We are created by God to live together, and offer ourselves for others. How can we live together in this world today as God’s children?
1. The Context
– Getting ready for the coming of Chirst
– When he comes, all people will be gathered and separated them into two groups
– First, Jesus is talking about his coming. Does it mean after his suffering and death he is going to be back as a resurrecting Jesus? Or is he talking about his second coming in future?
– Second, Jesus separated them into two groups just as a shepherd separates sheep from the goats. Who are they?
– Third, he is talking about the least. Who are they in our context today?
– Another Q: Many of us understand we are justified by faith apart from any works of the laws. Apostle Paul says in Romans 10:13 “All who call on the Lord’s name will be saved.” However, Jesus says in Matthew 7:22 “On the judgement day, many people will say to me ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name and do lots of miracles in your name?'” But Jesus says “I’ll tell them, I’ve known you.” HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO INTERPRET it?
2. Difficult Text to interpret
– “All nations: panta te ethne” : The goats as Gentiles – they will be judged by their actions. People who think they are not Gentiles might be free from fearsome judgement because they think the judgement if for someone else.
– Another interpretation from some connection between this passage and the following Chapter 26:1 “When Jesus finished speaking all these words, he siad to his disciples, ‘You know the Passover is two days from now. And the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.” – his revelation himself in the cross.
– It shows us God’s amazing love – we may be connected with God – God as a Loving God, not a fearsome king.
– Whatever interpretation we may have/prefer, there is one thing we should keep that in mind: Jesus who came 2000 years ago comes in our hearts right now and have some expectation for us to LOVE AND CARE FOR THOSE WHO ARE IN NEED AROUND US.
3. Q to Ponder:
– Who are the least today in our context?
– How can we welcome Jesus in our lives without knowing who Jesus is or who the least is?
– BUT THE LEAST IS EVERYWHERE
– SO, the Q should be: “How can we treat those least, and with what motivation?”
– TWO GROUPS: One group did care others, and another didn’t. But NONE OF THEM recognized Jesus as they did/ didn’t.
– They all had the same Q: “Lord, when did we see you hungry, thirsty, naked, and sick?”
– What was the motif behind them?
– Q to ponder: How are we doing what we are doing? Out of fear Or out of LOVE? Out of duty or out of gratitude?
– Jesus is telling us a story about a king who separate the sheep from the goats on the last day. But it’s not the Last day that has emphasis – only the PRESENT.
– Because being in God’s presence forever , that eternal consequences is from TODAY.
– Those who ignore the hungry…
– Those who care the hungry…
[Two photos I have seen last week]
-Even in the situation where WILDFIRE burn down not just A house but entire TOWN & COMMUNITY, some says “WE’ll be back BETTER! STRONGER!” Another photo was from our brother Richard as he was standing in hospital bedside for her daughter, saying “A rainbow outside our daughter’s room of the hospital. G’s ways of saving life is still beautiful and there is HOPE.”We don’t know how long it will take to rebuild again, and recovery from that sickness. We don’t know how much it will cost. But we know ONE thing. We are called to care AND love.
– A Danish Philosopher and theologian, Soren Kierkegaard said, “We are a people who know that ‘when one has once fully entered the realm of love, the world – no matter how imperfect – becomes rich and beautiful, it consists solely of opportunities for LOVE.’”
May the L bless your H, so that you may claim this opportunity of LOVE, JOY, HOPE even in Nov. Amen!