What I read today;
Romans 11; Matthew 11; Isaiah 11; Job 11; Joshua 11; Genesis 11
Matthew 11 verses 25-30 is the section of scripture that changed my life.
We are surrounded by noise in this world we live in. Teachings jump all around. Preachers are made famous by grabbing single sections of scripture and building entire careers on them. Some promise riches, other demand you live a certain way. In the end, people are harassed and hopeless.
Jesus however, has a different idea.
In Matthew 11 vs. 25-26, Jesus goes after the highly learned. He says that in spite of all the learning they’ve done, they still lake the Holy Spirit. While they can spout the law, the highly educated elites, do not have the Holy Spirit to really interpret the truth. They have the head knowledge but not have heart knowledge. Instead, he blessed the simple people with the gifts of the holy spirit. The very people that the elites look down upon. Most importantly, he says that not only is the fact that the simple have become more knowledgeable, but God has also decided that is the way it should be.
In Matthew 11 vs. 27, Jesus then announces that God has given him all authority on heaven and earth. He tells the crowd that not only does Jesus have the authority, but he chooses who will receive the message and understand it. Jesus knows who will turn on him. He knows who will follow him.
Matthew 11 vs. 28, Jesus extends his arms wide and calls all who have been beaten up by legalistic teachings to come to Jesus. More importantly, he promises rest from the guilt and shame that the legalists require.
Jesus goes on in verse 29 to extend to all around him the promise that if you will come and learn from Jesus himself that you will find rest for your soul. His teaching will not be burdensome. It won’t require a seminary degree to determine where you fit in. You will be learning from Jesus directly now.
Finally, in verse 30, Jesus makes one more promise. His yoke is easy, and his burden light. Does your church make you feel more burdened? Do you feel like you have demands placed on your back because of all the requirements? Does it feel more like a 30 steps to peace and prosperity club when you attend church?
If it does, then you might want to re-evaluate what you are doing on Sunday.
This was how Jesus explained what our spiritual lives should look like:
Matthew 11 vs. 28-30, “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”NRSV
If your church doesn’t feel like this to you, maybe you need a new church?