Temptations to Sin
This quote stuck out to me:
It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin.Luke 17:2
Sin is always there to tempt, but the tempter is the worse of them all. That is why we should do our best to not cause one another to stumble, lest we become the tempter.
Increase Our Faith
Jesus really loves mustard seeds. It also appears in Matthew 13:31-32, Mark 4:30-32, and Luke 13:18-19. Apparently mustard seeds are only 1-2 millimeters in diameter but when fully grown can be between 6 and 20 feet. Wow!
Upon reading this passage, it seems like Jesus is being pretty mean to the servants. But actually, it’s simply a reminder to the disciples that we were not worthy to begin with.
We cannot earn our salvation. Those who try will have misunderstood the whole point of grace.
Jesus Cleanses Ten Lepers
1 of the 10 turned back, a Samaritan, and profusely thanked Jesus. Jesus remarked that only this foreigner came back.
This is a common theme too where Jesus brings in the foreigner and compares them to the Jews. Think about the Good Samaritan, the Centurion, or the woman who said even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.
These were all foreigners who expressed a significant amount of faith. Jesus reminds us not to ever be full of ourselves and to always stay humble.
The Coming of the Kingdom
I always feel mystified whenever Jesus talks about the kingdom of God. Take this verse for example:
The kingdom of God is not coming in ways that can be observed, nor will thy say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There!’ for behold, the kingdom of God is in the midst of you.Luke 17:20
It’s never straightforward. But it’s also not like a mystery that you can solve using deduction. And you know that faith is somehow involved, but you can’t really pinpoint how.
Jesus does warn you not to follow the false prophets who say ‘Look, there!’ or ‘Look, here!’. So how are we to know when it comes?
Perhaps it’s too complicated for us mere mortals to understand.
The best comparisons Jesus gives are of Noah and Lot. In both cases, the people around Noah and Lot were partying it away and constantly ignored the warnings of the pending destruction. And they were destroyed when it came.
Essentially, there are two groups: one will be taken and the other left. To be taken means to be swept away with the destruction. Those who didn’t listen to Noah were destroyed in the flood, and those who didn’t listen to Lot were destroyed in the fire that rained down on Sodom (this includes the wife who looked back and turned into a pillar of salt). To be left is to be spared.
The only difference between the two groups? Faith. They knew about the imminent doom because God told them.
Scary, isn’t it? Well, there’s a glimpse of what it means to fear the Lord.
Every weekend I write about some thoughts, life lessons, and interesting things I came by for the week. I'd love for you to join.