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Introduction

Background

There was a place in Jerusalem where those disabled would wait. Wait for the right moment for the waters to stir. See in it states:
John 5:4 ASV 1901
for an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the waters stepped in was made whole, with whatsoever disease he was holden.

Have you ever been in a holding pattern, waiting for your turn, your chance for healing, for justice, for a break-through?

This man, we don’t know his name, had been waiting in this pattern for 38 years.
Now, in God’s timing and purpose, this man is in the right place at the right time. Jesus shows up and simply asks him: Do you want to be healed?
Now if this were another sermon I would say, even when Jesus is personally asking each of us, do you want to be healed, we would easily point to something else as our healing source.
I do Lord, but I don’t have medical issurance. I do Lord, but I don’t have a way to get to the doctor. I do Lord, but I don’t have enough money as is the case for our brethren in Venezula. I would say, if I were preaching this sermon, we bypass Jesus, while thinking something else could help us better. But I’m not preaching that sermon today.
So after the man tells Jesus that he has no one to pick him up and put him in the water....
Wait a minute, not only does he think the water can heal him and not Jesus, he’s waiting, because he relying on someone else other than God to PICK HIM UP.
I’m sorry but I must say: some of us are placing our hope and security in others. Maybe its our leaders, maybe its the president, maybe its our husband or wife, our employer…we are waiting for someone else to PICK US UP. People fail. People let down. People don’t do what they ought to do often. But your Father never fails, never leaves, never forsakes...
Wait, I’m not preaching that sermon either...
So eventually, Jesus looks at the man and says “Get up, take up your bed, and walk”
Jesus said
Get up: you don’t need to wait for anyone to pick you up, I ‘ll give you what you need to stand up
Take up your bed: Waiting time is over your healing is now
Walk: Its time to move on.
John 5:9 ESV
And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked. Now that day was the Sabbath.
Now, let’s direct our attention away from the man who was healed to the Man who healed him.

See when your healed, it should point people back to the one who healed you.

But the problem is: what if you’re sitting in this audience thinking that your not sick, your not disabled, your not waiting for healing, your not waiting for your chance, you don’t feel powerless sometimes…right? What if you’re hear simply out of habit, obligation, routine, to hear something nice, to “feel” convicted (but then don’t do anything with the convicted feeling)
Did you notice how verse 10 starts off:
John 5:10 ESV
So the Jews said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to take up your bed.”

Sometimes the people that don’t think they need to be healed are the exact ones who know the most about Scripture.

Which leads me to my first point:

Poor Stewardship of the Knowledge of God

They knew their bible, they had read it every day, they had regular attendance at syagogue. They knew the rights and wrongs of behavior based on their deep scripture understanding, which they learned from the scribes and maybe the Pharisees.
But today, when they saw “Jimmy” (let’s give him a name today....Jimmy), it’s what they didn’t say that matters....

They didn’t say “WOW Jimmy, you’re walking, that’s amazing! How did this happen?!”

They didn’t say, “Jimmy, I know that you have been struggling and waiting a long time for this to happen. I’m glad to see that your life has changed for the better.

They didn’t say “Jimmy, how did this happen, because, even though I haven’t told anyone, I’ve also been waiting a long time. Who helped you that I may be healed as well?”

They did say...”It is not lawful for you to take up your bed”

When did the being an expert in the scripture become more harmful than it is helpful. More injurious than it is healing.

Despite their knowledge, their character shown this day was lacking something.
They clearly did not care about Jimmy. Some, well intentioned folks might say, well they did care because they wanted him to do right i.e., for his behavior to ACCURATELY follow the standard.
But here’s the rub: We want other churches to be book-chapter-verse, but DO WE LIVE OUR LIVES book-chapter-verse? Worship should look a certain way, but my life can look like whatever I want it to look like, right? Men, how you talk about your wives is reflective of who you are? Does it match the pattern—Jesus who sacrificed Himself for His bride?

As long as I teach accurately, I can treat people however I want to treat them…that’s what these Jews were doing to Jimmy. They had the “truth”, they knew “the Word”, but the way they showed no concern for this man’s life is proof that they did not know God.

People, sisters & brothers, its not Bayside that’s stealing your children, its not Baptist or Catholics that are yanking up people away from the COC...

Its their insecurities
Its their daddy issues
Its their mommy issues
Its their childhood memories stuff they’ve witnessed between you and the wife of your youth.
Its their lack of guidance for dealing with the stresses of life.
Its pornography (boys and girls)
Its sex (masturabation, fornication, experiementing with sexual preference)
Its seeking attention
Its trying to disconnect
Its lust (boys and girls)
Its sucidal thoughts
Its alcohol
Its drugs
Its a life-time of unresolved hurts
Its lonliness
Its self-confidences
Its tragedy
Its not having the ability to stand for the right thing, do the right thing because they are too worried about acceptance.
Its their desire to belong, to feel welcome, to be wanted, to be needed
Its the fact that boys/men are calling your daughter names
Its that fact that boys/men are allowed to call your daughter names, do cat-calls, touch them without permission
These are stealing our children, our people away:
See you think its the lights, its the music, its the fun things they get to do, but you couldn’t be more wrong.

If you’re thirsty, do remain in a desert or go to where the water is?

So get your HEAD out the book and wake up and see the people around you. See their faces. See the stress they carry in their shoulders. See their smiles. See their defeatedness. See their worry. See their pain. WAKE UP and see them as important enough to pay attention—important, like Jesus did, to see them.
Genesis 16:13 ESV
So she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, “You are a God of seeing,” for she said, “Truly here I have seen him who looks after me.”
Then you will know Jehovah God for He is the God who sees.
John 5:39–40 ESV
You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life.
All those years of study, yet the Jews walked right pass the One, to whom the scriptures were pointing. They were trying to obtain eternal life, but in their pursuit they were hurting people, stepping over them, pushing them out the way. They, by their behavior, were showing what they apostle John later stated:
1 John 4:8 ESV
Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
In the pursuit to be “right” to “be accurate” to “follow the Law” and to achieve eternal life, they were right pass eternal life because they did understand what eternal life really is...
John 17:3 ESV
And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
Don’t do this, don’t do that…but what if someone needs
Eternal life is that they continually know you God.
See if our knowledge of God’s word, does not lead us to God’s character, then we are reading the wrong book or the wrong way.
1 John 5:20 ESV
And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.
Our Father is eternal life () . Knowing Him is eternal life.
1 John 2:4–6 ESV
Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.
The commandments we need to keep are:
1 John 3:11 ESV
For this is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.
Love people. Love your brothers & sisters. Love your enemies. Love those who don’t know who Jesus is yet.
1 Corinthians 13:2 ESV
And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
Knowledge without love is poor stewardship of the knowledge of God. There is no way we can know God without treating:
Our families right
Our neighbors right
Our coworkers right
What good is knowledge if there is no love?
If we are more concerned about rules than about people. If we more concerned about our feelings than the relationship. If we are more concerned about being right than being in relationship with, then we have missed the red scarlet line streaming through the pages of the bible. We have missed God.
Love is to treat each other with kindness.
Love doesn’t write people off.
Love doesn’t hate others for what they have and you don’t
Love is to hate others for what they have and you don’t
Love doesn’t look down on anyone because of their current circumstances, life-style, choices, financial status, number of children, behavior of their children, noise of their children, dress, smell, look of their teeth...
Love doesn’t wear their accomplishments on their sleeves…how many people they have brought to Christ, have many degrees they have, ...
Luke 18:11 ESV
The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.
Love doesn’t “push people out the way” because they are irritable (I confess I do this)
Love is not rude to others when you are inconvienced.
Love is not “my way or no way” i.e., love is not about “me, me, me”…does what is good in the best interest of others.
Love doesn’t hold things against people i.e., not resentful
1 Corinthians: An Introduction and Commentary 3. In Praise of Love (13:1–13)

Love does not take notice of every evil thing that people do and hold it against them. Love takes no account of evil. It does not harbour a sense of injury

Love doesn’t “push people out the way” because they are irritable (I confess I do this)
What these Jews, , should have asked themselves, what we need to ask ourselves is: am I living as Jesus taught me to live—am I following His way of life…His pattern of life.
What these Jews should have asked themselves, what we need to ask ourselves is: am I living as Jesus taught me to live—am I following His way of life…His pattern of life.
Matthew 11:29 ESV
Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
Some of ya’ll want to discredit Jesus’ teachings in the gospels, but its there that we get to see how Jesus lived. Its there we get to see how Jesus treated people. How He didn’t run from sinners, but embraced them. How He weclomed traitors. How He saw the people others overlooked or avoided. His goal was for them to know Him and His Father that they might believe and have eternal life. Jesus was healing, Jesus was helping, Jesus told people the truth about themselves.
1 John 4:7 ESV
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.
John 17:3 ESV
And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
See if our knowledge of God’s word, does not lead us to God’s character, then we are reading the wrong book or the wrong way.
See if our knowledge of God’s word, does not lead us to God’s character, then we are reading the wrong book or the wrong way.
Listen to what Jesus says in Luke 13.15:
Luke 13:15 ESV
Then the Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger and lead it away to water it?
We condemn instrumental music in church worship, BUT then we listen in our cars on the way home “Sexual Healing” by Marvin Gaye.---WHAT IF, it drowned out the silence so people, who don’t open up, could open up in worship and pour themselves out?
We condemn the use of non-church of Christ books propelling us to holiness, BUT allow our lives to be governed by our current culture e.g., treatment of other races, male opinions of women, the tabue topic of sex—really we can’t talk about porn, mastrubation cause it makes some of ya’ll uncomfortable. Its because we don’t, its because we don’t know how to, that millions of men & women are slaves to this wickedness even some in our own congregation. Someone says “well you preachers design a program the church of Christ way”…Here’s good english: We ain’t got time for that as the virus is not waiting for us to put a curriculum together-What if a non-church of Christ program lead to the overcoming of a 40 year addiction, healed a marriage, helped young men look at young women as if they were made in God’s image?
We want young Christian woman to dress modestly, but then some of us go home and lust after or indulge in pornography. Do we want them to please God or just not be a stumbling block for our husbands or ourselves?—What if we care more about the young ladies hearts than making their dress legislation to hold back our evil habits.
This is NOT ABOUT non-church of Christ books or young Christian woman’s modest dress.
Poor stewardship of the knowledge of God that results in Jimmy (remember Jimmy?) being in a holding pattern for another 38 years.
Jesus pointed out in their time…inconsistencies or as He put it, being a hypocrite.
Let’s look at a few others...
Luke 13:10–16 ESV
Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And behold, there was a woman who had had a disabling spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not fully straighten herself. When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said to her, “Woman, you are freed from your disability.” And he laid his hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and she glorified God. But the ruler of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, said to the people, “There are six days in which work ought to be done. Come on those days and be healed, and not on the Sabbath day.” Then the Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger and lead it away to water it? And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath day?”
Did you see what happened? Jesus healed her, yet in an uncovential way, and she glorified God. That’s awesome.
How did the leader respond? He was indignant. He was angry. He was angry because Jesus didn’t follow the rules. Again, the leader didn’t care about the woman, He simply care about following the rules.

Point 2: What good is knowledge if it’s not manifested in our actions?

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