Monday, September 17, 2007

Are You In The Family?

Matthew 12: 47-48 Someone told Him, “Look, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to You.” But He replied to the one who told Him, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?”

What an odd question for someone to ask. Do you think that Jesus didn't know who His family was? That is not even a possibility, so the question that Jesus is asking here must have some deeper meaning. But what is it? Well, if we read on we will see that Jesus actually explains what He was saying in the following verses. In verse 49 Jesus gestures to His disciples and says, "Behold, My mother and My brothers!" Was Jesus saying that His earthly family had no meaning to Him? Not at all. What He was doing here was making the point that His spiritual family had a higher place in His life than His physical family did.

Jesus continues in verse 50 by saying, "For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother." So not only did Jesus say that it was His disciples who were His family, but He also included in that list each and every one of us who do the will of His Father. If you want to be included as a brother or sister of Jesus He tells us how; just do the will of His Father. But this is not something that we con do in our own power; we must rely on the power of the Holy Spirit which we get by being in a relationship with Him.

Warren Wiersbe points out here that the word Jesus uses in verse 50, the word "whoever", is the same word He used back in Matthew 11:28-30 when He gave the invitation that whoever was weary and burdened could come to Him and He would give them rest. The invitation here is the same; whoever wants to be in Jesus family just has to come. John MacArthur writes here that "The arrival of Jesus’ family gave Him the perfect opportunity to give a graphic illustration of the need for personal relationship to Him." Physical relationship is of no importance in the kingdom of heaven; no one gets in on the basis of human position or birth. There are no grandchildren in Heaven; we are a child of God, or we are not included. Jesus wants to have a relationship with you and He invites you to come, so repent of you sins and put your faith in Him. Then you too can be called the family of Jesus.
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