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They Were Afraid to Ask

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They Were Afraid to Ask

Mark 9:33-322-33

If you to Amazon and do a search for books with the title, “Everything you Wanted to Know About ___________, but Were Afraid to Ask”, you would find a fairly large and diverse list.  Some of the titles include:  Real Estate Acupuncture, Classical Music, The Occult, American Presidents, Food Allergies, Remodels, Gardening, Surgery, Hypnosis, and Birds.  We have to be willing to admit that there are areas of life where we lack knowledge, and in some of those areas we may want to be better informed.  And there may be some other areas where we have no interest or no present need, so we happily roll along in our ignorance.  Then there is this third area, things that we are afraid to ask.  Maybe you sensed that your spouse was a bit displeased with you, but you were afraid to ask what the problem is.  In the employment arena, you feel like you have earned a raise in wages, but are afraid to ask.  Often times children are afraid to ask their parents for permission for various reasons.  There are all kinds of reasons we do not ask for things.  Fear of rejection, fear of consequences, fear of seeming uneducated, or like the disciples in our text, being filled with pride.  This is not the first time Jesus has taken the time to teach His disciples of His betrayal, death, and resurrection.  It is spoken of again, and the disciples just didn’t get the big picture.  Instead of asking for more information, or clarification, the Bible says that they were afraid to ask. I want to tell you this morning in no uncertain terms that we should not be afraid to go to Jesus for the answers of life.  I want to talk about three areas this morning, that I believe we can see from our text, that we should not be afraid to approach Jesus about.

1.  His Gift.  In verse 31, we have the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  I imagine when the Apostle Paul read this record, he would see the Gospel, and we should see the same thing.  The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the greatest gift that God has ever given mankind.  The need for the gift dates all the way back to the Garden of Eden when man fell from his state of perfection and the human race became stained with what God calls sin.  Sin is missing the mark, going astray, crossing the line, and breaking the Law. 

Sin is universal in its reach.

.”Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Sin is dire in its consequences.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.  The second part of that verse describes a gift that is wonderful, and marvelous that if any lost sinner were to open it up, they would be given eternal life.  Christ taught about the gift too.

John 4:10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.

Simon the Sorceror was willing to pay for the gift, but he was corrected by Peter.

Acts 8:20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. Let me share something with you, if God were to put a price tag on His gift, not one of us would be able to afford it, and it would no longer be a gift.  Listen to the words of Paul in  Ephesians;

Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.  Now why would anyone be afraid to ask for this gift?  Because they think it too simple.  Because they feel that there must be another way.  Because they fear the change that may take place in their lives.  Or they think they don’t need it.

2.  His will.  Most of us understand this morning that it was God’s perfect will for Christ to die on the Cross of Calvary.  Remember the words of Jesus as He prayed in the garden, “Not my will, but thine be done.”  That is an intense event to go through in order to see God’s will fulfilled.  We understand that God has a will for every person in this room today.  We can generalize  and find there is a common will for all mankind. 2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.  There is a common will for every believer that includes giving of ourselves.

Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Separation from uncleanness:

1 Thessalonians 4:3 For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:

To be thankful.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.  Beyond that, there is a specific will of God for each one of us.  One of the ways that we are going to find out what it is, is to ask Him.  I do not think God means for His will to be a secret, I think we are afraid to ask.  It may involve changing jobs, moving to an area you do not wish to live, waiting for that special someone in your life, becoming a part of a local church, or serving in a capacity you are not comfortable with. 

3.  His help. I think this is a tough one.  Look at verse 32.  This is the same mindset that prevents many men from stopping to ask for directions.  Men are not the only ones who will refuse help.  In our day of independence and liberation, it seems that many people are more willing to refuse help than to accept it.  One of my favorite verses in the Bible is

Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.  God wants to give you help.  It is interesting if you like to study words in the Bible that other than God giving man a help meet for him, the first time the word help is mentioned is found in

Genesis 49:25 Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee; and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb:  The Psalms are full of references of getting help from God.

Psalms 121:1-2 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.  You can scour the world for help and you can try self- help, but you will find no help that compares to God-help.  Just like the disciples in our story this morning, you may need help for understanding.  You may need help in your family.  You may need help with you testimony and controlling fleshly desires.  God wants to help you this morning. 

We should not be afraid to ask God for anything.  If it is out of His will, I think He will let you know.

1 John 5:14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:

Matthew 7:7-8 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

The first time we read of someone being afraid in the Bible it is Adam just after the fall.

I wonder if Adam would have asked God before the fruit was picked, if God would have given him good direction. 

We ask by requesting in prayer, reading the Bible, and receiving the preached Word.  Has God answered a question for you today?  Do you have a question for Him?  Do not be afraid to ask.

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