the authority to cast out demons. Apparently they lacked this same authority and were ignored by demons that they attempted to cast out. This must have been bittersweet for them since many of them were all about authority and position and they had just been shown up in that arena. Some probably found themselves intrigued and wondered how they could get that authority for themselves.
Jesus heals Simon’s mother-in-law of a fever
[Luke 4:38-39 NASB] 38 Then He got up and left the synagogue, and entered Simon’s home. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Him to help her. 39 And standing over her, He rebuked the fever, and it left her; and she immediately got up and waited on them.
-As I mentioned before, this fever was caused by an evil spirit, as opposed to having an organic medical root. This is evident by the way He healed this woman: he rebuked the fever, and it left her. Rebuking is something you do to a living entity and leaving is also the action of a living entity. In instances where Jesus healed organic diseases/conditions He never rebuked them nor did they leave; the people were simply healed of their condition.
-What did Simon’s mother do after the fever left her? She began to “wait on them”. When we rid ourselves of the baggage that hinders us we are more free to serve others.
Jesus lays hands on and heals ALL who are sick with various diseases
[Luke 4:40 NASB] 40 While the sun was setting, all those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to Him; and laying His hands on each one of them, He was healing them.
-It says that ALL those who had ANY that were sick brought them to Him. That had to be a lot of people, possibly hundreds. Word about Him had spread quickly simply by word of mouth as a result of Him casting demons out of the man in the synagogue. The supernatural has a way of grabbing people’s attention. It did in that day and it still does today. Also notice that He laid His hands on EACH ONE of them. Jesus took the time and put out the effort to minister to each person individually. Although He had the power and ability to heal all of them at the same time, He chose to touch each of them one by one, giving them the individual attention He believed they deserved. Just another subtle example of His love for people.
Jesus casts out lots of demons
[Luke 4:41 NASB] 41 Demons also were coming out of many, shouting, “You are the Son of God!” But rebuking them, He would not allow them to speak, because they knew Him to be the Christ.
-More demons were driven out of people. More than likely these people were suffering from various mental illnesses. The beauty of the demons leaving these people was the result; no more mental illness. These people were set completely and totally free from the mental torment they had been forced to endure for years! We tend to focus on the physical healings and totally overlook how many people Jesus healed of mental illness. Jesus cared (and still cares) about every aspect of people’s health and well-being. Jesus is the healer of our bodies and our souls (mind, will, and emotions).