Least in His Kingdom

4th Sunday of Advent
Scripture: St Matthew 11:18-25
Our text for today shows us how little we know about Jesus. It shows us and we must remember that in the gospels we have only a basic knowledge of Jesus’ work on earth and the things we do not know about Jesus far out number the things we do know.

We must be careful to catch the tone in His voice as he says many things. “Woe onto thee” is far more expressive of sorrowful pity as much as it is of anger. It is not the acceptance of one who is in a large temperament because his self esteem has been torched, nor one who is blazingly angry because his has been insulted , nor one in a passion of hatred at his people on earth at his time of his ministry among us.

For like our Lord, we can not and must not answer someone in anger who has misunderstood us. It was and is the sin of people who forget the responsibility of privilege that we have as a child of the living God. For unto the city of Galilee and even here today, there has been given privilege, a chance and an opportunity which comes to us through our lord and Savior.

We dare not condemn a man or woman gone astray, through ignorance or never having the chance to know any better. And we must never, condemn a child for that which we might condemn an adult. We can not expect to have someone who has never heard about Jesus to respond in the same way as a person who has grown up within the family of the church. We have a great Christian responsibility to respond with Christian ethics as we are members of the community of Christ.

Years ago, while serving in Richmond, IN community, I heard a radio preacher say he had never sinned since he became a pastor. By his own actions, in fact, he may have condemned himself.
Jesus tells us, from his own life experiences, he has been insulted and misunderstood by the religious community of His time. Paraphrasing Jesus words, the Rabbis and the wise men rejected Him while the simple people accepted and flocked to Him. When I left to study for the ministry, many in my small home church were extremely happy, while at the same time saying “don’t let your education destroy your faith in the Lord and your commitment to Him.”

I found this little saying sometime ago, and it comes to mind once again:

“Still to the lonely soul
He doth himself impart
And for his dwelling and his throne
Chooses only the pure at heart”

May we each strive, with the Lord’s help, to seek a pure heart.

Let us pray.