Matthew 9; Two Groups of Church People


I am writing today from the beautiful Florida Keys.

And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.  Matthew 9:2

 

Luke gives a little more detail; “And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judaea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was [present] to heal them.  And, behold, men brought in a bed a man which was taken with a palsy: and they sought [means] to bring him in, and to lay [him] before him.  And when they could not find by what [way] they might bring him in because of the multitude, they went upon the housetop, and let him down through the tiling with [his] couch into the midst before Jesus. And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee.  Luke 5:18-20

 

Here we see the doctors of the law and Pharisees, the religious big shots sitting around with Jesus in a house. How important they must have felt to be able to debate theology with Jesus, or on the other hand, thought how important He must feel to be able to debate theology with them.  Meanwhile some people show up who have been bringing people to Jesus. Notice they could not get in because of the people blocking the way. Who was blocking the way? The big shots, who wanted to sit around and debate theology. Here we have to groups of people. One group is in the church, but blocking the way for others to come. Do we do the same today? Do we block people out who are not as old as us, rich as us, who just don’t think exactly like us? The second group were out bringing someone to Jesus. The man may not have even had faith, but when Jesus saw their faith He healed him. So this man, may not have been like the others who brought him to Jesus. The people bringing him to Jesus were not  bent on getting the man to think exactly like them, they were just bent on bringing him to Jesus! Also the people bringing him to Jesus were not about to let the so called religious big shots keep this man away from Jesus.

 

So which group are in? Are you sitting in church, maybe even next to Jesus, but to you the church is just an exclusive club? Or are you in the second group, where you are busy bringing people to Jesus?

 

Notice too, they were willing to tear the house apart to get him in to meet Jesus. How much do we read into that if anything at all? Of course our standards and doctrine cannot be altered. However, I sadly remember being a Bible Worker in a church long ago that was made up mostly of older people. A young couple joined our church, and I began Bible studies with their teenage cousin and a few of her friends.  Three of them got baptized with her! They did not stay long though. They  wanted to become active in the church and the older people became threatened by their presence. One older lady in the church actually told me, “William, don’t let these kids take over our church!” I was shocked! What made this lady think it was her church in the first place! I thought it was God’s church! Sadly these teenagers did not last long in the church. Sadly that church is still struggling to exist even today.  Isn’t it our calling to bring people to Jesus?

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