March 1, 2019
What was the focus of Jesus’ life while He was here on earth? Based on Luke 19:10, for the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost,” so He came to give people something they couldn’t get anywhere else. Jesus had and has a loving heart and a desire that none should perish… but He also isn’t in to wasting His or our time. 2 Peter 3:9 says, the Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. Instead He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
Most or a lot of the people Jesus witnessed to, came to Him. They mainly wanted something, healing, food, answers, but nonetheless, they seeked Him out. The crowds followed Jesus. The crowd was awakened and brought back to reality though a couple of times, but the instance that stands out to me is found in Luke.
In Luke chapter 14 Jesus is telling stories and parables of the banquet and of eating, and we can tell from Scripture and even now days, that food brings in a crowd. The requirements and expectations that Jesus gave in those parables are fairly “simple” compared to what’s coming. Jesus said two main points, be humble (put others first) and put Jesus first above all else. To the crowd that probably sounded somewhat doable.
Jesus now shifts the topic from food and eating, to something more challenging. Jesus proceeds to tell the crowd, why start something that you can’t complete. Why lay a foundation when you can’t afford to finish the building? Why go to war before examining the situation and seeing if you are able to have victory? “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples. Luke 14:26-27, 33
Does God want people to come to Him and find Salvation in Him? ABSOLUTELY! However… God is looking for TRUE repentance, He’s looking for a TRUE relationship with Himself. God doesn’t want some superficial relationship.
That’s why so many times in the Bible the people who receive this gift from God have nothing. The people who are lacking earthy rewards find something so much better.
On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matthew 9:12-13
When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Matthew 9:36
Does Jesus expect a lot, you bet, but Jesus also intends on giving a lot. Jesus shared the Gospel with people who wanted to hear. (Obviously I’m not Christ and I don’t know who is being drawn to Him, but Christ knew who truly wanted to find Him.)
When I first started this particular post, the title I put on it was “With Whom Did Jesus Share the Gospel?” The answer… Christ shared the Gospel with everyone, but Christ was looking for the people in the crowd who were interested and willing to give up EVERYTHING!