Matthew 21:23-46

Matthew 21:23-46

You're not going to ever really deal with problems without a little discomfort. Real problems need real solutions, and the only real solution there is to any of our problems is turning to Jesus and falling on Him and humbling ourselves even if it hurts or if it's uncomfortable. That's where we need to be.You know what? If you are firmly convicted about something, even if it’s wrong, stand up and say it. God can deal with a man who’s wrong, who’s willing to stand up and say something that’s wrong, and then correct him if He needs to. The hardest hearts to deal with, and we learned this in Revelation in the church of Laodicea, is the heart that’s lukewarm, the one that is neither committed to the hot or the cold, the wishy-washy mind, the wishy-washy heart that doesn’t want to commit. Jesus says, “I would rather you be hot or cold, either one. I don’t care. I can deal with the cold just as I can deal with the hot, but lukewarm makes Me sick. I’m spewing it out of My mouth.” And this is where these guys are. They step up in fear and say, we don’t know…

There are a lot of believers who do not like their circumstances. They do not like what God is asking them to face. They don’t like the challenge. They don’t understand the path that they’re on. It’s cloudy, it’s hard to see, and it’s confusing, and it’s easy to say, “No! I do not want to go down that road.” But you know what? If you step on the road, even though you’ve been what sounds to be disobedient to the Father, you know what? He can deal with a disobedient child in love and in care…

A lot of Christians in our world today, they want to look good, they want to sound good, they want people to perceive them as good. “Oh, yes! Oh, praise God!” Until it comes to facing the hardship. Until it comes to stepping in to that road that leads into a place that is scary and uncertain…

Serving God, the way God asks us to serve Him, needs to be done. First and foremost, He tells us, go therefore into all nations making disciples. Right? Are we making disciples?… We already have a command given to us to go, to go into the field. Jesus has asked us to step up and go into the field. But…so often we find ourselves trapped and we pay lip service to the Father, and that’s what it is, paying lip service to God, thinking somehow He doesn’t see into our heart, and know our real position where we stand… We have very clear guidelines, very clear direction on how to live right here in God’s Word, and to say, “I don’t know” or “I don’t understand” is really a lie. The truth is, “I’ve not read it, I don’t care to study it, I don’t want to be a part of it.” It’s better to say that than “I don’t know…”

Who ever promised that a Christian would be comfortable? Did Jesus ever promise us that we were going to be comfortable? No. Jesus, in fact, tells us, “In this life you will have tribulation.” Guys, don’t plan on being comfortable. But you know what? I hear the teaching in the world today that, “If you truly believe, you’ll be wealthy, and you’ll be at peace, and you’ll never be uncomfortable.” And I’m not against having. I own a couple cars, I have a nice home, but the thing is, how am I holding on to it? And if God said, “Now, it’s time to give that up and move on. That’s My fruit. I’ve let you use it, I’ve let you benefit from it, but now I’m requiring what’s Mine,” how am I holding on to it? By what authority am I holding on to it? What right do I have to hold on to it? It’s not wrong in having. It’s wrong in how you perceive why you have it, and how it came to you. And everything that we have is loaned to us. Given to us as a blessing to be shared and to be passed back on, not to be claimed

“He who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, but he on who it falls will be crushed.” Jesus is that capstone. He is that cornerstone. He is the One that was rejected. And I like this verse because it reminds me that all men are affected by this Stone. You can’t get around it. You can’t get away from it. You have a choice, though. You can either humble yourself and fall on it; you’ll be broken. You know what? When you humble yourself, it hurts. It’s uncomfortable. I don’t like being humbled. I like being right. I like people looking up to me… But you know what? God does not allow us to stay in those elevated positions for very long. He’ll put us in positions where we find ourselves in need, and then we have to fall on Him, and when we fall on Him we realize the reason that we’re falling on Him is because we made the mess in the first place, that’s now causing us to need Him to come and get us out, and we have to humble ourselves, and we’re broken. Being broken is not a bad thing. Being crushed is a bad thing. You don’t want the Rock to fall on you. Jesus will come after you. Jesus will have His way with you. I don’t care who you are. I don’t care who they think they are out in the world. Jesus will have His way, and one day that Rock will fall, and it will land. You just better hope you’re not standing under it when it lands, because those will be crushed…

You’re not going to ever really deal with problems without a little discomfort. Real problems need real solutions, and the only real solution there is to any of our problems is turning to Jesus and falling on Him and humbling ourselves even if it hurts or if it’s uncomfortable. That’s where we need to be.

It doesn’t matter what people think. It doesn’t matter what other people do. They’ll tease you, they’ll try to coerce you, they’ll try to bring you to their position, but if you know you are right in Jesus Christ, you stand there. And if you’re wrong, and you’ve made a firm stand, Jesus will deal with that, too. But what makes Him sick, what makes Him want to puke, is when you’re lukewarm and wishy-washy. He’ll deal with that, too. I don’t think any of us here want to be spewed.

Pastor Dave Elkins