Did you grow up in a family with siblings? Did you ever disagree on anything with your brothers or sisters? Ever get into an all-out brawl over anything? If you were part of a family with siblings, and you answered no on any of the other questions, you are A) in total denial and unable to process reality correctly; or B) an alien for whom Scully and Mulder have been searching in vain for these two score years.
Point is…families fight. They just do. The Christian church is oft described as the family of God…and we shouldn’t be surprised that as God’s family, we fight too! Jesus is going to give us some instruction concerning this, in a series of sayings that require us to engage in some serious self-inspection.
We’ll be reading Luke 17:1-10 this Sunday (Father’s Day…happy happy! – then it’s off to the beach for Surf N Grill!!!!)
It’s my consideration that v1-2 are a transition, where Jesus is still talking about the bad behavior and attitudes of the Pharisees. We aren’t told to judge them back…but that’s not to say that judgement is non-existent. With eternity in view…what should we feel for those who try to put a stumbling block in our path of faith?
V3-4 change the focus to US. How are WE supposed to deal with offenses within our community of faith? Sluff things off, tell white lies that “nothing’s wrong”….or what does Jesus instruct?
If someone wrongs us, we’re commanded to forgive. Not just once…but open-endedly. How does that work for you?
By v5-10, the disciples are in a panic because this seems like impossible stuff to live out. They need more faith…they really want superpowers to accomplish this change in reaction. But Jesus doesn’t seem to indicate that more faith is the answer. What DOES Jesus indicate as the key to living out this forgiving love in real life?
Should be an interesting read this Sunday…hope to see you there!