We are excited to announce some new features to the blogsite. As more and more readers are viewing from foreign countries we have added the translate feature to the site. Our readers can also now choose to have the blog emailed to them, and they can search the blog by keywords on various topics. We hope that this makes the site more manageable for you. God Bless.

Hear current audio messages by Pastor Scott Burr at:

Thursday, August 25, 2016

House of Mercy and Grace

“After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now there was in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew, Bethesda, having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water.”-John 5:1-3

Bethesda! This pool, located near the Sheep Gate in Jerusalem, became a gathering place for the sick, blind, lame and paralyzed. John 5:4 gives us some insight to why this pool became so popular among the sick and the lame:

“For an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the waters; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water, was made well of whatever disease he had.”

Perhaps this is why the pool was given its name. Bethesda can be translated two ways: House of Mercy or House of Grace. This duel meaning was likely very appropriate as the location was seen as a place of suffering and disgrace because of the rampant sickness. Multitudes had come to throw themselves on the mercy of God as Bethesda became a beacon of God’s grace due to the healings that had taken place.

Among the multitude was a man who had been sick for 38 years:

“Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to Him, “Do you want to be mad well?” The sick man answered Him, “Sire, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.”-John 5:5-7

Jesus saw the man lying there and knew he had been in that condition a long time. Somebody reading this today nears to hear that! Jesus is aware of your pain. He is aware of your physical needs. He knows exactly how long you have been struggling in that condition!

Today, He is posing the same question to you that He posed to this man: “Do you want to be made well?” You would think, that the answer to that would be a resounding…Yes! However, some people have so identified themselves with their sickness that they are not really looking for healing as much as they are relief. Others, due to financial reasons don’t want to be healed and others don’t want to give up their sinful lifestyle to maintain it. Others, are simply waiting for the conditions to get just right before they will come forward to be healed. If you wanted to be healed, you had to go to the Pool at Bethesda in Jerusalem, the one near the Sheep Gate, then wait for the angel to come, stir the water, and the first person in was healed. You couldn’t just get in anytime you wanted, or into any pool you wanted; the conditions had to be perfect. 
Even after Jesus, the Great Physician, showed up, all eyes were focused on the water. They were watching and waiting for the conditions to be right, while the Healer was standing in their midst. 

I wonder how many people today forego receiving their healing because they are waiting for the conditions to be right! They need the music right, the message to be right, the kid’s to behave, and right pastor to pray for them, and then they say, “I’ll receive my healing.” 

Can I tell you that the perfect condition for healing is the one in which Jesus is present:

“Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up you bed and walk.” And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked. And that day was the Sabbath.”-John 5:8-9

Bethesda was not called the House of Mercy and Grace because of what was taking place there, but rather who was present there! Jesus! 

I wonder, had they known the Great Physician was present, would they have bothered any more with watching for the water to be stirred or would they have thrown themselves on the mercy of God!

Can I encourage you today! Jesus is present. Which means the condition is right for healing! The Great Physician is in the house, which means that the grace of healing is available if you will throw yourselves on the mercy of God.

Pastor Scott Burr
Dayspring Community Church 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Jesus loves messy people! Pt. 2

(Part 2 of 2)

“Then the woman said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw.” Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.” The woman answered and said, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You have well said, ‘I have no husband,’ “for you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband; in that you spoke truly.”-John 4:15-18

As Jesus continues in conversation with the woman at the well, He slowly begins to uncover some additional experiences that have likely left this woman jaded and apprehensive. The depth of her struggles is revealed when Jesus asks her to go and get her husband. The woman readily admits that she has no husband, but withholds some pertinent information. 

This woman had been married five times and the man she is currently living with is not her husband. Obviously, this woman had some real relationship issues. We have no idea if she was the cause (infidelity) or if she was abused, neglected, abandoned, or widowed. However, we can gauge from the text that her current situation was not healthy or God honoring. 

Nothing can leave a person jaded faster than bad relationships. Relationships can be  tainted by drug abuse, physical abuse, verbal abuse, alcoholism, neglect, or a controlling spirit. These relationships can be toxic and can have a negative impact on how we receive God! 

Jesus certainly didn’t shy away from her lifestyle issues. In fact, He brought it to light, not to embarrass her but rather that the knowledge of her sinfulness would lead her to trust Jesus. Jesus isn’t afraid of our sinful condition, it is actually what draws Him to us. He sees our need of a Savior! He doesn’t ignore our sin. He always addresses it. We can come to Him as we are, but He refuses to leave us in that condition. 

However, once Jesus begins to reveal this pattern of bad behavior in her life, she quickly begins to change the subject:

The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship.”-John 4:19-20

Another reason for this woman’s blatant apprehensions was that she was confused by the obvious differences between Jews and Samaritans when it came to worshiping God. Jews said worship in Jerusalem. Samaritans said worship on Mt. Gerizim. There is nothing that will cause a person to become confused faster than being brow beat by religious people. Religion is the idea that we can earn favor with God through our own prescribed efforts. So the push is not towards having a relationship with God, but on doing right things so that God will accept us. Jesus answer?

“Jesus said to her, “Woman believe Me, the hour is common g when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father.”-John 4:21

Racism, relationships, and religion! All three of these can create a culture of messy people, but that is exactly who Jesus came to save! How? First we come to Him (hot mess and all) and then slowly, as we trust in Him, He begins to make adjustments in our lives; corrections that will make our lives better. It doesn’t happen all  at once, but eventually He’ll turn your mess into a message and your changed life will become a message of hope to others. 

Pastor Scott Burr
Dayspring Community Church

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Jesus loves messy people! (Pt.1)

(Part 1 of 2)

“So He came to a city of Samaria which is called Sychar, near the plot of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well. I was about the sixth hour. A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.”-John 4:5-6

This story, recorded for us in John 4, focuses on a woman that Jesus encounters at a well. Jesus was traveling from Judea to Galilee, when he became tired and stopped to rest. The disciples had all left to find food, leaving Jesus at the well; when this woman shows up to draw water. 

The timing of her trip to the well seems somewhat peculiar, as most women would have visited the well in the early morning hours before the sun came up. Perhaps she was attempting to avoid the congestion, or perhaps she was avoiding becoming the topic of their morning gossip column. Whatever the reason for her delay, she was about to have an encounter with Jesus!

It is plain to see, as you read the story, that this woman did not live an easy life and she had good reason to feel jaded and question whether Jesus was who He claimed to be. 

“A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” For Jews have no dealing with Samaritans.” John 4:7-9

Is it just me, or does Jesus have a way of showing up and hanging out with messed up people? Read the gospels! Jesus never ran from people whose lives were a mess, he ran to them! Look around, wherever you are right now. You are surrounded by people with messed up lives, wrecked emotions, questionable motives, and raw attitudes. I remind our congregation, often, that we are a messy church. On any given Sunday you are sitting in the company of people struggling to overcome addictions, sexual immorality, doubt, unbelief, unforgiveness, marriage problems, and financial crisis. Yet, that’s how I know that Jesus is there with us; because Jesus loves and looks for messed up people!

The Samaritan woman was one of those people!  She had several life-altering experiences with racism, bad relationships and religion that made her question the authenticity of Christ’s claims. 

The Samaritans were a racially mixed society with Jewish and pagan ancestry. There was no love loss between the Jews and the Samaritans. This woman grew up being exposed to deeply racist attitudes toward Jews and was on the receiving end of that racism from them. Couple that with the fact that in those days and that culture women were often treated as mere property; you can be certain that she would have held some very strong opinions and certainly questioned Jesus about His intentions.

His answer to her reservations?  “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, “Give Me a drink,” you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”-John 4:10

Jesus doesn’t simply have the answers; He is the answer! 

Pastor Scott Burr
Dayspring Community Church