Friday, May 23, 2008

Jesus' Call to Social Justice

Mat 22:35 Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,

Mat 22:36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?

Mat 22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

Mat 22:38 This is the first and great commandment.

Mat 22:39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

Mat 22:40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

Love your neighbor as you love your self. Radical.
If we all did that, what a wonderful world this would be.

Our point here is to emphasize the importance to which Jesus attaches to social justice, or how we treat each other. It is the second greatest commandment!

Many Christians love God or at least say they do, but how many truly love their neighbors as themselves? No where near as many even pretend to do that. Many "Christians" go to Church on Sundays, sing and shout and on Monday through Saturday could care less how their neighbors are doing. Many of us go out of our way to avoid them when we know they need our help, our time, our ...GASP! ... Money!

Some of us say to ourselves, "I've worked hard for everything I have and if they'd just work hard like me they wouldn't need my help", or, "I'm not giving them anything, they'll just go out and use it on drugs", or, "why should they raise my taxes so that those lazy welfare mothers can stay home while I work so hard", there is a host of excuses that sound good until you put them under the light of the Scriptures:

Mat 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
Mat 7:2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
Mat 7:3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
Mat 7:4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
Mat 7:5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

Mat 5:42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.

I know that we've all been persuaded at times by corrupt, demagogic preachers and politicians to think like the world does, but the Lord Jesus Christ commands us to love our neighbors as ourselves.

Who is our neighbor?

Luk 10:29 But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?
Luk 10:30 And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.
Luk 10:31 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.
Luk 10:32 And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.
Luk 10:33 But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,
Luk 10:34 And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
Luk 10:35 And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.
Luk 10:36 Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves?
Luk 10:37 And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.

Notice how Jesus said a priest and a Levite went right by the wounded traveler. Sounds again like the hypocritical group of people that call themselves Christians these days. They'll yell at the top of their lungs for a Constitutional amendment to ban Gay Marriage, or for prayer in schools , and then go out of their way to avoid helping their neighbor in need. They'll sing God Bless America and get all warm and fuzzy about the flag and turn away from the 50 million Americans with no health care. They say little or nothing about the ever-widening gap between the rich and the poor, the 37 million Americans that live in poverty, but crow about how they turned the election for a guy who said he was a Christian. They pray for the soldiers in the middle east and say little or nothing for the over a million innocents who have perished already in that war.


In light of the Scriptures above how do you think Jesus is going to react to the behavior of many "Christians" towards their neighbors?

Mat 7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
Mat 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
Mat 7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Luk 22:31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:
Luk 22:32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

Mat 26:41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.

Let's continue to pray for our faith to overcome the world through Jesus Christ! To be led away from temptation to sin, to believe in the promises of our Lord and not doubt, and to not believe the lies of the enemy. To be delivered from evil and to offer ourselves as little children, humble and obedient.

Pray without ceasing, and never forget that we WILL overcome the world through Christ!

No matter what your bank account says, no matter what the mortgage company says, no matter what your landlord, or employer says believe and do not doubt, you'll overcome through Jesus, you may not get what you want, but you'll get what you need. Believe it.