Articles

Jesus Healing the Blood Issue

The woman with the blood issue, is one of the more well-known accounts of healing mentioned in the scripture. Literally thousands of sermons (probably more) have been preached on it over the years. Many have been from the perspective of “You need to sacrifice everything and press-in through the crowd to receive healing! You need to keep on pushing to touch Jesus!”

However, what I want to share with you today, is a different perspective on the entire thing; a perspective not focused on ourselves, or our works, but one focused on the love and mercy of Jesus Christ. As I meditated on this some amazing things came to light, that I am excited to share with you today.

Savor the Taste of the Finished Work

We’ve discussed previously about having joy in Christ – and that’s a phrase that’s fairly common; there’s even songs sung about the joy of the LORD. We know as Christians, joy is something that we are supposed to have (and happiness also, even though some deny that today), yet very few people actually seem to have joy or happiness.

I have been to far too many churches and encountered far too many people who put on fake smiles, church-masks, and take on an entirely different persona when they are around others. Inside, they really are not happy. Inside they really have no joy.

And what makes it even worse is that they are afraid, ashamed and embarrassed to mention this fact to any of their Christian friends, because then the friend might look at them differently, treat them differently, or maybe even begin to gossip to other church members (more common than you might think!)

However the reality is that the friend is probably feeling the exact same way on the inside!

So, what I want to share with you today in this study, is how to receive real joy, real happiness, which only comes from Jesus Christ and His finished work. The kind of joy and happiness that lasts, and endures. The kind that can not be taken away.

What it Means to Have Love

Most people who have read the book of 1st Corinthians, are familiar with the phrase from chapter 13, stating that if you do not have love, nothing else matters. Most people and most preachers for that matter present this in a way which makes it seem as though this verse is saying you must work up love, and do your best to love others – and most people tend to accept and believe that to be true.

However, what I want to share with you today is a different perspective. As we take a look at 1st Corinthians 13, through the lens of Grace and the finished work of Christ, we begin to see something different than what is generally assumed. Something less focused on our efforts to try and work-up love within ourselves, and something more (properly) focused on Christ, His finished work, and His love for us. By seeing this, you will have a new appreciation and application of the love of God in your daily life.

Be Health-Conscious Instead of Sickness-Conscious

When talking about sickness, many people take a hopeful cautious attitude. “It’s raining outside, and the weather is cold, I hope I don’t get sick.” – “Gee, that virus is going around, I hope I am not next to get it.”

These statements are the norm, and they may even seem logical. However, are these attitudes really the way that God wants us to live? Is this the kind of abundant life that Jesus suffered and died on the cross for us to have?

What I want to share with you today, are some thought-provoking questions like the ones I just mentioned, and some scriptures that will open your awareness and increase your perspective regarding healing and health. Because Jesus didn’t suffer and die on the cross so that you would continue to suffer and die – but in-fact He has redeemed you from the curse, and as His ambassador, you should be walking in His blessings (all of them) and bringing them to others also.

Keep Your Hope High in Christ

One of the biggest areas of doubt for many people is a lack of hope. And as we have studied in the past many times, I am not speaking of hope as the world understands it to be, but I am speaking of spiritual hope, Biblical hope.

You see, worldly hope is like a wish, a dream, something that you don’t really expect.
Whereas spiritual hope, is a confident expectation.

In the Bible, when you see the word “hope” – especially in connection with Christ, it is always the spiritual kind of hope, the confident expectation of good.

For many people, their confidence is constantly being attacked and challenged. Their hope is always being pressed by situations, circumstances, thoughts and feelings. The world even likes to say “don’t get your hopes up!” – and that same sentiment has infiltrated churches as well.

I have been in many churches, where I have shared with my Christian brothers and sisters that I was believing for a miracle, and they would respond with something along the lines of:
“Yeah! That sure would be great… but don’t get your hopes up.”
“Absolutely! That would be amazing! But I can’t count on it.”

What I want to share with you today, is why you should go ahead and get your hope up, and also keep it up in Christ Jesus. And how by having a proper perspective through the lens of the finished work of Christ for you, you can stand against these attacks against your hope, and show others to do the same.

No Curse Can Touch You

When someone mentions the word “curse”, how do you react? For many Christians, fear comes over them when they hear of curses… they are afraid that they can be cursed – and some that I have spoken with, even believed that a curse was on them already.

It seems that when it comes to curses, many of us have lost sight of the finished work of Christ and the truth of His redemption. We have more trust in the power of the curse, than the power of Jesus’ redemption; or we just don’t believe that He has redeemed us. In either case, the false belief must give way to the truth, and in this study today, I want to share with you the truth regarding curses – that just like the title of this study says: No Curse Can Touch You!

The Good Shepherd is Really Good

One of the titles of Jesus Christ that many people are familiar with is “the Good Shepherd”. There have been countless sermons preached around this title of Jesus, usually in connection with the parable of the lost sheep. And though we assume that everyone understands the meaning of the title “Good Shepherd”, it is striking how many people make assumptions about His character and behavior, that even by lower, worldly standards, would not be good at all.

What I mean, is that there are a lot of people who hold a view of God’s nature and character that are actually less than good – maybe because those are the things they have heard preached all of their lives, and so they just believe it without question; or for another reason all together – but I have heard it many times where people have told me that they have a view not of a good shepherd who loves and cares for his sheep, but instead they expect a shepherd who beats his sheep, abuses them, harms them, or refuses to feed and care for them.
But my friend, this could not be further from the truth of your real Good Shepherd.

So today, I want to encourage you with this study about how your good shepherd is really good.

The Spiritual Side of Fornication

When we hear the word “fornication”, or as some scripture translations put it “sexual immorality”, our thoughts tend to focus immediately on the physical act of sex outside of marriage. It’s understandable, and in-fact normal for us to think of that. It is true that sex outside of marriage is not in any way ideal, nor is it beneficial… in-fact it is harmful in many ways; it’s just plain not a good idea.

However, I would like to direct your attention to a much deeper kind of “fornication”, a kind that I believe the scriptures speak about in a variety of ways, but it is often overlooked because we are so quick of focus on the physical act, that we miss the spiritual act – and this is a mistake, because the physical is not the root of the issue, but the root is in the spiritual.

As we examine this truth today, in the light of the finished work of Jesus Christ, through the lens of Grace, I believe that chains will be broken, and eyes will be opened to see the truth of Christ, even when the scriptures speak on something so often assumed to be purely carnal, such as fornication.

You Shall Know Them By Their Fruit

You will know them by their fruit; The words of Jesus in Matthew 7:16, are often quoted in isolation, and many times in a judgmental way when looking at the deeds and works of others… “Haven’t you seen everything that this guy is doing? Jesus said you will know them by their fruit!” is what is commonly said, when being critical of others.

This kind of judgmental examining of people’s performance is not what Jesus had in mind when he said these words, however. And as we examine the additional things He said along with verse 16, we can see this clearly.

So what I want to share with you today, is what the often misunderstood verse of scripture truly means, and by seeing it, we will see another amazing aspect of Jesus Christ.

The Absolute Perfection of Christ

Jesus is perfect. As believers that statement might not be too surprising. Most Christians would say “Amen” to it, and agree with the statement without thinking twice. Yet in practice there are some areas where we don’t take into account just how very deep His perfection runs. For example, let me ask you a simple question: If you could obey the Law of Moses perfectly, would you be righteous?

Most of the Christians that I have discussions with, would answer “yes”, and indeed many are trying to do exactly that… they are trying to continually improve their behavior to align to what they call the “moral law” (even though the Law of Moses really has no divisions or separate categories).

Additionally, many of the Christians that I speak with, believe that this is all that Jesus did; they believe that the reason Jesus was the perfect sacrifice was because He simply kept the Law of Moses perfectly.

And what I want to share with you today, is the fact that Jesus’ perfection is so much deeper than that! I want to expand your vision and broaden your horizon to see much more of His perfection than what is generally seen. And as you see the perfection of Jesus today, you will be able to more fully appreciate what He has accomplished for you.