Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Power and Pity of Christ {Mark 5:22-43}

Funerals are the most desperate and sobering of all human occasions. 
Death is so final and everyone, to some extent, fears it.
 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
|Hebrews 2:14-15|
My heart is sore pained within me: and the terrors of death are fallen upon me. Fearfulness and trembling are come upon me, and horror hath overwhelmed me.
|Psalm 55:4-5|

So can anyone overcome death? And, if so, how can we get in on that victory?

"Every religious leader in history has an occupied tomb, except for One. The difference between Buddha, Confucius, Mohammad, and Christ is that Jesus' tomb is empty. He is no longer dead." 
|G.B. Hardy|

 Everyday is a day closer to our death. Are we ready? Do we have a covering for ourselves? Because God dwells in light and He cannot tolerate darkness. 
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
|Romans 6:23|
And, behold, there cometh one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and when he saw Him, he fell at His feet, And besought Him greatly, saying, My little daughter lieth at the point of death: I pray thee, come and lay Thy hands on her, that she may be healed; and she shall live.
|Mark 5:22-23|
We cannot run away from death anymore than Jairus could lock the door of his daughter's bedroom to keep death out. Jairus was doing all he could do to get Jesus to his house as fast as possible. He knew that without Christ's help, death was coming to take his daughter. And yet Jesus is all calmness.

And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years, And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse, When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment. For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole. And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague. And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes? 
And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me? And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing. 

But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.
|Mark 5:25-34|

He stops, in fact, to heal a woman of a chronic disease all the while knowing that this little girl was dying of an acute illness. If a doctor would have had his priorities in the same order as Jesus, no doubt he would be sued for malpractice! But Jesus is the Son of God and He is the Great Physician. 
God's timing will rarely line up with our schedule and His timing will often confound us. His ways are not our ways. 
Jairus probably was frustrated with Christ because he was having to wait on Him. Yet, the Lord will not be hurried. 
Waiting is the very tool to sanctify us and teach us patience.

While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue's house certain which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further?
|Mark 5:35|
These men came and told Jairus four daunting words: 
"Your daughter is dead." 
His thoughts were most likely that of Martha when her brother, Lazarus died
"You're just too late, Jesus." 
But Christ Jesus is never too late.
Jesus' response is, "Do not be afraid, just believe." 
More waiting. 
More patience. 
This wan't Jesus being harsh or not having compassion for Jairus. He gave Him these words as a comfort.
As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe.
|Mark 5:36|
"Be not afraid (literally: Stop fearing!) Only believe (literally: Keep believing!) If he believed that Jesus was sufficient when his daughter was dying, Jairus needed to keep believing that Jesus was sufficient even when she was dead. He could not see the solution clearly but that is where trust comes in. 
Trusting that God knows and has control over what is going to happen next in our lives should comfort us even when we don't know or have control. 
When I am afraid, I will trust in Thee. In God I will praise His word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.
|Psalm 56:3-4|

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength:
|Isaiah 26:3-4|
Jesus can help when there's only a little hope and He can help when there is 

And he cometh to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and seeth the tumult, and them that wept and wailed greatly. 
And when he was come in, he saith unto them, Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn...

|Mark 5:38-40a|

No one can break up a funeral like Jesus because no one can wake up the dead like Jesus can! Because of who Christ is, death does not have the final say. Therefore He can call true death nothing more than sleep. Sleep is a temporary state. And Christ, knowing He was to raise her, called it just sleep, not death. But she really was dead. All the mourners could see that. Only Christ had the power to call it otherwise. 

...She was of the age of twelve years...
|Mark 5:42|
The girl was only 12 years old. This lets us know that no one is too young to die. This means
 no one is too young to be made alive by Christ!!
And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.
|Mark 5:41|
 Jesus takes this little girl by the hand and pulls her up out of the greatest and final enemy. If Jesus has you by the hand, He can pull you out of death so gently and easily that it seems like sleep!
And straightway the damsel arose, and walked...And they were astonished with a great astonishment.
|Mark 5:42|
She immediately got up and started walking around. She was fully alive, no longer dead or even sick!
And he charged them straitly that no man should know it; and commanded that something should be given her to eat.
|Mark 5:43|
He exhorts her parents to give her something to eat. He has immeasurable power to defeat and deliver this girl from her biggest problem (death) and also immeasurable compassion for her smallest needs and makes sure she gets something to eat. there anyone that can overcome death?
Christ did so...time and time again. He raised people from the dead and He rose from the dead Himself. 
With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible!
|Matthew 19:26|

And since He conquered death, how can we get in on that victory?
Stop fearing. Keep believing.
When He saves us...death is but sleep.

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
|2 Timothy 1:7|
 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. And He laid His right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am He that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
|Revelation 1:17-18|

{These are my sermon notes from today's sermon by Bro. John Greene. Check out our church's site on Sermon Audio...this sermon should be posted soon. :)}