“What Does Faith Look Like?” – Original by Rev. Barry Snapp
Mark. Mk Ch2. Vv 1-5 & vv 11&12
I’m interested in this; “When Jesus saw their faith”.
“What Does Faith Look Like?”
Now the sermon title today is tricky. It’s what the English teacher used to call an oxymoron. On the surface it sounds like a contradiction. Can you see faith? Is there tangible evidence of faith? Hebrews 11:1 gives us the Bible definition of faith. Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Paul said in II Cor5:7 For we walk by faith not by sight. But I’m prepared to talk to you today about seeing faith observing faith. What does faith look like? There’s faith all around us but it’s not always easy to see. The Bible says Jesus saw their faith. I’ve told you before what faith does. Faith sees the invisible faith believes the impossible faith receives the incredible faith moves the unmovable faith proves the un-provable. Ok preacher we hear a lot about faith. But faith is the unseen world. Faith = believing God. Faith is trust in God but really what’s the big deal about faith? Everything we have from God is by way of faith. Think about it spiritually everything you have from God you received it through faith. Salvation and eternal life is through faith. Eph2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves it’s the gift of God. You become a Christian through faith. How are you justified and made right in the eyes of God? It comes through faith. My 1st sermon was about justification by faith. When your loved one is in the hospital and you pray for their recovery, James says the prayer of faith shall save the sick. Think about it faith itself comes from God. God gives us the measure of faith we need to believe. People say all you need is a little faith. The Bible never says that. In fact Jesus gave rebuke when He said O ye of little faith. The Bible says if we have faith as a grain of mustard seed we can tell the mountain to get out of our way. A mustard seed is very small. It’s tiny. But it’s a seed. A seed is planted in good soil and it grows and develops. That’s the idea there. Our faith grows and gets bigger. The only way we can get to God is through faith. God will only accept faith. Listen to Heb11:6 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. What is faith? I’ve told you a 1,000 x’s let me tell you again. Remember faith in the acrostic “Forsaking All I Trust Him.” So if faith is the way we get to God if faith is the way we’re saved if faith is the way we go to heaven if faith is the only way we can please God don’t you think we ought to know all we can about faith? Don’t you think we should study faith? Don’t you think we should be men and women of faith? Don’t you think we should learn all we can about faith? And let me be honest I’m still learning. I haven’t learned all about faith yet. So I want to talk about faith. Here’s my thought; what does faith look like? How can you recognize faith? In our passage the Bible says Jesus saw their faith. What was it that Jesus saw? What is the context of Mark Ch2? Let me tell the story. Real quickly I want to make 3 observations. It’s right here. When Jesus saw their faith what did He see? #1
I. Faith Listens Up
V1 Capernaum listened up. Word will get out when Jesus is in the house.
A. Jesus Preached
B. Jesus Preached the Word
C Jesus was anointed to preach (Luke Ch4)
V2 says Jesus preached the Word unto them.
1. Jesus was in the house preaching
Rom10:17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God
. Jesus said He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. (Faith listens up).
2. How do we get faith? The Word of God
3. How do we receive faith? The Word of God
4. Where does faith come from? The Word of God
Commentary: The people in Capernaum went to the house. You could say it this way they went to house of God. David said in Ps122:1 I was glad when they said unto me let us go into the house of the Lord. Luke4:16 Jesus went to the synagogue Jesus went to the house of God as was His custom. It was customary for Jesus to go to church. Heb10:25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together as the manner of some is. It was noised that Jesus was in the house and many were gathered. It was a full house. What happened when they got there? They heard the Word of God at the house of God. The Word preached the Word!
II. Faith Lifts Up (Verse 3)
A. 4 men carry 1 man.
1. They lifted him up to let him down to Jesus
a. The 1 had palsy.
Commentary: Now what is palsy? Palsy is paralysis. This man was paralyzed probably from the waist down. He was a paralytic he couldn’t walk. He depended on others to pick him up and take him where he needed to go. There may be someone here today and you’ve been spiritually paralyzed. You don’t move with God like you used to. You don’t walk by faith like you used to. You’ve been crippled by fear. Fear is the opposite of faith. Fear and faith cannot exist together. You either live in fear or live in faith. This palsied man had a physical infirmity and a spiritual infirmity. He had a sickness of sin. He was an unbeliever. He had never placed his faith in Jesus. But there were 4 men who had a concern for this man.
2. The 4 had compassion – They understood Jesus is this man’s only hope
Commentary: Somebody said God will make a way when there seems to be no way. People said there’s no hope. Maybe the man himself said what’s the point what’s the use? I’m an old cripple. I guess I’ll just sit here and waste away and die. That’s the opposite of faith. I’m talking today about what faith looks like. Let me tell you what faith does not look like. I’ll never make it. Why even bother? No one believes in me. I’m sick and tired I’m down and out. I’m down for the count. I’ll never get up again. I have no promise of a better day. I have no hope for tomorrow. But 4 men believed in a man named Jesus. Their faith was not in faith. Their faith was in Jesus. Their faith was not in psychology or sociology. Their faith was in theology. Their faith was not in a doctor. Their faith was in the Great Physician. Isaiah said with His stripes we are healed.
3. The 4 got personally involved. They took action. (See James)
B. Faith sometimes looks silly
– Remember Noah?
– Remember David and Goliath?
– Remember the little sack lunch and the thousands?
Commentary: They said we’re taking this man to Jesus. These 4 men would not be denied. They said whatever it takes we will get him to Jesus. They lifted up this man onto the roof and lowered him down.
III. Faith Leaps Up
A. Jesus saw faith
1. Belief was made visible
2. Belief Became Behavior – Behavior = Visible Belief
Commentary: Growing up in the church I used to hear an old hymn that said have faith in God have faith in God. We don’t have faith in faith. We have faith in Jesus. Jesus saw their faith. When Jesus saw their faith He said unto the sick of the palsy Son thy sins be forgiven thee. What does that mean? Let me give you my interpretation. The cripple man got saved. Preacher how can I get saved today? Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved. Before there was ever a physical miracle there was a spiritual miracle. In His mercy Jesus is not done. Jesus said arise and take up thy bed. Take a leap of faith. Faith leaps up. Jesus said arise and you know what he did? He arose.
3. People were amazed
a. They were amazed and glorified God, saying, we never saw it on this fashion.
b. They were amazed because they saw faith.
That’s what faith looks like. I wonder what your faith looks like. Does your faith listen up? Do hear the Word of God and respond immediately? Does your faith lift up? Somehow someway I’ve got to get to Jesus. Sometimes faith even looks foolish. Does your faith leap up? Do you put legs and feet on your faith? Extend invitation…