Saturday, May 8, 2021

Forewarned


 Bobservations Column

By Pastor Bob Lawrenz

With the Apostles gathered together to Jesus, He spends more time preparing them for the future ministry to the saints, believers and followers of Jesus’ teachings and works. He is giving them insight into what they can expect as they go out into the world. Basically, what Jesus has experienced, they should expect no different, not even from their families.

This is an alarming section to study, especially on Mothers’ Day of all days. Yet the subtleties of familial relationships bear out the truth of this chapter. It’s also a warning: with Romans 1:30 and 2Timothy 3:2, the Holy Spirit tells us that things will get worse and worse towards the end of days.

Even as written in verse 34 of this chapter, we learn that Jesus Christ, and the message of the Gospel will bring division among even the closest of relationships. The Gospel is directly opposed to the generally accepted world view of life, death, and all personal relationships. To the point, God is left out of so many of the issues of daily living in the world. That’s not how He meant His Creation to be.

The message of the Gospel challenges those who hear it to think outside the box, to open their hearts and consider another source of truth, other than what the world promotes continually: personal experience, personal opinion and a human interpretation of the world. That’s what the world expects and what they promote to us. Even much of science is based on the human world view, rather than God-the-Creator’s view.

The Gospel kicks against the world view, even though it rings true in the hearts of those that accept Jesus’ message of love, and loving one another. It’s a simple message of a bonded love and acceptance, something we all desire. And because it comes from our Creator, we know we have a desire of our hearts.

Stand up to the pressure and intensity of the world. Bend and bow down to the King of kings, and Lord of lords instead, for Jesus alone is worthy.

“For it is written, ‘As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall
bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.”

Isaiah 45:23 – Romans 14:11 – Philippians 2:10,11

Today's Audio Message

Matthew 10:21-42 - "Forewarned"

Chapter Summary:

To be a Christian is to imitate Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1). If many have persecuted Him, so also will many hate us for preaching His Gospel. We who follow Him cannot expect to escape the same tribulations our Lord also endured (Matthew 10:24–25).

If there is a message that desperately needs to be heard by the church today, it is Jesus’ words regarding persecution. In this morning’s text, Jesus prepares His disciples for the certainty of persecution on their current mission to the nation of Israel. In so doing, He also expands His teaching to include the mission to the Gentiles which encompasses the entire history of the church down to the present day. Here Jesus provides key teachings of what His disciples can expect from a world that rejects Him.

In John 15, Jesus said, “If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.” Expect it!

Just as Jesus was crucified, according to tradition handed down from the early Church, all of the apostles, except for John, would be killed for preaching the gospel. It is not so important how the apostles died as it is important that they were all willing to die for their faith in Christ.

Are you willing to follow Jesus if it means losing some of your closest friends, family, job, or even the loss of your life? As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said, “Ye were bought at a price’, and what has cost God much cannot be cheap for us.”

The truth is, we have gained everything in Christ, and the cost is nothing in comparison. Sharing our faith is both an honor and a privilege, and following Jesus is priceless!







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