- Sermon Notes
Jesus Cares About You
December 6, 2020
1. Does God really care about what happens to us?
ILLUS – We live in a world filled with great evil and tragic suffering.
2. Tonight, we will discover the answer to this all-important and relevant question as we study Jesus Christ’s interactions with two people who were suffering due to sickness and death.
3. My prayer is that this study will deeply comfort your hearts and strengthen your faith as we look at Jesus Christ’s compassion for the hurting and His authority over sickness and death.
4. You see, the truth is, Jesus Cares About You.
1. When we arrive at Luke 7, Jesus Christ’s ministry has exploded onto the scene in Israel and the ripple effects were felt in the surrounding regions.
a. At this time in His ministry, many were in awe of Jesus and followed Him joyfully, hanging on His every word, watching His every action.
b. At the same time, others were growing in their animosity towards Jesus, feeling threatened by His authoritative teaching and His command over demons and disease.
c. Jesus was and still is a polarizing figure.
2. For example, in Luke 5:12-13, we are told that when Jesus was asked by a leper if He was willing to cleanse him, Jesus responded with compassion and touched the leper before He said, “I am willing, be cleansed.”
3. And when a paralytic was let down through the roof of a home where Jesus was teaching, He told the man with crippled legs, “Friend, your sins are forgiven you.” (5:17-26)
a. Immediately the scribes and Pharisees scoffed at His pronouncement and accused Jesus of blasphemy because only God can forgive sins.
b. Jesus responded, “Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins have been forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? But, so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins,”—He said to the paralytic—“I say to you, get up, and pick up your stretcher and go home.”
c. Immediately the paralytic was healed and went home glorifying God.
4. In Luke 5:27-39, Jesus called a tax collector named Levi (a.k.a. Matthew) to be His disciple and then dined with him and his sinner friends.
a. Again, the Pharisees and their scribes grumbled saying, “Why do you eat and drink with the tax collectors and sinners?”
b. Jesus reiterated His mission, the purpose for why He came when He said, “It is not those who are well who need a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”
5. Next, the scribes and Pharisees were filled with rage when Jesus declared that He is the “Lord of the Sabbath” through His teaching and also by healing a man with withered right hand. (6:1-11)
6. Then, after He spent the whole night in prayer with Father God, Jesus chose twelve of His disciples to be His apostles. (6:12-16)
7. Luke 6:17-19 describes how a “great throng of people from all Judea and Jerusalem and the coastal region of Tyre and Sidon” came to “hear Him and to be healed of their diseases” and that “those who were troubled with unclean spirits were being cured. And all the people were trying to touch Him, for power was coming from Him and healing them all.”
8. As the large crowd gathered around Jesus, He taught them the Beatitudes of the kingdom of God and exhorted them to build their lives wisely by building their lives on His Words; to not only call Him “Lord” but to come under His authority and live under His Lordship. (6:20-49)
Transition – As we reflect on chapters five and six in Luke we discover a theme developing which carries us into chapter seven, a theme which, in many ways, is also a call to action. . .
I. Bring All Your Burdens to Jesus
APPL – Why should we bring all our burdens to Jesus?
• Because Jesus cares for us.
• The Apostle Peter was convinced of Jesus’ heart for us and that’s why he wrote. . .
1 Peter 5:7, Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. (NIV)
• This is confirmed by Jesus’ first encounter with a person in need of His healing touch.
• After Jesus finished teaching the crowd, He returned to His hometown of Capernaum. (1)
• News of Jesus’ return spread quickly and even reached the ears of a Roman centurion.
• This Roman centurion was the commander of 100 soldiers and also the owner of a slave who had fallen “sick and was about to die.” (2)
• In that day, slaves were considered property and were treated as such by their owners.
• But there was something different about this slave owner for Luke notes the centurion held his slave in high regard. (2)
• In fact, the centurion showed concern for his slave’s welfare which speaks volumes about his character and how he valued human life.
• Luke also notes that this centurion was respected by the Jews because he loved the nation of Israel and even built the synagogue for them in Capernaum. (4-5)
• With his slave on threshold of death, the centurion asked some Jewish elders to go to Jesus and speak to Him on his behalf regarding his slave, which they were more than willing to do. (3)
Transition – But there is something else which is noteworthy about the centurion.
• His example provides us with a very important faith principle.
• Specifically, when you feel burdened by the sufferings of this life. . .
A. Make Jesus your first stop
1. Likely the centurion had heard about Jesus.
a. Perhaps he had heard about Jesus’ teachings and was struck by the weight of His words.
b. I am sure he could not help but notice the crowds that flooded into Capernaum; the sick, the lame, the blind, the deaf, lepers and demoniacs alike, all longing for a touch or a word of healing and deliverance from the Savior.
c. He also noticed how they all arrived in Capernaum burdened and oppressed, but they all left new, whole, and delivered because Jesus is our Healer.
2. But now, it was personal. The centurion was in need, his slave, whom he highly regarded “was sick and about to die.” (3)
3. The centurion did not waste any time.
4. He did not explore other options.
5. Jesus was back in Capernaum and the centurion needed Jesus now.
6. But there was a problem.
a. The centurion was a Gentile, a Roman citizen.
b. And the centurion was an enemy occupier in Israel.
c. Would Jesus Christ help an enemy?
d. Would Jesus Christ help a Gentile?
e. Would Jesus Christ value the life of a slave?
7. Based on what he had heard about Jesus’ teachings and the kinds of people He had healed, the centurion had hope.
8. The centurion called some Jewish elders to go to Jesus and implore Him to “save the life of his slave.” (3)
APPL – Again, the life principle from the centurion’s example is “Make Jesus your first stop.”
• Perhaps you can relate to me. . .
• There have been seasons in my life when I exhausted my options before I turned to Jesus, and only then as a last resort.
• Is that your story as well?
• We must bring all our burdens to Jesus, not as a last resort, but as our first and final stop.
Psalm 25:1-3, To You, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, in You I trust, do not let me be ashamed. . . Indeed, none of those who wait for You will be ashamed
Transition – The next faith principle we learn from the centurion’s example is that we must. . .
B. Trust Jesus with the outcome
APPL – What I mean is that we must have faith that:
• Jesus Christ will do the right thing, the right way, and at the right time.
• We can trust Jesus with the outcome.
1. Verse six is very comforting for it reads, “Now Jesus started on His way with them.”
2. If you have any doubts about our Savior’s heart for the lost, for the undervalued, for the hurting, sick, and dying, then please underline this verse because it clearly reveals that Jesus is willing to personally meet us in our moment of need.
Psalm 23:4, Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
3. The exciting news reached the centurion that Jesus was on His way to the soldier’s home; the slave was going to be healed!
4. What happens next is nothing short of amazing.
5. Upon hearing the encouraging news, that Jesus was on His way, actually, He was almost there, the centurion sent some friends to tell Jesus, “Lord, do not trouble Yourself further, for I am not worthy for You to come under my roof; for this reason I did not even consider myself worthy to come to You, but just say the word, and my
servant will be healed. For I also am a man placed under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come!’ and he comes, and to my slave, ‘Do this!’ and he does it.” (6-8)
6. The centurion’s response reveals that he had an amazing depth of understanding not only regarding Who Jesus is but also the reason Jesus had such great authority.
a. Note his humility. Though a Roman centurion occupying a conquered people, he recognized the superiority and greatness of Jesus Christ.
b. Next, note his sensitivity. He knew that Jesus, being a Jew, would be ceremonially defiled if He entered a Gentile’s home.
c. Finally, note his estimation of Jesus. He recognized that authority is critical because it determines the outcome. “I say to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes. . .”
APPL – Trust Jesus with the outcome.
• Welcome God’s authority over your life.
• Remain under God’s authority everyday of your life.
• Pray for God’s will to be done in your life.
Matthew 6:9-10, Our Father who is in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
• And trust Jesus with the outcome.
ILLUS – The Bible is filled with examples of those who welcomed and remained under God’s authority and trusted Him with the outcome.
• Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego’s example of faith when threatened with death in a fiery furnace.
Daniel 3:16-18, O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to give you an answer concerning this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.
• Then there is Paul’s example of faith when he was days away from execution.
2 Timothy 1:12, For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day.
APPL – Their outcomes were different, but the depth of their unwavering faith was the same. This is the kind of faith that Jesus praises.
7. “Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled at him, and turned and said to the crowd that was following Him, ‘I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such great faith.’” (9)
a. The word “marveled” or “amazed” is used only two times in the Gospels with reference to how Jesus felt about someone’s response to His person and ministry.
b. Here, Jesus praises the faith of the Gentile centurion.
c. But in Mark 6, we are told that Jesus did not do many miracles in His childhood hometown of Nazareth because of their unbelief.
Mark 6:6, He was amazed at their lack of faith. (NIV)
APPL – The centurion’s faith is the kind of faith that pleases God because it looks at the facts, acknowledges the truth, and trusts completely.
• People with this kind of faith bring all their burdens to Jesus.
• People with this kind of faith make Jesus their first stop.
• People with this kind of faith trust Jesus with the outcome.
Hebrews 11:6, And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.
Transition – The next comforting principle to glean from this passage is. . .
II. Jesus Knows What Concerns You Today
• Beginning in verse 11, we are introduced to another awe-inspiring interaction between Jesus and a widow who had just lost her only son.
• Sometime later, Jesus, His disciples, and a large crowd traveled to a town called Nain, about 20 miles southwest of Capernaum.
• Nain lay on the northern slope of the Hill of Moreh.
• The Hill of Moreh is significant because on its south side stood Shunem where Elisha raised the dead son of a Shunamite woman. (2 Kings 4:18-37)
• Luke notes that as Jesus “approached the gate of the city, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow; and a sizeable crowd from the city was with her.” (12)
• So two crowds collided at Nain’s city gate.
o The one crowd was entering the city with Jesus, full of joy and eagerly waiting to hear what He would teach and see what He would do.
o And one crowd was leaving the city, mourning the death of a widow’s only son.
APPL – Was the collision of these two crowds a coincidence or divinely orchestrated?
• I am convinced it was divine orchestrated.
• Because Jesus knows what concerns us today and every day.
• In fact, the Bible says God knows what we need before we even ask.
Matthew 6:8, . . . your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.
Transition – Here again, we discover another important faith principle. . .
A. Jesus will be there when we need Him most
1. Jesus saw the dead son and then His gaze fell upon the grieving mom and His heart was filled with compassion for her.
2. What did Luke mean when he said Jesus was filled with compassion for the mourning, childless widow?
a. The word compassion denotes the loud wailing or lamenting typical of 1st century Jewish mourning.
b. It means that Jesus’ heart went out to her and He was moved with sympathy because widows were vulnerable in that day.
c. Warren Wiersbe rightly captures Jesus’ heart when he writes, “Compassion has been defined as ‘your pain in my heart.’”
d. With her only son dead, the childless widow was especially vulnerable, alone, and unprotected.
e. Who would help her now?
f. Answer: Jesus. Jesus was there when she needed Him most.
3. Jesus looked upon the mourning mother and said, “Do not weep.” (13)
a. Both crowds immediately fell silent.
b. Faith flooded the mourning mother’s heart.
c. She could see Jesus’ heart for her in His eyes.
d. She could hear it in His words.
4. Then Jesus put His hand on the stretcher upon which the corpse lay and the bearers immediately came to a halt. (14)
5. Jesus opened His mouth and spoke life-giving words which resuscitated the dead young man, “Young man, I say to you, arise!” (14)
6. Immediately, “the dead man sat up and began to speak,” a two-fold proof that he was truly alive. (15)
7. Jesus raised the dead three times. This is the first of three recorded in the Gospels.
a. It confirms that Jesus Christ, God the Son, has authority over life and death.
b. And ultimately, Jesus defeated death through His death and resurrection.
c. And when Christ returns, the victory that He won through His death and resurrection will be fully realized when we Christians are given our resurrection bodies and enter into the new heavens and new earth to enjoy God’s presence for all eternity.
1 Corinthians 15:54-57, But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
APPL – Jesus knows what concerns us today and will be there for us when we need Him most.
Psalm 138:8, The LORD will accomplish what concerns me; Your lovingkindness, O LORD, is everlasting
Transition – What happened to the mourning widow and the crowd who had joined her to bury her dead?
B. Jesus will turn our mourning into dancing
1. “And Jesus gave him back to his mother.” (15)
2. Oh the joy that must have flooded her heart.
3. Jesus had given her back her son.
a. When the child was born, Jesus, God’s Son, gave the boy to the mother for the first time.
b. Here, Jesus, the Son of God, gave the mother her son for the second time.
Psalm 30:5, Weeping may last for the night, but a shout of joy comes in the morning.
APPL – Jesus knows our needs before we ask.
• Jesus meets us when we need Him most.
• Jesus will turn our mourning into shouts of joy.
• Jesus will accomplish what concerns us each day.
• Because Jesus cares about you.
Hebrews 4:14-16, Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
1 When He had completed all His [a]teaching in the hearing of the people, He went to Capernaum.
2 Now a centurion’s slave, who was highly regarded by him, was sick and about to die. 3 When he heard about Jesus, he sent some [b]Jewish elders to Him, asking Him to come and save the life of his slave. 4 When they came to Jesus, they strongly urged Him, saying, “He is worthy for You to grant this to him; 5 for he loves our nation, and it was he who built us our synagogue.” 6 Now Jesus started on His way with them; but already, when He was not yet far from the house, the centurion sent friends, saying to Him, “[c]Lord, do not trouble Yourself further, for I am not worthy for You to enter under my roof; 7 for that reason I did not even consider myself worthy to come to You; but just [d]say the word, and my servant [e]shall be healed. 8 For I also am a man placed under authority, with soldiers under myself; and I say to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come!’ and he comes, and to my slave, ‘Do this!’ and he does it.” 9 Now when Jesus heard this, He was amazed at him, and turned and said to the crowd that was following Him, “I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such great faith.” 10 And when those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the slave in good health.
11 Soon afterward Jesus went to a city called Nain; and His disciples were going along with Him, [f]accompanied by a large crowd. 12 Now as He approached the gate of the city, [g]a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow; and a sizeable crowd from the city was with her. 13 When the Lord saw her, He felt compassion for her and said to her, “Do not go on weeping.” 14 And He came up and touched the coffin; and the bearers came to a halt. And He said, “Young man, I say to you, arise!” 15 And the dead man sat up and began to speak. And Jesus gave him back to his mother. 16 Fear gripped them all, and they began glorifying God, saying, “A great prophet has appeared among us!” and, “God has [h]visited His people!” 17 And this report about Him spread throughout Judea and in all the surrounding region.