Thursday, August 16, 2007

first responses

Thank God we're not tied down to our first responses when we are disobedient to God and his will. Of course when we do agree to obey then we need to follow through with down to earth obedience.

Jesus told the story of two sons. The first son refused to obey his father, but then turned around and obeyed him. The second son said that he would obey his father, but then failed to do so. Jesus then likened the repentant tax collectors and sinners to the first son, and the unrepentant religious leaders to the second son.

Too often my initial reactions show unbelief and other sin in some form. When life hits me with the unexpected, especially in disappointing ways, what can spill out of me is not pretty at times, an indicator, all too true of what's in my heart. But we can and need to change and act differently so that we obey God, instead. Repentance is not just initial entrance into the kingdom of God, but it continues throughout our lives as those who would continue to follow Christ and be changed more and more into his likeness.

Of course neither do we want to say, "Yes, Lord," but then fail to follow through what our lips say with our entire lives.

What might you like to add to this?


Ted M. Gossard said...

This post is kind of surfacy.

The sinners were open to the way of the kingdom of God, and the religious leaders were blind to it.

Anonymous said...

what is the lesson here...some were following Jesus and some were following _____? what would be in the blank...themselves? the law? the world? greed? an illusion of themselves? they got lost and did not realize it, could not see it, were too blinded to be able to see. why were they too blind to be able to see? why could the tax collector see what the leaders could not see?

Ted M. Gossard said...

Nancy, Good questions. I think an attitude of seeking God and his kingdom in one's life or being open to that, or finding oneself open to that is key here.

Oddly enough many of the Jewish religious leaders were not open to that, though as in Joseph of Arimathea (my memory here) and Nicodemus, some were.

My first response needs to be dictated or moved in God and by the reality of his kingdom come in Jesus. So that I develop eyes to see everything in view of that.