3. Jesus: The Great Physician For Sin! Psalm 38:15-21

Text: “And she (Mary) shall bring forth a Son, and thou (Joseph) shalt call His Name Jesus: for He shall save His people from their sins.”
Matthew 1:21.

          “Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Thy lovingkindness: according to the multitude of Thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.  Wash me thoroughly form mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.”
 Psalm 51:1-2.

Good morning, Christian in need of Renewal!  Like many other genuine Christian believers, you and I have occasionally allowed ourselves to stray – in word, thought, or deed - into foolish, yet dangerous, sin; willful disobedience; unChristlike talk or behaviour. 

The genuine Christian who denies having ever failed in this manner is, according to God’s Word, ‘a self-deceiver’.  Sin is natural to the natural man within each of us: we are naturally born sinners, and we have sinned; will sin; and shall undoubtedly sin until the Lord God grants us bodies that are glorified and forever free from the leprosy of sin.  Fact!

“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth (Christ Himself!) is not in us...If we say we have not sinned, we make Him (God) a liar, and His Word is not in us.”  (1 John 1:8-10) 

What a sobering, self-depreciating, and totally honest statement of God’s truth!

However, here’s the good news, my Christian friend:  Christ only came into this vile world to save SINNERS.  Hallelujah!  Only self-confessed sinners can be saved!

“This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.”         (1 Timothy 1:15)

The Lord Jesus Christ is the only Great Physician that heals the disease of sin.

“Twice in his biographies Jesus referred to himself as a ‘physician’ or ‘doctor,’ once in the sense of ‘spiritual healer’ and once in the sense of ‘physical healer.’

“Jesus as Spiritual Healer: His opponents once attacked him for having unsavoury characters such as tax collectors and ‘sinners’ among his disciples. Jesus reminded them that “They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”   (Mark 2:17)

“Jesus as Physical Healer: When Jesus gave his first sermon in his hometown synagogue of Nazareth, he anticipated the possessive nature of the crowd when he challenged them: "Surely you will quote this proverb to me: 'Physician, heal yourself! Do here in your hometown what we have heard that you did in Capernaum.'"  

“Jesus’ role as ‘physician’ and healer is so pervasive in his biographies and so essential to Jesus’ mission that he cannot be understood apart from it. The crowds seemed instinctively to see Jesus as a "physician." It’s a title he clearly deserves. One has only to skim through the biographies of Jesus to note the remarkable attention he gave to healing. He was a physician, a healer whose time was consumed with encounters with people who were sick, blind, lame, deaf, leprous, paralyzed or mentally ill. Each of the biographies portrays Jesus in this way. (see Recorded Miracles of Jesus)” (Jesuscentral.com)
At one time in Great Britain & Northern Ireland (U.K.) if one was ill, one went to a doctor; he diagnosed the illness; and, in most cases, prescribed a medical remedy that would cure the patient.  Now, in this chaotic, money-grabbing 21st Century – one gets ill, goes to a Medical Centre; is looked at for ten minutes by a ‘doctor’; given a prescription for tablets; and dismissed.  There does not seem to be many actually CURED of the illnesses they presented with at the Health Centre – it’s an assembly line, in many cases, devoid of any semblance of essential compassion or true CARE!
Verse 15. “For in Thee, O Lord, do I hope. There is only ONE CURE for the leprosy of sin: Jesus Christ is the only Physician of sinner’s souls.  Even the hypocritical Pharisees knew this much truth:  “...Who can forgive sins but God only?”  (Mark 2:7)

To prove to all forever that the Lord Jesus had the power to forgive internal sins, He healed the outward physical palsy of the man in Mark chapter 2. (Mark 10-12)

Verse 16. “For I said, Hear me... The Lord Jesus is sat right now at God the Father’s right hand, ever interceding for penitent sinners who are inspired to call upon Him for Spiritual healing from our sins.  His promise stands the test of all time and situations:

“Call unto Me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.”  (Jeremiah 33:3)

Thought  “One of the chief objects of Christ’s coming into the world, we have in the well-known words, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
“We need to be frequently reminded, that Jesus did not come merely as a teacher, but as the Saviour of that which was utterly lost, and that those only can receive benefit from Him who will confess that they are ruined, bankrupt, hopeless, miserable sinners.
“Let us use this mighty truth, if we never used it before. Are we sensible of our own wickedness and sinfulness? Do we feel that we are unworthy of anything but wrath and condemnation? Then let us understand that we are the very persons for whose sake Jesus came into the world.” (J.C. Ryle 1816-1900)

2. The Symptoms of Sin Psalm 38:7-14

Text: “For my loins are filled with a loathsome disease: and there is no soundness in my flesh.  I am feeble and sore broken: I have roared by reason of the disquietness of my heart.  Lord...my groaning is not hid from Thee.  My heart panteth, my strength faileth me: as for the light of mine eyes, it also is gone from me.  My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore; and my kinsmen stand afar off.”
                                                                                                               Psalm 38:7-11.

Good morning, back-sliding Christian!  You have, no doubt, been tempted by Satan, sin, or self, and lured to partake of this world’s ‘forbidden fruits’; and, now, you are experiencing the inevitable symptoms of your foolishness in venturing into sin’s dark strongholds.  Yet, fear not, there is good news today for YOU! 

“As cold waters to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country.” (Proverbs 25:25)

Because you are a Spiritually regenerate child of God’s grace; because you have been redeemed by Christ’s own precious and sinless Blood – there most definitely IS a ‘Balm in Gilead’; a remedy for your serious complaint. If you will take and receive it!

Repent, turn away now, from your sin; turn again on your knees to the Lord Jesus – and make prompt way to God’s throne of grace in penitent prayer.  At God’s throne of ever-given grace, you shall find recleansing and restoration to full fellowship with Him and with those ‘...of like precious faith...’ in the risen Christ Jesus.  Amen.

In Psalm 38: the Psalmist, David, has clearly identified the disease of Spiritual leprosy – inherent Adamic sin, and wilful sin after Salvation.  (Psalm 51:5) (1 John 1:8;10)

Sin’s symptoms:  In this second section of the Psalm, David clearly describes sin’s symptoms, the experiencing of which causes the truly redeemed Christian to flee to his/her Lord God for Divine healing.  Sin does not affect the unsaved in this manner, thus, the unregenerate soul can wallow in sin with impunity, and without deep grief.

“But the natural man (the Spiritually dead) receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him/her: neither can he/she know them, because they are Spiritually discerned.”  (1 Corinthians 2:14)

Genuine Bible-believing, ‘born again’ Christians receive ALL the symptoms of committed sin, due to the fact that God the Holy Spirit lives within us – and is sorely grieved by committed sin; and therefore, He sorely grieves the back-sliding Christian with all the symptoms of sin that David so graphically describes in this second section of Psalm 38.

“And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.”  (Ephesians 4:30)

God the Holy Spirit afflicts us in order to draw us back to Himself for healing.

Verses 6 & 7.  “I am troubled; I am bowed down greatly...a loathsome disease...there is no soundness in my flesh.  In many things, our estimates are extravagant; but we never overestimate the evil of sin.  It is as corrupting as it is damning.  It covers the soul with plague-spots, with leprosy (Isaiah 1:5-6).  (William S. Plumer 1802-1880)

For a few short moments/days of rebellious sin, some Christians are willing to risk and pay a sore and always grievous price.  ‘Oh, Lord God, deliver us from wilful sin!’

Verse 8. “I am feeble. The original is ‘benumbed,’ of frozen, such strange incongruities and contradictions meet in a distracted mind and a sick body – it appears to itself to be alternately parched with heat and pinched with cold.  Like souls in the popish-fabled purgatory, tossed from burning furnace into thick ice, so tormented hearts rush from one extreme to the other, with equal torture in each.  A heat of fear, a chill of horror, a flaming desire, a horrible insensibility – but by these successive miseries a convinced sinner is brought to death’s door.”  (C. H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 185)

The Holy Spirit, Himself God of very God, cannot live in the same breast as wilful sin!  The Christian that seeks to harbour sin in his/her heart – must pay the terrible cost!  Christians can either be ‘fish’ or ‘foul’!

Verse 8.  “...There is no soundness in my flesh. When true Christians sin - and we do – we find that, while we are very capable of sin, we are not so capable of enduring in it.  Like the sheep that strays into the mud – we soon bleat sincerely to get back out of it, and be cleansed from the filth of sin we have encountered.  (1 John 1:8-10)

Verse 9. “Lord...My groaning is not hid from Thee.  Indeed, our  penitent groaning over committed sins is not hidden from the Lord God – and neither are the vile sins we have wilfully committed!  Therefore, it grieves us deeply, to think that we have been disloyal and disobedient to such a Holy Lord God Almighty who has saved our souls.

Verse 9.  “My groaning is not hid from Thee. Secret tears for secret sins are an excellent sign of a holy heart and a healing balsam for broken spirits.”  (Samuel Lee 1625-1691)

Verse 11. “My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore. Oh, the loneliness of a soul passing under the convincing power of the Holy Ghost!”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 185)

Verse 12. “They that seek after my life lay snares for me.” Sin-snares are always laid if in any degree Satan may cause the true Christian to fall into sin.  Watch out!

Thought: Come, back-sliding Christian: present yourself at God’s throne of grace; plead the Blood of the risen Christ Jesus; be immediately made clean again and ready for Holy service.  Christ is the only sinless One.
Dear International Bible Class,

In a day of increased apostasy, 'easy-believism'; and lack of Spiritual maturity and knowledge of what every true, 'born again', Bible-believing Christian should know about his/her Christian faith - Ulster/American Christian Fellowship Ministry has placed thirteen vital Christian doctrines on a new Button here on our Blog/Website.

Please visit the Ulster Christians site at www.ulsterchristians.org, click on the new Basic Christian Doctrines section, to find these great Christian doctrines I have prepared for all genuine Christian believers whom, in obedience to God's Word would "Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman/woman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth."  (2 Timothy 2:15)

Please also pass on this vital Christian knowledge to other believers - the 21st Century church of the Lord Jesus Christ must know what we believe, try to practice what we believe; and stand firm on the truths God wants us to share with 'His people'.  (Matthew 1:21)  Thank you.

Every blessing in Christ Jesus,
Dr Cornelius K. McClinton
Ulster Christians