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Tuesday
May082018

The Pattern In The Ministry of Jesus

I find the ministry of Jesus intriguing.
When you analyze the way Jesus went about doing ministry it appears that He was not afraid to be creative and rather unique. Have you ever wondered how many times he did something out of the ordinary? 

If you just look at the miracles He performed you find some bizarre events. 

  • He turned water into wine
  • He healed an official’s son
  • He healed Peter’s mother-in-law
  • He cleansed a man of leprosy
  • He healed a centurion's paralyzed servant
  • He healed on the Sabbath
  • He raised a synagogue leader’s daughter from the dead
  • He fed the 5,000
  • He healed a man by spitting in his eyes
  • He even healed a servant's severed ear while he was being arrested

The one thing we can say about the ministry of Jesus is that He was involved with people. His ministry reached out to the powerful and the influential as He healed an official’s son and cured the Centurions’ paralyzed servant. He also broke with tradition by healing on the Sabbath, and used spittle to give sight back to a blind man. Jesus was not afraid to engage life and rub shoulders with people of prominence and with people of poverty and disease. Jesus didn’t just teach about the ways of God, He practiced them by taking a common everyday incident and turning it into a miracle. If you run out of wine, you believe for more. If you have no food to feed a large crowd, you simply multiply some young lad’s lunch to satisfy the hunger. You even have a mother-in-law that gets a second chance to bug her son-in-law, by getting healed. 

There are some pretty incredible miracles among the 37 mentioned in the gospel stories. Jesus could have been a boring healer by only going to those who were the least of the brethren in His day. But He didn’t; He lived among the throngs of people from all walks of life and did His unique ministry of miracles in broad daylight. Jesus taught us to engage life and not be afraid of it by retreating to a monastery like so many of His followers did following His crucifixion. Many of us do similar things, like retreat to the church and become heroes among the faithful. I am convinced that the only way the Church makes a difference in this world is when it is bold, creative, and unafraid to engage life wherever possible. It takes risks by befriending people who swear, drink, and are worldly-minded.  True Christianity is not afraid to engage people who are not popular, and it protects people who are bullied or killed in the womb because they are not wanted. True Christianity is dirty, messy business because you are rubbing shoulders like Jesus did with disparate people with disparate needs. 

I was in Africa recently and in one of the poorest areas of a third world city. As I visited a one room schoolhouse run by a church of less than 25 people, God spoke to me and said, “this is where my church does it’s best work.” As I looked around the room I saw bright shining eyes of laughing children not knowing they were poor, but realizing they were being loved and cared for. 

I believe that miracles could happen everyday and they don’t because we have become too afraid to engage life as Jesus did. Miracles have to have two things for them to work:

  1. Be present with people who have needs  
  2. Be willing to allow God to respond thru you

That was the pattern of the ministry of Jesus. 

Keeping it honest and truthful…K

 

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