Carter Conlan from the historic Times Square Church in New York City. So I think it settles it once and for all that God will move heaven and earth to answer you.
It's really that simple. He did. He moved heaven and earth. God will beyond all doubt do whatever He has to do to answer our cry. We're glad you've joined us for A Call to the Nation with Carter Conlan from the amazing story of Jesus stopping the wind and the seas. To the unbelievable account where God turns back time for King Hezekiah, Carter will settle the question once and for all that God will move heaven and earth to answer our cry.
Let's discover more now as Carter begins his message today. Mark chapter 4 verse 35. On the same day when evening had come He said to them let's cross over to the other side. Now when they had left the multitude they took him along in the boat as he was and other little boats were also with him. And a great windstorm arose and the waves beat into the boat so that it was already filling.
Does that sound like your life anybody here yet? You know you got a word from Jesus you know if you'll trust in me I'll take you to the other side. So you got in the boat with him and now you're halfway across your journey and the wind and the waves are beating on your boat and you're wondering God am I ever going to make it through this life? But he was in the stern asleep on a pillow and they woke him and said teacher do you not care that we are perishing?
Has anybody prayed that prayer recently in your room at night alone? God do you not care that I'm being persecuted at work? Do you not care that I don't have a job? Do you not care that I'm I'm not free yet from this this addiction in my mind or my body whatever the case is or that the way people are treating me or that I'm lonely or lost or hungry? Do you not care? And then he arose and rebuked the wind and said to the sea peace be still and the wind ceased and there was a great calm.
I think it was instantaneous I don't think it was gradually the waves went down I think they just went flat like a mirror. But he said to them why are you so fearful and how is it that you have no faith? Not little faith, no faith. Their only prayer was an accusation. They didn't really believe other than the fact that the son of God was with them in the boat. They didn't even believe they were going to make it to the other side and they woke him up accusing him of being not faithful. But in spite of the fact that their prayer had no faith in it he still answered it.
He still got up and he rebuked the wind and he calmed the seas. In Psalm 107 in the Old Testament we're shown four instances where people or societies seemingly are broken beyond hope and without repair but yet when they cry out for help God answers and sets them free. The first instance verses four to nine it talks about people who are hungry they're wandering in the wilderness they're lonely they're empty they find no place to dwell they're hungry and thirsty and their soul is fainting in them and then they cry out to the Lord in their trouble and he delivered them out of their distresses. Later on in verse 10 it talks about those who sit in darkness in the shadow of death bound and affliction and iron because they rebelled against the words of God. Think about this present society we're now living in the depth of rebellion against the word of God that we're now experiencing and the fact that we're now finding ourselves captivated by addictions and such like in our major towns and cities and captivated by incivility and hatred one for another and such like things because they rebelled against the words of God and despised the council of the most high therefore he brought down their heart with labor they fell down and there was no one to help and then they cried to the Lord in their trouble and he saved them out of their distresses. Verse 17 fools because of their transgression and because of their iniquities are afflicted their soul abhors all manner of food and they draw near to the gates of death because of their iniquities they're not wanting what God wants to give pushing away in a sense the word of God pushing away even the true and correct history of how God has dealt with us as a nation throughout the years but then they cry to the Lord in their trouble and he saves them out of their distresses he sent his word and healed them and delivered them from their destructions and lastly verse 23 it says those who go down to the sea and ships who do business in great waters they see the works of the Lord and his wonders in the deep and those who have trust in really in commerce to keep them trust in their money in the bank trusts in their retirement plans and all of the schemes and plans that they they put together to give them security in the future only to find out that these things are all collapsing around them which unfortunately we're starting to experience today and probably will in a much greater degree in the future don't forget when all these things begin to happen it's the mercy call of God some will say well this is the judgment of God that's true in measure but mercy still triumphs over judgment and and I would rather that God pull out the carpet of false security than leave us to ourselves as a society heading on our own way with our own pursuits and winding up in an eternity without God the scripture says then they cry in verse 28 then they cry to the Lord in their trouble and he brings them out of their distresses he calms the storm so that its waves are still then they are glad because they're quiet and he guides them to their desired heaven so you see these instances in society where where people are hungry lost rebellious bound foolish dying and have embraced a false trust and no longer really trust in God anymore and suddenly all these things they begin to realize that they're in prison they begin to realize that they're lost they're bound they're foolish they're dying and all of their trust that they they've trust trusted and are collapsing under their feet and then they cry to the Lord in their trouble but and there's no evidence in this psalm that there's any faith in their cry it's just a cry of despair it's a cry of desperation it's an oh God help me moment if you're out there please help me there's there's no real mountain of scripture behind this cry don't forget they have pushed away the word of God they pushed away the warnings of God they have embraced false pursuits and false trust and then suddenly there's this cry comes into their heart and God in his mercy answers them brings them out of their distresses calms their storm stills their waves brings them to the place that they've always really longed to be they just didn't know that's what they were longing for he brings them into a relationship with himself we are created by God in the image of God for God eternally for God we are the only thing in creation that has the ability to make a decision to accept or reject the lordship of Jesus Christ and God brings us home and now the last verse of psalm 107 says it this way whoever is wise will observe these things and they will understand the loving kindness of the Lord whoever is wise will see these things will read these things and begin to understand how incredibly kind God is amazing amazing not withholding not drawing back not saying to the people well you made the mistake you decided to walk away from me so you bear the consequences of it you you said you didn't need me so go ahead see if you can save yourself you trusted in money more than you trusted in me so let money be your guide into the future no he doesn't do that when they cry out he calms their storm stills their waves brings them back to himself again because his mercy endures forever thank God hallelujah hallelujah now in our opening text he describes his disciples at this time as having no faith now it's it's a type of the young believer these are young believers in a sense they don't fully get the cross yet of course it doesn't even happen so they obviously don't get it they they understand that the messiah in measure at least is with them but they're new to the to walking with him just as many of you are here today as well and they're on this this journey and jesus describes their prayer as having no faith is anybody here can identify with that you're you're praying but you read your prayer is not even a prayer it's an accusation against god that's that's what it was do you not care that we're perishing and he says why are you so fearful why do you have no faith and the beauty of it is that it was at least it was an honest cry it may not have been faith-filled but at least it was honest and at least it acknowledged that his presence can make a difference it was enough for him to get up and calm the waves and calm the wind and say peace be still because god is good is good and his mercy endures forever oh thank god so they have no faith so here's an instance where there's no faith and yet he answers their prayer now i want to show you another one of somebody in the new testament in mark chapter 9 that has some faith mark chapter 9 there was a father whose son whose child from childhood verse 22 it says mark 9 22 and often he says he's thrown him into the fire and into the water to destroy him but if you can do anything have compassion on us and help us so he's got a child and it's a type of the unbridled passions in this generation now that are being unleashed in a sense in a whole generation of young people that have been raised without god they they've been told there's no such thing as eternal life there's no such thing as a cross or salvation they've been led to believe that if it feels good do it there's no consequence to it they they've been raised without any real moral moorings and and now we see in the news just a couple of days ago a whole group of teenagers going into a restaurant just destroying it for the fun of it i think some of you saw that in the news and this is the fire that's starting to embrace this young generation now because there's a frustration in the hearts of young people when when this is all there is to life and when there's not much to this then there's an anger comes in the heart and says well if that's all there is i'm just going to destroy it all anyway if if this is what life is and if i'm just here for this this small season of time and then it's all over then why not just have as much fun or be as angry as i am without any restraints and the father said his son's already or daughter's already cast into the fire too as well and to destroy into the water rather and we we see that the water's a confusion now that this generation is being baptized in instead of the water of god's word that brings life and it brings clarity and it brings cleansing and direction there's this this baptism of confusion that's hitting this generation where people are they don't know who they are they don't know what they are they don't know where they're going there's there's just such incredible confusion and the father comes to jesus and said if you can do anything have compassion on us and help us and i can hear the cry now i can hear the cry of of moms and dads that don't know what what's going to happen with their children in the future and they're they're they're praying and they're saying god if if you can help us if you can do anything have compassion on us and help us there is a cry in this generation and jesus said if you can believe all things are possible to him who believes and immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears lord i believe help my unbelief have you ever been there god i believe as much as i can believe all of our faith has limits you know is anybody here raised the dead recently and if you haven't then your faith has limits you understand have you walked on water if you haven't your faith has limits all of our faith has limits and and i've prayed that over the years god i i believe as much as i can and if you want my faith to go beyond that line that limit in my heart you're going to have to take me there because i can't get there on my own i can't do it that's what the father was crying out lord i i believe that you can set my son free but if if my faith is short then then take take it where it needs to go because i can't go beyond what's in my heart right now take it where it needs to go and then jesus commands that spirit to come out and enter him no more and that child was set free and here's the case now the first prayer was a prayer of no faith that he answered of his own disciples now we have a a prayer where he sets free a child that was oppressed by darkness through a father that had some faith thank god for the mercy of god thank god that we don't have to have it all together thank god that we don't have to we don't have to get every line right we don't have to get every prayer right we don't we we don't get much right realistically when we get there we'll see how far short our all of our prayers came no matter how eloquent we thought we were we'll see and then in second kings chapter 20 this this is a story in the bible that just nails it it's about the cry of someone who wanted to believe so we have we have a prayer that was answered that had no faith we have a second prayer that was answered that had some faith now we're going to see god move heaven and earth to answer the prayer of somebody who said i want to believe you isn't that amazing now chapter 20 of second kings in those days hezekiah was sick and near death and isaiah the prophet the son of amoz went to him and said thus says the lord set your house in order for you shall die and not live then he turned his face toward the wall and prayed to the lord saying remember now oh lord i pray how i've walked before you in truth and with a loyal heart i've done what was good in your sight and hezekiah went bitterly and i i know there's somebody here like that online or in this sanctuary today that this has been your prayer lady god i want to live i want to live i feel like i'm dying inside i feel like there's i have no purpose in life i don't like the way i'm going and and you turn your face to the wall just as hezekiah did you go to bed at night and you're turning to the wall and you're silently weeping and saying i don't like who i am i don't like what i am i don't like what's going on in my life i don't like where i'm going i feel like i'm going to die oh god let me live let me live i'm i'm so tired of this i i just don't see a way forward and i feel like my life is over and it happened before isaiah had gone out into the middle court the word of the lord came to him saying return and tell hezekiah the leader of my people thus says the lord the god of david your father i've heard your prayer i've seen your tears surely i will heal you on the third day you shall go up to the house of the lord look at that for a word from god coming through the mouth of a prophet god says i've heard you i've seen your tears i'm going to heal you and in three days you're going to be in the temple offering praise to me praise be to god that means for you it's going to be like next tuesday i'll tell you it's two days you're going to be back in the temple and you're going to be praising god for what he has done in your life now and then hezekiah verse 8 said to isaiah what is the sign that the lord will heal me and that i shall go up to the house of the lord the third day can you imagine god gives you a word through a prophet that he's going to do this if i was god i would have said to hezekiah here's your sign you'll be in the temple in three days and you'll be healed enough said but here's what the lord did isaiah said this is the sign to you from the lord that the lord will do the thing which he has spoken shall the shadow go forward 10 degrees or backwards 10 degrees now 10 degrees on the sundial of that time is 20 minutes so isaiah's saying here's what the lord will do to show you that he's going to heal you not that god had to do that but he wanted him to know that i'll be faithful to what i said i'm going to do and he wasn't offended by the prayer of a man who wanted to believe isn't that amazing you and i forgot we'd be offended but he wasn't offended by the prayer of hezekiah now hezekiah said it's an easy thing for the shadow to go down 10 degrees in other words time naturally moves forward but it never goes backwards but let this shadow go back 10 degrees so isaiah the prophet cried out to the lord and he brought the shadow 10 degrees backwards by which it had gone down on the sundial of a has now in response to the prayer of a man who said god i want to believe you that you're going to that you're going to heal me god turns time backwards which tells us a couple of things number one god doesn't dwell in time like we do we dwell in this little space in eternity called time he doesn't he dwells from eternity past to eternity future he doesn't dwell in time so he can do he's the lord over time do you understand he can do whatever he wants he can go back and he can heal things that you thought could never be healed in your life he can go back and give you things that you thought you were never you lost them you're never going to have them again he can go back and give you back callings that you thought slipped through your fingers he can go back and he can make your life into something that that natural progression of sin in your life seemingly took it away from you god is not he doesn't dwell in time like we do he can go back into the past and he can change everything hallelujah thank god now here's where it gets really interesting so he had to take the world and he had to turn the world backwards 20 minutes in order to do that he had to suspend the laws of gravity if you if you stop the world number one the oceans would overflow the continent so he had to he had to keep the seas in place and and at the point where the world actually stops before it turns backwards we would all literally everything on the surface of the earth would fly off into space so he has to suspend the laws of gravity in order to turn the world backwards it's amazing then he turned to turn it back 20 minutes that's what he did it's as if we're here it's now 215 and it's as if we we prayed that same prayer and suddenly it's five to two and we wonder how did that happen and all of a sudden the whole world has gone backwards 20 minutes now i've studied this and i've read commentaries on it from those that do study astronomy and astrophysics and all this kind of stuff and the interesting thing is to turn the world back 20 minutes you can't just turn the world back you have to actually turn the whole solar system back that the world is part of otherwise everything is out of sync the seasons would all change and all the plant everything would be out of alignment so you can't just turn the world back you got to turn everything around it back and others say you can't just turn the milky way back you have to turn the whole universe backwards 20 minutes otherwise everything is thrown out of sync because we're all moving together in one direction absolutely amazing what god can do to answer the prayer to answer the prayer of a man who just said i want to believe i want to believe god that you're going to heal me i want to believe that i'm going to be in the temple praising you so lord says well i'll show you what i can do you see when he stopped the wind and he stopped the seas that the scripture says the disciples said what kind of a man is this that even the wind and the seas obey well it's the same same man that turned back the universe for hezekiah it's the same god who's it was unoffended he was unoffended by the prayer of unbelief and accusation of his own disciples he was he's he's unoffended by the the father that says i believe as much as i can god help me take me where i need to go so that you can do a miracle in my son's life he's unoffended by king hezekiah who has a word from the mouth of god himself through a prophet and yet doesn't fully believe it he says i want to believe it so give me a sign that you're going to do this so i think it settles it once and for all that god will move heaven and earth to answer you it's it's really that simple he did he moved heaven and earth the answer to man's cry proves that god will beyond all doubt do whatever he has to do to answer our cry and so the question is if you're lost if you're hungry if you're bound if you're dying inside what are you waiting for why will you not cry out to god how perplexing it must be to the lord himself when he looks down and says have i not shown you my heart have i not shown you my passion to answer you have i not shown you my power have i not shown you my willingness to even work with your frailty and your lack of faith you know we think we have to have a mountain of faith to move a mountain that's the way i don't know we always think we want to give god a hand even in our prayers but he didn't say that he said if you have faith the size of a grain of mustard seed you can say to this mountain be removed and it shall obey you he didn't say you have to have a mountain of faith you have to have a mustard seed of faith like the little boy who's on his way home or to school i don't know which direction he was going and there's ten thousand people that need to be fed and the little boy stops and gives his lunch to jesus and a whole crowd ten thousand people are are fed it's amazing can you imagine when that boy went home mom dad you'll never guess what i did today i fed ten thousand people with my lunch that you made they probably said go to your room when you learn not to lie and exaggerate you can come back down to dinner but i'm telling the truth i put my lunch into the hands of a man that multiplied it he was not offended with the smallness of what i had in my hand this is the beauty of our salvation god is not offended by the littleness of our faith sometimes not offended by our questions and our struggles and even sometimes our accusations against his faithfulness because because he's good and his mercy endures forever we serve a god who can turn back time he can recover the things that you thought were lost forever he can show you and i the way that we need to go into the future he can break the chains that bind us in pieces no matter how they got on our hands or how the bars got in front of us he can break those chains in pieces he can open any prison door he can set any captive free he can heal us where we've been wounded in our hearts to the point where we believe that we'll never be able to recover he can give sight to our blinded eyes so that we can see a way forward that only god can set before us he can send his word and bring healing into our lives when we think we're irrevocably damaged and hurt and beyond repair he can bring us out of our distresses and present storms he can stand up in the midst of our journey and speak the same words to you and same words to me that he once spoke in that boat peace be still be still and know that i am god be still and know that i will always be with you be still and know that i will never fail you i will never leave you i will never forsake you be still and know that there's no power no principality no mountain no valley nothing present nothing to come that can separate you from the love of god which is in christ jesus your lord be still be still and know that i have sealed you in my father's hand and no one can take you out of my father's hand be still and know that no weapon formed against you will ever prosper and every tongue that rises against you in judgment you shall condemn it this is the heritage of the servants of god be still and know that by my stripes you are healed i have destroyed the destroyer i have rebuked the devourer i have paid the price for your sin i have crafted a future for you i have determined and destined that you will be my people you will bring praise to my name in the earth i am your god you are my people hallelujah to the lamb of god glory to the name of jesus the message today has been brought to you by carter conlon from time square church for more information log on to tsc.nyc that's tsc.nyc plan to be with us next week for a call to the nation with carter conlon you
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