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February 13, 2021 6:00 pm
Well as you know, last week I was in Israel than one day after we had toured around Gordie Langley who was there with me. My friend the and I went out to go down into town about a 10 minute walk. We were up at the sea of Galilee, about a 10 minute walk from our hotel and and just sit and relax and talk a little bit and I take it over with me a bunch of CDs of my life story in Hebrew. You know, we have those CDs in 14 different languages right out here in the lobby at our churches and were coming up with some even more, you know, millennial friendly but I'll tell you more about that in a couple weeks but anyway we went up there and I forgot to take any CDs with me. I mean the just. I forgot. So we were sitting there we go.
The servers were nice and the cashier body and and I was like Gordie you know I cannot believe I forgot to bring my CDs and as were walking back to the hotel about a 1012 minute walk. The Holy Spirit was beating on me saying you need to go back to get some of those CDs and bring them back up to the people in this café I similar maybe I'll come up tomorrow night and the spirits that will, they may not be there tomorrow night. I civil Lord is 10 o'clock at night. We gotta be up before 6 o'clock in the morning I got a bunch of sermons to preach tomorrow. I need to be good and fresh for you and and the Lord said lot I want to go back there.
Get those CDs and take a backup to those people and I'm like what Lord I don't really want to do that. I don't feel like doing that.
I'm tired and we argued the whole way back to the hotel me in the Lord. Finally, when we walked into the lobby of the hotel, the Holy Spirit, said to me, long if you don't get those CDs and walk back to those people.
The message that you're going to preach the weekend your back this weekend. You are going to be the worst kind of a hypocrite imaginable said while working on a message.
Were you going to preach. Well folks, I gotta tell you it's not a message. Were going to preach at the message I are going to preach right now. So are you ready all right.
Here's the message it comes out in Mark chapter 5 in the title of our series is from my heart to yours and the this is on my heart so I want to communicate it to your heart Mark chapter 5. Here we go. Verse one then Jesus and his disciples went across the lake that is the sea of Galilee, to the land of the gear seems not only show your map and what this means is Jesus went over to the east side to Garrison on the east side of the Sea of Galilee.
And when Jesus got out of the boat. A man from the tombs with an unclean spirit. A demon met him.
Now you say lawn we you are an educated man. I mean come on, you don't really believe this to you. You really believe that there is a being called the devil, do you, you don't really believe that there are demons real demons.
Do you really believe that this man had demons inside of them. Do you mean when the Bible talks about devils and demons. Isn't that just an allegory for the evil in the world, will the answer is no, not at all.
The Bible says Isaiah chapter 14 Ezekiel chapter 28 that the devil and Satan and Lucifer that this is a real angelic being who led a revolt against God before this world was created in the Bible says the demons are fellow angels who followed him in this revolt and the Bible says that right now these demons and the devil himself are running loose here on earth but the Bible says that even so, they are still under the authority of God and finally the Bible says that their final destination.
At the end of the age is the lake of fire.
The this as it's called in Luke chapter 8 where Revelation 20 verse 10 says they will be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Look, the Lord Jesus Christ spoke to demons.
He had conversations with demons, he cast out demons and he even went one on war on which Satan himself. In Matthew chapter 4 at his temptation in the wilderness friends the Lord Jesus Christ believe that the demons and devil are real.
The Bible says that Satan and his demons are real and therefore educated or uneducated. I believe exactly what the Bible says a man, all right. And this, let me say before I go on that. I just want to take a moment and remind you that in light of this, the occult is nothing to play around with Ouija boards to row card séances, which is fortunetellers movies about Satan and demons and exorcisms and vampires. Ephesians 427 says do not give the devil an opportunity to gain a foothold in your life and that's precisely what exposing ourselves to this kind of material Dawes so is your pastor, may I say to you, stay away from this dog and keep your children away from this stuff a man all right now let's finish up the story so this man lived in the tombs and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain. For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he would tear the chains apart and break the irons on his feet and no one was strong enough to subdue him and constantly night and day among the tombs and in the mountains. He would cry out and gnash himself with stones.
Every body was powerless against these demons, but friends that's all about the church. Verse six and when he, the demon saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and wanted to do. He fell on his knees before him, and he shouted at the top of his voice.
What do I have to do with you, Jesus saw on of the most high God, and the demon went on to say, I implore you by God. Do not torment me for Jesus had been saying to him come out of the man you unclean spirit. Then Jesus asked the demon what is your name and he replied my name is Legion for we are many a Roman legion contains 6000 soldiers and I don't know if there were 6000 demons inside of this man, but the fact that their name was Legion indicated there were a bunch of and you know it's very interesting what the Gospels of Matthew and Luke record that the demons said next in Luke's gospel. The demons begged Jesus that he would not command them to go into the wads the abyss and in Matthew's gospel chapter 8 behold the demon cried out saying what do we have to do would you owe son of God. Have you coming here to torment us before the time and what's the time was at the end of the age when the Lord Jesus returns and and flex. Remember we said earlier that the demons final destination. When will it be at the end of the age and where will it be the best. That's right, the Bible says they know it.
The demons know that they are time is limited, which is why they're trying to cause all the damage they can right now because they know there's a day coming when the Lord is going to lock him up and throw away the key, and there will be no more damage for eternity that they can possibly cause a man we say aggressive if that's the best clap you can get. Let me just say to you, you have never fought with these things before, let me say their time is limited. Praise the Lord. Yeah right now there was a large herd of pigs feeding on a nearby hillside in the demons begged Jesus to allow them to go in the pigs. So he gave them permission. And the demons came out of the man and went into the pigs. Now this should strike you as strange because Jewish people don't raise pigs because of devout Jewish people. They don't eat at red hot and blue, you know, I'm saying you're right. So what in the world are a bunch of Jewish people doing raisin pigs and these were not wild pigs. They were domesticated pigs because were told in a moment or two there were people ending up there, will the answer is false that the east side at the time of Christ the Eastside and the south side of the Sea of Galilee were not populated by Jewish people. It was populated by Gentiles. As a matter of fact there were 10 Gentile cities on the east and south side will show you a map of the Sea of Galilee called the Decapolis deco means wads and polis means cities anybody go to high school and taking Capital Cities right these of the 10 cities and as you can see Gorgas circled in red was one of them. These were Gentiles, not Jews, and pigs were a crash crop for these people watch then the herd of pigs. About 2000 and number, rushed down the steep bank and in the lake and were drowned on me were talking a huge financial loss here, and then those who were what's the next word attending the pigs. I told you these were domesticated pigs ran off and reported this in the town of all the townspeople went out to see for themselves and when they got there they found 2000 of their pigs bobbing like corks in the Sea of Galilee and the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons sitting there grass and in his right mind. Nobody could heal this man. Nobody could corral. This man the demons tormented him so badly that he went around howling like a coyote at night cutting himself hurting himself. But here he was sitting at the feet of Jesus, dressed column and in his right mind pay when Jesus does something he does it right a man a man and the people look at this. The people look what they did, then the people began to plead with Jesus that he leave a their region. Now, it occurs to me that the city they came from back in their town must have sick people in it occurs to me there must've been lame people and blind people and deaf people and crippled people and people with leprosy and and people who were dying of some disease back in their town. Wanting these people say oh my gosh Jesus please can you come back to our town with us.
We got all these people who need you to do for them what you just did for Legion come with us, please wanted. They do that they said would you please leave well I'll tell you the answer and this is the salient point of the whole passage don't miss it. The reason they they wanted Jesus to leave his because they didn't want to lose anymore pigs. The pigs and the money that the pigs represented they were more concerned about them than they were about the people that Jesus could help if you came back to town.
Do you see that we see that okay so as Jesus was getting back into the boat.
By the way friends. Jesus is a gentleman, if you ask him to leave belief and I want to say. If you're here and you've never trusted Christ as your Savior and people have tried to press Christ to you and and have been praying for you and have been challenging you to receive Christ and you been saying to Jesus go away go away. I'm not interested you better be careful, be careful. I'm warning you because I love you at some point, Jesus may just go away and not offer to come back to you. This happens friends. He's a gentleman. Be careful about telling them go away if you're here and you don't know Christ. My advice to you is to say Jesus right now while you're still offering. I'm accepted.
I hope you will do that well when Jesus was getting back into the boat, the man who'd been demon possessed begged to go with him. But Jesus would not allow him instead. Jesus told them go home and what's the next word.
Tell everyone what great things the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.
So the man went away and began to proclaim throughout all the Decapolis.
All densities want great things Jesus had gone for him. My friends Legion became the first traveling evangelist in all of Christian history. He became the Billy Graham of the Decapolis going from a demon possessed man to Billy Graham of the Eastside of the Sea of Galilee. What a great story, what a wonderful story now.
That's as far as we want to go in our passage because we want to ask our most important question now you know what it is so are you ready I know you miss this so here we go. Come on now every body nice and loud. Juan Luther ride. Both cannot tell you why this passage is on my heart today to share with you is because last week, our tour group stood at the very spot where Mark chapter 5 Took Pl. today it's called Percy I'll show you a picture is a church there from 325 A.D. the remains are and then if you look up in the hills you see the tombs even there today where Legion was living in where he came down from to meet Christ and as we stood there, God reminded me as he does every time we go to this box that Jesus did not die on the cross for church buildings.
And Jesus did not die on the cross for parking lots and Jesus did not die on the cross for attendance figures, and Jesus did not die on the cross for offering plates and Jesus did not die on the cross for book sales. Jesus died on the cross for people and see see sometimes. Sometimes I forget that I get so busy and I get so distracted and I'm in such a hurry and I get so sinfully focused on my own issues and Mona selfish agenda that I put people second. Just like I did those people in Israel but I did want to go back to and give a CD you save a lot.
I'm dying to know what it should do well. I went up to my room. I got six season Hebrew. I walked back to 12 minutes to the café I gave out the CDs to every body there. They were amazingly receptive.
One of the hard living forgiven it to and then I walked the 12 minutes back 25 minutes round trip.
But folks aren't the souls of five or six people were 25 minutes. Then you sell on such a wonderful example. No, I'm not don't do. Did you hear what I said to you that I argued with God. The whole way back to the old gal. I didn't want to go back. No, I'm not a good example of this principle.
I'm a terrible example of this principle, but I know this is the way God wants me to be and so on trial to get better and I'm asking the Holy Spirit every day to help me get better and help me slow down and help me have a moment for people and help me have an alarm for people and help me have a concern for people. I'm trying to do better but I'm not a good example.
Jesus is a good example mean he had an agenda whole lot bigger than mine and he never, never was too busy for people and folks as followers of Christ. I'll open you will be trying to do this very same thing say Lord please slow me down. Please Lord help me to look up from my own agenda and see people all around me who need a little bit of love would need a little bit of encouragement who need somebody to put their arm around him who need somebody to say and Encouraging Word help me God do that so many some up if you want to know what the purpose of today's message was a one sentence here it is above everything else. God cares about people and as his followers. He wants you and me to have the very same value system both in our personal lives and are here in our church family.
That's the point we got it.
Got it okay was power heads together with our heads bowed in our eyes closed. Here's what I want to ask you to do. I want to ask you to think of some people that you know they really need you to slow down a little bit for them.
I know you got people in your life. Like the because I do. I've got a son who's been away from the Lord and his comeback with his wife is divorcing him and I got three grandchildren right in the middle of this age for two and 19 got a daughter who's medically fragile and disabled, and I've got friends who were lost that I love that I care about them. They need Christ. All we've all got people now that you've got those people in your mind. Here's what I want to ask you to consider.
I want to ask you to take time right now to leave where you sitting and come join me down here in the front. Let's get on our knees together.
Let's take the time to pray for these people. If you can't get to the front just get on your knees right there and you see drop in the upper tier will wait for you but I want to invite you to come down right now. Let's invest time dear heavenly father, I ask you to please rip us with the needs of people around us, oh God, I ask you to forgive us as your people to give me for being so into our own agendas. Being in such a hurry, particularly in this crazy tell that we don't even have time to look around the school and see people in need everywhere we go. Oh God, I pray that you would change us in the morning we go out of our house in the morning.
May 1 thing we think about is not our meetings, but rather the people were going to meet and how much you love them and how much they need you, Lord, and how much they need comforting hand and somebody was just willing to pray for with more Jesus for all the people we pray for today and thought about today. There is no God like Jehovah, Lord, there is no problem. Any person has that you can't meet. I am the God of all flesh you said to Jeremiah, is there anything too hard for me. So God it's in that confidence. We lift up people who were sick people who are needy people who are discouraged people who were downcast people who were lost people whose marriages are coming apart.
Oh God, honor our prayers and doing work in these people's lives because we know it was for them you came and died Lord, make us a church. I pray the doesn't think in terms of anything else but people and how we can serve and love and help people make us an extension of your heart here in Washington Lord so we commit these folks to you that we pray for.
Thank you Lord Jesus that because there is no God like Jehovah we can leave them safely in your arms, we commit them to you father in Jesus name we pray, God's people said amen