I do mostly exposition preaching at church. Keeping the verses and history in context. We have been going through the Gospel of Luke the last several months. Amazing writing from a historian, physician, musician and theologian inspired by the Holy Spirit.
Seeing God’s grace through Jesus’ life is overwhelming time and time again. His willingness to forgive, without penalty, our past trespasses. Jesus is the opposite of what we see happening in our world today.
There is an incident in Luke chapter 11, verses 14-28, that I find amazing. Jesus is hit with being discredited by those that opposed Him. He is the recipient of the most vile and hateful insults… and yet, He responds with, what can be seen as an apologetic approach in explaining, for the benefit of those accusing Him, to see the truth of Who He actually is. The Saving Messiah.
Luke 11:14 And He was casting out a demon, and it was mute. So it was, when the demon had gone out, that the mute spoke; and the multitudes marveled. 15 But some of them said, “He casts out demons by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons.”
That name Beelzebub was another name for a wick false god called Baal in scripture. Evil worship and vile acts done its name. And to make matter worse, the reference to “lord of the flies” comes from this false god. And where do you find flies?in garbage, human and animal bodily waste. This was a huge attack and insult of Jesus! But if we see the rest of the verses, Jesus, the Creator and Sustainer of all life, doesn’t wipe them out. He offers grace. He shows them the error of their thinking in the following verses (16-22) and then lets them know, they need to make a choice. Verse 23 “He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters.”
Look, there are two people on this planet. Those that love God and those that do not. There is no in-between. People think that they can try to clean themselves up and make their lives better. And everyone can for a short time. But Jesus tells us about our nature and the nature of the enemy of our souls in verse 24-26. Very insightful. If we do not allow the Holy Spirit to come into our hearts and lives and take up resident and bring a real heart and life change, our lives will never get better. We’ll continue to try and do better. We quit drinking, only to go on a huge bender, we try to control our anger, only to let it build up until we say and do tings we thought we’d never say or do and hurt others. So many areas of life this applies to. Sin is wicked. We need someone stronger than the enemy and stronger than ourselves to help us find help and hope and bring forgiveness and grace to us. That is Jesus!
One last thought. Those wicked and hateful that spoke to Jesus. Jesus didn’t write them off. He explained to them why they were wrong. Do not write off people indoor life that seem to hate God right now. Jesus and didn’t we do not et to either. Read and study and know the Gospel message that you can share it when the time is right. If God can save me, if He can save you, He can still save anyone!
The writer is the pastor of the Cornerstone Assembly of God in Sidney.