God has an encouraging word for you and me today through the Bible-based teaching of Dr. Don Wilton about the healing voice of God. The Encouraging Word We'll be headed to John, chapter 5, beginning in verse 1 in just a moment with Dr. Don Wilton, well-known author, evangelist, seminary professor and pastor. And today as he takes us into God's Word, we'll be understanding about the power of the healing of the voice of God.
Now, perhaps there's something going on in your life right now. You'd like to have us pray with you for healing or pray for anything. We're here 24 hours a day at 866-899-WORD. Jot the number down, 866-899-9673 or meet us on our website, www.tewonline.org.
That's www.tewonline.org. We'd love to connect with you, connect with resources and pray for you especially. Now, Dr. Don Wilton with today's message. The Encouraging Word We're in John, chapter 5. This is what the Bible says. John, chapter 5 and verse 1, after this there was a feast of the Jews and the Jews went up to Jerusalem. Now, in Jerusalem by the sheep gate there was a pool which in Aramaic is called Bethesda.
Which has five roofed colonnades. In these lay multitudes of invalids, blind, lame and paralysed. One man in particular was there who had been an invalid for 38 years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there for a long time, he said to him, Do you want to be healed?
The sick man answered, said, Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool. When the water is stirred up and while I'm going another steps down before men, Jesus said to him, get up, take up your bed and walk and at once the man was healed. And he took up his bed and he walked.
Now the day was the Sabbath. So the Jews said to the man who had been healed, it's the Sabbath, it's not lawful for you to take up your bed. But he answered, that man was the one who healed me.
That man said to me, take up your bed and walk. And they asked him, who is the man who said, take up your bed and walk? Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was for Jesus had withdrawn. As there was a crowd in the place, but afterwards Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, See, you are well, sin no more and nothing worse will happen to you. The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him.
Where did this take place? This is very important for you to hear, the pool of Bethesda was not a Christian healing pool, not even sort of. The pool of Bethesda, the word Bethesda means mercy.
That's the word, mercy, it's a beautiful, the house of Bethesda, the house of mercy. So the pool of Bethesda was part of the Hellenization of the Roman Empire. It was one of the many things that were built by the Roman oppressors who were ranked pagans.
God, Jehovah had no part of their life. In fact, they crucified Jesus accepting the cry of the crowd to crucify him. And the pool of Bethesda was no different to the theater that was built, the sports complex. Even just you almost from the pool of Bethesda looking at the Antonio fortress, which lies on the right side of the temple mound where Pilate was, where Jesus was judged. That was all Roman, the Hellenization of Jerusalem. And the pool of Bethesda was built to the God Asclepius, Asclepius.
That was his pool. Who was Asclepius? Asclepius, the God, the pagan God Asclepius was the God of wellbeing, the God of health and the God of medicine.
That's who he was. And just to help you to understand Asclepius, Asclepius had two daughters. Guess what their names were? One's name was Hygiena or Hygienia. Does that sound medicinal, hygiene?
Where do we get our name hygiene? His first daughter, her name was Hygienia. The second daughter's name was Panacea. Panacea, remedy for sickness. I know I'm being very simple and medical people are saying, you're just scratching the surface.
I am. So here's Asclepius, the God of medicine, the God of healing. His two daughters, Hygienia and Panacea. And the symbol, the symbol for all of this was a snake, still to this day, the medical symbol.
All right? So, putting all these things together, this place here was a place where God, so impressed on me, was a pagan place where, according to the gods, whomever went to this place, because that was the place that you were supposed to go to, to ask the gods to do their work. Justin Martyr, one of the great fathers that we always, he said, how do you explain all of this?
The stirring of the water and everything. Justin Martyr said, and I'm quoting Justin Martyr, when the devil brings forward Asclepius as the razor of the dead and the healer of all diseases, may I not say in this matter likewise, he has imitated the prophecies of Christ. Now, who is the devil? The devil is the great imitator. Everything he does, he tries to set himself up as God, like God. And actually, in end times, that's the ultimate what's going to happen with Antichrist. Who is Antichrist? And during the tribulation, Antichrist is going to set himself up in the temple as God. And because the Holy Spirit is going to be removed from the earth, everybody who has been left behind is going to believe it, because they have no means to not believe it, because the Holy Spirit is the one who convicts us concerning sin and righteousness and judgment.
Take the Spirit out, you've got to expect sin, you've got to expect a disdain for the righteousness of God, and you've got to expect a mockery concerning the judgment of God. So here we have the pool of Bethesda. That's where this took place. What did it provide? What did this provide?
Well, it provided an avenue. It was one of the many features of the Roman Empire. It was no different in many ways from their sporting activities, where they would provide these gory scenes so that people could come and feast and scream and shout and give vent to their feelings and feel like they could let it all hang out, so to speak.
That's what the Romans did. They understood the lust of human nature for something to be able to vent on, to get a hold of. And the pool of Bethesda, dedicated to the god Asclepius, was the place where they said, look, man, you come to this god, and if he wants to, by whatever means, he'll do it. And they believed him.
They believed it. And hundreds of thousands of people came, including this one man, came looking for the answer in the wrong place to the wrong person. And in his case, it cost him many, many years, as the Bible said. So why was he there? This brother here, this man here was there for a very good reason, folks. He was desperate in need of healing. And then the fourth thing was who it was that healed him, and this is all going to come together here. Who was it that healed him?
After all is said and done. And the Bible here says that he'd been coming all his life, been in his condition for 38 years, and he was persistent. He was desperate. And in the final analysis, who healed him? The only person who could. It wasn't the water.
It wasn't the place. It wasn't Asclepius. It was Jesus.
And I just want to say this. I've got so much in my mind. I just want to say this to you, that after Jesus had healed him, there were two pools.
Have I got a lot I want to tell you. There are two pools within walking distance. There's the pool of Bethesda here, and then at the bottom of the city of David, the bottom of the Kidron Valley, almost where Gehenna meets the Kidron Valley, you have the pool of Siloam. When Jesus healed the man at the pool of Siloam, he told him, after he healed him, to go and wash off in the pool of Siloam. But this man, after he healed him, he didn't tell him, now go and wash off in the pool of Bethesda.
Why? Because Jesus wanted him to know, when I've healed you, don't go back to the gods. Don't go back and dip your toe in the waters that are not mine. And that's why Jesus said, don't go back to your sin of following after another god. He didn't say your sin is the cause for your sickness. He was saying you were sinning because you were following pagan gods. And Jesus said, you want to go back to the pagan gods. These things will come back on you because I do not share my space with any other god.
And there are many of us. We go to Jesus, and Jesus answers our prayer, and two weeks later, we're back to the same thing. What a powerful challenge from Dr. Don Wilton. Do we say yes to God and ready to change our behavior and then fall back?
Forgive the interruption. Dr. Wilton will be back with the conclusion of today's program in just a moment, but perhaps in this desire of each of us to break free from a hurt, a habit, or a hang-up so that you don't find yourself two weeks later back doing the same thing. Let us form a hedge of prayer protection around you. We'd love to pray with you and for you and give you the resources that'll help you grow your faith. Spending time in God's word every day is mission critical. You can sign up for an email from Dr. Wilton with a wonderful daily Bible study on our website right now at www.tewonline.org. That's www.tewonline.org. Sign up for the daily email. You can also have us send you a free copy of a quarterly devotional that has the same kind of information in it, or feel free to know that we have friends that would love to pray with you anytime at 866-899-WORD.
That's 866-899-9673. And if you haven't heard about the cross of Jesus and the special message on the cross by Dr. Wilton, here's Liz with all the details. Even though the world is becoming an increasingly challenging place to live in as a Christian, Jesus' ultimate sacrifice on the cross remains a message of hope for everyone. Discover a deep understanding and appreciation for our Savior's death on the cross in Dr. Wilton's powerful sermon, The Cross, along with the bonus book, The Cross of Jesus by Warren W. Wiersbe, which explores the entire crucifixion in detail. These powerful resources are yours to have with your gift of support to the encouraging Word. Thank you for listening today. That's just one of many great resources you'll find on our website, www.tewonline.org. Drop by today.
Again, the website is www.tewonline.org. Now back to today's great teaching on the healing voice of God with Dr. Don Wilton. Very quickly, just to contextualize, five ways that Jesus heals. Just can write these down. We'll be putting this on Instagram.
You can get the notes afterwards. Five ways in the Bible Jesus heals. Number one, instantly.
Boom! Previous chapter, John chapter 4, starting at verse 46. There are just countless illustrations. Jesus heals instantly. I've watched it even in our church. I've seen it in the lives. There are some people sitting here today that we've watched go through deep, deep waters, and Jesus has just healed them just like that. I've heard more, I've heard so many stories in diagnosis, in the case of sickness, and they did this, that, went to the doctor, and the radiologist came and said, we just don't understand this.
There's not a sign of anything. Jesus can heal instantly. Number two, Jesus heals slowly. So if you go to Mark chapter 8, talking about the blind man, Beth Cider.
Mark chapter 8, the blind man at Beth Cider. Jesus heals slowly. If I may say very respectfully in the face of my Jesus, it's his decision. Sometimes he heals instantly.
Sometimes he seems to take his time. Thirdly, he, Jesus heals in the Bible medicinally. He uses people, godly doctors, nurses, medical people. He heals medicinally.
In our day and age, how true is that? You go into Luke chapter 10. The Bible is full of olive oil. The Samaritan man, I said in Luke chapter 10, he heals medicinally. God uses the means that have been brought into the benefit of our people, but he heals.
Number four, fourth way, he heals is gracefully. I don't know how to put that in another term, because in 2 Corinthians 12, he says, my grace is, what's the word, sufficient for you, and this is a tough one. I've met some of the most grace-filled people in this congregation who have had debilitating, whatever it might be, for years and years and years, and in that, they've been healed gracefully, because they carry in the context of that debilitation such a living testimony of grace. I don't know how to say this.
Please forgive me. It's like God has just said, I want you to keep having this problem, because you are blessing so many people. You just, there are people I meet that I know are hurting in whatever way, but they show such grace.
It just, it's like, and then the final one that I put on the table today is Jesus heals eternally. He takes people home to be with him. You know, in 2021, Karen's father, my father-in-law, got COVID, and yeah, he was a very elderly gentleman, but COVID essentially killed my father-in-law, and we, like many people, just like you, very, very loved, beloved man, and it was because of COVID, he got, he was taken off to hospital. We couldn't even see him.
Remember that time? His last five weeks on this earth, we couldn't even see our father. Couldn't go in, couldn't see him. He was by himself, and I remember when they brought him to hospice the last day, and we stood there watching them offload him from an ambulance and then put him into this little isolation room at hospice. We couldn't go in. We had to stand outside the window, and I remember my father-in-law saying, I have fought the good fight of faith, and then he lifted his hand, and he saluted us through the window, and shortly thereafter, Jesus healed him eternally.
This week, a lady very close to my wife, same thing happened to her. You know, eternal healing is the greatest healing because it's tied into the greatest healing that God ever gives us. What's the greatest healing? Salvation.
We began with baptism today. This is a picture of the greatest single healing that can take place. When he heals us from death to life, the healing of forgiveness. Everyone that is listening right now is a sinner.
Everyone. All of us have sinned, and we've been healed because we've been forgiven. What hope would we have in the world, in the world? What hope would we have with our sons and daughters?
I've, in my life and ministry, folks, I've dealt with men who have been unfaithful to their wives, and they've confessed their sin to Jesus, and Jesus forgave them, and then they confessed that to their wife, and their wife forgave them. It's the greatest healing that could ever happen. If we, if you took the greatest healing of Jesus out of us, what are we left with? Why are we Christians? Why do we believe in this church, and I think in all Christian churches, that we're the place where everyone can invite who? Anyone to come to First Baptist Church to encounter who? A living one.
Pool of Bethesda. Anyone because of the healing of Jesus. It's the greatest joy in the world, so for healing to happen, I've earmarked five things that need to take place for you to be healed. Number one, you have to be in the right place, and I don't know what I'm saying there.
I stood at the pool of Bethesda. It was the wrong place for this man for 38 years, but it turned into the right place. I think right now you just may find yourself in the right place, be it here or be listening in your living room.
Are you in the right place? Number two, you need to be in the right position, and I'm speaking of your heart. The way you are positioned before a holy and a righteous God. Number three, you need to have the right reason to be seeking healing. You've got to get down to that inner motive, and I began my message a little while ago saying, you've got a reason. Number four, you need to have the right determination.
Nothing should stand in your way, and then you need to be going to the right person. You can spend 38 years going, doing everything, trying everything, but you're dealing with Asclepius, and he's not going to heal you, and then here comes Jesus. This is the voice of God. So many of us have gone repeatedly to the pool of Bethesda, and we're looking at you, Jesus.
It's your voice. It's who you are, and today, Lord Jesus, as we go into this invitation time, there are people who will come forward, seeking prayer, making decisions. There are people right now who are giving their hearts to Jesus, which is the single greatest healing that can ever take place, and I pray, Lord Jesus, that people everywhere today would trust you as Savior and Lord.
Are you weary, heavy-laden? Jesus wants us to come and lay our burdens right there at the foot of the cross, and he will be the one to heal. We believe this, Lord Jesus, and as we go into this invitation right now, you are doing your work, and we believe it, and we are praising the name of Jesus, and when people come and say, Who did this?
We too, like this man, will say, Jesus did it. In Jesus' name, we pray together. Amen.
Amen. If the Lord is stirring in your heart, you need to know we believe God is ready to do a work. Jesus is ready to do a work in your life. You know, you may want to call us and let us pray with you, maybe answer some questions at our 866-899 word number.
That's 866-899-9673. Or perhaps you want to just take a moment and call out to God. Before we get away, Dr. Wilton has a closing thought that could be the most important few seconds of our broadcast today.
Well, hello again, my friends. Are you ready to give your life to Christ? You know, you've been listening like this, and God has been speaking like this, hasn't He?
And He's speaking to your heart. I'd love to help you give your life to Christ right now. Why don't you pray this prayer, make this your prayer, because you know that God not only hears our prayer, but He answers our prayer too. Pray this prayer with me. Dear God, I know that you love me very much.
I believe Jesus came and died on a cross just for me, and that He gave His life for me. Right now, I confess my sin to you, and by faith, I receive you into my heart and into my life. In Jesus' name I pray. Well, if you've prayed that prayer right now, in just a moment we're going to send you some information.
I want you to listen real carefully, because you can take note of that. We've got the means by which we can connect together, and I want to connect with you, because you're part of my family. You're part of the family of God. You are my brother, my sister in Christ.
God bless you today. Indeed, we are ready to connect with you 24 hours a day. If you want to meet us on our website, tewonline.org, we'd love to start the conversation. We'd love to connect you with resources that'll help you grow, and perhaps moments ago, you were praying with Dr. Wilton to give your life to Jesus, maybe for the first time or maybe rededicating your life. You need to know that we want to rejoice with you, and Dr. Don would love to pray for you and put some free resources in your hands.
He's prepared these resources. Whether you've given your life to Christ for the first time or rededicated your life today, would you give us a call? 866-899 word is our number.
I'll slow down. It's 866-899-9673, or meet us on our website at tewonline.org. This is a broadcast presentation of The Encouraging Word made possible by the prayerful and financial support of many friends like you. If you want to discover how you can get involved, discover more at tewonline.org. The Encouraging Word
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-05 11:31:34 / 2023-03-05 11:41:14 / 10