Raising the Roof
Raising the Roof
Our title for this mornings sermon is entitled People who raised the roof and let their friend down. I want to talk about the love of Jesus. In fact the Bible tries to let us understand exactly how God's love is toward us.
In Isaiah 66:13 tells us that God's love for us is likened to that of a relationship between Mother and child.
This is one of the first sermons this year that I'll be preaching about relationships. The very existence of this church suggest that you and I in it are representatives of a higher authority. It should suggest my brethren that we are ambassadors of the President of the universe.
We are members of the CHA, Central Heavenly Agencies, We are all about the FBI, Fathers Business and Interest. We are on a mission it is one that cannot fail and for prognosticators or prophets who continue to proclaim that this church will not reach it's intended purpose, for those who would not be guided by love but belly ache and complain I've got news for you this morning.
You can raise the roof all you want, but no one who believes Jesus and what He says will not be disappointed but is going to come through life on top!!
I suggest to you today that this church was built for the purpose of Salvation, It was founded by Jesus and if we as individuals want eternal life and we trust God and follow Him, no matter how much Hell the devil raises we cannot be lost.
Mark 2:1-13 A few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum, the people heard that he had come home. So many gathered that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them. Some men came, bringing to him a paralytic, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus and, after digging through it, lowered the mat the paralyzed man was lying on. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "Son, your sins are forgiven." Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, "Why does this fellow talk like that? He's blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?" Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, "Why are you thinking these things? Which is easier: to say to the paralytic, `Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, `Get up, take your mat and walk'? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins...." He said to the paralytic, "I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home." He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, "We have never seen anything like this!" Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd came to him, and he began to teach them. (NIV)
First of all we ought to ask ourselves a question here who is this man?
The bible says that he was one sick of the palsy, He was a paralytic. A mere cripple, a disgusting sinner according to the people of his day. For in those days people believed that anyone who was suffering, afflicted or diseased it was because they were great sinners. But Jesus dispelled that stereotype in John 9 when the disciples asked Him about why a certain man was blind. Whose fault was it his parents or his. Christ said neither . . .
But in this case, yes it was true that he might have had alot of buds, he may have smoked 6 packs of Marlboro's daily, Maybe he was a drug dealer and used it heavily, Maybe he was one who hopped from bed to bed. This was the kind of person that if he came to Jesus he would have a long list of yea I broke all the 10 commandments.
One day all his smoking all his drinking all his gambling all his bed hoping got him into trouble.
Wrong will always be wrong no matter how we might feel and what we might say to justify it. But what we need to understand is that in the worst way the devil wants to stamp out humanity.
In the worse way he wants to destroy all of us. Because we are the object of God's love and salvation we are the target of Satan's hate and destruction. And the devil will use all the devices and cunning he can muster to get us to choose to destroy ourselves.
He will fix up sin in attractive manner to bring us down and like the story of Snow White and the seven dwarfs make an apple of passion and pleasure that's looks good and taste good but it's full of poison. Are you listening to me?!!
He'll wrap up a package so neat and nice, fine and good looking you would think you got heaven on earth but all you got is a demon in bally shoes. Man you may think you have a passion flower somebody you can turn you on, you can pick and choose and she'll never refuse but all you got is an invitation to disease.
And by the way did you hear the news that there are Physicians who state that the government is not telling us all the truth about the aids virus. I saw a commentary on TV where Dr. Lorraine Day says that they have been telling you that the blood once exposed to air will die in a matter of moments but this lady says that's not true the HIV virus will last as long as seven days in the open air, and it can also penetrate the skin.
Also in that same documentary experts say that the virus also exist in mucous membranes such as saliva. So in these days you not only have to worry about the one night stands, but you got to look out for the first kiss too!!
See that's why God doesn't want you to be unequally yoked with unbelievers.
He does not trust your judgment and He knows that you do not have the perception to see beyond the exterior of individuals. Bible says The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? God does!!
And He knows you do not have the ability to tell the future, the best you can do is just guess.
Ah but we persist and continue to blatantly walk contrary to the Word of God and flirt with unbelievers You look at the figure and the phys you smile at the witty and humorous conversations and admire the exterior. Laugh and play and go out with them and talk on the phone then share in things you got no business sharing in going places . . .
Then you fall in love, but what some don't understand is that they're flirting with disease, they are flirting with death (cause any how you marry that person) they are flirting with broken homes, they are flirting with needless pain and stress does not have to be borne, some are flirting with bearing the pain of infidelity, some flirting with the end of their Christian relationship,
But we know how to rationalize, you know love will find a way, I'm sure that things will be different once we settle down and get married, and once he or she sees the truth they will definitely come and join the church. God does not ask you for you opinion, He does ask me! If He needed that He wouldn't have written this!!
There are Church folk today who are regular Subway items they make stops at other peoples bedrooms all the time with a Wife at home and girlfriend on the side. Some folk who deal drugs, and others who deal blows physically and verbally.
There are some folk who spend their nights at set of sun on a Friday not on before the altar of worship, but before cocktail and bar. Others wrestle with the demon of alcohol and tabacco,
and this man had been through all of that sin after sin. He probably kept telling himself I'll get a grip soon, I'll get a handle on it soon!! Just this one time, Just this once I can always go back for forgiveness. I'll fix it soon
And this thing about control is a farce, we don't control sin, sin controls us and we need help!!
(we talked about habits that form characters in the case of bad habits a wise professor took one of his students . . . .)
The more this man sinned the deeper his habits and character became fixed, the more he sinned, the deeper ingrained in his mind was the guilt and pain, and the desire to come to God was pushed back by a sense of helplessness. The more away from God he was the more of a heathen and outcast he became to his friends and one by one they disappeared except maybe those he partied with, smoked with...
He knew the evil of sin by experience, he knew what it felt like to be an outcast and especially when he contracted the social disease that crippled him. He could just hear the "he got what he deserves" ringing loudly in his ears. Guilt, embarrassment, depression ruled his soul
and as his health deteriorated so did those about him. But never the slander, never the backbiting, never the gossip, never the pain and the guilt. He was reduced to byword among men and bedridden. Not the mast of man he was before but now a fragment of humanity.
And so on his dying bed he remembers Jesus is in town the bible tells us it was noised about, and what little courage he has left in himself, he asked friends nearby take me, take me to Jesus.
In my preachers imagination I can just hear someone saying what good will that do you just about ready to die.
Now when you are on your dying bed you think about religion. What hope could you possibly have?
and I can hear him saying I know but take me anyhow!! He said I've tried everything else, I've tried the Pharisees and church leaders they said I too deep in sin I can't make I've got the curse of God on me. (Church folk let him down)
You seen all the doctors and they have given up on you, you have little time to live.
Yes I've seen all the doctors but this doctor! this doctor is the great Physician take me there.
There is no friend that can help you
But they say I've got a friend in Jesus take me. Maybe I will find some kind of solace.
Maybe I'll find some relief and peace before I die.
So a few folk took him to where Jesus was, but but we have a problem, we have a problem. bible says
the people heard that he had come home. So many gathered that there was no room left, not even outside the door,
He had made it to the house were Jesus was but the problem was too many people blocking the way.
You know it amazes me sometimes when I think about the long process of salvation and the long suffering of God especially for backsliders. I think about the prayers of love ones on their behalf, I think about the guidance of ministering angels to turn them to the right track, I think about the wooing of the Holy Spirit, the blood that was shed and the suffering of Jesus , that wants to get through to all of us.
And one day all that reaches the heart and brings a wayward sheep in church one Sabbath and the devil tries to use someone to blow what God has been doing for a lifetime.
You know they come one Sabbath decked down in "We come up and say"
And there are folk in the church that's been out and are just starting to show those signs . . .
Angels . . .
Some of us are just content sitting up here talking about the paralytic, as holy and righteous as we are. We start by saying what he/she should have done parents, wife and husband and child. Without saying a word of comfort to him.
You in the way brother get out of the way!! Sick man trying to get to Jesus and by the way did you miss verse one!!
A few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum (Jesus was there before but He's back tracking)
Woman sick with the infirmity, On the cross, now with this gentleman.
Sick man trying to get to Jesus, Jesus edging on the sick man to come to Him!!
He's at the door but he can't get in as one well known preacher said too many church folk in the way. "Elders in the way, Deacons in the way, Choir members in the way"
Now some folk would get discouraged and say okay we can't get in let's go.
You're at the door you might as find some way to get in, You didn't come this far to be turned backed.
Some of us get upset by trivial things, We get turned back because of foolishness.
Some of ya don't like the Pastor, others were hurt because somebody in the church did something bad to you, some heard something that somebody else said. Folk calling you bad names . . . So you threaten to leave the church. You gonna leave Jesus for that?
some can't get along with their family members, there spouses.
You come so far to leave???
We need to stop talking and start acting, we need to start loving unconditionally like Jesus. Cause that is where the rubber meets the road, that is one of the issues we will be judged. Whether we have loved our neighbors as we love ourselves, whether we have loved liked Jesus loved. That is the test of discipleship.
So lets stop talking and start practicing, we got all these people here that we complain about lets see if we can start to get to work!! we don't have much time.
(Imagine if Jesus after His death and resurrection acted like some of us do . . .)
Too many hypocrites Hypocrites can get saved too!!
You can call me all sorts of names.
There are some who come sick like the paralytic, to the house where Jesus is but never come in with Jesus. Folk who once walked with Him or who have accepted Him (Jesus has led them so far) but they are not baptized.
You came so far you might as well come on in with Jesus. And you always hear that "Put Pastor I'm not ready I'm too sinful!
Are you gonna let a little thing like sin get in between you and Jesus?
where sin abounded, grace more much abounds
It didn't stop Abraham, Noah, Mary Mag,
we ought to be more like this paralytic when something was in between him and the Saviour! "He said get me in there!! I don't care how you do it, tear down the house, raise the roof if you have to I haven't come this far to be turned back!!
I don't know what prompted that response maybe it was the brevity of the 1st visit. Fearful now that he might miss this opportunity.
We get all uptight when we are denied materials rights by man( check missing money) but when someone tries to take away our spiritual rights that belong to us through the sacrifice of Jesus (Eternal life) it's ok.
I don't care who it is It could be Satan running that line, God's to angry with you. Could be your Father or Mother, could be your boyfriend, uncle.
It's that determined faith that Jesus initially instills within us that He will bless.
Jacob, hem of His garment, the Greeks,
Altar call - Race
Paul tells us something about a race.
Heb 12:1 . . . let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, (KJV)
How did you run the race?
David When I got knocked down
Solomon Wisdom, heavenly
Job trust in God, sometimes much trial and tribulation
healed paralytic started late, almost couldn't get in, but when I had to I raised the roof to follow Jesus.