“Let Him touch your coffin”

MERRY THURSDAY BY PARRIS-

“Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still. And He said, “Young man, I say to you, arise.” So he who was dead sat up and began to speak” Luke 7:11

I find it interesting that Jesus touched the coffin instead of the boy. He touched the box or the container that held him. Death bound the boy and his life was taken from him. There was no exchange between the mother and Christ, there was no request made or favor sought. It is a wonder the mother even saw Christ coming up behind her. He comes to touch our coffin of dead things. We all hold containers of loss, dreams shattered, lives wasted away. We put a lid on our horror stories of our sad serenades of long ago days. You have to allow Him to touch that coffin because he comes to make all things new again. He does that ; you know-changes what we think it will be. We box it all in, stuff it way down but He who knows the stars by name comes to tell a different story over you. There are songs yet to be sung, war stories yet to be told and children that will dance again. Christ comes with his basketful of gifts every ready to arrest and halt the places where hope dies. God’s love flows out of its own expansive and endless nature for there is no shadow of turning with our father of lights. His great love is at work among us and that is to stop the march of death that tries to silence our song! Christ steps up to our coffin every time with his word STOP! Stop reliving the lies of the past, the failures of yesterday, stop not forgiving yourself, stop the anger that wants to bury you once again. Allow Christ to touch your coffin, allow Christ to collide with the negativity that has engulfed you. Allow Christ to come into the small compartments, the cramped damp and dark places where shame multiplies. The boy spoke and the mother no longer wept over yesterday for her world would never look the same! The Greek word “splanchnizomai” is the word the Bible uses to describe the compassion Jesus had for this scene. There is no greater word in the Greek language to describe the depth of emotion Jesus felt for this widow over her loss. Go ahead and let him come touch your coffin!

BEAUTIFUL FEET

Lk.7:38 – Broken and weeping, she covered his feet with the tears that fell from her face.

Six times in the gospel of Luke we find someone worshipping at the beautiful feet of Jesus.

1. We find the woman who was forgiven much in Luke 7:38 – “Broken and weeping, she covered his feet with the tears that fell from her face. She kept crying and drying his feet with her long hair. Over and over she kissed Jesus’ feet. Then she opened her flask and anointed his feet with her costly perfume as an act of worship”. She was overwhelmed by the mercy she received from Christ.

OVERWHELMED BY HIS MERCY SHE SAT AT HIS FEET

2. We find the demonized man in Luke 8:35, “Then the people of the region came out to see for themselves what had happened. When they came to where Jesus was, they discovered the notorious madman totally set free. He was clothed, speaking intelligently, and sitting at the feet of Jesus. They were shocked!” This man found the only place true freedom is offered, at the feet of Jesus.

OVERWHELMED AT HIS ACCEPTANCE AND LOVE HE SAT AT HIS FEET

3. We can’t forget the ruler of the synagogue, Jairus, who risked everything to see his daughter made whole. Jairus was at Jesus feet in Luke 8:41 – “Just then, a man named Jairus, the leader of the local Jewish congregation, fell before Jesus’ feet. He desperately begged him to come and heal his twelve-year-old daughter, his only child, because she was at the point of death”.

DESPERATION BROUGHT THIS MAN OF PROMINENCE TO HUMILITY AT JESUS FEET

4. There was also Mary of Bethany. Jesus said she had chosen the best part. Seated at His feet soaking in His words. Lk.10:39 – “And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching”.

STRUCK BY HIS WORD AND HIS PRESENCE SHE SAT AT HIS FEET

5. In Luke 17:15 – we find the leper, falling at His feet, thankful to be rid of leprosy, “When he found Jesus, he fell down at his feet and thanked him over and over, saying to him, “You are the Messiah”.

THANKFULNESS BROUGHT THIS MAN TO THE FEET OF JESUS

6. Finally, the disciples were gazing at His beautiful feet after He was raised from the dead, Lk.24:39,40 – “Come and gaze upon my pierced hands and feet. See for yourselves, it is I, standing here alive. Touch me and know that my wounds are.”

STUNNED BY THE POWER OF THE RESURRECTION LIFE EMANATING FROM HIM

We want to be in this number, numbered among those who are sitting at His feet. Notice, its not the mighty or the accomplished at His feet, it is the broken and the needy.

THE TALK OF THE TOWN

Lk.7:16 – 17 – A tremendous sense of holy mystery swept over the crowd as they witnessed this miracle of resurrection. They shouted praises to God, saying, “God himself has visited us to bless his people! A great prophet has appeared among us!” The news of Jesus and this miracle raced throughout Judea and the entire surrounding region.

You really can’t keep good news like this quiet. Think about it; without television, newspapers, radio, social media, or iPhones the whole region heard about this boy in Nain who was raised from the dead. After all, we are still talking about him 2000 years later. When the Lord visits a city the word gets out. The Lord had decided to go to Nain that day. Did He go on a whim? Was this just a random stop? I don’t think so. This widow and her son had an appointment that day, they just weren’t aware of it. People seldom are. The woman at the well in Samaria was caught by surprise at her well. Paul was surprised on the Damascus Road. Peter also was caught off guard by the unplanned fishing trip with the Lord that changed everything. What do all of these stories have in common? They are all part of God’s plan to change the world. Here is how Johann Spangenberg sees it.

“And this talk of him spread forth throughout the whole land of Judah and to all the surrounding areas. You see, those are the fruits of the wonders and work of God, for where God’s Word, wonders and works are joined with a true believing heart, there Christ will be rightly known. And where he is recognized, there pure thanks, praise and glory will follow. Then all people must say: “Well, God did not visit us in wrath but in grace. He has given us a great prophet—but no, not a prophet, but rather his own dear Son for our Savior, who will save us from the devil, death and hell. Why should we not rightly thank such a Savior, and for his sake suffer everything gladly? Where is another who has shown himself to be so friendly and charitable to us, yes, who has done us so much good, as this Savior Christ?”

So when He shows up in your world don’t think its just a coincidence, it is a guarantee that the Lord has something special in store for you and everyone in your world.

THE MOST BEAUTIFUL OF ALL STORIES

Lk.7:11-14 – Shortly afterward, Jesus left on a journey for the village of Nain, with a massive crowd of people following him, along with his disciples. As he approached the village, he met a multitude of people in a funeral procession, who were mourning as they carried the body of a young man to the cemetery. The boy was his mother’s only son and she was a widow. When the Lord saw the grieving mother, his heart broke for her. With great tenderness he said to her, “Please don’t cry.” Then he stepped up to the coffin and touched it. When the pallbearers came to a halt, Jesus said to the corpse, “Young man, I say to you, arise and live!”

This has to be my favorite story in the Bible. Of all the miracles of Jesus this one displays God’s love for forgotten people. Let’s face it, all of us have felt picked over and left out from time to time. It could be the drama of always being the last picked for sports, or being rejected by the school you wanted to get in, or even the feeling of being second best or unloved in your family. Living in Nain may have made you feel that way. Nain was an out of the way insignificant town. This lady had never had it easy. First her husband and now her only son. Rejection, depression, fear, and anger; she was overcome with those hopeless feelings of finality that death brings. All of that suddenly changed when Jesus came to Nain. Why would Jesus come to Nain? He does nothing by accident, He came to Nain because of that poor widow’s pain. Here is how Barclay describes this moment.

“In many ways this is the loveliest story in all the gospels. It tells of the pathos and the poignancy of human life. The funeral procession would be headed by the band of professional mourners with their flutes and their cymbals, uttering in a kind of frenzy their shrill cries of grief. There is all the ageless sorrow of the world in the austere and simple sentence, “He was his mother’s only son and she was a widow.” Jesus was moved to the depths of his heart. There is no stronger word in the Greek language for sympathy and again and again in the gospel story it is used of Jesus.”

Jesus was moved deeply with compassion for this woman, He was hurting with her. Maybe today is your day; maybe, just maybe Jesus is coming into your world right now. When He visits your city all the dead things come alive and your days of sorrow will be finished.

LITTLE DEAD BOY

Lk 7:14 – Then he stepped up to the coffin and touched it. When the pallbearers came to a halt, Jesus said to the corpse, “Young man, I say to you, arise and live!”

I love to read about the miracles of Jesus. This miracle stands out to me as much as any of them, this was an insignificant town and an insignificant widow. That’s exactly the point, this is all of our stories; insignificant people who are loved by God. This boy and his mom are pictures of all of us, dead in our sins without any chance of fixing ourselves. How did this situation get turned around? Jesus came to town and put His hand on this boy’s casket. When Jesus comes on the scene everything has to change. Death cannot stand before the power and love of this life giver. Eyes are opened, paralytics get up, lepers are cleansed, deaf ears are opened, dead come alive, the gospel comes to the poor, and those without hope begin to hope again. Here is how Martin Luther describes this event.

“This is not a sermon for the satisfied crowd, but it is delightful for the small and insignificant. The widow, whose only, beloved son has died, is set forth as an example for them. By this woman, the Gospel teaches us what we poor folks need to know: our Lord is a Lord of wretched, forsaken, dead and corrupt people. That is the content and text of the gospel. Paul also said, “Because the world in its wisdom does not recognize God, he turns everything around and becomes a God of foolishness and fools.” Those who are well satisfied do not wish to have him for a God, but instead they trample him underfoot and do not notice him, as Moses said. Therefore it has pleased God to turn everything around and to be a God of those who are not full and satisfied but are rather poor and thin, those who suffer hunger, thirst and distress, who are imprisoned and who die.”

So what category describes you today? Deaf, blind, paralyzed, stained with sin, poor, dead in your sins, or just plain giving up; it makes no difference, Jesus is more than enough for a every circumstance. Today He happens to be coming to your town and putting His hand on your casket. One touch is all it takes, that’s when everything begins to change. epped up to the coffin and touched it. When the pallbearers came to a halt, Jesus said to the corpse, “Young man, I say to you, arise and live!”

I love to read about the miracles of Jesus. This miracle stands out to me as much as any of them, this was an insignificant town and an insignificant widow. That’s exactly the point, this is all of our stories; insignificant people who are loved by God. This boy and his mom are pictures of all of us, dead in our sins without any chance of fixing ourselves. How did this situation get turned around? Jesus came to town and put His hand on this boy’s casket. When Jesus comes on the scene everything has to change. Death cannot stand before the power and love of this life giver. Eyes are opened, paralytics get up, lepers are cleansed, deaf ears are opened, dead come alive, the gospel comes to the poor, and those without hope begin to hope again. Here is how Martin Luther describes this event.

“This is not a sermon for the satisfied crowd, but it is delightful for the small and insignificant. The widow, whose only, beloved son has died, is set forth as an example for them. By this woman, the Gospel teaches us what we poor folks need to know: our Lord is a Lord of wretched, forsaken, dead and corrupt people. That is the content and text of the gospel. Paul also said, “Because the world in its wisdom does not recognize God, he turns everything around and becomes a God of foolishness and fools.” Those who are well satisfied do not wish to have him for a God, but instead they trample him underfoot and do not notice him, as Moses said. Therefore it has pleased God to turn everything around and to be a God of those who are not full and satisfied but are rather poor and thin, those who suffer hunger, thirst and distress, who are imprisoned and who die.”

So what category describes you today? Deaf, blind, paralyzed, stained with sin, poor, dead in your sins, or just plain giving up; it makes no difference, Jesus is more than enough for a every circumstance. Today He happens to be coming to your town and putting His hand on your casket. One touch is all it takes, that’s when everything begins to change.

ARE YOU THE PROMISED ONE ?

Lk.7:22 – And he answered them, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have good news preached to them.

All of us have struggled with our doubts, John was no different. Even at the height of John’s prophetic insight he saw through a glass darkly. John wanted to be certain before he died, is Jesus the one? Rather than just giving John words Jesus put on a display of His power for John’s disciples. He healed the sick and cast out evil spirits to display the power and glory of God for John’s disciples. He then began to quote from Isaiah about the miracle ministry of the Messiah. That’s all we need, a demonstration of the power of the Spirit and the confirmation of the word of God. Here is how Spurgeon explains this passage.

“Our Lord makes no assertion, but sets clear evidence before the eyes of John’s delegates. He based the evidence of his Messiahship upon his miracles…..What John had heard in prison his messengers were to see for themselves, and then to tell to their imprisoned master. Prison walls cannot shut out news of Jesus; but good news comes best through friends who are personal witnesses. The messengers received command “Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see. ” Of hearing and seeing they had more than they could fully report, and more than enough to make them see for themselves that Jesus was the Christ. The cures wrought were all beneficent, superhuman, and of a kind foretold by the prophets as signaling the coming of Messiah. The proof was cumulative: the argument increased in power. The last two proofs are evidently placed as the climax of the argument: “The dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them. ” These two wonders are placed side by side. There is as much of the miraculous in the poor man’s gospel as in the dead man’s resurrection.”

So what was true in Jesus’s day is true now. He is still ministering to broken people. The power of the Spirit and the word seen in the testimony of Jesus in His elect today is all we need. I have to agree with the blind man that Jesus healed; I once was blind but now I see.

THE GREATEST OF ALL THE PROPHETS

Lk.7:28 -TPT – Throughout history there was never found a man as great as John the Baptizer. Yet those who now walk in God’s kingdom realm, though they appear to be insignificant, will become even greater than he.

What a great honor, to have Jesus call you the greatest of the prophets. John the Baptist was a fresh blast of wind, blowing away the stagnant religious smog that had settled in on Israel for several centuries. The same old same old would never bring change, the Lord had saved the best of the Old Testament prophets until the last. Here is how Adam Clarke describes the Baptist.

“(John) was contented to live in the desert, and to announce the solemn and severe truths of his doctrine to the simple inhabitants of the country. Let it be well observed, that the preacher who conforms to the world in his clothing, is never in his element but when he is frequenting the houses and tables of the rich and great. He was a prophet, a teacher, a man divinely commissioned to point out Jesus and his salvation; and more excellent than any of the old prophets, because he not only pointed out this Christ, but saw him, and had the honor of dying for that sacred truth which he steadily believed and boldly proclaimed.”

Think of the radical nature of Jesus’s statement. John was greater than Abraham who was the father of the nation of Israel. The Baptizer surpassed Moses who was the giver of the law. Think about the prophetic power and miracles of Elijah and Elisha, John was greater still. And of course there was Isaiah who had the vision of the Lord high and lifted up and a revelation of the birth and death of Jesus, John’s ministry was greater still.

I used to wonder what Jesus meant until one day in a flash I saw it. John was relentless in his call to repentance. his message was consistent and two fold. He saw Jesus as the lamb of God, the final sacrifice to end all sacrifices; He would be the complete price paid for the sins of man. The second part of His message was seen in John’s baptismal ministry. “I baptize in water but the One coming after me is greater, He will baptize you in the Holy Spirit and fire. John saw Jesus in His heavenly priesthood. John was the greatest prophet because he had the clearest vision of Christ.

JOHN’S DOUBTS ANSWERED

Lk.7:18 -23 -TPT -John’s disciples reported to him in prison about all the wonderful miracles and the works Jesus was doing. So John dispatched two of his disciples to go and inquire of Jesus. When they came before the Master, they asked him, “Are you the coming Messiah we’ve been expecting, or are we to continue to look for someone else? John the prophet has sent us to you to seek your answer.”

Without answering, Jesus turned to the crowd and healed many of their incurable diseases. His miracle power freed many from their suffering. He restored the gift of sight to the blind, and he drove out demonic spirits from those who were

tormented.

Only then did Jesus answer the question posed by John’s disciples. “Now go back and tell John what you have just seen and heard here today. The blind are now seeing. The crippled are now walking. Those who were lepers are now cured. Those who were deaf are now hearing. Those who were dead are now raised back to life. The poor and broken are given the hope of salvation. And tell John these words: ‘The blessing of heaven comes upon those who never lose their faith in me no matter what happens.’”

1. THE BLIND ARE SEEING – Not only does Jesus heal physical blindness, His power and love open the eyes of our hearts. When we tell our story that we were blind but now we see it effects other people. This is exactly what Jesus was doing for John, telling of His great love to help encourage the Baptist at his lowest moment.

2. THE CRIPPLED ARE WALKING – The testimony of Jesus effects the way we “walk”. We are no longer walking in darkness like those around us. We are walking in the light of His love.

3. THE LEPERS ARE CURED – Leprosy has always been a picture of man’s sinful condition. Jesus cleanses us on the inside as well as the outside. What a testimony, all of my sin has been washed away.

4. THE DEAF ARE HEARING- Before we were born again we could not hear His voice. Now that Christ has come into our lives His word is alive to us.

5. THOSE WHO WERE DEAD ARE RAISED BACK TO LIFE- We were dead in our sinful condition. Like Lazarus, His voice brought us back to life.

6. THE POOR AND BROKEN ARE GIVEN THE HOPE OF SALVATION – Without Christ we are totally bankrupt. Not only does the Lord supply our needs, He Himself becomes our greatest treasure.

7. THE BLESSING OF HEAVEN COMES UPON THOSE WHO DON’T LOSE THEIR FAITH IN CHRIST NO MATTER WHAT – As our faith is awakened our life begins to change. The favor of God begins to come on every part of our lives.

HEART TEARS

MERRY MONDAY BY PARRIS-

“When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume.  As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.” Luke 7:37

What a picture of redemption! It shows how much our emotions are to overflow toward our Savior! When He walks into the room do we treat him as ordinary? Or even better when our brothers and sisters come for a visit! My oh my how many times did I turn my head away! Some historians say that this woman was no stranger in this Pharisees house. We of course don’t know but everyone seems to know what her occupation was! It was also indicated that she had an encounter with Jesus earlier and came to this house to give thanks. Whatever the case is, her encounter was timely and newsworthy. Her life was turned upside down and instead of using her precious oil on men, she poured out her life onto Christ. All the feelings inside of her became white as fullers soap and she knew the old ways were finished. Her repentance filled the washbowl and poured over! The same hair that she used on others she used for the Son of God. The Pharisee on the other hand showed no common courtesy to Christ because he thought he was just another fixture in the room. In fact it sounds like he didn’t show any attention to Jesus at all. But this woman begin to cry and cry and kiss his feet over and again using her hair as a towel and wiping away the oil and the tears. We will call them heart tears! What a spectacle she must have been in the room! To those that know where they have been and know where they are, they have no trouble being a spectacle all the days of their lives. The alabaster box of devotion breaks out in all of us. We give him back what was meant for him in the first place. We can never diminish the guilt of sin and the amount of grace that it took to free us from it!

Christ turns to the annoyed Pharisee and demands him to “look at the woman”! Christ chides him by saying, ‘You gave Me no water for My feet; but she has washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head.'” What a changing of places there is now! The Lord has made the first to be last and the last to be first! Simon the Pharisee thought himself far more advanced than this woman. Where are your heart tears?

MOMMA DONT CRY!

MERRY MONDAY BY PARRIS

Luke 7:11-15 – “Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said DONT CRY!

Then he went up and touched the bier they were carrying him on, and the bearers stood still. He said, “Young man, I say to you, get up!” The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.”

An encouraging word to you my dear mothers who cry over your children! Christ visits all those who are dead, lost, or in harms way. Never give up!

Spurgeon says “He scatters His mercy by the roadside and anywhere and everywhere His paths drop fatness. Where Jesus journeys or sleeps, a word will find Him ready to conquer death, or quell the tempest. Yonder a procession descends from the city. Our spiritual eyes see death upon the pale horse coming forth from the city gate with great Suddenly the procession is arrested by another—a company of disciples and much people are coming up the hill. We need not look at the company but we may fix our eyes upon One who stands in the center, a Man in whom lowliness was always evident and yet majesty was never wanting. It is the living Lord, even He who only has immortality and in Him death has now met his destroyer. The battle is short and decisive—no blows are struck—for death has already done his utmost. With a linger the chariot of death is arrested—with a word the spoil is taken from the mighty and the lawful captive is delivered.”

My dear mother never lose heart! What I love about this story is that Jesus halts the procession of death. So many of our children are in harms way but Christ halts the progress of it. He interrupts the cycle that we were on. It’s in his nature to heal. He has a touch full of power.

Maclaren said “Note that this voice of Christ’s has power in the regions of the dead. Wherever that young man was, he heard; in whatsoever state or condition he was, his personality felt and obeyed the magnetic force of Christ’s will!”

My dear mother -wherever your dear son or daughter is God is able! Able to find, hunt down, deliver and he hears our cry!