“Blessed are the poor in spirit.” Who was Jesus talking to when He said these words at the Sermon on the Mount (Luke 6 and Matthew 5)? He was speaking to a group of people who knew what it meant to be poor, to wonder where their next meal was coming from and to live under Roman oppression. The people who heard these words were people who understood completely what it meant to be poor.
Stop avoiding uncomfortable passages
The West has made religion comfortable and apathetic. We’ve presented a white Jesus who spoke in metaphor at the Sermon on the Mount when in fact He was part of the oppressed and was speaking to a crowd who understood Him literally.
When the first crisis hits, you will have a crisis of faith if you’ve spent your whole life believing that God will bless you. Suddenly you hold up all that you have done right in the world and hold it up to a God who uses blessing and pain to control us. This is not the message Jesus gave us. What you are holding on to is karma, which is not a truth found in Scripture.
We twist the Bible to fit our cultural context. We allow it to collude with oppression, injustice and privilege rather than using the words of God that were given us to stand with the oppressed, to welcome the stranger and to love our neighbors.
Find peace in the storm
Jesus’ truth and compassion brings peace. Explore the Scriptures and find the truths spoken regarding how storms will come. You and I have been adequately equipped to weather them. We are simply asked to hold on, to have courage and faith and to press forward together. Sit with the story of Jesus calming the storm and remember His promise to be with us always.
Late that day he said to them, “Let’s go across to the other side.” They took him in the boat as he was. Other boats came along. A huge storm came up. Waves poured into the boat, threatening to sink it. And Jesus was in the stern, head on a pillow, sleeping! They roused him, saying, “Teacher, is it nothing to you that we’re going down?”
Awake now, he told the wind to pipe down and said to the sea, “Quiet! Settle down!” The wind ran out of breath; the sea became smooth as glass. Jesus reprimanded the disciples: “Why are you such cowards? Don’t you have any faith at all?”
They were in absolute awe, staggered. “Who is this, anyway?” they asked. “Wind and sea at his beck and call!” (Mark 4:35-41 MSG)
What would it be like if we just did what Jesus said; if we were to have courage, to love God and love one another? How would that transform our world? Join us at Unfiltered Radio as we explore what it means to authentically follow Christ.