Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Jesus Preached.

"And he went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people. So his fame spread throughout all Syria, and they brought him all the sick, those afflicted with various diseases and pains, those oppressed by demons, epileptics, and paralytics, and he healed them. And great crowds followed him from Galilee and the Decapolis, and from Jerusalem and Judea, and from beyond the Jordan" (Matt. 4.23-25).

Throughout the gospels Jesus preaches. It is important to note that the gospel is a message that is to be spoken. We need to emphasize this in a culture where if you're not being 'preachy' then you're doing us all a favor.

With that said, Jesus' ministry is not characterized by preaching alone. It is often said that he heals the sick and casts out demons. In other words, he is helping those who are dealing with the sufferings due to living in a fallen world. He demonstrates, through his healing, what the kingdom looks like. This is what it looks like when Jesus becomes King.

Christians need to follow Jesus in this regard. However, we cannot say 'Im a Jesus follower' just because we do good things to people. Following Jesus does not simply mean doing good things. We need to accompany our good works with preaching. Giving food to a homeless person is not preaching the gospel. It can be interpreted a thousand of different ways. Yes, help people. Show our world what it looks like when Jesus becomes King! But then explain yourself.

The sad thing is we can give people a foretaste of the Kingdom and they can miss out on it all together if we never tell them how to enter in. As is evident in the Scriptures, people need their sins forgiven. They have offended the Lord of the world. Yet, as John Piper says, 'we can have amnesty with the King'. We can be sure that if we have faith in him that times of refreshing will come. So again, show people what it looks like when Jesus becomes King but don't let people miss out on the Kingdom.

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