Monday, May 2, 2011
You will enjoy this post by Dr. Gary Manning, who taught at Pacific Rim Christian College, now an Associate Professor of the New Testament at Talbot School of Theology.
Sunday, May 1, 2011
Matthew 18:15 “If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over.
Who’s the greatest in the Kingdom?
...will he not leave the 99 - and look for the one who wandered off?
The greatest in the Kingdom may not be found behind the pulpit, riding in a limousine chauffeured to the Fortune Five Hundred award gala or influencing their community or city in civil or moral leadership.
The greatest in God’s Kingdom will be found following Matthews account of Jesus’ instruction in chapter 18. The disciple, whether leader in the community or church, volunteer, housewife, child, elder, business entrepreneur or pastor - will study the instruction of Jesus to human-kind on the relevant, Kingdom of heaven pursuit of greatness and relationships in life.
Becoming the greatest in the Kingdom, will require humility, boldness and courage. The fight to overcome pride, anger, resentment and unforgiveness. How? Showing others their fault or sin. I don’t’ mean this to say that we should be ”fault-finders“ or the contrast, ”overly sensitive, insecure“ Christians who get hurt easily by others, only to find themselves blame shifting on those who hurt or sin against them. But we must hear and heed the Lord through Matt. 18’s instructions.
And...before we can even answer this question: ”Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother who sins against me?“, I think we should pay attention and obey Matt. 18:15.
I find myself as a spiritual leader, with fair regularity, guiding people to follow Matt. 18:15. People come to me to ”ground offense or hurt“ confessing their anger, bitterness, unforgiveness to me about someone who offended or sinned against them. I don’t’ mind counseling people towards Biblical resolution, but when people have a passive attitude towards obeying Jesus’ guidelines in Matthew 18, I get weary.
I want to live differently today, being affirmed by His Spirit... ”Rod, you are my spokesperson, doing My will as a pastor.“ To live differently is to receive this encouragement from God, not grow weary in doing well to fulfill Jesus instruction, equipping others to walk by Matthew 18.
I confess Jesus, I get tired of weak, passive, ignorant and hard hearted people who want to vent, but are calloused to ”suck up their FEELINGS and hurts.“ I just want to say ”lick your wounds“ and get over it! BUT WOE am I!! If You or others treated me this way when I am hurt, I would be doomed! Forgive me, strengthen me, fill me with Your love, once again...today...for You, people. May I be a follower and example of Your character and life - to others around me...especially my family!!!!