Upsetting the Equilibrium
Tell story of video about camp meeting
1 One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, at three o’clock in the afternoon. 2 And a man lame from birth was being carried in. People would lay him daily at the gate of the temple called the Beautiful Gate so that he could ask for alms from those entering the temple. 3 When he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked them for alms. 4 Peter looked intently at him, as did John, and said, “Look at us.” 5 And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them. 6 But Peter said, “I have no silver or gold, but what I have I give you; in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, stand up and walk.” 7 And he took him by the right hand and raised him up; and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong. 8 Jumping up, he stood and began to walk, and he entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. 9 All the people saw him walking and praising God, 10 and they recognized him as the one who used to sit and ask for alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.
The Word of God for the people of God: thanks be to God!
Analyzing the Discrepancy
A. Following Pentecost, the church is alive and moving
1.) Peter and John are walking to the temple together
a.) Need for two witnesses (as in Jesus’ sending them out)
b.) Did not neglect Jewish hour of prayer
2.) Lame man is carried to the gate of temple
a.) Lame from birth
b.) Carried to temple daily
c.) Broken, unable to go into temple, poor, no quality of life
d.) Asked for money to live (could not work, have family, etc.)
3.) Lame man asked Peter and John for money
a.) Peter and John look at him showing personal connection
b.) Lame man looks at them expecting money
c.) Peter and John are poor and have no silver or gold
d.) Peter promises to give the lame man what he does have
B. “In the name of Jesus of Nazareth stand up and walk”
1.) There is power in the name of Jesus
a.) By telling the lame man who Peter was healing in the name of, the work is not Peter’s, but God’s
b.) Shows that even though Jesus’ ascended into heaven, He still has the power to save
2.) Peter took the lame man’s hand and he walked
a.) What was the first thing he did?
b.) The lame man could now enter the temple and praise God
3.) Because of this man’s healing and praising God, other people took notice
a.) He was recognized as the lame man from the gate
b.) Filled with wonder and amazed by what happened
c.) Connects last week’s passage about many signs and wonders
d.) The ultimate goal is not healing; it’s secondary. The primary goal is the glory of God.
Disclosing the Clue to Resolution
C. Why is there sickness and suffering? If God could heal, why was this man lame?
1.) The Fall
a.) We live in a world that is broken because Adam disobeyed God in Eden
b.) Adam and Eve were cast out to live in a world of sin and sickness and death
c.) Because of this, there are things that happen that does not have a natural effect; i.e. cancers, or miscarriage, or being lame from birth.
d.) Jordan in college: why him? We can’t always know
2.) Personal Sin
a.) Every person has sinned, has disobeyed God, and fallen short of the glory of God
b.) While Adam led us into brokenness, we have continued that through own sin
c.) Because of this, things may happen to us that have a cause and effect; i.e. drugs, drunk driving,
d.) Personal sin directly leads to personal suffering
3.) Principalities of darkness
a.) Throughout the gospels, Jesus heals many demon-possessed people
b.) Not all spirits are from God
c.) We are amidst a spiritual battle that is often unseen
d.) Satan wants to oppress us through sickness and suffering
Experiencing the Gospel
D. Why does God heal?
1.) It’s an act of love and mercy to the person who’s suffering.
a.) The lame man was now shown love from anyone except God and His people
b.) It was an act of mercy to save him from being crippled
c.) The lame man knew when he stood up that he was loved by God
2.) It validates God’s servant.
a.) Peter and John got a little more credibility
b.) You’re going to see that in the book of Acts. You’re going to see God work through his servants to show they are representatives of Jesus
3.) It reveals the kingdom of God.
a.) God will heal everyone eventually in the kingdom
b.) Preview of the coming kingdom
c.) It evangelizes to non-Christians that the power of God to save, and His kingdom are real
4.) It motivates Christians to worship.
a.) When the lame man was healed He praised God
b.) It increases the worship of God’s people
c.) God is good, He is alive and powerful. He is Jesus of Nazareth
E. Does God heal everyone in this life?
1.) False teaching #1: Everyone can be healed, and you need to have faith, and if you have enough faith, you can be healed, which means if you’re not healed, it’s because you’ve failed and you don’t have enough faith
a.) This is horrific
b.) Example: Paul thorn in his flesh
2.) False teaching #2: God used to heal, he doesn’t anymore, don’t get your hopes up
a.) False: Doctors heal, not God
b.) Balance of both healing directly from the hand of God and healing through the hands
c.) Luke was a doctor, yet he also wrote about miraculous healing
Anticipating the Consequences
F. How should we minister to the sick?
1.) Pray from a distance
a.) There are instances in the Bible where Jesus couldn’t physically go and heal, but he prayed and they were healed
b.) You can’t always be with them physically (either because of distance or health, or practicality)
c.) Miracle of technology
2.) Lay hands on them and pray
a.) Happens often in Jesus’ ministry and throughout Acts
b.) The Holy Spirit lives in the person, and the Holy Spirit’s going to work through that person
c.) Shows affection and companionship: suffering alone is worse than suffering
3.) Minister in faith
a.) God wants you to act in faith. And faith is trusting that Jesus is alive.
b.) Faith is trusting that the name of Jesus of Nazareth is strong.
c.) Faith is believing that God hears and answers prayer.
d.) Faith is trusting that God can heal
4.) If you know someone who is sick:
a.) Pray for them, lay hands on them if you’re able
b.) Call me and I’ll do it
c.) If you are listening and suffering and in need, reach out to us
1.) Healing is coming
a.) Either in this life or the next kingdom
b.) God is healer and is not at work doing good
c.) We may not see it or understand it
2.) Rejoice and worship
a.) Remember the power and strength of the name of Jesus
b.) Have faith and hope in Him
c.) Walk and leap and praise God for all that He does