WHAT ARE YOU BEGGING FOR?
She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter. Mark 7:26
They begged Him (Jesus) to place His hand on the man. Mark 7:32
And some people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. Mark 8:22
The man who had been demon possessed begged to go with Him (Jesus). Mark 5:18
Do you have something that you are begging God for? Are you begging for something in a relationship? Your job? Something for yourself? Are you lacking anything or do you have a need so great that you have resorted to begging?
I am not above begging. It’s not that I want to go there – because we all know that begging usually conjures up pictures in our minds of a dog or cat relentlessly begging for a tidbit from the table or the fridge. But, it is the most common use of the word.
We have 2 indoor kitties and both have unique ways and times to beg. And they know who to go to – the one who has the goods they want.
Same thing with a young child – a toddler will beg for attention, snack, play time, a toy. Usually he will run to the parent because he knows that parent can provide the resource because the parent has in the past. And, toddlers are relentless in their pursuit of getting what they want when they want it. It is exhausting at times.
BEG, GIRL, BEG
I have been spending some time this week with this word beg probably because I’m teaching in Mark and so I'm having to looking at words, words and more words. Is begging biblical? Does God want us to beg? As we see in the above verses, different people begged Jesus for healing, with the healings being different from each other.
First question that arises, at least for me, is – Why did they go to Jesus? If we look at the analogy of the toddlers and even animals, we can compare those reasons with the people in Mark. They demonstrate to us they knew Jesus would heal. They went to Him because they must have known He had something they needed and that because He had provided in the past He was trustworthy to provide for them.
Another question I have is about the word BEG. What is this word in Greek? There are actually different Greek words in place here. Mark 7:26 has a Syro-Phoenician woman (a Gentile) begging Jesus to heal her daughter of demon possession. The word used is EROTAO, meaning to interrogate, request, beg, beseech. And if you know the story, she indeed interrogates Jesus because of the sole fact that she is a Gentile, all the while understanding that Jesus came to the Jews first. Jesus commends her faith and understanding and heals her daughter from afar.
What about Mark 7:32? Mark uses another word here, which is the same one used in 8:22 and Mark 5:18 – PARAKLAO. This word means to call to one’s side, to invite, invoke, beseech, entreat, comfort. Paraklao is used 109 in the New Testsment.
But it’s the root of paraklao that grabbed my attention this last week. If you have been around sermons for a while you have probably heard the word PARAKLETOS or PARAKLEET.
And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor
to be with you forever – the Spirit of truth. John 14:16
Parakletos is a noun and its meaning is called to one’s side, especially called to one’s aid, an intercessor, consoler, comforter.
Am I the only one jumping up and down with this discovery? Begging is calling to our side - the Holy Spirit is called Comforter and we are calling Him to our side. When we beg we are using the same root word which God provides for us – His Spirit.
Let me do the math – we beg for aid to our side and God gives us the answer – THE Comforter coming to aid at our side.
The way I see it, is that God provides an answer even before we ask. When Jesus promised the Holy Spirit to the disciples in John 14 it was right before He was going to the Cross. He promised them they would not be left alone – He would send a Counselor, Comforter, the Spirit of Truth. He was providing provision for their future begging in the form of His very Spirit. And the Spirit would live IN us.
We have the solution to our begging living inside of us. We may beg for healing, restoration, salvation, forgiveness, and more – and the answer will always be the Holy Spirit.
I find this rather cool.
No matter my problem, the Holy Spirit is the answer. Always. Every time. Forever.
It gives me chicken flesh.
My God provided for ALL of my begging before He went to the Cross. Not just mine, but all mankind. Whatever the need, the answer is found in the Holy Spirit because ultimately our greatest need is salvation. Oh, in the day-to-day, my feet need healing, my loved ones may need healing too. Or a job, direction, guidance, deliverance.
But the answer to all our beseeching is the SPIRIT OF GOD.
Isn’t God amazing?
Father God, You are Sovereign. Even before You stepped into time, You provided for everything I need. And the best provision is Your Holy Spirit. Thank You for giving me Yourself living inside of me giving me the complete answer to all of my begging. May I never cease to beg because it actually draws me close to You. AMEN