I often think about Jesus teaching in the synagogues and market places. Those in attendance wanted to be there; it wasn’t like religion class or Sunday school, where most are in attendance because they’re obligated to be there. No. In Jesus’ school, everyone wanted to be there.
He taught them what they needed to know to make it through each day and not get caught in the snares. It wasn’t a pep talk; it wasn’t about how God wants you joyful; it wasn’t about tapping into God’s blessings and living the high life here and now. No. It was about how to make it day by day in a fallen world that will drag you down if you let it. It was about how to get to Heaven. It was about how to avoid going to Hell.
It was spiritual mother’s milk for the spiritually starving, because then, as now, the religious establishment was all but useless when it came to proper feeding. And not having the true spiritual mother’s milk, the religious establishment could only provide an artificial formula that kept people alive, but just barely. And that was the point. Did they want people spiritually thriving? No. Because then they’d see through the corruption and artificiality that passed for spirituality in a fallen world. They wanted them just alive enough to keep paying their tributes and taxes and tithes and shipping and handling.
Jesus was perpetually on the move in his ministry years. Today, that is referred to as being an “itinerant preacher”, with the implication that being itinerant is somehow less valid than staying in one place. But Jesus wasn’t itinerant because he was less valid. No. He was itinerant because that was his job description. Being itinerant is the nature of being a preacher, so the phrase “itinerant preacher” is actually a tautology.
A tautology is phrase where the descriptive word is redundant, like “wet rain” or “cold ice”. Of course rain is wet and ice is cold. There is no need to include those descriptors because rain can’t be anything other than wet or ice anything other than cold. No. Just as a preacher can’t be anything other than itinerant if the preacher is really a preacher
I started this blog a few years ago with the intention of reaching out to those who are born again, whether newly or otherwise. I wanted to provide a service, a guide, a sounding board, a head pat, a few words of encouragement, a few words of warning, a sign post pointing to God, a friendly wave from a stranger passing by on a train, and the occasional kick to the butt. These are things we want to do for each other, when we’re born again. We want to help. We want to guide. We want to protect. We want to warn. There are so few of us and our numbers are shrinking daily. We are not, like the armies of anti-christs, growing in numbers. No. We are shrinking. Every morning we wake up, there are fewer and fewer of us, and the world around us is growing colder and darker.
We know it must be like this because Jesus said it would be. He didn’t tell us this to discourage us. No. He told us so that we would have the courage to see things as they are and to know that he spoke the truth. What must come to pass must come to pass. God’s justice is perfect. The journey is long and hard but the ending is happy. We know this because we know that Jesus spoke the truth. And knowing he spoke the truth, we can have the courage to see things as they are and not be discouraged.
Each of us it charged with the task of being like Jesus in the synagogues and market places. Each of us is charged with reaching out to those who want to know the truth and feeding them until they’re strong enough to feed themselves and others. There are only a few of us now, and we’re becoming fewer and fewer by the day. But just because we’re fewer doesn’t mean we’re weaker. On the contrary. One believer must now do the spiritual work of a hundred and ten the work of a thousand. God will provide the strength to those who are willing.
All you need to do is say “Yes” and make yourself available. God will do the rest.
Say “Yes”. Say “Yes”. Say “Yes”.