Two Responses to Jesus

Daily Spirit &Word: 742:

Two Responses to Jesus.

Some say, “I won’t”, but do.

Some say, “I will” but don’t…

Good morning my friends, what an awesome day and week it’s been. Curry night was great Indigo was a treat to the taste-buds. Ying Kai came to my home and so did Pastors and key leaders from other churches in West Norwood. He shared the simplicity of the Gospel and Discipleship, encouraging us to not-overcomplicate the process, but to allow so much more room for the Holy Spirit, it’s not about systems, programs or fancy marketing, but relying completely upon the empowering, guiding and equipping of the Holy Spirit in the knowledge that Jesus will always be with us. Praise the LORD for Ying Kai, his wife Grace (who exudes God’s grace and gentleness).

I was reminded during that meeting yesterday about Jesus Parables and the one about the Two Sons. It’s in a section of Matthew’s Gospel where Jesus was challenged by religious people who were not following Him or His teachings.

The Parable of the Two Sons

Matthew 21:23-32 (ESV)

23  And when he entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came up to him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?”
24  Jesus answered them, “I also will ask you one question, and if you tell me the answer, then I also will tell you by what authority I do these things.
25  The baptism of John, from where did it come? From heaven or from man?” And they discussed it among themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’
26  But if we say, ‘From man,’ we are afraid of the crowd, for they all hold that John was a prophet.”
27  So they answered Jesus, “We do not know.” And he said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.
28  “What do you think? A man had two sons. And he went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’
29  And he answered, ‘I will not,’ but afterward he changed his mind and went.
30  And he went to the other son and said the same. And he answered, ‘I go, sir,’ but did not go.
31  Which of the two did the will of his father?” They said, “The first.” Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes go into the kingdom of God before you.
32  For John came to you in the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes believed him. And even when you saw it, you did not afterward change your minds and believe him.

Jesus was talking with the Pharisees, they are the religious elite of the time, people who should have known how to serve the Lord and be a light to everybody for His glory, but instead of working with and accepting Jesus, they had turned against him. This Parable was directed at them, but in some ways it’s directed at every single Christian. Because like those sons, we’ve all said, “Yes” to Jesus, but only a very few who’ve received Christ as Lord are actually being obedient to the things that Jesus commands. His primary command that we ignore or disobey is what we’ve been praying about all week, “Going into the world to share, spread and broadcast His powerful, life-transforming, Gospel message with everyone”…

The first said “I won’t” but later had a change of mind.

There are many people, who upon first hearing the demands in the Gospel message, initially reject it, refuse to acknowledge their sin or their need for God in their life, but later on change their minds. But there’s a much deeper teaching in this parable for those who’ve got ears to hear. What is the SPIRIT saying to you today?

One of the primary reasons Christians STOP or DON’T obey Jesus instruction / command is because of FEAR of rejection or non-acceptance of the message they are taking into the world, their friends and relatives.

So they end up being like the son who said, “I will”, but don’t continue to do it. My friends, I want to encourage you to CHANGE YOUR MIND again, go back to Jesus in prayer and say to Him: “Lord I will go for You”. “I will take Your message of Good News, I will believe what You’ve promised; Authority, Power, Persuasion and Presence when I go. I KNOW that You will be working on those to whom you send me, that by Your Holy Spirit, you’ll be drawing people to Yourself. Give me the courage to continue to be obedient to Your Commands and teachings, and to never give up or give in to fear again.” Amen!

What do you think made the reluctant son change his mind?

It could be his conscience was bothering him or perhaps it was the fact it was his own dear father asking him to do the work?

My friends, You’ve been following Jesus for so long, it’s time to be living in obedience.

A Lady Who’s MIND has been CHANGED.

One lady, who was at our meeting with Ying Kai yesterday, said to me last night, “I know so much, but I’ve been doing so little with what I know”... She’s been on course after course, training after training, but hasn’t put very much of what she’s learned into practice. Don’t get me wrong, she’s the sweetest Christian lady you could ever wish to meet, she’s got a real heart for people and loves and gives so much of her time, talents and treasures to Jesus already. But she felt convicted, because there was an area that she’s been neglecting, even though she knew it should be the highest priority in all her service of the Lord. “Sharing the faith” transitioning from service to witness. She felt she just hasn’t learned or been obedient to actually SHARE THE GOSPEL. She said, “I’m going to come out and learn HOW to do it with you”… I’m praying she will come.

It’s NOT what we know, it’s WHO we know that counts. 

The BIGGEST LESSON:

The biggest and strongest message I’ve been learning afresh this week: It’s not what you know that matters, it’s WHO you know. You know Jesus, that’s enough, take what you know about Jesus and how He’s had mercy upon you, how He’s saved you from your sins, cleansed you and forgiven you for so much. Take WHO you know to the people who don’t know Him yet. That’s what Jesus is asking for: Obedience to His Commands.

I’m praising the LORD now, because, even if only ONE person gets this message, this whole week has been a tremendous success for Christ’s Kingdom. However, I know there are MANY MORE brothers and sisters out there, who KNOW they too should be sharing Jesus offer of NEW LIFE with many of their family, friends, neighbours and work-mates and even going farther to share the Gospel with strangers. Some of you have tried and then given up because you didn’t get the response you thought you’d get. Don’t give up, because God didn’t give up on you. Keep going, and keep going back to Jesus again.

Which son will you be?

The one who said, “I will” but didn’t?

Or the one who said, “I won’t, or can’t or it’s not me” but did?

Be like the sweet lady I was talking with last night or the first son in the parable and also Moses, who all said: “I won’t, I can’t, It’s not me”, but eventually gave in and did what the LORD asked them to do.

Be assured that I’m praying for you all, that the LORD will be with you, calling you, equipping you and enabling you to serve Him with your life. Don’t wait for the equipping though, because it comes as we step out in obedience to His Commands.

Thy will be done.

Thy Kingdom Come! Amen.

Praise be to the LORD!

Don.

P.S. Hope you all have an awesome Pentecost Weekend.

We’ve got an Open Air Baptism Service on Sunday: Outside St Luke’s Church.

At 10.30am. No matter what the weather, we’re going to BAPTISE some people tomorrow.

One of the Candidates is a lady called Emma who only gave her life to the LORD on Tuesday. Praise the Lord!

COME!