Sweep ’em in and sweep ’em out!

Reading Time: 4 Minutes

Who is the Messiah?

John 7.25-27 Now some of the people of Jerusalem were saying, “Is not this the man whom they are trying to kill? 26 And here he is, speaking openly, but they say nothing to him! Can it be that the authorities really know that this is the Messiah? 27 Yet we know where this man is from; but when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.”

The people were looking for a Messiah. Exactly what were they hoping to see in the Messiah?

(1) They were looking for a human leader, physically descended from the line of King David.

(2) They were looking for this leader to end centuries of oppression from foreign powers, to rebuild the Temple, and to usher in an age of peace.

Some people thought Jesus was the Messiah, while others plotted to kill him. Even those who hated Jesus, at least took him seriously. What a contrast that is to people today who claim to believe in Jesus, but who largely ignore him.

Jesus restates his purpose

John 7.28-29 Then Jesus cried out as he was teaching in the temple, “You know me, and you know where I am from. I have not come on my own. But the one who sent me is true, and you do not know him. 29 I know him, because I am from him, and he sent me.”

I wrote in an earlier article that Dr. Frank Laubach found forty-six statements similar to the ones in these two verses. Dr. Laubach attempted to imitate Jesus and only do what he saw the heavenly Father doing. His amazing legacy is a testimony to what happens when we daily live the Jesus-kind-of-life.

We can believe Jesus’ words and actions to be true, because he completely serves his Father in heaven. There is absolutely no self-interest or self-serving in his actions. In addition, his mission is to bring the best life possible to people everywhere.

When authority is threatened

John 7.30-31Then they tried to arrest him, but no one laid hands on him, because his hour had not yet come. 31 Yet many in the crowd believed in him and were saying, “When the Messiah comes, will he do more signs than this man has done?”

Reverend Broomfield was an old African-American preacher friend of mine in Louisiana. The first time I met him, he said, “Name’s Broomfield. I sweep ’em and I sweep ’em out.” I learned a lot from Reverend Broomfield and treasured his friendship.

Like Reverend Broomfield, Jesus swept people in and he swept people out.

Some people see miracles of transformed life and seek to know Jesus for themselves. Others see the same thing and turn away from Jesus. Still others actively persecute Jesus’ followers.

Your Turn

Throughout all of church history, difficult times have been a signal to seek the Lord. What better way to seek the Lord than to attempt to imitate Jesus’ life. A relationship with Jesus that helps us to know and to do God’s will is exactly what is needed today. Let’s pursue it today. Thanks for reading.

Today’s Prayer

Dear God, I want to imitate Jesus. I desire to know you and to do your will. No longer will I live according to my own best thinking. I will see what you are doing in the world and join you in your work.

3 Comments

  1. As we sit in amazement daily at this sweeping coronavirus and the rapid changes in our government’s reactions to it, I can’t help but think about the plagues of Bible times. How did they spread the word of famine, disease and self-protection without the immediacy of the internet?? We think we are so much better and sophisticated than the ancient cultures…but are we? I don’t know if this is God getting our attention or if it is just more of the evil in our day. Obviously, God is allowing it to spread. So, I think we need to look for Him in this. What do You desire from us, Lord? More worship? More prayer? More bold witness for You? One thing I am certain of…our God of the Bible is One of relationship, not isolation. Of faith, not fear. Of hope, not helplessness. There are many who rely on “church” as their family, support, friends, encouragement. I come to Hebrews 10:25 “And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of His return is drawing near.” We must get creative and be open to God’s leading so that we don’t fall headlong into the enemy’s trap of isolation. We are mandated to follow man’s rule in our lives, but we are also to honor God with our lives and obedience to Him. Pray, fellow believers, pray!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. When we look at all the things we can’t do, it’s daunting. So trying to think of the things we can do is a little more difficult takes a little more time a little more searching a little more boldness there are things we can do and not endanger ourselves or others and still spread the love of Jesus I’m trying to find those things I’m trying to be open to cause bleeding I’m trying to be brave.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Denise and Donna. I feel that God is taking some of our idols (sports, money, entertainment) and removing them from us. In some ways this is fasting from the things that keep us from God. Quite frankly, I have some way to go. I really like the way I lived my life prior to the virus. God wants something from me and from us, I believe. I am working on responding to his direction. Hope this makes sense. Thanks for your contributions.

    Like

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