Chapter # 5 Paragraph # 2 Study # 3
March 18, 2007
Lincolnton, N.C.

<330> Thesis: The "willingness" of God is heavily dependent upon the "agenda" of God. Introduction: Last week we spent our time together looking into the leper's prayer. We looked into his motivation, his desperation, his theology, and whether he is, in fact, an "example" for us. And, in a very real sense, he is an example for us in a limited sort of way. The "outer boundaries" of his "example" are two: he had a problem that he knew Jesus could "handle"; and he brought this problem to Jesus to see if He was willing to "handle" it in the same way that the leper wanted it "handled". For two weeks now we have attempted to make the point that "conditional discipleship" is not discipleship at all. Perhaps the greatest problem men have -- of all the problems they face -- is the delusion that they are legitimate "negotiators" in respect to the issue of discipleship...that they have the "right" to insist not only upon certain "outcomes" for their participation with God, but also upon certain "processes". They, in effect, say, "If You will agree to my pre-sets, I will serve You." That this is a rather blatant contradiction of divine omniscience, divine wisdom, and divine love ... that they are, in effect, saying, "If You will subject your knowledge, your wisdom, and your love to mine..." ... never seems to enter their brains. But, this morning, it is going to enter our brains. What we do with it is up to us, but we are going to, at least, face it. We are going to do this by looking again at Luke's record of the healing of the leper. We are going to zero in on Jesus' answer to his "statement/question".