Today's sermon* was from Luke 21:37-22:13. In it we see four different groups of people:
Luke 21:37-38 we see the Fickle Masses:
37Each day Jesus was teaching at the temple, and each evening he went out to spend the night on the hill called the Mount of Olives, 38and all the people came early in the morning to hear him at the temple.
Big crowds don't mean success! These same people called for his crucifiction just days later. (Luke 23:18-19) 1 Peter 2:25 is the remedy for those prone to follow the crowd.
Luke 22:1-2 we see the Hostile Opponent:
1Now the Feast of Unleavened Bread, called the Passover, was approaching, 2and the chief priests and the teachers of the law were looking for some way to get rid of Jesus, for they were afraid of the people.They knew the crowds were hoping for a political Messiah and feared a revolt. The priests were so angry, they were blinded. So many people today are so angry with church, with religion, or with Christianity (and sometimes I don't blame them). But we must remember that Jesus is not religion!
Luke 22:3-6 we see the Religious Fake
3Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, one of the Twelve. 4And Judas went to the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard and discussed with them how he might betray Jesus. 5They were delighted and agreed to give him money. 6He consented, and watched for an opportunity to hand Jesus over to them when no crowd was present.
Isn't it amazing that none of the disciples knew it was Judas? A person can come so close to God's Kingdom and still not know Him. This betrayal was foretold in Psalm 41:9. Jesus' life was threatened before, but all of this was happening in God's timing (John 12:23).
Luke 22:7-13 we see the Faithful Servants
7Then came the day of Unleavened Bread on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. 8Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, "Go and make preparations for us to eat the Passover." 9"Where do you want us to prepare for it?" they asked. 10He replied, "As you enter the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him to the house that he enters, 11and say to the owner of the house, 'The Teacher asks: Where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?' 12He will show you a large upper room, all furnished. Make preparations there." 13They left and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover.
The disciples did not argue that 1) it was a real estate impossibility that they would find lodging during this feast with a million extra people entering the city, 2) they would find a man carrying a water jug, a chore done only by women during that time, 3) that they had not taken a Martha Stewart course in how to lay out a banquet.
We exhibit our faithfulness through our service. We cannot say we're Christians and not serve.
Which group do you fit into?
*Pastor Kevin Short's sermons can be heard here.