175 Things Jesus Commanded

61.       Let both (wheat and tares) grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, “First gather together the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn.                       -Matt. 13:30            Context: Matt. 13:24-30

Jesus is not teaching here that unrepentant sinful conduct should be tolerated in churches (see Matthew 18 and I Corinthians 5). He IS teaching that Satan will be successful in planting in even the best of churches those who can say the right things and appear to be the right thing and yet are as lost as a swan in a snowstorm. Jesus here indicates that being too zealous to identify everyone who is a false disciple may very well injure the faith of true believers and get the church side-tracked from its purposes. Jesus teaches here that God will justly take care of all such things at the “harvest.”

 

62.       Again the Kingdom of Heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.            -Matt. 13:44

Salvation is free, but it will cost you everything! You can’t buy it, because you couldn’t possibly afford it! You can’t earn it, because your best efforts are like filthy rags. When you try to wash the mud off a window with a filthy rag, it simply smears the mud. Our best efforts are like that! But there is something required for us to give God to gain the Kingdom of Heaven. What is it? 100% of us! He gives us Himself and eternal life! In exchange we give Him the control center of our life. We fire ourselves as our own boss and submit to Jesus as our Lord and Savior. This call to surrender all to Jesus from the moment of conversion is seen in Romans 10:9, where Paul writes, “if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” It would be insufficient to say Jesus is Lord if you weren’t indeed committing yourself to follow Him as your Lord. The man in Jesus’ little parable sold everything he had so that he could gain the field with the treasure in it. We don’t really have much, but Jesus demands it all, and in exchange He gives us far more. We’re the winners in that deal! Because not only will we gain eternal life, but with Jesus in control we will begin to experience more abundant life now, more and more becoming who God created us to be! He specializes in the “extreme makeover” of sinners like you and I!

 

63.       Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.   -Mark 4:39      Context: Mark 4:35-40

A simple observation: there’s no such thing as mother nature! Jesus sovereignly controls ann things, including the weather. The Son controls the sun. The Son controls “el nino” patterns. Sin in the world effects the weather (Romans 8:18-23), but the Lord can start and stop a storm anytime He likes (Matthew 5:45).  Here he calmed a raging sea. An even greater miracle is that He is able to calm the storm raging in your heart! Let Jesus say to your troubled heart, “Peace, be still!”

 

64.       However, Jesus did not permit him (to go with Jesus), but said to him, “Go home to your friends, and tell them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how He had compassion on you.”                -Mark 5:19      Context: Mark 5:1-20

The last passage showed us that creation obeys Jesus. This passage shows us that demons have to obey Jesus also. Jesus commanded the demons to leave this man, and they did. So many people worry so much about the power of Satan and demons that they live in fear. God doesn’t want that! But he also doesn’t want us fighting Satan and demons in our own strength. Occasionally you will hear a child say, “My daddy can whip your daddy!” Fellow Christian, our God has whipped Satan and his demons! The book of Job seems to indicate that Satan has to get permission from God to work woe (see Job 1-2). Both Genesis 50:20 and Romans 8:28 show us that God can bring great good out of the unspeakable evil we have faced. As we turn to Christ in those times, we grow and God receives glory. The next time demons flex their muscles in your face, tell them “My Daddy can whip you and your daddy!” James 4:7 says, “resist the Devil and he will flee from you.” Here in Mark 5 Jesus delivered this man from demon possession.  The relieved man would have loved to leave everything (including his reputation as the demon possessed man) and go with Jesus. But Jesus had the man stay right where he was and share what Jesus had done for him within his sphere of influence. He’s calling you and I to do the same, to tell others the “great things the Lord has done.”

 

65.       As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken (of the death of Jairus’ daughter), He said to the ruler of the Synagogue (Jairus), “Do not be afraid; only believe.”                                             -Mark 5:36      Context: Mark 5:21-43

In this passage Jesus restores Jairus’ dead daughter back to life! Whereas Satan has come to kill, steal, and destroy (John 10:10a), Jesus gives life (John 10:10b). Jesus is omnipotent, He is all-powerful! That means that He can heal you and I and our loves ones, no matter what the age or problem we have. Of course, if we are healed and given more life now, we will still die, so all physical healings are temporary compared to the greater need we all have for eternal life! Thank God that every believer will live forever with Christ after this life! One time as a Pastor I prayed for a lady to be healed of cancer, and she said it felt like lightning went through her body. The next time she went to the doctor he said there was no sign of cancer! Praise the Lord! A few years later she got another kind of cancer. We prayed again, but this time she died.  I had the privilege of doing her funeral. Praise the Lord – she will never have to experience physical pain again. All this to say that faith in Jesus means we don’t have to be afraid as we face the inevitable difficulties of this life. Brothers and sisters, “Do not be afraid, only believe!”