Power at Every Level – Part 4

The plain truth is this; you cannot please God without faith.


Luke 5:17 – And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judaea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was present to heal them.


Take a moment to re-read the final phrase of our Text for Today.  It declares “the power of the Lord was present to heal them.”  When you consider those words in the light of the rest of Scripture as it clearly defines the will of God for healing, we see that it was evidently the desire of the Lord Jesus to heal every person present in the meeting described here.  The simple truth is this; God wants you well.

So why don’t we read about others being healed in that meeting?  That would include the Pharisees, doctors of the law, and all the others, many of whom were, no doubt, devout followers of Jesus.  Jesus, the Word made flesh, was present.  He (the Word) was sent to heal.  So why only the palsied man?  Jesus went about doing good, healing all that were oppressed of the devil.  So why only the palsied man?  Though He was anointed to heal, He could do no might works in His own hometown except for healing a few folks of minor ailments.  Could it be that same kind of unbelief was at where that day?  What we DO know is that Jesus went to work “when He saw their (the men who carried the palsied man) faith.”

Always keep in mind here that the “power of the Lord was present to heal them.”  And that means “ALL” of them.  But Jesus only moved in the healing operation where He saw faith being released.  We should learn a very valuable lesson from our observations here.  The power of God alone is not what puts healing into operation.  Being a disciple of Jesus alone is not what puts healing into operation.  God’s desire to heal alone does not put healing into operation.  The need of the person who is sick alone does not put healing into operation.  All these factors may be present, but alone, they do not put healing into operation.  And the truth of the matter is that all these factors were certainly present in the incident herein described.  But none of them alone, or even collectively, put healing into operation.  Something else was needed.

What was needed was faith.  It was not seen in the Pharisees, the doctors of the law, the other followers of Jesus, or the palsied man.  The needed key, faith, was seen in the men who carried the palsied man, who took him to the roof, who tore away the ceiling, and who lowered him before Jesus.  And “when Jesus saw their faith,” He went to work.

Manna for Today – Mark 2:1-12; Mark 11:22-24; Matthew 18:19-20; Deuteronomy 32:30; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20:21; Luke 5:17-26; 3 John 2; Psalm 107:20

Power at Every Level – Part 3

No one, not even critically religious people, are irredeemable.


Luke 5:17 – And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judaea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was present to heal them.


Today we’re still considering the story of the palsied man carried by four other men who lowered him through the roof to get him before Jesus.  As this story is related, even before the palsied man is introduced into the story, we read the words of our Text for Today.  we know according to our Manna for Today that the house where Jesus was teaching was full, that there was no more room inside, and apparently, the crowd outside was so pressing that those carrying the palsied man could not even get near the door.  Look again at our Text for Today.  It appears likely that a large part of the crowd that filled the house were “Pharisees and doctors of the law.”  And more than that, they weren’t just from one location.  They were from “every town of Galilee, and Judaea, and Jerusalem.”  That’s a lot of towns!  Most of the maps I’ve examined of that region in the time of Jesus indicate there were at least 40 towns or cities.  If there were one (1) Pharisee and one (1) doctor of the law from each of those, that would put at least 80 people in the house that were there to hear what Jesus said.  And when you consider his disciples and the many others who followed Jesus closely, the house was surely packed with people inside, and quite a crowd outside.  It is there quite understandable why men on a mission would go up on the roof to complete their mission.

Now take a moment and examine the final phrase of our Text for Today.  We read “the power of the Lord was present to heal them.”  The power of God was not there just for the palsied man.  Nor was it there just for those who supported Jesus and His ministry.  It was there for those who opposed Jesus, for those who were looking for anything they could find to accuse Jesus, for those were spoke harshly to, of, and about Jesus.  This statement verifies John 3:16-17 completely.  It clearly verifies the truth that “God is love.”   It makes no difference what relationship a person has with Jesus, He loves them, He wants them to be redeemed, and a major part of that redemption it their healing.  That is why it is so necessary for us to know that God is a faith God.  Faith moves God, NOT need.  Faith moves God, NOT His desire.  And in this situation, Jesus “saw their (the men who carried the palsied man) faith.” 

Manna for Today – Mark 2:1-12; Mark 11:22-24; Matthew 18:19-20; Deuteronomy 32:30; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20:21; Luke 5:17-26

Power at Every Level – Part 2

No matter the severity of the problem, Jesus is always more than enough.


Mark 2:3 – And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.


Today, let’s consider the man who was afflicted by palsy.  A few things should be quite evident.

  • He had palsy; a disabling, crippling, killing disease. 
  • Having this disease, you can only live as long as there is someone to take care of you.
  • It frequently attacks one’s ability to walk, to have full functionality of the hands, and diminishing one’s ability to speak, and possible even to reason.
  • It often attacks a person some years after birth, when they will begin to stumble, fall, and lose their mobility.
  • When this happens as a child, other children, in their ignorant cruelty, will blame such a person for things they didn’t do. 
  • Fear of the pain of falling and the blame for damaging things, often grips the palsied mind, crippling them even further.

Now with all those things in mind, can you imagine the terror in the palsied man’s mind as he is taken from his home, carried through strange areas, lifted high above the ground to the roof of a house, all the while fearing that he may be dropped or blamed for damage to the roof.  I can only imagine the depth of fear and torment that must have been coursing through his being.  The only thing he had was whatever trust he had in those who carried him; those four men, four acquaintances, four friends, for men of faith, for it was their faith that moved Jesus. 

I have often meditated upon the scene inside that house.  Picture it with me.  This man had been plagued by palsy, likely most of his life.  He was accustomed to the shaking, immobility, slurred speech, and total dependence upon other.  He had mentally trained himself most of his life to live in such a condition without thought; after all, there was no cure for him.  Lying on the floor before Jesus, the first words he hears are that his sins are forgiven.  You and I know that sickness and disease in the fruitfulness of sin, and that if sin is conquered, so is sickness, disease, poverty, and all that goes with them.  Because of the known connection, I am convinced that as soon as Jesus told him his sins were forgiven, all manifestations of the palsy that afflicted him, ceased to operate, and it was not until Jesus told him to get up, take his bed, and go home, that he realized he was healed.  Many times, we do not know a miracle or healing has taken place until we are challenged to do something we don’t think we can do.  Such a statement challenges our thinking in such a way as to cause us to recognize the current reality that is different from our past.  Let God’s Word do that for you today.

Manna for Today – Mark 2:1-12; Mark 11:22-24; Matthew 18:19-20; Deuteronomy 32:30; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20:21

Power at Every Level – Part 1

What Jesus lived and demonstrated now belongs to the child of God.  Learn to use it; then use it.


Power at Every Level – Part 1

Mark 2:3 – And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.


The incident surrounding our Text for Today is one of the most powerful pictures of being redeemed that exists in the Scriptures.  And it likewise paints a picture of the power of Biblical agreement.  Let’s examine it regarding participants, today’s being a look at the four men who carried the palsied man to Jesus.  Some things about them should be obvious. 

  • They had heard of Jesus, and knowing where He was, agreed together on a plan.
  • They believed Jesus could do something for the palsied man.
  • They loved the palsied man, putting their own testimony at risk with their plan.
  • They were willing to take a risk in their actions to tear away the roof over Jesus’s head.
  • They were mutually determined to carry out the plan.

Though nothing is mentioned of the men once their friend was lowered before Jesus, it stands to reason that these were men who believed in covenant with God, and believed in the ability and willingness of the Lord to heal their friend.  I can only imagine how they had to coordinate their efforts to achieve this task.  They had to put their own life on hold, at least for a few hours.  They carried their friend who had palsy, over various kinds of terrain, through streets, around buildings, perhaps some miles to get him to where Jesus was.  Then arriving where Jesus was, they could not get to Jesus because the crowd was too great.  Seeing their plans being stopped, they decided to lift him to the roof, tear away part of the ceiling, and let him down before Jesus inside the house.  I have witnessed people with various kinds of palsy, and those who cannot get around on their own are very leery of falling, or being dropped, especially in places where their movement is difficult.  Can you imagine the terror of the palsied man as they lifted him skyward to the roof?  These men had to deal with that, I am sure, reassuring him throughout the process.  Often, in ministering to people who have great insecurities, constant reassurance is necessary, and can be very taxing on those who are trying to help.  Yet these men persisted. 

While we can be relatively assured that they witnessed the complete healing of their friend, they are no longer mentioned.  But the only notice of them that really mattered is in the words of what drew the attention of Jesus to them.  “When He (Jesus) saw their faith, He said unto the sick of the palsy…”  Do you see the importance of these words in verse 5?  As soon as Jesus saw their faith, He went to work.  He hasn’t changed.  Show Him your faith.  He stands ready to day to honor your faith, immediately.

Manna for Today – Mark 2:1-12; Mark 11:22-24; Matthew 18:19-20; Deuteronomy 32:30; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20

Desire Manifest

No question should exist concerning God’s will for your healing and health.


Mark 1:41 – And Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean.


One of my favorite statements in ministry and leadership training is, “If God said it, that settles it!”  I really can’t make a more powerful statement relating to the final authority of God’s Word.  We know that it is impossible for God to lie.  Based on that great Biblical truth, my statement, “If God said it, that settles it,” should end all other discussion of that matter.  Time and again through the Scriptures we are directed, ordered, and commanded by God that we should humble ourselves under His hand, under His authority.  And for the child of God, there is no more authoritative manifestation of God’s authority than His Word, especially His written Word. 

Take a moment to read the Mark passage of our Manna for Today.  Leprosy was one of the most horrible diseases of Jesus’s day.  They had no cure but God.  It is evident that the leper in question had heard of Jesus and His healing power.  It is likewise evident that while he knew Jesus could heal him, he was not sure that it was the Lord’s will to do so.  But when Jesus heard the passionate request of a desperate man, He ended all questions of this matter.  Look closely at the words of Jesus.  He said plainly, “I will; be thou clean.”  Two Biblical statements serve as framing statements for these words of Jesus, establishing them as being true in all situation regarding healing, especially towards those who have covenant with Him.  Each of those statements are themselves quite brief. 

First, we know that God is no respecter of persons.  He does not exalt one above another.  It is faith that moves God, not one’s status in life arising from any element.  Secondly, the Scriptures declare that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  Clearly, we can see that Jesus did not cleanse the leper because of some special favor, and in reality, His healing power has never flowed from that perspective, nor will it ever, for He never changes.

Take hold of this truth, my friend.  Do you need healing in your body?  Jesus has provided it, and wants you to have it.  He wants you to have it so much that you can live without the need for healing by living a life of health.  That is, in truth, the covenant in which we live that we call the New Covenant.  It was paid for by the blood of Jesus, brought into power by the death of Jesus, and backed up with full heavenly authority by the resurrection, ascension, and seating of Jesus on the right hand of the Father.  That is His covenant with us for this hour.  Believe it, embrace it, and live in it.

Manna for Today – Mark 1:40-45; 3 John 2; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20:21; Acts 10:34; Hebrews 13:8

By Force

Some things must be forcefully done to establish a kingdom.


Matthew 8:17 – That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.


Our Text for Today is a critically powerful statement in how the kingdom of God operates.  It is the focal point of Jesus’s ministry of healing to Peter’s mother-in-law.  When Jesus came into Peter’s house, He saw the mother-in-law sick of a fever. His touch alone caused the fever to lift from her, and she was refreshed, got up, and ministered to the guests present.  Now, for a moment, read our Text for Today once again and think on it for a moment.  We read that Jesus “bare our sicknesses.”  That is a powerful and all-encompassing statement.  It does not say that Jesus “bare some of our sicknesses,” but that He “bare our sicknesses.”  It plainly states that Jesus “bare our (all) sicknesses.”

But I urge you to take time also and consider the other half of that great statement.  It states, once again very clearly, that “Himself took our infirmities.”  Do you see the forcefulness of that statement?  To “bare” our sicknesses reveals a loving willingness to sacrifice for us.  But that He “took” our infirmities indicates an urgency and strong desire on the part of Jesus. 

Imagine yourself holding a deed in your hands.  That is the deed to all your infirmities, sicknesses, and diseases.  Now see Jesus stepping forth, not to ASK for the deed, though I’m sure most people would gladly give it up, but to TAKE the deed from you without asking, without your permission, or asking any person’s by-your-leave.  And once again, keep in mind that this is ALL your infirmities, sicknesses, and diseases. 

Now carry your thought yet forward.  Someone comes to you with a piece of paper that looks exactly like the deed Jesus took.  He stops before you and offers that document to you.  What do you do?  Sadly, most Christians seem to remember nothing of their covenant, and simply accept it as though it belonged to them.  Now stop!  What did Jesus do?  He “tookyour sicknesses and infirmities.  Here, emphasize “your.”  If Jesus “took” your sicknesses and infirmities, then what are you doing accepting something that looks just like them?  DO NOT accept that which is given to you by anyone when Jesus has bourne and taken what formerly belonged to you.  It does not belong to you.  You are being offered a lie, a counterfeit.  At that moment, as you would with any testing of your faith, draw nigh to God and He will draw nigh to you.  Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  Refuse to accept that which is not your own.

Manna for Today – Matthew 8:14-17; Mark 1:29-34; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20:21;       Matthew 11:12

The Demonic MUST Bow

In a world where the church speaks little of the demonic, the world is overflowing with it.


Mark 1:25 – And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him.


What is happening in our churches today?  In most churches (not all), little if anything is taught concerning demonic activities, how to recognize them, how to deal with them, and the real authority of the believer to act in that arena.  And yet, that which is mentioned little, if any, in our church ministry, is having a season of horrid fruitfulness in the lives of and against many believers.  The enemy has done well in his ploy to hide his activities behind social, political, and psychological facades, all the while being like an ocean mollusk that is attached to the pilings that support structures on which people live, work, and socialize.  In that scenario, mollusks attach themselves, unseen by people above, to the very support columns, even concrete, and bore them full of holes, weakening the foundation of the structures they are to support.  This is certainly dangerous in the natural world, and even more so in the realm of the spirit.

And too often, people who recognize the demonic realm, seem to attempt to capitalize on it.  I have witnessed it when those that are known to exorcise demons seem to shine the spotlight on the demons they encounter.  They spend hours conversing with a possessing demon, almost putting on a show as if to entertain onlookers.  I have literally witnessed someone who is supposed to be casting out demons, take a break for a fund-raising commercial for their ministry.  My friend, such should not be the case.  This is NOT the way Jesus dealt with demons, and He is our example, not a 21st century minister of some sort who sheds more light on the demon than he gives glory to Jesus.

Note our Text for Today.  Jesus had encountered a demon possessed man in the synagogue.  It is obvious that the demon recognized Jesus, and used that recognition as a means to confront Jesus, attempting through fear to drive Him away, or at least, cause Jesus to go on His way, not bothering with the demon.  But Jesus would not be the object of Satan’s trifling actions.  In the confrontation that occurred, the demon recognized Jesus, attempting to show off his spiritual awareness.  He was trying to draw Jesus into a dialogue.  But Jesus would have none of it.  See the Lord words in our Text for Today.  Jesus gave two commands; “Hold your peace,” and “come out of him.”  Jesus did not want the conversation, though it appeared to draw attention to Him.  Jesus understood all too well that words have power, and He did not desire to hear anything the devil said.  We must adopt the same attitude.  The devil didn’t like it, and he showed his irritation by antagonizing the man and making his cry out loudly.  But the final affect was “he came out of him.”   You see, “the work of righteousness (and Jesus was righteous) is peace, and the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever.”  When righteousness speaks, the demonic must bow.

Manna for Today – Mark 1:21-28; Mark 16:15-20; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20:21; Isaiah 32:17

Another Draught Coming

When you are repetitious in an obedient action, you ought to be better at it each time.


Acts 1:8 – But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.


Tell me something.  Are your prayers more accurate now than when you were first born again?  If you’re in the five-fold ministry, do you improve your ministry over time?  If you’re a musician or involved in leadership of praise, do you improve at that ministry over time and with practice?  Of course, the answer to each of these questions should be a resounding “YES!”  If the answer is “no,” then repent, and do your first works over.  God deserves more from you than that.  We should seek to ALWAYS improve in our walk with Him in every arena.

In the Gospels, we read about two different draughts of fish.  In the first one, Jesus said to “let down your nets,” their nets were filled, and they broke under the load.  They started where they were; in their Jerusalem.  This is a type and shadow of the Old Covenant.  It was a good covenant, but not as good as the New Covenant, and could not contain all that swam into their nets. 

But God does not want us to just reach out to the people in our own town/community.  He had sent us into the “uttermost part of the earth.”  At the second draught of fish, Jesus told them to “cast your nets.”  Once again the nets were filled, but this time they lost none.  This is a type and shadow of the New Covenant.  It is a better covenant than the Old Covenant, and it was not to the Jews only, but to “whosever will.”  And while some may find a way to get out of the net, you will not lose fish that are caught because the net broke.  Note, too, that I the second draught, the net was “cast,” not “lowered.”  In the New Covenant is the ability to reach that which is beyond your personal grasp.  The Jews did not send forth missionaries to reach the world.  On the other hand, that is one of the prime directives of the church.  And that is one of the great tools we have for reaching the world.  Not everyone can travel to the Russian states, European nations, African nations, nations of the South Pacific, or to Mexico, Central or South American nations.  BUTBUTBUT EVERYONE can pray for all those nations, and everyone can be a part of sending forth men and women of God for the work to which the Lord has called them.  I don’t know of anyone who knows every person God has sent forth, but most of us know someone.  Partner with them.  God will direct you in that.  Pray for them.  Support them financially.  Receive them as vessels of God and be a part of their harvesting work.

Manna for Today – Acts 1:6-11; Luke 5:1-11; John 21:1-14; Mark 11:22-24; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20:21

Start in Jerusalem

The question today is, “Where do YOU start?


Luke 5:4 – Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught.


Through your giving, you can vicariously travel across our globe, fulfilling the great commission.  But that does not divest you of personal responsibility to be a witness where you are.  So, allow me to say to you at the very beginning today, “Start in Jerusalem.” Consider this; Jesus said that when you are empowered by Holy Spirit, you would be witnesses unto Him in Jerusalem (where you are; your city; your community; your neighborhood), in Judea (a larger sphere of influence; your state or region), in Samaria (an ever enlarging sphere of influence; perhaps your nation; your native tongue nationality), and to the uttermost parts of the earth (just what it says; wherever people are).  Jesus was indicating that the process of winning the lost, growing the church, making disciples, and all the inherent works is a progression of influence.  I recently heard from a pastor that his son, perhaps 10-years of age, had won one of his teachers to Christ, and that she had attended their church.  That young man is starting in his Jerusalem. 

In our Text for Today, Jesus told Peter and his associates to “launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught.”  Look closely at the Lord’s instruction.  To “launch out into the deep” indicates that when He gave the command, they were in shallow water.  That would indicate that they were surely in their daytime dock, for they fished at night.  Oh, the great number of images that presents.  When we’re close to home, we’re in shallow water.  For us, “the deep” is just moments away.  That’s our Jerusalem. 

Then Jesus told them to “let down your nets.”  In the miracle of the second draught of fish, that being just after His resurrection. Jesus said to “cast out your nets.”  Nets that are “let down” indicate local fishing.  Nets that are “cast out” indicate an expanding arena.  That would be Judea, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of the earth.  Note, that in the first draught of fish, it was the local area.  It was in that first draught that His disciples learned much about their weaknesses; weak, unrepaired nets that broke under the strain.  Learn to fish well where you are before you start casting nets

Permit me one additional thought.  It was their custom to fish at night.  But when Jesus showed up, He told them to fish in the daytime.  My friend, when you are fisher of men, you will always fish in the light, for you are the light of the world.  Let your light so shine than men may see your good works and glorify God.  That draws them to your net.

Manna for Today – Luke 5:1-11; Matthew 4:19; Mark 1:17; Mark 11:22-24; John 14:12-14; John 17:18; John 20:21; Mark 16:15-20; Acts 1:8; Matthew 5:16

Invite Him Back


John 4:47 – When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judaea into Galilee, he went unto him, and besought him that he would come down, and heal his son: for he was at the point of death.


How often in Scripture do we see a mighty manifestation of the Lord in a place where He had previously performed great works?  Perhaps even repeating a work He had shown previously.  We see it in wells being redug, His supernatural manifestations in the wilderness, first as a burning bush to Moses, and later to Israel with all His might works as they traveled there.  God returned again and again to Gilgal and to Carmel.  And how often was the Sea of Galilee the scene of a mighty work of Holy Ghost through the Christ?  While we should fully embrace the truth that “if God said it, that settles it,” we must NEVER limit Him by thinking He will not repeat a great work, do something again, and that not just once or twice, but in multitudinous manifestation.  Never forget that God is upholding all things by the Word of His power.

Have we, the church, adopted a posture similar to the world, in which they are constantly seeking for something new, for something they haven’t before seen?  My friend, I would personally be thrilled to see things done by the hand of the Lord that He has before performed countlessly.  How often is it said of Jesus as He ministered to the people that He “healed them all?”  Oh, that we could see that again, consistently, in our churches at any service!  Oh, that we could see miracles like that at the pool of Bethesda take place in one of our hospitals in plain view of many witnesses!  My heart cries out for this, and I’m sure your heart does, too.

From our Text for Today, we can see that when Jesus came back to where He had turned water to wine, a man with a sick son came to Him to “heal his son.”  Let me ask you a question: have you witness the power of God in your life, in your ministry, in your home?  Do you believe the Lord can do it again?  What could happen if we exercised our faith and invited Him to return in the same power in which He had come in the past?  Are we not told that Jesus stands at the door and knocks?  He has told us that if we knock, it will be opened to us.  Should we not offer Him the same reciprocity?  Why don’t we openly, collectively, and in unity, invite Him to come again and perform again that which He has already performed?  Let us pray!

Manna for Today – John 4:46-54; Mark 11:22-24; John 14:12-15; John 17:18; John 20:21; Hebrews 1:3