(This message may be used as an individual sermon or as part of the series.)
JOHN 4:46-54 – A FAITH STORY
LIFE OF CHRIST #13 of 61
Each of us must realize that one quality that God requires of us is faith. Romans 5:1, Hebrews 11:6
We must also realize that there are going to be times when our faith is going to be put to the test. James 1:2-4
One of my former church members, Alan Cornman, recently came up with the following definition of faith.
“FAITH: the underlying confidence in God that He has done all He said He has, is all He said He is, and will do all He said He will.”
John 4:46-53 is the story of a nobleman with a sick son. Like so many Bible Stories, it is a story of faith. And like so many Bible stories, this story challenges you and me to greater faith.
FAITH REFINED – Vss. 46-49
Vs. 46 – Jesus returns to Cana in Galilee, the same place where He had recently turned water into wine.
Jesus is about to have an encounter with a “nobleman”. He was probably a member of the court of King Herod. It appears that the man was probably a man of means. He had servants, and working for Herod was probably a profitable venture.
This nobleman had a problem. He had a very sick son.
Have you noticed that the rich and famous are not exempt from having problems? They get problems just as much as we do!
Job 5:7 – Yet man is born unto trouble, as the sparks fly upward.
The Son of this nobleman was in Capernaum, between 20-25 miles away.
Vs. 47 – When the nobleman heard that Jesus was only 20-25 miles away, he came to Jesus.
When the nobleman came to Jesus he begged Him, or actually continually begged him for help. He was in earnest. He cared. He wanted Jesus to come right away because the boy was at the point of death.
God wants us to pray in a similar way. Matthew 7:7-8
The words in Matthew 7:7 actually mean “Keep on asking, keep on seeking, keep on knocking.” We should be persistent in our prayers to the Lord!
Sometimes God allows our faith to be tested even more!
Such was the case with the nobleman. Things immediately got worse.
Vs. 48 – This statement was somewhat of a blow to the nobleman. What Jesus says even seems cruel.
And notice that Jesus made his response not just to the nobleman but to all that were gathered around.
The Jews were constantly looking for “signs” or proofs from Jesus before they would believe on Him.
They wanted to see Him physically perform a miracle.
The nobleman wanted Jesus to go physically with him to Capernaum and heal his son. That would have been a sign.
Jesus was saying to the crowd and to the nobleman, “I want you to believe on me, even if I don’t give you a sign.”
Vs. 49 – The nobleman didn’t seem to care. No matter what Jesus said, he realized that Jesus was his hope. He still thought Jesus needed to come, and he was still in earnest.
“Sir, Come ere my child die.”
Oh, may we have the same earnestness as this nobleman when we pray!
The man’s faith was severely tested, and yours will be too from time to time.
Psalm 66:10 – For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried.
When silver is tried or refined heat is applied!
When you are tested, the heat of affliction will be applied.
FAITH REFINED– Vss. 46-49
FAITH RESTING– Vs. 50
Jesus now shows what he means about believing without a sign.
Jesus simply gave His word.
Jesus said, “You can go now. You’re son lives!” Jesus had healed the boy without going to Capernaum.
For all of the nobleman’s begging about Jesus going to Capernaum, he simply took Jesus at His Word.
Why, he didn’t even rush home to make sure that what Jesus said was true. He didn’t go until the next day!
This man simply trusted the Word of Jesus.
This is what faith is. It’s trust that what God says he will do!
Trusting faith is often what is missing in our prayers.
We leave out the believing that God will answer.
God does not answer faithless prayers. Mark 11:24
FAITH REWARDED – Vss. 52-53
When we trust God there will always be victory.
Sometimes the victory will be a positive answer to our prayers. A person will be healed, or a problem will be solved.
Other times we will not see the answer we want, but God will give us the grace to triumph through the difficult times. Romans 5:3-5
In our story the Nobleman experiences triumphant faith.
Vs. 51 – The Nobleman’s servants actually started out to find their master with the good news! The son had been healed! The fever was gone!
I’m sure the Nobleman was overjoyed, but I don’t think that he was surprised! After all, he was trusting Jesus at His word!
Vs. 52 – The Nobleman was curious. When did the boy start to heal? The time was stated.
Vs. 53 – The boy was healed at the same hour as Jesus had said “Thy son liveth”.
This is absolutely remarkable.
Jesus healed a boy 25 miles away without seeing him.
He simply spoke the Word, and the boy was healed.
The result was that the Nobleman and his household believed. They believed in Jesus as the Messiah. The man’s faith led to more faith.