Seems backwards, doesn’t it?
Who could possibly have the audacity to think they know how to direct the Wonderful Counselor and the Mighty God? The truth is, if I’m being honest, I’m afraid I have this attitude more than I’d care to admit, and it’s something others did to Jesus in Luke 18:35-43.
“And those who were in front rebuked him, telling him to be silent.
But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” -v.39 (ESV)
As I first approached this passage in my personal study I didn’t really notice what was really going on at first, so I continued to read it over and over again. I couldn’t figure out why there were people out in front of Jesus on the way to Jericho. Then I started to reflect, and I had begun to understand more.
These people were so glued to their own idea of Jesus and who they wanted Him to be and what they wanted Him to do for them that they totally missed it. These people were carrying the banner crying out: “Make way for the Lamb of God!” and the blind beggar heard it as a sweet anthem. To which he responded, “Have mercy on me, oh God!” You see, this man had heard of the one of Nazareth who claimed to be the Son of God. He must have heard of this man who was going around healing the lame, the sick, the blind, and feeding the hungry. But this blind man cried out for more than these, he cried out for mercy.
See how those out in front “leading Jesus” responded to such a man? They rebuked him. I could just imagine their scoffing: “How dare you ask for help from our King, you are not worthy of Him.” or saying, “Be silent, don’t you see Jesus is for us and has no time for you!” Honestly we really don’t know what was said, but it is pretty clear that those in front were concerned with themselves first, Jesus second, and all the others the least. This was a stunt to exalt themselves and to climb on this man’s shoulders as if they themselves had no deformity that Christ alone could cure. If there was someone they could cast to the side as undesirable, they could label themselves worthy.
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift,
through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus”
Everyone of us, no matter how highly we might think of our self, are so totally unworthy though. Nothing we do can change that, we are absolutely corrupted from within and have fallen short of His glory. Jesus alone justifies us, (gives us right standing with God), and He saves us by His grace as a gift to us. What does this mean? There is nobody worthy enough to be out in front but Christ. He doesn’t follow us around accomplishing our purposes, following our counsel, or wait for our permission to envelope someone with grace.
Yet, how often do we find ourselves angry because some prayer didn’t get answered like we wanted? How often do we find ourselves looking down our noses at those labeled “undesirable” thinking how could God ever love someone like this?
I confess that the Lord deserves so much more of me, and that this pride needs to be curbed. May we be like the ones so close behind Jesus that they were saturated with the dust kicked up from His feet. Those were the ones that got to stand in awe as Jesus came to the blind beggar and healed His sight and forgave His sin, and they glorified God together rather than shrink in shame.
Soli Deo Gloria
“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord,or who has been his counselor? Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid? For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.”