A Call For Help

When people are grieving, they need godly love and understanding, not formalities. Remember, God wants to use you so you may help others.

Scripture: Mark 5-6


Alright thank you very much. And hello again, radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing Alright? Well, bless your heart. I trust everything’s okay at your house. And I want you to know that I’m grateful for your friendship and the fact that you’re there on the listing end. And that produces a blessed fellowship that is the best thing this side of heaven. Isn’t it? Oh, I treasure these times together with you, my beloved friends.

What I’m doing in these days is just sort of recapping some of the high spots of truth in the book of Mark before we go on to something else. We went through it verse by verse over a period of weeks, and now we’re just sort of recapping chapter by chapter. The last part of Mark 5 deals with the fear of ultimate failure. Jairus, the ruler of the Synagogue, came to see the Lord Jesus, said, “My little daughter is dying. Come and lay your hands on her that she may be healed and I know she’ll live.” And Jesus went with him.

Our Savior never failed to answer a call for help. But in the meantime, there was this interruption where the dear lady who’d been ill for 12 years came, touched our Savior with the touch of faith and was healed, and there was the dialogue concerning what had happened and all of that. It took just long enough, the delay did, for the precious little gal to expire, because while he yet spake, in other words he was still talking to the lady, there came people from the ruler of the synagogue’s house, said, “Your daughter’s dead, why do you trouble the master?” Cruel way to announce to this distraught and heartbroken man that his precious little daughter was gone. Well, the Lord Jesus said, “Be not afraid, only believe.” And so he brought Peter, James, and John with him to the ruler’s house. People were already weeping and wailing. That was the custom. Everybody get together, and cry, and weep, and mourn. He saw the tumult and them that wept and wailed greatly.

And when he came in he said, “Why do you make this ado and weep? The damsel is not dead but sleeping. And they laughed him to scorn.” Now, see the shallowness of human nature. A moment before they were weeping and wailing, now they’re laughing out loud. They didn’t care really. This was a formality. Small thought here. If you really want to help people whose hearts are breaking, don’t depend on the formalities. Don’t depend on the stereotypes of speech that we so often use. No moralize and say “Well he lived a good long life and this and that.” And don’t sermonize and say “Well you should trust the Lord now and He will remove your grief.” Look, when people’s hearts are breaking, they don’t want sermons and they don’t want moralizing and they don’t want little vapid, empty sayings. They don’t want formalities in other words. They want love, and they want the presence of God. I don’t know how to tell you to do this, except if you’ll pray and open your heart to the Holy Spirit of God, and then bring love and compassion with you into a scene of heartbreak, you will be of far more comfort than those who simply go through the formalities. Alright?

They were weeping and wailing one moment, they were laughing the next. “They laughed him to scorn.” Well, he put them all out. He said, “Get on out of here.” Then he took the father and mother of the damsel, entered in where the damsel was lying, took her by the hand, and said “Little girl, wake up.” And straight away, the damsel arose and walked, for she was of the age of 12 years, and they were astonished. What’s the point of all that? The fear of ultimate failure. “I ran as fast as I could, I got to the master, I told him my little daughter was dying. I said “Come and heal her.” He said “I will.” We were on our way and there was this interruption, and it took just long enough for my precious gal to die.

Now what?” Jesus said “Be not afraid.” Don’t be afraid of ultimate failure. Trust your God. Let me talk to somebody who’s in a place where you’re thinking, the what-if syndrome has gotten hold of you. “What if I don’t quite make it? What if I don’t succeed? What if I don’t turn the business around? What if I don’t make the top of the corporate heap? What if I don’t get promoted when merit rating time comes around? What if I don’t pass the test? What if I don’t achieve this particular degree that I’m seeking?” What if.

Fear of ultimate failure and for those who’ve passed the, you’re on the shady side of 50, and you think “What if I can’t get another job? They say I’m too old, and I’m overqualified for the jobs that seem to be open. What if after I’ve served the corporation for years they turn me out to pasture? What if I’ve tried my best to succeed in a given profession and don’t quite make it.” The fear of ultimate failure is there, isn’t it? Oh, yes. What do you do about it? You turn to your blessed Lord, and you hear Him saying, “Be not afraid. Only believe.” If you bring Jesus with you into the room of your heartache… He said He took the mother and father of the damsel, and entered in where the damsel was lying. If you go with Jesus into the room of your ultimate heartache or fear, He says, “Don’t be afraid. Just believe.” He’ll take care of it. You wanna believe that today? You wanna take it to yourself? Somebody’s afraid that your job won’t last. Somebody’s afraid that your health won’t last. Somebody’s afraid that you won’t quite make it. Listen, bring that whole situation to the Lord Jesus, and let Him walk you into the place where you were afraid, and give you His victory instead.

You try that for yourself. I know it works. Chapter six has a number of truths in it, which we can’t go over in their entirety at this time, but let me stop on the story of John the Baptist because that takes up a considerable part of the chapter. John the Baptist, he introduced the Lord Jesus. His faithfulness in preaching against sin got him in jail. For John had said to Herod, “It’s not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” Herodias the lady, I used the term loosely, in question, had a quarrel against him and would have killed him, but she could not, because Herod feared John, knowing he was a just and holy man, observed him. He was in jail, John was. They bound him in prison. How do you figure this out? John was the forerunner. He was the one who was the voice crying in the wilderness saying, “Prepare ye the way of the Lord. Make His paths straight.” He introduced our Lord Jesus to the crowds. John the Baptist’s own crowds begin to fall off. They told him so. As recorded in John chapter three said, “Rabbi. He to whom thou bearest witness. The same baptiseth and all men come to Him.” “You’re losing your grip John! Your crowds are diminishing. Your love offering is shrinking. But we’re your buddies.” [chuckle]

There’s always those comforters that come to tell you that you’re slipping. But, oh yeah, they’re your friends. [chuckle] Friends! Who needs friends like that, huh? Well, they came to John that way. Then, there was that fateful day, when after he had faithfully preached against sin, stealing another man’s wife, Herodias, Herod’s brother Phillip’s wife, for he had married her. John had said, “It’s not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” So, Herod put him in jail. Now, there he is. Not only that, but then there came this birthday supper. Herod got drunk and said to the daughter of Herodias who had danced beautifully before him said, “Whatever you want, I’ll give you, even to the half of my kingdom.” He was feeling no pain at that point, was he? She said to her mother, “What shall I ask?” and her mother said, “Now is my chance to get back at John the Baptist. Ask for his head on a platter.” So she came in and she said, “I will that thou give me by and by on a platter, the head of John the Baptist.”

The king was sorry, but for his oath’s sake, and for their sakes which sat with him, he didn’t want to lose face in other words. Immediately he sent an executioner who went and beheaded John in the prison, brought his head to the little girl in a platter. That must have been a grizzly sight. Can you imagine that? Well, Herodias now has her revenge. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, huh? She got her revenge. John, this beautiful person, was dead. Now what do you make of all that? Is it possible that God would greatly use a person, and then allow him to rot in jail, and finally be beheaded? The answer is, “Yes, it is.” God has his ways of doing things. He always does the right thing. Paul the Apostle was in jail not once, but several times. And finally, as tradition tells us at least, he was beheaded in prison. We don’t know that for sure, but that’s what tradition says. Why would God allow that? Simon Peter, this stalwart apostle of our Lord, was crucified, and he said, “I don’t want to be crucified. I’m not worthy to be crucified in the same position even, as my Lord.” So he was crucified head downward, they tell us.

Tell me. Why do things happen like that? A great apostle crucified. Paul the apostle to the gentiles, executed. John the Baptist, as in this sixth chapter of Mark, where we’re looking now. “Allowed to rot in prison, and finally to be beheaded at the whim of an angry woman. Is that right? No. It’s not right. But, God allows it to happen for His own purposes. And when you and I get to glory, we’ll see what the purposes were. And we’ll see what God had in mind. “What I do, thou knowest not now. But, thou shalt know hereafter.” That’s the word that comes to us in many of these cases that we can’t really explain. My job and yours is to trust our blessed Lord all the way. If you’re going through something terribly unpleasant right now, don’t fight it accept it, and let God use you in it.

Dear Father, today, help us to stand for Thee no matter what the cost, in Jesus name I pray this Amen.

Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today, and be a blessing!

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