Message for December 15, 2013 from Pastor Jerry

Is this not the carpenter, the son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon?  And are not His sisters here with us.” So they were offended at Him.” Mk. 6:3(NKJV)

What is it like to do everything you can for the good of someone, and then to be rejected by them?  What kind of a reaction should one have?  If you have never been rejected by someone you have never tried very hard to help anyone.  Why would you offend anyone by trying to help them?  Is it because they do not want the help or they don’t want it from you?

        One of the first questions we ask ourselves is, “What did I do wrong?”  We examine ourselves to see what fault we have that led to our rejection.  Why is it always our fault and not the one who rejected us?  Were my motives pure and my desire genuinely to help someone?

        What were Jesus’ motives when He went to His own country, town, and family?  Did He go unprepared to minister or just to upset them with His teaching?  Those who heard Him were amazed at the wisdom conveyed by His teaching.  They were in awe of the mighty works done by His hands.  Yet, they were offended at Him because of whom they thought He was.  His background was not covered in mystery.  They knew Him well and knew His history.  To them He was an uneducated local boy who had no right to talk to them the way He did.  To them He was nothing special.  They had known Him all His life.

        The important thing was not what the people thought of Him and His work but what He thought about Himself.  He was without fault, sinless and He knew what He was doing was honest and God ordained.  Most people would have faltered under the peoples’ offense because of uncertainty about themselves.  What is one to do?

        We need to make sure we are being led by the Spirit of God.  If we please Him, what else matters?  For over 33 years I have poured out my life trying to help people here at New Life.  The ministry has never been about me but some people have not seen this.  You can’t help but think about all the people over the years that have gotten help here and then for some reason or other became offended and left.  You carry that with you as pastor and try to search yourself for the answer.  Then you finally realize that people do what they want to do.  Endure, quit, or choose an easier path.  I’m not better than Jesus.  I have no right to be offended at the ones offended at me.  Even though He was rejected He never changed His vision.  Neither can we.

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