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1 Corinthians 10:1 - 13
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Thursday, 7 August 2008
ALL IN THE FAMILY
Topic: Matthew 12:46-50
As Jesus was speaking to the crowd, his mother and brothers were outside, wanting to talk with Him. Someone told Jesus, "Your mother and your brothers are outside, and they want to speak to you."

Jesus asked, "Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?" Then He pointed to His disciples and said, "These are my mother and brothers. Anyone who does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother!" Matthew 12:46-50, NLT

Everyone wants to be on the inside. The existence of clubs, secret societies, membership, and associations indicates there is something in all of us that seeks a special identity apart from everyone else. No one wants to be lost in a crowd.

In the instance quoted above, Christ's immediate family tried to pull rank on the larger group Jesus was addressing. The implication in their request is that they expected Jesus to give them priority over the crowd; they wanted Him to stop what He was doing and pay attention to them. We have no idea what the urgency was, it may have even been some important family matter they felt was worthy of an interruption, but Jesus used the opportunity to teach everyone something: He has a much bigger family than His nuclear family, and in that family, everyone has priority.

How does it feel to be a part of Christ's immediate family? We have priority. Even if Mary His mother showed up, Jesus would say, "Just a minute. I know you're my mother, but I'm talking to my mother over here." Our requests receive the same significance as those from Mary, the mother of Jesus, and Christ's earthly brothers. We have privilege, by walking in God's will.

It's a testimony to his humility that one of those brothers waiting to talk to Jesus that day was James, who went on to become one of the most important leaders of the early church, respected by Jews and Gentiles alike, and the author of the New Testament book by his name. When he introduces himself at the beginning of that book, he calls himself: "James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ." James 1:1 Nothing else. You would think he would have thrown in "and brother of Jesus," just for extra measure (I would have), but he did not. He didn't want his place to be seen as any different from anyone else's.

James knew that we could all say we are "the brother/sister of Jesus" by rebirth. He was not in a special position by birth; he was in a special position by a new birth into God's family by faith. The same can be true for each of us.

How can we try to remain humble, given the fact we are considered family with our Lord?

Posted by Prophecies Of Revelation at 5:18 AM CDT
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Sunday, 18 November 2007
THE BOND OF LOVE
Topic: Matthew 12:46-50
"Let me assure you that no one has ever given up anything - home, brothers, sisters, mother, father, children, or property - for love of Me and to tell others the Good News, who won't be given back, a hundred times over, homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and land - with persecution! All these will be his here on earth, and in the world to come he shall have eternal life" (Mark 10:29,30).

Having admonished His disciples to follow Him even at the cost of leaving everything - including mothers and families - behind, Christ is now affirming His consistency with the disciples. Obviously He loved His own mother dearly - one of His last acts before He died on the cross was to be sure that the apostle John would take care of her. Yet the bond of love which Jesus felt toward His disciples, a bond which continues today toward those who truly seek Him with all their hearts, transcends even the bond of love which one experiences in flesh-and-blood relationships, unless those relationships are also rooted in the love of Christ.

Romans 5:8 explains the basis for this bond. The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts through the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit ignites the hearts of true disciples with supernatural love, (agape) in action. That bond of love builds a spiritual family relationship that transcends all others, a relationship that is truly supernatural. In this way our Lord fulfills His promise that everything that is given up to follow Him will be given back a hundred times over in this life.

In every way I will seek to obey the commands of my Father in heaven with the certainty that greater bonds of love will unite my heart with many brothers and sisters. This will demonstrate to the world the validity of the revolutionary, supernatural power of the love of God ignited in our hearts through the Holy Spirit.

Posted by Prophecies Of Revelation at 12:10 PM CST
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