Saturday, January 14, 2012

A Morning Cup of Tea: Journeying Toward Jerusalem Teaching

Good morning! I hope you had a great day yesterday and are enjoying the beginning of today. I was blessed to spend most of the day with family. It's always good to see my loved ones and I wish I could see all of them more often.
  From what I understand, Jesus is traveling toward Jerusalem here in chapter 13 of Luke. Many things are going on in this chapter. The first few verses Jesus and others are discussing some deaths of Galileans, caused by Pilate.  I'm afraid I don't know much of the history of that time but I do know that Rome had a firm hold on the area and the people were living under Roman rule.  Common belief was that great suffering was the result of sinful living. 
  Jesus addressed this belief when he asked if the people who died there were more sinful than others, (v 2) and also of the ones who died in Siloam when a tower fell (v 4). In each case Jesus said they were not worse sinners than anyone else. However, he used these examples to warn those who listened that if they did not repent, they too would die.  These words are for us as well. He did not mean the death that all of us will someday face, but the final death --separation for eternity from God. 
   Jesus tells us that some will be turned away even though they (we) have done good works in his name.  There is a pattern for us to follow. If we do not follow it to the best of our ability then we will be lost. Jesus knows that we are not perfect and we will make mistakes. But he also knows our hearts. If we continually read his word then we know how we are supposed to live. It's when we try to do things our way, or see one or two verses and decide that this is all we need to do then continue on living as the rest of the world lives that we err.
  Continuing on. Jesus always taught  in the temple on the Sabbath. On this particular instance Luke tells us that there was a woman present who had had an infirmity for eighteen years and could not raise herself up ( v10).  Jesus saw her and cured her, saying Woman you are loosed from your infirmity. The leader of the synagogue was not at all happy that Jesus did this. After all, it was the Sabbath and no one works on the Sabbath! Jesus asked if there was anyone there who would not take an ox or a donkey from his stall and lead it to food and water on the Sabbath. Satan had hold of this woman for 18 years, was it not proper to loose her from her bonds, no matter the day of the week?
  What is the kingdom of heaven like? It is like a mustard seed which was planted and grows into a large tree, and many birds can rest there.
  He then tells us to strive to enter through the narrow gate (v24 - 30). Many will try but few will enter.  He was telling them and us to be careful.  
  He was warned during this time to get out of town because Herod wanted to kill him. Jesus knew that his life was in danger, and his time here on earth was growing short. He was not afraid of Herod, he would continue driving out devils and teaching  and healing along the way till he died but on the third day his body would be perfected. Yet he did move along because he knew that what had to be done would be in Jerusalem.

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