With Men It is Impossible, Mark 10 by Rev. Shine P. Thomas
No Matter what, It is Impossible with me
God is Greater than any problem we can ever face
Every one has challenges and setbacks in life. Some of you maybe facing challenges in life that is impossible by your natural capacity. You have tried you best, knocked many doors but nothing seems to be changing. Maybe you have exhausted all your resources. No matter what your condition, what your need in life is; God is greater than your problem.
27 Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”
This morning I want to focus on three aspects of our life and see how God works when our capacity fails.
1. God Brings Peace in Relationships
We all have opportunities to get upset in relationships. Remember it is impossible for us to not have those times when we are not upset in any kind of relationship, we are living in a fallen world and the devil tries again and again to disrupt peace within our relationships. I do not know if you are sitting here without peace in your family, hurt by all that is going around but I want to tell you that God can bring peace in you. It is not impossible for God.
In the book of Genesis we find one of the most beautiful scenes in the Bible. This is a beautiful location, a wonderful garden. Sun is shining beautifully and the golden rays are reaching through the leaves of the trees. I imagine in my mind that the leaves are stirring very beautifully from a slow breeze. The animals are peeking out between the shrubs and the trees.
In a distance is a man, his name is Adam. He is asleep now. He had spent the previous days getting acquainted with those animals and naming them. But our gaze quickly goes to the Lord Jesus Christ who is kneeling over Adam. Adam is asleep. Jesus, the great physician has administered some heavenly anesthesia and he is doing surgery on Adam. He gently takes from Adam’s side a rib. If we think about it, it is impossible for men to do this, however, Jesus then closed up the flesh of Adam. Jesus holds that very special bone, Adam’s rib, and he starts to shape that rib. It begins to take a form that is similar to that of Adam and yet wonderfully different, beautiful. The Lord Jesus Christ made a woman.
Adam by this time must have been fully awake. Jesus takes this woman who is alive and very beautiful and he brings her to Adam and introduces her to Adam.
22 Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib[a] he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. 23 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.” 24 That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.
It was a time of joy, peace, and oneness within the family. But as Jesus was speaking, He knew that there would come a day when sin would enter the garden there, when Eve and Adam would sin. Jesus knew that sin would create great difficulty within that marriage. Jesus knew that this beautiful couple who were experiencing such wonderful happiness would have tremendous tragedy in their lives. It is a beautiful relationship that God gave in marriage but sin marred that relationship. Very soon we find Adam complaining against Eve and soon there is a murder in the family. Jesus knew all of this and some 4000 years later spoke about it in Mark 10.
In Mark 10, Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. It is just before the triumphal entry and Jesus is now near his death.
2 Some Pharisees came and tested him by asking, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?”
The purpose of the question was to trap Jesus, and of course, it is impossible to do that, So they ask Jesus “Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife?” Jesus responded with a question:
3 “What did Moses command you?” he replied.
That is an interesting question. Jesus could have said, “What did God say in the Garden of Eden to Adam and Eve?” That would be the answer. But instead he reached down to the time of Moses and said, “What did Moses command you?” Because Moses had told them that they could break up marriages under certain circumstances.
4 They said, “Moses permitted a man to write a certificate of divorce and send her away.”
They said, “Moses permitted a man to write a certificate of divorce and send her away.”
5 “It was because your hearts were hard that Moses wrote you this law,” Jesus replied.
In other words Jesus asks about Moses rather than the beginning because he wanted to put his finger on the condition of man’s heart. Man’s problem is a heart problem, a hardened heart because of sin. Such heart causes problem within relationships. So sin had marred even the marriage relationship.
So Jesus used this occasion to show them the condition of man’s heart. Then Jesus goes back to the creation in Genesis 2 and told them:
6 “But at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.’[a] 7 ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife,[b] 8 and the two will become one flesh.’[c] So they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9 Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
In this statement we learn some beautiful things about marriage.
a. God made only man and woman. The third sex is man-made, born out of sin.
b. Marriage is between a man and a woman. That is the way God established it.
c. Marriage is made before God. God joins them together. It is not just a matter of what the society or laws say. Marriage is an institution that was established, ordained by God himself. When a beautiful bride and a handsome groom turn and say I do and the preacher pronounces them man and wife, they are married by God in the eyes of God.
d. Once married husband and wife are one flesh. They become one together. That is a relationship that a man and a woman have in marriage which is not duplicated in any other way in life. It is a special relationship where 2 become one together.
This relationship pictures the relationship between Jesus and his church. If you have trusted the Lord Jesus Christ as your savior, you are one with Jesus. When the Father looks at you, he sees Jesus. When he sees Jesus, he sees you. It is a marvelous thing, it is a mystery. It is beyond what we can comprehend. There is no way Christ can separate from his church. Husband and wife are impossible to be separated, inseparable relationships.
God Restores, It is Possible with God
Dear friend, Satan is always against what God instituted. Sin has come into this world and ruined this setup that God created. Satan has distorted man’s view of sexuality. He has distorted man’s view of marriage. And he has also brought tremendous difficulty and problems in the institution of marriage. Today maybe some are here with problems in husband-wife relationship, problems in family. This is the devil’s work. God brings unity, every problem can be sorted and it is only possible by God.
Moses had permitted them to divorce, but look at Jesus he is reminding them that He is the solution for any marriage troubles. If you are facing problems in any area concerning your marriage relationships, family, child spouse I want to tell you with God all things are possible. God can bring peace into that family. I bind the powers of darkness that is bringing division and split in families now.
Now there are a couple other things that I would like you to see in this chapter.
As Jesus was making his way down the road, a young man came to him. He was a devoted young man. He had very respectful tones as he addressed Jesus.
17 As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
This is obviously a good young man who has lived his life carefully but when he talks about going to heaven, eternal life, he starts out with a question: What shall I do (did you get that verb) that I may inherit eternal life?” May I put it into our English, “What can I do so I can prove I deserve eternal life, so I can earn salvation, so God will be obligated to accept me?” Now there are problems in that question right from the start. Jesus knows his heart and he quotes the law to him.
19 You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, you shall not defraud, honor your father and mother.’[d]”20 “Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.”
I guess he is telling the truth there. This is a young man who has lived very carefully. What he does not understand is that he cannot do anything to earn salvation because he is a sinner by nature. He is suffering from that harness of heart Good life and good work of his life will not change his nature. But his question is what can I do?
Jesus knew that there was something which stood in his way, something in his life that is not willing to surrender to God. Jesus wants to demonstrate to him that he cannot do enough to earn salvation. So Jesus looked at this young man who was very rich and who was very pleased with his life and proud of his possessions and said:
21 Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
Leave all those bank accounts and wealth behind. Jesus put his finger on the thing that was most precious in his life. It was not God, it was not good deeds, it was his possessions. The young man was very sad at that saying. I think he has been sincere, but he was not going to give that up. He went away grieved and sad because he had great possessions. This led Jesus to say a profound statement.
23 Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!”
It is not actually meaning rich people; this means people who trust in their riches. How hard it is for those who trust in their riches to enter in the Kingdom of God. Jesus’ disciples were amazed at his words. Oh! that young man who was so sincere, who had lived such a clean life cannot be saved. Then who can be saved!
26 The disciples were even more amazed, and said to each other, “Who then can be saved?” 27 Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”
This is an earth-shaking pronouncement. You cannot be saved. If you are going to take it upon yourself to try to somehow sneak into heaven someway, you cannot do it. With men it is impossible. I am so glad Jesus did not stop there, Jesus went on to say, but not with God, all things are possible with God.
We learn something about how man’s condition of hardness of heart, sin, separation from God, spiritual death – how all that can be changed? We learn first of all how that cannot be changed. You cannot change it yourself. Jesus can give is peace with God.
So we learn that not only is man a sinner, and the relationship with God was fractured from the garden fall but we also learn that man cannot do anything about it himself. Dear friend, you cannot save yourself. Living according to your religion will not save you. Those external things cannot save us. It is not by the works of righteousness. With man it is impossible to have eternal life, but with God all things are possible. If you are sitting here with the burden of sin, you have not accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as your savoir; Jesus can save you right now. Pray that prayer now.
So, first we understand that with God brings peace in relationships. Secondly we understand that Jesus brings peace with God.
3. God can Change any Human Condition
In Mark 10 there is another scene which takes place which illustrates that all things are possible with God.
On his way to Jerusalem Jesus came to the city of Jericho. As Jesus was exiting on the other side of Jericho, there was a man who was known as blind Bartimaeus. That had sort of become his name, he could not see. This poor man is there begging. There is no way he can ever get his sight. This man has no means of taking care of his physical needs from day-to-day.
The best thing he can do is sit and beg and hope that some people will have mercy to give him a few small coins so that he can some money to get enough food to keep himself alive. Even then he is at the mercy of those who sell him the food because he cannot tell how much money he is giving them and what he is getting in return. He is helpless and hopeless. Blind Bartimaeus has heard that Jesus is passing by. He begins to cry out for Jesus.
47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48 Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
Jesus had been traveling around and he had been healing, raising the dead, and casting out demons. Blind Bartimaeus had heard about Jesus and when he heard Jesus is passing by he must have said, “This is the Messiah and he can change my condition.” When Jesus came by he cried out, “Jesus though Son of David, have mercy on me.”
I think Bartimaeus was speaking mercy more for his lost eyesight, but it seems that blind Bartimaeus knew Jesus even more – have mercy on me, Son of David, the Lamb of God.
49 Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” 50 Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus.
I like to imagine what that must have looked like. He is blind, I think the only way he can tell where Jesus is, is the sound of his voice. Jesus said my sheep hear my voice and they follow me. Blind Bartimaeus was longing for Jesus, he hears Jesus calling him, blind Bartimaeus gets up as best he can in his helpless way and makes his way to Jesus.
So Bartimaeus went to him and Jesus ask him:
51 “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.” 52 “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.
Not only are your sins forgiven as you trust in Jesus, but your faith will restore your sight also. Blind Bartimaeus is no longer blind but oh how grateful his heart his, he does not go his own way. He follows Jesus along the road.
In Bartimaeus we have a picture of how every need of man is possible by Jesus Christ. All things are possible. Even your physical needs are possible for Jesus to meet. Today whatever be your need, Jesus is able to meet it according to his glory. Doctors would have given hope, and probably you would have given hope but for Jesus nothing is impossible.
Finally, there is one small incident that I want to show you in this chapter just before Jericho. There are little children who want to come to Jesus and his disciples do not want them to come and he rebukes his disciples for it and he takes those little children up and Jesus says that nobody enters the Kingdom of heaven unless he does so like a little child.
Now, see the contrast with a hardened heart of a sinner and the soft heart of a child. That is what God is looking for. That is what Bartimaeus did, he trusted, he believed like a child. He was not filled with the sophistication of a life time of sinfulness away from God, he heard Jesus say come and he went.
Impossible With Men yet, Possible With God.
My dear friend that is what God wants you to understand more than anything else. Man’s condition is that his heart has been hardened by sin. Sin has brought about problems in his relationships. Sin has taken us away from God. The consequence of the sin of man is there in every sphere of man. The Bible says all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, but God wants you to know that Jesus came to restore that relationship, It is impossible for us to do that on our own, only Christ can restore the effects of sin in the lives of those who believe in him.
Commit your life ask God to cleanse you and give you a child’s heart. Commit your family and relationships into God’s hands. Let God bring healing in your circumstances. Commit your needs to him for with man this is impossible but not with God. All things are possible with God.
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