Worse than Sodom and Gomorrah?
Matt 11:23-24 are incredibly challenging and humbling words.
The people of Jesus’ day would be under harsher judgment then the homosexual-gang-raping-and-self-absorbed Sodom and Gomorrah.
Consider why that would be. We don’t see behavior that is nearly as outwardly wicked as Sodom and Gomorrah going on in the gospels. From the outside they seemed a pretty religious and moral group: consider their strict sabbath regulations, for instance.
BUT: they had FAR MORE LIGHT. They had Jesus with them and rejected Him. This was the harsher judgment,
So today: we should see what people are doing with the light God has given. In Gods eyes it may receive stricter judgement than Sodom and Gomorrah, even though outwardly it seems much tamer. God help us—I especially think of Western countries that were founded with the light of the gospel.
I am very struck by all the references Jesus makes to the future judgment at the end of the age. And in this judgment there are a lot of wicked who will be banished from Him:
- Matt 7:21-23 – including professing Christians
- Matt 13:36-43
- Matt 13:47-50
- Matt 19:23-24
- Matt 24:48-51
- Matt 25:11-13
- Matt 25:30
- Matt 25:41-46
Purpose and Service
In Matt 20:1-16 there is a profound parable that would probably offend many people’s thoughts of fairness.
At the end of the day, though, the fundamental issue is service toward—AND trust in—God your Master.
What especially stands out to me this time around was the category of people the master/God sought. Namely,
“he saw others standing standing idle in the marketplace” verse 3.
They were aimless and weren’t currently serving anyone. Those were the ones God chose.
Gives me hope for those aimless and idle ones. Any of you looking for purpose and a good master to serve? God wants you!
Polite Disobedience = Disobedience
I’m struck by Jesus’ interactions in Jerusalem in Matt 21 and the response of the “upstanding Jews” of His day.
Jesus welcomes the praises of kids while the chief priests and scribes “were indignant” (21:15). In other words, they were much too respectful for all that.
And then in the parable of the 2 sons, which clearly is a rebuke on these Jewish “authorities” I’m struck that the disobedient one was the polite one. He said, “I go, sir”. While the one who initially disagrees (but later goes) says, “I will not,” (21:29-30).
Notice, no “sir”. Surely the son who said he’d obey (but in reality did not) would’ve been indignant at such impropriety by the other son.
Now consider that. You can be respectable and polite, but totally against God. He’d rather you be real and with Him (or at the very least stop pretending).
The Mission Continues
Reading Matthew 28 afresh I’m struck by how little mention of celebration there is with Jesus resurrecting. No doubt that was there as seen in other gospel accounts of it, but here in Matthew the focus and climax of the resurrection account seems to include the “Great Commission”.
In other words, His resurrection was pivotal for the work to continue—not cease.
Until we reach glory, may all who celebrate this miracle and foundation of Christianity be inspired to KEEP GOING because He rose—not stop.