Posts Tagged 'problem solving'

Snapshots from Mark: Diagnosing a Demon

Snapshots from Mark: Diagnosing a Demon Sermon Audio Here

Mark 9:14-29

I ran across an inspiring quote this last week: “The difficult we do immediately; the impossible takes a little longer.” An admirable sentiment; but what happens when the problem is absolutely beyond our means to solve?

How Do We Deal With Devilish Difficulties?

Situations Solved Solely by Jesus ~ Mark 9:14-18

  • 14/16 Why RUN to Jesus?
  • 17/18 When we strike out solving our own struggle

Spiritual Solutions Accessed Through the Son ~ Mark 9:19-24

  • 19 “unbelieving” they’d tried to solve a spiritual problem by natural means
  • 20/22 “if you can”=the father doesn’t understand the spiritual world; he knows there’s a demon problem, but he doesn’t know Jesus’ place in that spiritual reality
  • 23/24 “I believe YOU can fix this – it’s beyond me” = the admission that leads to salvation

Supernatural Shows Up the Merely Natural ~ Mark 9:25-29

  • 25/27 The results of Jesus’ work are often misinterpreted, when viewed through a merely natural lens
  • 28/29 spiritual problems require spiritual solutions

The Disciples were using Jesus’ authority without understanding its origin: Jesus is LORD of Heaven and Earth. The Father has GIVEN all authority to the Son, and so when the Son’s name is appropriately invoked, as an agent of the Son, spiritual forces will pay attention!

Gems from Genesis: God Reveals His Purpose

Gems from Genesis: God Reveals His Purpose Sermon Audio Here

Gen.45:5-8; Rom.11:30-32

When preparing to view the upcoming eclipse, remember: You can’t focus directly on the event, but must take intentional steps to view what’s actually happening (or you’ll damage your eyes).

To Prevent Being Caught By Our Point Of View, Remember:

Our Problems Don’t Prevent God’s Purpose ~
Genesis 45:1-15
summarize Joseph’s Egyptian adventures; moral found in 5-8:

  • 5 “not yourselves – God sent me” Do we make dumb decisions at times? OF COURSE; do they prevent God from doing what He wishes? IN NO WAY
  • 7 “a great deliverance” Sometimes God intervenes; sometimes we play right into His plans without our knowledge
  • 8 “it was not you” God’s plans for our lives aren’t thwarted by our free will… and our free will isn’t thwarted by God’s plans!

God’s Purpose Is To Proclaim Himself ~ Romans 11:1-2, 29-32
Paul’s questions about God’s people

  • 1/2 Did God reject His promises to Israel in sending Jesus? NO; Jesus is the fulfillment of all God’s promises to both Jews and Gentiles GOD KEEPS HIS WORD
  • 29 What God promised to Israel, He will deliver, just as He has delivered us through Christ GOD PROTECTS HIS PLAN
  • 30/31 “their disobedience”=Israel was to be a kingdom of priests to share God’s love with the nations (Ex.19:6; Deut.7:6-8) we receive grace because God chose to give it to us; that makes us chosen as well as Israel GOD PROVIDES A PURPOSE
  • 32 our relationship with God isn’t based on what great things we’ve done; it isn’t severed by what awful things we’ve done. God loves us because of who HE is, not who we are. It’s not that we’re lovable; it’s that He is loving towards us. GOD’S WILL WILL WIN

That means that no matter how badly we screw up (and we do), it doesn’t prevent God from accomplishing His plans and using us to do them. IN fact, when God uses broken people, we recognize that something more than just the triumph of the human spirit is at work: God is showing off!


Pastor Ed Backell

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