Read Lk 4.16-31a
And all were speaking well of Him, and wondering at the gracious words which were falling from His lips; and they were saying, “Is this not Joseph’s son?”
And all the people in the synagogue were filled with rage as they heard these things;
Jesus was teaching His hometown crowd in Nazareth and He had them eating out of His hand. Suddenly, He aims His message at their hearts. He cuts to the chase by describing how they will respond when He tells them the truth. He uses the example of Old Testament Gentiles being more receptive to God’s message than the Jews. The Prophet’s prediction is immediately fulfilled. The comparison pushes His audience over the edge and within minutes they go from admiration to rage.
Why did Jesus do that? Didn’t He know that you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar? Maybe He wasn’t trying to catch flies! Jesus certainly knew what He was doing. He was always calculated in His teaching. This audience would have stayed in a superficial state of religion had Jesus not stirred things up. He wanted them to be real and expose their innermost attitudes. The truth (Jesus) always has that effect. The light blazes into the darkness of our hearts and there is nowhere to hide.
This is actually the toughest part of disciplemaking for me. I would rather be liked than to help a person see their error. How selfish. If the integrity bridge is out in a man’s heart, how will he avoid spiritual disaster unless I warn him? Disciplemakers do the loving thing by telling the truth. Sometimes it’s gently and other times it comes with blunt force trauma. Truth should always be told in love with the object to heal but the truth must be told none the less. The truth and people’s relationship with Jesus must always be more important than our reputations. Disciplemakers must be willing to go from hero to zero for the sake of the flock. FJ42
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