Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Obvious but not so...

When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?”John 5:6 

Jesus asked a man a question that appears to have had an obvious answer! He came upon a man who had been lame for thirty-eight years and who was sitting beside a pool of healing. Jesus asked him if he wanted to be healed. Why would Jesus ask such an obvious question? Perhaps the answer was not so clear. Bartimaeus was blind, yet when he cried out for Jesus to have mercy on him, Jesus asked what he wanted Him to do (Mark 10:51). It would have seemed apparent that the foremost concern of a blind person would be to receive sight. There were times, however, when Jesus considered it important for people to verbalize their need and specifically ask Him to heal them. 
     Just because we are spiritually sick, or just because we are near a place of healing, does not necessarily mean we want to be made well. We may attend church regularly, but choose to remain sinful. Our generation has taken many of the activities that the Bible identifies as sin and has labeled them as addictions or character flaws or the result of an abusive upbringing. We act as if having an addiction is sufficient excuse for disobeying God's commands. 
    As Christians, we are no longer helpless victims of our sin. There is no sinful habit or past hurt that is beyond the healing touch of our Lord. Have you gone year after year without receiving spiritual healing? God is capable of freeing you, but you may have become comfortable in your sin. You may not want to be healed. If you really want to receive spiritual health, God can give it today. He wants you to ask Him. - Blackaby Experiencing God Day by Day 

There are times when I still find myself trying to wrap my head around things that I read in the Bible.   This one, for the longest time, was one of them.  

It's pretty easy to see that the man thought, in all practical terms, that he was at the doctor's office.  Thinking it was plain as to why he was where he was.

Yet, I think after reading Blackaby's comments it's a bit clearer.  

We live in a world that tries to lull us into a false sense of peace and rest.  Of peace and safety.  That you ought to do what makes you feel the most comfortable.  Regardless of if the Bible specifically says you shouldn't.   People omit verses to keep their hold on their sin.  In their minds they have convinced themselves that it's just how they are.  They have let enough of the world's lies get in that they won't let go of the things that really are sin in their lives. 

I was also reading in 1 John this morning.  It's always amazing when the Holy Spirit connects things for me to see!   I was also in Ezekiel.  In Ezekiel the same Holy Spirit was showing Ezekiel the Temple.  Of its dimensions.  Of where sacrifices were to be made.  It dawned on me that the building itself would amplify the sound of the sacrifice being made.  The sound of the animal being killed.  The people would hear the price being paid for them.  Yet, look to the future, to the cross, Jesus uttered no sound. 
     In 1 John, he mentioned concerning antichrist's and where they were coming from.   They came from WITHIN the Church.   They worked among them, they learned with them, they arose if you will from the ranks WITHIN the Church.  Looking back on history you can see the truth in John's statement. 
     How do these connect?  The obvious oftentimes isn't so obvious.  We oftentimes overlook the obvious because we don't want to be healed!  We have become so comfortable with our sin that when the Spirit does come about to heal we keep coming up with excuses.  Our sin screams out when His Holiness is near. We hear it.  We unwittingly become the people who are in the Church who are poisoned by our thoughts and become stumbling blocks to others because they think our behavior is ok!
    It's NOT ok!
    I have had painful, painful, times at the altar between myself and My Savior.   Letting go isn't easy.  Far from it.  It's being taken from our so-called comfort zone into freedom.  Real freedom.  Dear reader, let go.  Answer God honestly, truthfully.  Don't be a stumbling block to others in your denial and defense of your suffering!  Yes, people living in sin defend their position all the time.  A little here, a little there, it adds up.  
      So what do we need to do?  Start by stopping.  Stop fighting what your spirit is crying out for.  We allow so many worldly influences to drown out our own Spiritual voice.   We allow.  You see the Cross of Christ left CHOICE in our hands.  Jesus was asking this man about what was his choice!  What is YOUR choice?
     I mentioned many painful times at the altar.  Yes, it was.  Profoundly so. Yet I wouldn't trade it for anything.  A bedridden person never realizes the freedom of movement until they can truly walk again.  I never realized how bound I was until I cried out that YES I WANT TO BE HEALED!

     You are blind to your problems.  Only after he was healed did his Spiritual eyes get opened.  You will never see the extent of how bad things are until you submit to Christ's plan for you.  You won't recognize idolatry until your eyes can identify it. You won't recognize coveting until your eyes can identify it.  These are Spiritual eye lessons that only healed eyes can see.

      Come to Christ and TELL Him you want to be healed.  He won't do it in half measures.   Be prepared but be not afraid.  He will be there with you through it all. 

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