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The Blind Beggar

Jim_Alaska

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The Blind Beggar

 James Foley

 

 

Text Mark.10:46-52

Here is a man beset by two great evils, blindness and poverty. Being blind is sad enough all on its own. We pity one like this, but to be blind and poor is heart breaking. My application of this scripture is that this man’s condition is but a picture of the natural man’s condition when he is born into this world. We are all born spiritually blind and poor by nature. Rev. 3:17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

In our blindness and pride we think we are able to see. After all, we are intelligent, educated, and able to make our way in this world. But the truth is that our blindness makes us think that our sight is perfect. 2Cor. 4:3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:
 4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Once we are enlightened (saved) we discover that our previous sight was actually blindness. We were blind to our lost estate, the blackness of sin, the wrath to come, and most important, we were blind to the all encompassing beauty of Jesus Christ.

In our lost condition we, like this blind man, were also poor. I’m not talking about being poor financially, but rather poor spiritually. Adam spent our birthright when he sinned. Paradise, which was our inheritance, was lost in Adam. The result of this is that we, through Adam have become beggars. This is the lot of everyone born into this sinful world until Jesus visits us in love.

1.  The origin of his faith.

We see in ver.52 that he had faith, where did he get it?  Mark 10:52 And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way. 
Certainly not from what he saw! He had not been anywhere that Jesus performed his miracles, poor blind people did not travel.

But the scripture speaks to this situation very well: Rom.10:17 “faith cometh by hearing”.  Being blind, all he knew was what he could hear.

He had heard of the miracles of Jesus from those who passed by. He had heard that Jesus raised the dead and healed lepers. It would be only reasonable that he would wonder if one who could perform these kinds of miracles might also be able to give sight to the blind. Then in John chapter 9 we read that Jesus restored the sight to one that was born blind.

There are not many diversions given to the blind whose only purpose is to sit begging. But one diversion that a blind beggar would covet is any news that he would hear from those passing by. Undoubtedly this blind man had heard of the healing of the blind as the fame of Jesus spread throughout the land.

It would be natural for him to think along the lines of, “What if this Jesus passed by, or, maybe he will pass by this way, if so I will cry out to him.” The story he had heard would be all encompassing to one who found himself in the same circumstances. Perhaps as he meditated on this information some Old Testament Scripture came to mind: Isa 42:6 I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles;
 7 To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house.

He had almost certainly heard that the coming Messiah would heal the blind. The only conclusion possible was that this was the promised Messiah.

You might think that this is just too much conjecture, but consider Mk. 10:47 where, as Jesus passed by, the blind man called out, “thou Son of David.” This is the designation of Israel’s true Messiah and this fact would not be lost on this blind man. Now, at this point, he has the faith that Jesus spoke of in Ver.52.

2. My application of all of this today is simply to ask, “what of you?”

At this point in life are you still spiritually blind? You may have heard of the deeds of Jesus, how sinners have been pardoned and forgiven. You may have heard the Gospel preached in church but never exercised the faith to be saved by it.

You may have even listened to the testimony of people who have been saved and yet believed not. Have you never thought on Christ or contemplated how the message of salvation might apply to you? You have heard that Jesus saves; this is the message of God to lost men and women. Has the thought ever crossed your mind that he might also save you? Perhaps you have heard the call to salvation but never acted on it in faith.

In our story the blind man had heard, but if the story had stopped at the point that he heard, there would have been no healing. Remember that this story has two main parts, 1. the blind man heard. 2. but then he acted on what he had heard, this is faith. There would have been no healing if this man had stopped short of the faith to be healed. We know this is true because Jesus said to him: “Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole.”

We can conclude then, as the scripture affirms, that there is no salvation without faith in Christ.  Heb. 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Just knowing he can save and knowing that he can forgive sin is simply head knowledge. To act on this knowledge requires faith. The origin of this blind mans faith came by hearing; your faith can come in the same way, for the scripture says that "faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God". Rom. 10:17.

Once we understand our lost condition and hear that there is a remedy for it, our faith must grasp the first opportunity. In the example of this blind man we can see this very plainly. He did not wait once he heard that Jesus passed by that way. Jesus was leaving Jericho and as the Bible records, he would never return again.

As he was passing he heard the pleading cry of this blind man. Many in the crowd tried to silence him, but he only cried out the louder. Once Jesus heard the awful cry for mercy, ver.49 says that Jesus stood still. This is not without its significance; our cry for mercy will have the full attention of Jesus. He then calls on this blind man.

We can almost read the thoughts of Bartimaeus: “Here he is, but he is passing by, this may be my last and only chance for healing. Unbelief says he passes by, no healing for you, no hope of mercy now. But faith grasps this opportunity.

Jesus of Nazareth passes by today, perhaps he will never pass this way again. Will you let him go without calling his attention to your plight? How many times in the past has he passed by and even knocked on your hearts door and invited you? Bartimaeus responded immediately when Jesus called him and the result was his immediate healing. His cry was from the heart and the resulting prayer was the simplest that could express his need.

Have Mercy on Me!

Your prayer need not be theologically correct. Simply asking Jesus for mercy and exercising the faith to believe that he will save you is sufficient. After all, this is what Jesus came to accomplish. “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” “Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.”

If you have never asked Jesus to heal your blind spiritual condition, would you consider doing that today? Jesus passes your way today, will you cry out to him in simple faith?



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Jim,

Very good gospel message. Before we are saved we are both blind and poor in spirit. Faith in the the Lord Jesus is the means of salvation. May we get this message of etrnal slavation thorughout the world.  :goodpost:

Thank you very much for the message.

Alan

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Brother Jim,

Excellent invitation to accept Christ!!!  That is (or should be) our main focus and goal, to bring others to Jesus! Faith and belief in the saving grace of Jesus (and He alone).

I spent most of the day (yesterday) on facebook, witnessing to the unsaved. It started out as a post about the differences between islam and Christianity.  The differences between the Bible and the qu'ran, then also the differences between sharia law and what the constitution states. It was (at first) a post to inform others (mostly unsaved/secular people on facebook) of the huge differences in what islam teaches in the qu'ran compared to what the Bible teaches... I was truly shocked by the mis-information the unsaved world has on both topics! I had a couple of "liberals" attempting to argue what (they thought) the Bible says. I quickly showed them (with scripture) their errors, and they also were misinformed about the evil of what the islamic faith believes. They were following the "party line" about Israeal, the "palestinians", and the false statements that islam is supposedly a "religion of peace".  I did spend a good deal of time showing them how the islamic faith is anything but "peaceful", and even so-called "moderate"  islamists believe what the qu'ran teaches (giving many evil qu'ran verses to prove the point). However, when the conversation spun off into Christianity (as a whole, at first, and then more specifically to what the Bible actually teaches) I was amazed by the lack of knowledge, even within those who were professing "christians" (small "c"). And so after answering each falsehood with a Bible verse (or verses in context), there were many of those professing "christians"(possibly from a catholic background?) who actually stated that the only "way to heaven" was to do good works!!! I presented MANY Bible verses to refute what they had falsely been taught, (John 14:6, Ephesians 2:8-9, Romans 10:9-10 and some others) I then presented John 3:16-18.  Every time I post those 3 verses on facebook, it is met with extreme hostility.  Letting them know that ALL people have a choice to make which is THE most IMPORTANT decision they will make in their lifetime... Believe and accept Jesus OR refuse to believe and deny Jesus. And by not making a choice, they HAVE made a choice, not to believe. This angers not only the unsaved (non-professing),  but also angers the professing "christians" who try to make "works" the means of salvation. I asked them why those verses upset them so much (the so-called professing "christians") and none had a good answer. And I left off the topic with those 3 verses again. I truly believe the Holy Spirit convicts with those verses especially, and even though they resist the conviction (with hostility), the word of God itself HAS reached them within. 

John 3:16-18; 16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God."

As for their falsehoods about Israel and the "palestinians", I showed them pictures of 1862 (taken by King Edward VII) showing no "palestinians", and only ghost towns of former Christian areas, the remains of where Christians were massacred by druze muslims. Photos showing no muslims, no so-called "palestinians" either. The muslims didn't even WANT the land until Jewish settlers started coming back. Here is the link for the photos of Israel (1862)if anyone is interested: 

https://palestineisraelconflict.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/jerusalem-photographs-1862-no-mosques-no-palestinians-only-ghost-towns-of-massacred-christian-areas/

Edited by Ronda

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Thank you for your comments on my sermon Ronda. I write out my sermons and lessons completely because when I get to preach I most always have people who want my notes. If I gave them notes they would not be able to get the whole picture. I don't always follow my outline and adlib a lot as the Lord directs. But by writing them out completely anyone reading them will get the importance of the work.

I really enjoyed your recitation of your interaction with those on FaceBook too, thanks for sharing it. :clap:

Edited by Jim_Alaska

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Ronda,

Thank you for your post and link to the photographs taken by the Royal, KIng Edward VII, in 1862, photographer. Very enlightening. 

Jim,

I can see why people would want your notes. Have you ever thought of making a salvation tract from the above message? do you have any written books or phamplets that are available?

Alan

Edited by Alan

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I agree with brother Alan, Your sermon notes are excellent. And I also think (if possible) maybe you should consider making salvation tracts (if you feel the Lord leading you to do so). I buy (donate postage and add in at least $5 per hundred) tracts from fellowship tract league, from kristinsfriends.com, and I have also found other places to buy tracts as well. It takes many hours to sort through all of the various tracts, and find the gospel of grace presented clearly. I run across so many which tie in (or sometimes just mention) baptism, and I think that could be very confusing for an unsaved person to read.  Before my last laptop "bit the dust", I could print off my own typed presentation, and use many Bible verses as well (since the word of God itself is what speaks to the unsaved person's mind,and not human reasoning). But I had to buy a refurbished laptop to replace it, and can't print from it. I really like the way you present the vital parts of belief and faith in Jesus, brother Jim!!! God bless you as you serve Him and try to reach the lost!

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Thanks to both of you for your encouraging comments. I have not written any tracts or books either. I have written and been published professionally, but not anything in the religious realm.

I wouldn't know how to go about writing a tract. I think I am bit too "wordy" to be able to condense it down to tract size.

I have years worth of sermons and lessons, but unfortunately they were hand written before I ever had a computer. I did start to put them on computer, but that's a lot of work to type them all out.

Thank both of you again for your kind, encouraging comments. I can only thank God for anything I accomplish for Him. No one knows better than I do that I am not capable of preaching or teaching without the guidance and ability that was given to me. I have no education to speak of, I made the sixth grade, but didn't finish it. I do have a GED, but no bible college. I was taught by my original missionary pastor for four years in preparation to serve God in the ministry he called me to.

I have had the privilege of being one of a team of four pastors that trained two missionary families in preparation for mission work on the Russian mission field. They were there for five years and were successful in establishing two churches under very adverse conditions. They are pastoring back home now.

See what I mean about being "wordy"?

God bless you both as you serve our Lord in your respective callings.

Edited by Jim_Alaska

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Brother Jim, Thank you for sharing those things with us. None of us would be worth a whit (or have any understanding at all) were it not for the Holy Spirit guiding us. To God be the glory.  I know many people who have graduated from colleges with "esteemed names" only to come out of those colleges thinking they know more than the Lord! Even some who have graduated Baptist seminary coming out thinking they now "know it all".  I don't think God gives it "all" to us at one time, nor do I think we ever should get to the point where we feel we've learned everything God's word has to teach us. And on the other hand, the gospel of grace by faith in Jesus alone is so simple and easy to understand a child can grasp it. 

 1 Corinthians 1:26-30 
26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:
29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.
30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption

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17 minutes ago, Ronda said:

 1 Corinthians 1:26-30 
26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:
29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.
30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption

You bring up really good points Rhonda so I am quoting you just to make a general plea.

To paraphrase what you said about this passage: The despised and base of this world need less Scripture and conviction to realize they are.

The Graham crusades fathered the emerging church hell-less gospel movement IMO. This downward spiral satan has used for some 40-50 years now to deceive millions into head belief (and hell) of the historical facts concerning Jesus' death on the cross.

Please remember that God poured out His Spirit over all flesh to convict the world of sin and of righteousness and of judgment to come. Make double sure that Scripture on sin, judgment and hell are clearly presented or the Spirit cannot work and the cross will mean little to them. The Spirit must work with those Scriptures or else we will continue to produce more head believers who never regenerated. Without a Spirit broken heart, then is no salvation.

Will this produce as many "professions", absolutely not; will it produce more real fruit that remains, absolutely yes.

Just a friendly admonition.

 

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Certainly a person must comprehend that there is an eternal punishment in hell for those who chose not to believe upon Jesus. They are condemned already of they have chosen not to believe (John 3:16-18). I do not contend on that at all dear "Wretched". There is no doubt that a person must realize they are in fact a sinner (as ALL are, Rom. 3:23), and they must realize that salvation entails eternal life WITH CHRIST, as well as no condemnation (once accepting Christ, Rom. 8:1). I do not believe in "watering down the gospel" by any means!!! 

And so I do contend on your assessment (paraphrasing) of the verses I noted. I did not bring them up  for this reason (to quote you):

9 hours ago, wretched said:

The despised and base of this world need less Scripture and conviction to realize they are.

But, instead I brought them up to show that as brother Jim stated he did not have a particular college degree, he is quite qualified (in the eyes of the Lord, according to scripture) to in fact serve his calling as a preacher. I never at all intended that anyone "need less Scripture and conviction to realize they are" sinners... and I really don't understand how you came to that conclusion after reading brother Jim's post and then reading my post. Sorry... but that wasn't what I was saying at all!

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9 hours ago, Ronda said:

Certainly a person must comprehend that there is an eternal punishment in hell for those who chose not to believe upon Jesus. They are condemned already of they have chosen not to believe (John 3:16-18). I do not contend on that at all dear "Wretched". There is no doubt that a person must realize they are in fact a sinner (as ALL are, Rom. 3:23), and they must realize that salvation entails eternal life WITH CHRIST, as well as no condemnation (once accepting Christ, Rom. 8:1). I do not believe in "watering down the gospel" by any means!!! 

And so I do contend on your assessment (paraphrasing) of the verses I noted. I did not bring them up  for this reason (to quote you):

But, instead I brought them up to show that as brother Jim stated he did not have a particular college degree, he is quite qualified (in the eyes of the Lord, according to scripture) to in fact serve his calling as a preacher. I never at all intended that anyone "need less Scripture and conviction to realize they are" sinners... and I really don't understand how you came to that conclusion after reading brother Jim's post and then reading my post. Sorry... but that wasn't what I was saying at all!

You misunderstand Rhonda. You have my word that I am not sharpshooting anyone. The OP is extremely well thought out and your post to it is also.

My post was just a reminder to all of us to make sure we preach condemnation and hell along with Heaven or the cross is of none effect.

 

 

Edited by wretched

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