Focus On the Right Mission

Message:  Today Matthew 10 stood out to me as bright as a neon sign. Jesus was instructing the 12 apostles to go and reach the lost children of Israel before reaching the Gentile nations. He gave them firm instructions and warned them that they will not be well received by many but to shake off the dust from their feet and move on. The verse that really stood out was verse 34. “Don’t assume that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.” He continues to say that he came to turn man against his father, a daughter against her mother etc. This sounds so unlike Jesus because we all think of Jesus as the nice one who wants everyone to get along. Jesus is not an enabler. He came with a purpose to reach the lost and he came to do it his way. The gospel itself will divide because it can’t be handled casually. It is a life changing decision that can’t be compromised. Jesus literally called us to share the gospel and stay focused in our purpose. As I read this I thought about the current state of our country. There are Christians currently fighting for a political candidate. They are so convinced that this candidate is God’s choice that they are using the name of Jesus to endorse him. They see this as a fight against good and evil, right and wrong, the kingdom of God against the kingdom of darkness. The problem is that they are fighting for the wrong kingdom. Jesus clearly said “my kingdom is not of this world” and we’ve seen this scenario before. When Jesus came as the promised Messiah the Jews had plans in mind that Jesus should overthrow the Roman government and rule and reign with them just like God had promised. This was not the plan. The plan was his death on the cross and because the Jews fought so hard for the plan they thought was God’s, they literally found themselves fighting against God himself. Instead, Jesus reminded them that this world was not his kingdom. They were to fight for another kingdom. He taught them to spread the gospel in spite of the state of the world and their government. He was not interested in reforming Israel and they were his chosen people. He had a global plan to change the world one person at a time. When we put our hope in a political candidate, we are putting our government in the place of a king and priest. We are not going to win the world by using our government to moralize our nation. We have to stay focused and on target with his instructions. We were commanded to preach the good news of the gospel to those who will hear it. When we stay focused on that task, the world will change with or without governments. We have to grasp the fact that God is bigger than our political system and his plan is so much higher than everything an elected official could ever do. We weren’t called to force Christian morals on the world. We were called to spread the gospel and let the truth of the gospel work its perfect work in the hearts of man one soul at a time. Let’s not get side-tracked on another mission. There is only one mission we were called to.

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