Sunday, June 21, 2009

How to reach them

I was reading in Mark 9:14-15 And when He came to the disciples, He saw a great multitude around them, and scribes disputing with them. Immediately, when they saw Him, all the people were greatly amazed, and running to Him, greeted Him.

As I read this familiar passage, where Jesus heals the boy that the disciples failed to heal, these verses caught my attention. Jesus comes on the scene to find his disciples arguing with the scribes. It is my understanding that the scribes were experts at the Law. So here are Jesus' students, disciples, followers whatever you want to call them - going head to head with the experts in the Law. It had to be heated with "A great multitude" surrounding them.

I am sure much of the argument was because of interpretation. I mean think about how much time has passed since the beginning of the law to now, and how much interpretation there is now - we have experts on everything. One person says sprinkle for baptism, the other says full submission, and there are many others in between. It appears they were arguing because the disciples lacked the miracle working that the crowd wanted that day - whatever it was they were in a heated debate over the technical part of it.

Then in walks Jesus. Didn't say anything, but we read the people caught glimpse of him and immediately were amazed and ran to him. He hadn't done anything, just arrived on the scene and people were amazed. They left the heated debate to run to him.

I thought about how this applies to our lives now. So many times we try to debate with people what the word of God says, what it means, and how it should be applied. I have seen things turn down right ugly as "Christians" try to prove they are right.

But really Jesus is the Word (John 1:14 - the Word became flesh). Just as Jesus came on the scene and people were amazed and ran to him, we should do the same. We need to present the Word, and let the Word stand. The Holy Spirit can bring the revelation to the person, and they will leave the argument and run to God. We don't need to argue it. "Here is what the word of God says......" Then we just need to live as Christ did. The rest of it is God's work.

You notice Jesus didn't join the debate. He simply arrived on the scene. The people were amazed before he did anything. But he still did what was right for him to do - healed the boy.

How many more people would be reach if we just gave them the Word and lived as the Word tells us and showed us to do.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Revelation on obedience and giving from an unusual story

I was reading in the word last night the story of the triumphant entry of Christ in Jerusalem, I have read the story a number of times before – Jesus sends his disciples to get a colt, they go get it. Jesus comes in, the people lay down the branches and sing “Hosanna and Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.” Last night as I read it, I had a new revelation about what really happened that day.

Mark 11:1- 11 tells the story as I read it last night. A couple of things caught my attention. The first was the disciples immediately went and did what Jesus told them to do, “Go into the village opposite you; and as soon as you have entered it you will find a colt tied, on which no one has sat. Loose it and bring it. 3 And if anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ say, ‘The Lord has need of it,’ and immediately he will send it here.”

While I would like to think that I would be obedient, I know from experience that while I might eventually do it, it would likely not be obedient. I mean I know I would have questions run through my head, and maybe the disciples left that part out. I might feel God tell me to go talk to someone about Him and I am reluctant, I drag my feet wanting to know it is Him, wanting reassurance I will say the right thing. That is just to talk to them about Him, not to ask them to give me something for His use. I guess if I felt passionate about it, I probably would with much encouragement from those around me, but they were asking for a valuable piece of property from a stranger, so the Lord could ride into town. WOW!

The second thing that caught my attention was after the disciples did what Jesus told them to, the owner of the colt just “let them go.” I mean a colt is a piece of property. I am no farmer but I am sure colts do not come cheap. And here some guy is told by a group of men that the Lord wants it. And he gives it, just lets it go. That amazes me. I mean some would say it was divine will, and while that is true, God still gave us the power of choice.

Again I would like to think that I would say oh yes, the Lord wants to use my ……, here it is. But the reality is while I have no problem paying tithes, giving to charities, or using my time I am not sure where I would be if God said “Give me your car, I need it.” especially if He sent a group of guys to ask for it. I would probably look at them and think they were trying to steal my car and call the police or the psych ward that these “nuts” thought the Lord told them to “borrow my car.”

As the story goes on, as Jesus is riding into town, on this colt so freely given, people are taking their clothes and laying them on the ground for the colt to walk on! I mean there is not a Mall or Wal-Mart where they can just run out and buy more. Clothes, including the material were all handmade, no Hobby Lobby to run to to by material – they had to use the loom. There were no heavy duty washer and dryer to get them clothes clean, just a river to clean them in. They took what they had and used it to glorify God.

So out of this story, I found revelation that God wants us to be obedient – no questions asked, just do it, immediately. Second, what we have should be used in the labor of Christ – big or small, God gave it all. We don’t need to analyze or get a second opinion, be just need to give it all. I just pray that God will help me apply what has been revealed.