Sunday, November 11, 2012



At the end of Luke chapter 10 is the renowned setting in the home of Martha and Mary.

As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!"
"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed-or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."

Martha was probably the older sister to Mary and they obviously had two very different personalities. Martha found herself doing all the work in preparing for her guests and Mary was focused on the guests, namely the guest, Jesus. When she realized what was happening, she complains to Jesus about her sister and wanted Him to tell her to help out a bit. Martha displays three problem issues with a fourth that most assuredly was present in her heart.

1. Martha was distracted from paying attention to her guests. 2. Martha was worried whether the preparations would get done. 3. Martha was upset with her sister's lack of concern and help. 4. Martha was most likely harboring some resentment that she was the only one concerned about getting all of the preparation work done.

Jesus' response to Martha's complaint was classic. He points out two things here. FIRST-Very few things are really necessary. SECOND-Only one thing is needed-only one focus is necessary. Jesus seems to be saying that Martha has lost her focus. Jesus says there is one thing that is necessary for her focus. What do you think it is?

I think it is precisely what was quoted in the previous paragraph. Remember? LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND; AND LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF. Jesus is saying nothing else is necessary.

This has been my life theme for quite some time. In fact, I have said many times that this is something I want placed on my tombstone-IT JUST DOESN'T MATTER!

There may be one more thing here in this scenario. It is too easy to become distracted by the many things pulling on our lives throughout the day-and, throughout the night. It's so easy to be caught up in thinking that we must be busy doing something all the time. This busyness seems to be the dues we pay for playing in this game of life. We wouldn't want anyone to think that we are slowing down or that we have too much time on our hands.

Everyone wants to feel like he is accomplishing something, keeping up with the Joneses, or winning in the rat race in this pressure-cooker world. The problem is that even if you win the rat race, you're still a rat.

Years ago I delivered a message on Jesus' encounter with Martha and Mary and I think the words still ring true today. I leave them with you for your personal and prayerful consideration. DON'T JUST DO SOMETHING, SIT THERE!



Well, the 72 were sent out and returned with great enthusiasm. Remember they were sent out with specific instructions to heal and tell of the kingdom of God, all in preparation for Jesus to show up personally.

The seventy-two returned with joy and said, "Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name." NOTE their joy over the fact that they were amazed at how demons were even responding to them and their presence.

Jesus responds with equal excitement for them. He didn't dampen their joy. He replied, "I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.

Jesus said, "I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven." This was no surprise to Him, since He had given them the power over all enemy forces. He uses a triple negative in describing it by saying, "Nothing, no way, no how will harm you-not even snakes or scorpions" could injure them. Now this isn't the same power He has given His disciples today. This was for a specific task in a specific time. So, don't try it today!

Now, NOTE what Jesus says: "However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven."
He is saying that they are not to get all excited over demons coming out of people. That is exciting, but there is something much more important than this to be excited about-their salvation-their names written in heaven.

Jesus is so excited about the field trip His disciples had just completed and the results they experienced. The next paragraph says that He was "thrilled with joy" about the whole situation. He was so thrilled that He broke into prayer for His special relationship with the Father.
At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure. All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him."

Then Jesus turns to His disciples: Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, "Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. For I tell you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it."

More than the ministry results, Jesus is thrilled with joy that His disciples "get it". They have been blessed with eyes to see and ears to hear. Then He says that many prophets and kings were eager to see what the disciples now see.

What was it that the disciples were seeing and hearing that had been so anticipated by prophets and kings? I think it was the fulfillment of the mystery of the Kingdom of God and the revelation of the King. The prophets and kings had read about this revelation for centuries and now it had come to pass. Jesus, the King, had shown up proclaiming that the Kingdom was finally here.

Now, this is where we come in. Jesus and His Kingdom was the full revelation of the grand mystery of the ages. What He is looking for today is for us to embrace them both. The Kingdom will always lead us to the King and the King leads us to living the newly empowered lifestyle of the Kingdom. Would you like to get Jesus' attention and make Him thrilled with joy? Focus your life on the unchanging person of Jesus, the King, and the unshakable Kingdom of God.