Saturday, May 28, 2016

Luke 9:49-50

Luke 9:49-50
Answering, John said, “Master, we saw some who were casting out demons in your name.  And we forbid him, because he does not follow with us.”  And Jesus said to them, “Do not forbid it, for whoever is not against you is for you.”

Thoughts for Today

First Thought:

Once more we have a story in the bible about spiritual warfare.  There are many people waging war against the forces of evil in the world.  Jesus takes this topic seriously.  The disciples certainly take this topic seriously.  We should take this topic seriously as well.  If we believe that there is an all-powerful God in the universe drawing us towards Him and His righteousness, we should also take seriously the idea that this God has forces working against Him in His endeavor, too.

Where have you seen evil at work?  Where have you battled spiritually against this evil?

Second Thought:

The disciples forbid the man who was casting out demons in Jesus’ name.  Again, I think we see the pride of the disciples coming out.  A few days ago they didn’t understand.  Yesterday we talked about how they argued, likely to cover up the fact that they didn’t understand.  Now, we get a story about how the disciples try to take control.  This is why it was so important to understand the story from a few days back.  When the disciples are afraid to ask because they don’t want to look stupid, they make mistakes in judgment again and again.  Because they don’t ask, they don’t learn.  When they don’t learn, they can’t act as they should.

Does it make sense to see how the mistakes of the disciples are coming from their inability to understand?  Why is it important to ask questions?  How does this help us understand why mentoring is so important?

Third Thought:

I think this is one of the more important teachings for the modern church.  Whoever is not against you is for you.  This is drastically different than what often feels like the motto of modern Christianity: Whoever is not for you is against you.  How often do we like to spend time arguing in church? How often do we squabble and fight and make others feel badly because they don’t agree with us?  I think in this arena the Moravians have it right.  Their church motto is simple: “In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in everything, love.”  Jesus tells us quite bluntly.  If someone is not your enemy, then they are on your side.  When it comes to faith, this is especially true.  Religion is an incredibly divisive topic.  If someone doesn’t want to fight you on it, they are likely your friend.

Have you ever fought with someone when you should have welcomed them?  Why is it easy to let things divide us that shouldn’t?

Passage for Tomorrow: Luke 9:49-50
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