In Mark 2 you see what it really means to believe. When you read the story of the paralytic being healed you see people living out true belief. The definition of true belief is this, “I will sacrificially do what I can do to see Jesus do what He wants to do and what only He can do.”
Jesus’ fame was spreading quickly and everywhere He went word really fast that He was in town. Capernaum was no different. After just a few short days, word got around Capernaum that Jesus was there. Probably at the home of Peter and people started coming. “And when he returned to Capernaum after some days, it was reported that he was at home. And many were gathered together, so that there was no more room, not even at the door. And he was preaching the word to them.” (Mark 2:1-2).
It’s obvious from these first few verses that Jesus loves lost people. Jesus had been traveling all around the region but had come back to his home area. A big crowd came to spend time with Jesus. So many came that there was no more room, not even at the door. People were spilling over into the streets. And as He always did, Jesus captured the moment and began preaching or “talking” to them about the word or the gospel.
Jesus loved lost people and they loved Him back. When you look through the gospels Jesus was always spending time with the tax collectors and sinners. He spent so much time with them that He was called “. . . a friend of tax collectors and sinners.” (Matthew 11:19). In one of Jesus’ parables He talked about the Shepherd which was a reference to Him and to us, leaving the ninety-nine to pursue the one lost sheep.
When Jesus was asked about His mission, He said it was to seek and save the lost. “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” (Luke 19:10). He wasn’t waiting on them to come to Him . . . He was going after them! Jesus came for the lost, hurting, overlooked and those whom religion had rejected. God loves people and Journey must have a heart for lost people.
The bottom line is this . . . If you love God, you will love people! Since Jesus loves lost people and we are to be like Jesus We Must Love Lost People. “And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him, and when they had made an opening, they let down the bed on which the paralytic lay. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, ‘Son, your sins are forgiven.’” (Mark 2:3-5). Notice it says, “And they came” (Mark 2:3). The “fantastic four” are not named, not famous and are just referenced forever as “they” (Mark 2:3). These four guys had a crippled friend and they were on a mission to get him to Christ.
When it comes to people who are lost we must Feel Personal Responsibility. Two things were for certain . . . They knew their friend needed Jesus and nothing was going to stop them from getting him to Jesus. We must be willing to be inconvenienced to bring people to Jesus. “And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him, and when they had made an opening, they let down the bed on which the paralytic lay.” (Mark 2:4). This bed they had him on was probably like a cot with four handles or maybe just with arms. They can’t get in the door so up the outside stairs they go to the roof. Roofs in the Middle East were flat roofs with beams about three feet apart covered with brush, clay and packed with manure. Now imagine this scene . . . you are standing here listening to Jesus and all of a sudden chunks of brush, clay and manure start falling on your head!
Plan “A” wasn’t going to work. Their “Plan B” was not convenient, was not easy and matter of fact took a lot of work. But his friends knew something had to be done and nothing was going to stand in their way of getting in front of Jesus. These four friends were willing to cut through manure to get to Jesus. They were not listening to any excuses and no obstacle was too big. You’re crippled? . . . we will carry you. Too crowded inside? . . . No problem, we will go through the roof. The roof is in the way? . . . we will cut through it. You and I are called everyday to do whatever it takes to bring people to Jesus! When Jesus saw the paralytic and his four friends it says, “And when Jesus saw their faith . . .” (Mark 2:5). We pray, we preach, we believe and Christ changes lives!
What you see in this passage is the “fab four” truly believed. True belief says, “I will sacrificially do what I can do to see Jesus do what He wants to do and what only He can do.” They knew Jesus could healed and wanted to heal. They knew their friend needed to get to Jesus. And although it wasn’t convenient and even difficult they did what they could do. The result was they saw Jesus do what He wanted to do and only He could do. Their friend who came in on a bed walked out of the house. “12 And he rose and immediately picked up his bed and went out before them all, so that they were all amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!” (Mark 2:12).
2016 is the year that we at Summit Community Church are saying we BELIEVE. And by believing we will sacrificially do what we can do and as a result see Jesus do what He wants to do and what only He can do. When we see a person who is far from God we know God wants to work in their lives so we will share the gospel with them. When we see a need we will give of our time and resources to meet the need. Do you see lost people around you? Do you see needs around you? Are you sacrificially doing what you can do? Are you willing to sacrifice and do what you can do in 2016? If not you, then who? If not now, then when? You are the one and now is the time to BELIEVE!