BINDING THE HANDS OF JESUS
A. In Mark 15:1, we read of how the enemies of Jesus bound Him in preparation for sending Him to Pilate
B. As we read this, it is easy for our hearts to be filled with sadness, and even with a touch of “righteous indignation” for that crowd that bound Jesus in such a way
C. And yet, there are many today who are guilty of binding the hands of Jesus in a “figurative” way!
D. To see what I mean, consider some of the various ways people can be guilty today of “Binding the Hands of Jesus”…
A. Are we binding the hands of Jesus BY REFUSING TO OBEY THE GOSPEL?
1. In His great love for us, Jesus stretched out His hands and died for our sins
a. Even today, through His gospel, He pleads with all to take advantage of His vicarious suffering
b. He does not want us to suffer for the guilt of our own sins
c. In truth, then, His “tender invitation” of Matthew 11:28-30 is still being offered today
2. But when one refuses to obey the gospel…
a. The hands of Jesus are bound!
b. There is no way such a person can then receive the benefits of Jesus death!
c. For him or her, the death of Jesus was in vain!
3. Is this true of you?
a. It is – if you have not yet accepted the gospel by obeying the commands of Jesus
1) Mark 16:15-16
2) Acts 2:38
b. And if it is, then you will one day have to face the righteous indignation of Jesus Himself! … 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9
4. But even those who obey the gospel can be guilty of “binding the hands of Jesus.” How? One way is…
B. BY REFUSING TO BE TRANSFORMED?
1. It is the will Christ that we be transformed.
a. This transformation involves a renewal of the mind
1) Romans 12:1-2
2) Ephesians 4:20-24
b. This renewal occurs as we read, study, and meditate upon the Word of God
1) 1 Peter 1:23-2:2
2) Philippians 4:8
2. But many Christians neglect the instrument by which we can be renewed…
a. Thus many do not “receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls” (Jam. 1:21b)
b. Many allow other things to take precedence in our lives, so they “bind the hands of Jesus” – not making the proper changes in their lives!
3. Are we guilty of this?
a. We are, if we neglect to study the Bible on our own!
b. We are, if we fail to take advantage of opportunities to study with others!
c. Neglect the transforming power of the Word of God, and we are just as guilty of “binding the hands of Jesus” as were those who delivered Him to Pilate!
4. We can also be guilty of “binding the hands of Jesus”…
C. BY REFUSING TO PRAY?
1. Jesus is our “High Priest”
a. He became man for this very purpose… Hebrews 2:17-18
b. Jesus has made it possible for us to boldly approach the throne of grace in prayer… Hebrews 4:14-16
c. As our High Priest…
1) He is able to save those who come to God through Him – Hebrews 7:25a
2) He “always lives” to make intercession for us – Hebrews 7:25b
2. When we don’t pray as we should…
a. Jesus cannot be our high priest, our intercessor!
b. Figuratively, we’ve taken the “praying hands” of Jesus and “bound” them behind His back!
3. Are we doing this?
a. If so, what a travesty this is!
b. For here is Jesus…
1) Who “lives” to intercede for us
2) But Who can’t, because we prevent Him from doing so by our failure to pray!
4. There is yet another way to be guilty of “binding the hands of Jesus”…
D. BY REFUSING TO DO OUR PART IN THE CHURCH?
1. The church is described as the “body of Christ”… – Ephesians 1:22-23
a. As His body, we are individually members of one another… 1 Corinthians 12:27
b. As members of one another, we are to care for one another… Ephesians 4:15-16
c. It is through such “mutual edification”, that Christ provides much of His help for the members of His body!
2. But when we fail to do our share, again Jesus is “bound”!
a. Just as our physical head can do little if our bodily members fail to follow its leading, so it is with Jesus and His church!
b. Jesus could do so much more for His members, if only more of the members did their part!
3. Have you ever considered it this way?
a. That by failing to do our part, we “handicap” the body of Christ?
b. That because of our neglect, or apathy, or lukewarmness…
1) Either the whole body of Christ suffers…
2) Or others are forced to do “double duty” in order to make up the difference?
4. Yes, there are many ways we can be just as guilty of “binding the hands of Jesus” today as were the religious leaders in delivering Jesus to Pilate! But consider just one more…
E. Are we binding the hands of Jesus BY REFUSING TO SHARE THE GOSPEL WITH THE LOST?
1. Jesus has made His disciples to be His “hands” in taking the gospel to the lost…
a. Consider Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-16; 1 Peter 2:9
b. In every case of conversion recorded in Acts, Jesus used a disciple to tell the good news
c. Jesus works the same way today!
2. But when we keep the good news to ourselves…
a. We have “bound the hands” of Jesus once again!
b. We hinder Jesus from telling others of His wonderful grace!
3. Are we “binding the hands of Jesus” in this way?
a. Every day, countless souls die with no hope of eternal life
b. This need not be, if more made sharing of the gospel the primary concern in their lives!
c. Sadly, in too many cases the primary concern of Christians is the pursuit of pleasure and acquisition of worldly treasures!
A. Yes, one does not have to literally “bind the hands of Jesus” to be guilty of the same sort of offense that we read about in Mark 15:1; as we have seen, there are many other ways as well!
B. Why not today, resolve to “loose the hands of Jesus” so that in us and through us He may accomplish His full desire? Which is…
1. To save us!
2. To transform us!
3. To use us!