Life presents many opportunities for us to grow in our spiritual walk. Many times we miss these learning experiences because of our preoccupation with self-appointed priorities. We may also miss these teaching invitations due to our religious baggage. Jesus used many daily occurrences to instruct His followers. One of the difficulties that He faced was correcting their misunderstanding of the Truth. Today, for the Truth to be accepted by the spirit of man, it has to break through human misconceptions and doctrines.
Sharing with other Believers has been a very difficult road for me. Whenever I say anything that might challenge another’s theology, their defense barrier goes up and their attentiveness diminishes. I desire to share with others what I believe the Holy Spirit has shown me, but some will not accept anything that steps over their spiritual border. Over the years, I have had Scripture expose the errors of my preconceived beliefs and teachings, and, as a result, I have fallen to my knees in submission to the Truth. I have asked forgiveness for wrong interpretations, and have sought opportunities to rectify my erroneous teaching. As I see my sunset approaching, I want more than ever to press toward the Truth. I urge every Believer to reaffirm your faith in God’s Word, and to open your hearts and minds to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Too many are coasting in the knowledge they have acquired through the years. It is time to reawaken that hunger for the Word of God!
Jesus conducted mobile classrooms on many occasions. As they would be walking, Jesus would see an opportunity to bring an illustrated teaching to His Apostles. On one particular day, His students took notice of a blind man sitting by the side of the road, and asked Jesus whether his own sin or the sin of his parents had caused this man to be blind. (John 9:2) The Jewish people had been taught through the Law that physical calamity was basically a result of sin. There seems to be a carryover to some groups of Christians today that believe sin and sickness are related. (There are certain cases where sin and sickness are enjoined, but not all sickness is related to personal or family sin.) Jesus simply told them that it is not a question of why, but rather, how the opportunity presented itself to bring glory to God. (John 9:3) Why are we so interested in wondering the why of something, rather than the answer to the problem? When will we start focusing on bringing relief, instead of trying to find the reason for the flaw? If we take the latter approach, we could open the door to judging someone. Later on, there may be an opportunity to share what might have caused their negative situation, but it must never precede the restoration!
Jesus tells His men that together they are to carry on the ministry that God had given to Him: to “work the works” of God. (John 9:4 NAS) Jesus and His Apostles were to reach out together to bring glory to God. I wonder how many Believers today are pursuing a self-initiated ministry. The only way Christians will have a successful outreach is if Jesus is in them and working with and through them. Many churches offer countless programs with the hope of drawing more people to their fellowships. These endeavors might cause a momentary jump in attendance, but in the long run they fail to achieve a long standing difference. Jesus with His followers is the combination that will cause both numerical and spiritual growth. Jesus pointed out to His Apostles that time was of the essence. He was the light, but that light would briefly go out. When God forsook His Son on the Cross, darkness filled the land. (Mark 15:33) No one would work the works of God. Some of the Apostles even went back to fishing. When Jesus rose again, He announced that the Kingdom work would begin again. For the next forty days, He would conduct an advanced course on ministry. (Acts 1:3) He then commissioned them to begin fulfilling the works of God once again. But Jesus told them not to begin until they were filled with the power of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 1:8) He had also assured them that He would be with them forever. (Matthew 28:18-20) Approximately ten days later, the Holy Spirit fell upon the Apostles and the working for the Kingdom resumed in power. May God grant us understanding as to the intent of His Word!