Persistence: “Mark 2:1-12
Mark 2:1 ¶ And again he entered into Capernaum after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house.
Mark 2:2 And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.
Mark 2:3 And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.
Mark 2:4 And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.
Mark 2:5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.
Mark 2:6 But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts,
Mark 2:7 Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?
Mark 2:8 And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts?
Mark 2:9 Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk?
Mark 2:10 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,)
Mark 2:11 I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.
Mark 2:12 And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.
Beloved this week we want to take a look at the holy habit of persistence. The word persistence is define as thus:
1. firm or obstinate continuance in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition : companies must have patience and persistence, but the rewards are there.
2. the continued or prolonged existence of something : the persistence of huge environmental problems.
Webster gives us two meanings, and we see both manifestations here. First definition is firm or obstinate continuance in a course of action. The the second meaning is the continued or prolonged existence of something. In this pericope we see both examples. We see the firm and obstinate continuance of four men who want to get their friend to Jesus. We also see the continued and prolonged existence of commitment to tradition at the cost of truth. One is laudable and one is tragic. Let’s look at the text.
The Text tells us that four men wanted to get their friend to Jesus. According to what we can prove from the text, they believed that proximity to Jesus renders sickness ineffective. What ever the problem facing the individual, if we can just get the person in the presence of Jesus, the issue has to change. Their believed this so strongly that they agreed to take their friend to Jesus. We can deduce that they wanted their friend to be healed. We have proof from the scripture that Jesus had in fact been healing many people, and we can infer that healing is what they wanted for their friend. Their belief was so strong that it dictated their actions. What you believe will always be manifested in your actions. The same can be said for what you do not believe. If I know what you believe, one can almost predict your actions. These four believed that Jesus can heal their friend so much that it sparked an urgency that can only be described as persistence. The bible tells us that their belief was met by a logistical problem. Verse 2 tells us that the house where Jesus did his teaching was so packed that there was not room to receive those who wanted to hear Jesus, let alone the four guys who wanted to get their friend to Jesus. Verse 4 tells us they could not get to Jesus because of the crowd. Does the fact that there is a crowd around the truth change your mind? Does the fact that believing in God’s word, which will make you an outcast, change what you believe? These men faced with a logistical problem, did not abandon what they believe. Because they still believed that Jesus can heal, they persisted. When we invite people to church, to get them close to Jesus, we come against objection all the time. Here is the real issue, what do you believe? Your belief determines your persistence. Your belief determines your actions. This is a universal law. These four men had a few problems, the crowd presented the biggest problem. Their was in fact a crowd, but they still believed something, so they persisted. They could not go in through the door, but they still believed so they persisted. These four determined to get their friend to Jesus decided to tear open the roof. Allow me to proffer this position beloved. The roof is just another objection. The roof is only a way to keep you from your purpose. Persistence is tested by the roofs in our lives. What are some of the roofs you face every day. What about the roofs people build when you are trying to get them to Jesus. Your belief in Jesus should engender persistence in your purpose to get people to Jesus. Tear the roofs that people build to prevent you from getting them to Jesus. I am busy on Sunday I can not make it to church. This is a roof. I have not been to church in so long. That’s a roof. I do not believe in that stuff. That’s a roof. Are you prepared to be persistent. Then tear open those roofs, and believe that Jesus can change lives. Are you Persistent? You need to make this a ‘holy habit’ today. Invite some people to church, and do not allow them to build a roof in front of you. Do you believe it? Then nothing can stop you.
Yours Because I’m His