April 11 at sundown - Day 12
Today is day 12 of counting the Omer
Today is day 12 out of Egypt
Today is day 12 of Messiah Resurrected
Child’s Play (Matthew 18:1-14)
1 At that hour the disciples came to Yeshua, saying, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
2 And He called a child to Himself, set him in the midst of them,
3 and said, “Amen, I tell you, unless you turn and become like children, you shall never enter the kingdom of heaven.
4 Whoever then shall humble himself like this child, this one is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
5 And whoever welcomes one such child in My name, welcomes Me.
6 “But whoever causes one of these little ones who trust in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck and to be sunk in the depth of the sea!
7 Woe to the world because of snares! For snares must come, but woe to that man through whom the snare comes!
8 “And if your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away from you. It’s better for you to enter into life crippled or lame than, having two hands or two feet, to be thrown into fiery Gehenna.
9 If your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out and throw it away from you. It’s better for you to enter into life with one eye than, having two eyes, to be thrown into fiery Gehenna.
10 “See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I tell you that their angels in heaven continually see the face of My Father in heaven.
11 For the Son of Man has come to save
12 “What do you think? If a certain man has a hundred sheep and one of them goes astray, won’t he leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go looking for the one that is straying?
13 And if he finds it, amen I tell you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that didn’t stray.
14 Even so, it’s not the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost.”
Humility. It can be a daunting word for those of us who want to follow after Yeshua. Here the disciples are questioning aloud which one of them would be the most famous. To understand why they were exploring this line of thought, it's important to understand the context. They were in Capernaum, which literally and quite fittingly translates to English as “village of the Comforter.” Here we see our Comforter at work performing great miracles among the people as they were being healed and set free from demonic oppression. It is important to note that Capernaum was a coastal city known for its great wealth. They approached Him with the question, “who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven,” because they saw elite, wealthy people being drawn towards Yeshua and must have felt starstruck by all the attention. They naturally assumed that since they were His “dudes” that they’d be rock stars! In response, the Lord brought a child before them. He did this in order to show them that: 1) authentic humility free of personal ambition was the only way to even enter the kingdom of God; 2) if there was anyone God gave special attention to, it was children; and 3) humility is expressed by lives that have departed from sinful behavior and practiced radical (by human standards) forgiveness. We must, as disciples of Yeshua, remember to exercise humility as He explained it in our lives. It will take forgetting ourselves, putting our own agendas aside, making the needs of others (especially the littlest among us) a priority before our own, and being intentional in fleeing sin and practicing forgiveness.
Prayer: Lord, we want to make it known that You are the greatest among us. Help us to remember that we need to be humble like little children when it comes to our own agendas, our sin, and forgiving others. Please show our community how to live this way so that those who are far from God will see that it's Your example we're striving for and not our own. In Yeshua's name, amen.
At Restoration, we have made it a priority to seek God first in prayer. During this season of counting of the Omer, we have decided to do this collectively as a congregation in the days leading up to Shavuot. Together, we want to trust in His power to impact our lives, our congregation, our city, and our world. The last 10 days we will encourage a corporate time of fasting and prayer, which starts the evening of May 9 and ends the evening of May 19. The conclusion of this season of prayer will culminate in a congregational picnic on the 50th day, the day of Shavuot - Sunday, May 20 at noon.