Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Oh me of little faith!

Wednesday  1-27-16 (Home in Modesto, California)     

Scripture reading for today: Exodus 17 – 20  Acts 3

S=Scripture  O=Observation  A=Application  P=Prayer  SOAP for the soul.

S.  Acts 3:7-9  And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.  So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them — walking, leaping, and praising God... 

Vs 11 Now as the lame man who was healed held on to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the porch which is called Solomon's, greatly amazed.  So when Peter saw it, he responded to the people: "Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk?

Vs 16 Yes, the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all. NKJV

O.  Vs 7 Peter has so much confidence in Jesus that he takes the initiative, grabs the paralyzed man’s hand and pulls him up!  Peter’s strong arm has stood the man up... only then... suddenly the atrophied muscles are strengthened and the man starts leaping and dancing around.   NUHV* 

Could it be that the man’s faith was slipping a few minutes later?  For now he is hanging onto Peter and John.  Or was he just hanging on them because he thought of them as the source of his healing?  Either way Peter sets him and all the hundreds of wide-eyed spectators straight. 

Vs 12Why are you all looking at us?  We didn’t do this.  The crucified, buried and resurrected Jesus Christ did it.”  And Peter makes the man release his grip on them and stand on his own.  “Look at this guy!  See?  He is completely and perfectly healed!”  NUHV*

A.  Now it is my turn:  I meet an obviously paralyzed beggar at the church door.  He is looking right at me hoping for folding money, not coins.  I left my wallet in my pickup.  So I ask this guy if he has enough faith to be healed (because I know I don’t).  He says, “I think so.”  So I gather all my “apostle-type” friends around me and we make a major scene praying.  The crowd gathers.  Now we ask the paralytic, “Can you get up?” He struggles and collapses in a heap.  So we all start praying over again.  And God speaks from heaven, “Hey, boys!  Do any of you have enough faith to grab him by the hand and lift him up?”  We look at each other and decide to come back tomorrow to see if he is better.  And Jesus sighs, “Oh, ye of little faith!”

P.  God, why is everybody looking at me?  You never called me to be a “healing” evangelist.  I prefer the inner, invisible miracles that last forever.  Are you saying that is a cop-out?  But Lord, I don’t have the faith of Saint Peter.  What’s that you are saying?  You are telling me to drop the “saint” in front of Peter’s name because he was just as big a mess as I am?  Oh!  You are the healer and I need renewed faith in You?  You are saying I need to do what Peter and John were doing?  You are telling me to get out of my comfortable stuffed chair tonight and go to prayer meeting?  Okay God!  I think I got the picture.  Amen.


*New Unauthorized Hiatt Version

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