Focus Text: Matthew 14:25-31; Acts 3:1-7
Central Truth: Faith in God requires action.
Objective: By the end of this lesson my students should be able to identify ways we can put our faith into action.
I. Faith in Action (Matt. 14:25-31)
II. Healing the Sick (Acts 3:1-7)
The objective for today's lesson is: "By the end of this lesson my students should be able to identify various improper motives people have in praying for miracles."
Discussion: What are some such improper motives in praying? (Feel free to add your comments below!)
In "Doctrinal Discussion", Dr. Glenn McClure points out five insights on divine healing from James 5:14-20:
- The person who is sick must want the healing.
- The church leaders not only directed this request for healing to God, but also acknowledged that only God could bring it about.
- We must pray in faith; faith is a prerequisite for healing.
- We should not overlook those who are praying and the one for whom prayer is offered.
- We must consider the intensity of the prayer of faith.
For deeper explanation of these insights, please see your Adult Teacher's Insights, pages 37-38.
"When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee." (Mark 2:5)
In "Biblical Perspective", Dr. Gayle Woods writes:
Jesus and the crowd in the room heard the noise above them as the roof was dismantled. It was not long until sand and bits of mortar fell into the room. A cloudy haze filled the room as they watched in wonder. A hole appeared, revealing the sky above. The opening grew larger and larger until they saw the four men feverishly destroying the roof. Then the cot with the paralyzed man was lowered carefully into the room. Somehow people bunched closer together to allow for its intrusion into their midst. Jesus was impressed. It was the collective faith of the friends that impressed Jesus. They brought their friend for physical healing, but Jesus offered him much more. Jesus spoke to the need of his heart. Using a Greek term that was used affectionately, Jesus said, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.
Discussion: What one step can you take today to demonstrate a greater faith in Jesus?
Source: Miracles of Jesus: Adult Teacher's Insights, page 35.
Read James 5:15-20
“Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (v. 16).
Throughout Scripture, men have turned to God in prayer when plagued with physical illness. The prayer for healing is both private and shared with the Church. But James suggests that sickness MAY be related to conduct — a discipline from God for disobedience. The translation “faults” is misleading as to seriousness, for the Greek word translated “fault” is the word for “sin” (see James 1:15). It will be necessary to confess to God (and man as it applies) the offending action. It is then that the prayer of faith imploring God’s will for healing may be presented.
Confession is not pleasant, but it is necessary. “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper” (Prov. 28:13). Confession brings humility, and it is the humble man that finds help from God. The clear instruction of this passage is that sickness can be related to disobedience. Equally clear is that confession accompanied with prayer brings healing. Certainly confession brings healing to the soul. Practicing these divine directives can and will bring health and renewed usefulness to the kingdom of God. Perhaps the words of J. Edwin Orr would be appropriate for us to pray today. (William Snider)
Search me O God,
And know my heart today.
Try me, O Savior;
Know my thoughts, I pray
See if there be some wicked way in me;
Cleanse me from every sin, and set me free.
Turn to God for healing.
This devotional is the Sunday, January 10, 2016 entry of Opening the Word.
Lesson 6 - January 10, 2016
Focus Text: Mark 2:1
Central Truth: Christ performed miracles to promote God’s glory.
Objective: By the end of this lesson my students should be able to identify various improper motives people have in praying for miracles.
- The Helpless Sufferer (Mark 2:1-4)
- The Compassionate Savior (Mark 2:5)
- The Murmuring Scribes (Mark 2:6-7)
- The Powerful Healer (Mark 2:8-12)
Lesson 5 - January 3, 2016
Focus Text: Mark 1:40-45; Luke 17:11-19
Central Truth: Christ has power to make us whole.
Objective: By the end of this lesson my students should be able to explain the difference between temporary faith and saving faith.
- Compassion and Healing (Mark 1:40-45)
- Mercy and Healing (Luke 17:11-14)
- Gratitude and Healing (Luke 17:15-19)