Mark – God is on your side!
We are humans in need of consistent and constant communication it seems. It’s part of our DNA. Before the invention of the telegraph, communication was written and sent by messenger who could skillfully ride the fastest horse they could find who was fed on megabytes of apples and hay! Letters were then sent postal. It took awhile, kind of like “dial up” internet service. When computers became small enough to fit in our hands, they became attachments of constant communication to our hands. We can now communicate with anyone around the world in a nano second. That’s good in most cases.
But, what mankind forgot along the way is what Jesus has known all along. We could always communicate with God just by humbling ourselves before Him and asking for help. He listens immediately. He responds with His best for us. God is always on our side! We are never alone. He is never out of reach. There are no “dead spots” of communication with God. All we need is our bowed heads and humbled hearts yielded to Him!
Jesus knew His Father, Our Father, was always with Him from the moment He left heaven to being born through a virgin human. He knew His Father would always give Him direction, His next move, His words to say, and actions to take while Jesus worked to fulfill God’s Plan to save humanity through Jesus Christ, His Son. They were in constant communication! (Without a cellphone!)
What an example of extreme communication with God! Jesus rose early, “before daybreak” to get away from the clamoring crowds, even his family of disciples, to talk with His Father. If you read the gospels closely you will see that Jesus never did anything monumental until FIRST being alone with His Father to talk, to hear each other, to listen and then to act on His Father’s behalf.
Why, then, do we think we can do anything of significance without first checking in with the God of Creation to know what HE wants and what HE thinks is significant for us to be and do?
Jesus prayed before doing. Jesus got alone with God so He could hear His voice specifically. Jesus prayed daily. Jesus prayed before choosing disciples. Jesus prayed before serving. Jesus prayed before going to the cross for our sins.
“So Jesus explained, “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does. 20 For the Father loves the Son and shows him everything he is doing. In fact, the Father will show him how to do even greater works than healing this man.” John 5:19-20, NLT
“I don’t speak on my own authority. The Father who sent me has commanded me what to say and how to say it.” John 12:49
Jesus gave us His example of communication that is perfect for living this life guided by His Holy Spirit. Pray first. Listen. Do what God tells us. Nothing more. Nothing less.
Pray before thinking. Pray before talking. Pray before serving. Pray before anything.
Mark 1, NLT
Jesus Preaches in Galilee
35 Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray. 36 Later Simon and the others went out to find him. 37 When they found him, they said, “Everyone is looking for you.”
38 But Jesus replied, “We must go on to other towns as well, and I will preach to them, too. That is why I came.” 39 So he traveled throughout the region of Galilee, preaching in the synagogues and casting out demons.
Jesus Heals a Man with Leprosy
40 A man with leprosy came and knelt in front of Jesus, begging to be healed. “If you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean,” he said.
41 Moved with compassion, Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing,” he said. “Be healed!” 42 Instantly the leprosy disappeared, and the man was healed. 43 Then Jesus sent him on his way with a stern warning: 44 “Don’t tell anyone about this. Instead, go to the priest and let him examine you. Take along the offering required in the law of Moses for those who have been healed of leprosy.[j] This will be a public testimony that you have been cleansed.”
45 But the man went and spread the word, proclaiming to everyone what had happened. As a result, large crowds soon surrounded Jesus, and he couldn’t publicly enter a town anywhere. He had to stay out in the secluded places, but people from everywhere kept coming to him.
GOING DEEPER STILL…
Late hours did not keep Jesus from His appointed meeting with His Father early the next morning. Read Isaiah 50:4 for a prophetic description of God’s righteous Servant as He meets the Father morning by morning. What an example for us to follow! It is no surprise that Jesus had such authority and power when His prayer life was so disciplined (see Mark 9:28–29; 6:46; 14:32–38).
Perhaps we can understand our Lord’s concern for a feverish woman, but that He would meet and touch a leper is somewhat beyond our understanding. Lepers were supposed to keep their distance and warn everyone that they were coming, lest others would be defiled (Lev. 13:45–46). This man knew that Jesus was able to heal him, but he was not sure the Master was willing to heal him. Lost sinners today have the same unnecessary concern, for God has made it abundantly clear that He is not willing that sinners perish (2 Peter 3:9) and that He is willing that all men be saved (1 Tim. 2:4).
When you read the “tests” for leprosy described in Leviticus 13, you can see how the disease is a picture of sin. Like sin, leprosy is deeper than the skin (Lev. 13:3); it spreads (Lev. 13:5–8); it defiles and isolates (Lev. 13:44–46); and it renders things fit only for the fire (Lev. 13:47–59). Anyone who has never trusted the Savior is spiritually in worse shape than this man was physically.
Jesus had compassion on the man (note Mark 6:34; 8:2; 9:22) and healed him. He did it with His touch and with His word. No doubt this was the first loving touch this leper had felt in a long time. As with the fever, so with the leprosy: it was gone instantly!
YES! God is on our side! He proves it over and over again! Jesus goes deeper than healing. He saves our souls.
Dear Heavenly Father,
What would you have me think about, say and do for today? What is YOUR will and direction? Your ways are always best. Show me your ways, for I am your servant. I love you, Lord with all my heart, mind and soul. Thank you for saving me and restoring me. Thank you for guiding my life. Thank you for this quiet hour with You. I’m listening….
In Jesus Name, Amen