Fruit or Root?

Mark 6:56 “And whithersoever he entered, into villages, or cities, or country, they laid the sick in the streets, and besought him that they might touch if it were but the border of his garment: and as many as touched him were made whole.”

I remember as a young boy taking a spill on my bike and scraping my knee quite badly. I washed it off with water and put a bandage over it. Sometime later, the skin under the bandage turned red and I pulled the bandage off only to find a green, infected, puss-filled mess!

My mother took a soft brush and soap and water and scrubbed away all the infected skin and continued scrubbing – much to my tears and cries for her to stop! Washing with water only took away the surface dirt. What I failed to do was scrub underneath the skin to get at the dirt underneath that had caused the infection.

We can be that way with our sin. There is a cause and effect with every one of our actions. Smoke cigarettes and you increase your chance for lung cancer. Drink and you may get cirrhosis of the liver. Drink and drive and you become a bullet in a loaded gun with the potential to kill. Whether it is lying, stealing, cheating, abuse, immorality, or murder; sin has built in consequences.

Numbers 32:23 “But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out.

In our text this morning, Jesus had landed on shore and when the people had found out, they came bringing their sick and diseased for Him to heal. And heal He did! It states:

“… and as many as touched him were made whole.

The healing touch of Jesus is a marvelous and miraculous thing. For those with such desperate situations to be healed would be a wonderful thing. But even Lazarus, who was raised from the dead still died. The greater healing for any that came to Jesus would be that their sins would be forgiven.

Many are driven to seek God because their situation and circumstances are seemingly out of their control – and many are way out there! But I find often, that when the situation has quelled and the consequences to our actions have been lessened or removed, we feel we no longer need God, His church or His people only to return with the same problem – or worse.

God has the ability to remove both the consequences of sin AND the root cause. Just like my gangrene-laden mess of a knee, it wasn’t until the soap and the brush were applied that it had the opportunity to truly heal. Until the cleansing agent was applied to the root of the problem, I was going to battle the recurrence of infection every time.

God allows us opportunity to deal honestly with our sin. He peels back the mess to show us that it is a heart problem – not a drug problem; not a relationship problem; not an anger problem – it is a sin problem.

You and I can weep and lament and wring our hands over the fruit of our bad decisions. But until we deal honestly and openly with the sin of our heart, it will infect us in ways we cannot even imagine. Not only will it affect us, but those around us. Many justify their sin thinking, “It is only hurting me” when in fact, there is not one person that can control the wave of consequences that come once that gate swings open.

Today, there may very well be things that need to be brought to Jesus for healing. But don’t stop there. Pray that God would do a deeper work in you.

Psalm 139:23-24 “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”

Wait for the answer. Confess what He exposes and know that the sin is already paid for but the restoration of the relationship with the Father is priceless!

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