Sunday, September 19, 2010

Measure Up to the LORD – (because he won’t measure down to you…)

NIV Matthew 11.1-24

John the Baptist was in jail and sent some of his disciples to see if Jesus was the one they were looking for. Jesus told them what was happening and told them to go back and let John know what you hear and see. John’s disciples had first-hand knowledge of what Jesus was doing. They left to report back to John and then the LORD began to give a testimony about John the Baptist and himself and the coming judgment of those who did not repent after the miracles that the LORD performed.

Two (2) Points I want to make here:

1- Doesn’t matter what you do or how you perform in your service to the Lord - you will never measure up to some people’s expectations – being more concerned about meeting the LORD’s expectations will help you get over this!

2- Be concerned about measuring up to the LORD’s expectations and that you respond properly to the things you hear and see!

Jesus said, we didn’t dance to your tune! You expected X and got Y. Because you got Y, you came to the wrong conclusions about us. We need to make sure we reach the right conclusion regarding who Jesus is. Like I have said in the past, your eternal zip code depends on it! There are some people out there that you will never measure up to even if you were the greatest human being born of man like John the Baptist or Jesus Christ - God himself! But know this: “Wisdom is proved right by her actions (children)!” Someone once said “The proof is in the pudding?” Jesus said in Vs 4 – “Go back and report to John what you hear and see: The blind receive their sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor.” You can’t argue with success! If you don’t dance to the tune that some people play or don’t respond in the expected way, after they sing a song – well… they can be hard on you. They had nasty things to say about John the Baptist and Jesus. The judgment can be harsh when you don’t perform to their level of expectation. If you are feeling bad about what some people think of your performance, ask yourself one question: Am I trying to win the approval of men or God? The Apostle Paul wrote that about himself to the Galatians 1.10. If you are truly serving the LORD, after perhaps the initial rejection by men, when you come back to your senses you will have solace that it doesn’t matter what anyone thinks about your performance.

Many people think that God operates in a particular way, as they conceive of him in their minds, based on their imagination. We can be assured the Lord’s judgment will not be measured out according to our expectations or imaginations. Vs 20-25. We truly should be concerned about measuring up to his expectations. Judgment will be based on what he has done “miracles that were performed” (mentioned 3x’s, see verses 20; 21; 25) and not on what we expected him to do.

Here is a small part of what Matthew Henry wrote in his commentary:

Matthew Henry – On Matthew 11

II. That what Christ said concerning John, was intended not only for his praise, but for the people's profit, to revive the remembrance of John's ministry, which had been well attended, but which was now (as other such things used to be) strangely forgotten: they did for a season, and but for a season, rejoice in his light, Joh_5:35. “Now, consider, what went ye out into the wilderness to see? Put this question to yourselves.” 1. John preached in the wilderness, and thither people flocked in crowds to him, though in a remote place, and an inconvenient one. If teachers be removed into corners, it is better to go after them than to be without them. Now if his preaching was worth taking so much pains to hear it, surely it was worth taking some care to recollect it. The greater the difficulties we have broken through to hear the word, the more we are concerned to profit by it. 2. They went out to him to see him; rather to feed their eyes with the unusual appearance of his person, than to feed their souls with his wholesome instructions; rather for curiosity than for conscience. Note, Many that attend on the word come rather to see and be seen, than to learn and be taught, to have something to talk of, than to be made wise to salvation. Christ puts it to them, what went ye out to see? Note, They who attend on the word will be called to an account, what their intentions and what their improvements were. We think when the sermon is done, the care is over; no, then the greatest of the care begins. It will shortly be asked, “What business had you such a time at such an ordinance? What brought you thither? Was it custom or company, or was it a desire to honour God and get good? What have you brought thence? What knowledge, and grace, and comfort? What went you to see?” Note, When we go to read and hear the word, we should see that we aim right in what we do.

1 comment:

  1. Very encouraging Bro Mark... Its easy to let ourselves fall into routine and end up going to hear the word for the wrong motives or reasons, and let ourselves be slack in what we are supposed to do with the word. We can't be stopped by the thoughts of men looking down on us, or be moved only by wanting to earn the praise of men. Either will leave you short of what the Lord has called you to, and what He has appointed you to do... Thank you for the encouragment!