“Limited Understanding of our Limitless God”
Luke 9:37-48 “This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!” (vs. 35)
After one day of being refreshed in prayer and the powerful witness of God via the transfiguration, verse 37 tells us that Jesus goes right back to work. ____________________
While Jesus was on the mountain, the 9 other disciples were in the village and they were struggling to minister to the young boy who was brought to them. Matthew 17:14-15 provides this information: “And when they had come to the multitude, a man came to Him, kneeling down to Him and saying, “Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic (moonstruck) and suffers severely; for he often falls into the fire and often into the water.” So by these two accounts we see that Jesus is dealing with a physical disease (epilepsy) as well as a spiritual condition (a demon) in this child. _______________________________________________
Jesus answer concerning the disciples failure to heal has broad implications: “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you and bear with you?” This phrase seems to come from Deuteronomy 32 where it is used twice with a direct linkage to lack of faith.
This may be instructive for us. _________________________________________________
The solution is the last phrase of verse 41: “Bring your son here.” Meaning bring the boy, bring the people to Jesus._____________________________________________________
So Luke says Jesus exerted His authority over the unclean spirit. “Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, healed the child, and gave him back to his father.” (verse 42) __________________
___________________________________________________________________________ This is the ministry of reconciliation and according to Paul, this is the ministry of the Church. Remember at the start of this chapter we read that Jesus sent out the twelve with power to heal diseases and with authority over demons. In slightly more than a week we see the disciples unable to operate according to the Lord’s instructions with any success.
Verse 43 says “everyone marveled at all the things which Jesus did.” But the Lord didn’t want the disciples to get caught up like the crowd did. So He turns to them and says, “Let these words sink down into your ears, for the Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men.” ____________________________________________________________________ Faith comes by hearing and Jesus is trying to establish a foundation for the disciples because His betrayal is near. His enemies, the religious leaders, will soon take him into custody and the disciples will be scattered like sheep without a shepherd. In verse 45, Luke lets us in on the consensus that he had learned from all the disciples after the fact: “They did not understand this saying, and it was hidden from them”.
I think what follows is a great warning to us. Jesus talks about betrayal and the disciples decide they need to establish a priority list, a succession plan that establishes the pecking order going forward. Instead of humility we see pride and infighting. So Jesus uses the most innocent example He came find, a child. If you want to be great in the kingdom understand how great every human being is because they are God’s creation. Receive others as Jesus receives us and we will know the Father. God is what makes all people important. He loves them. He made us all and we need not compete for his attention. Hear Him!
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