Blessed… Are You the One?

When Jesus finished teaching his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and preach in their cities. Now when John heard in prison about the things the Christ was doing, he sent word by his disciples to Jesus, asking, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” Jesus responded, “Go, report to John what you hear and see. Those who were blind are able to see. Those who were crippled are walking. People with skin diseases are cleansed. Those who were deaf now hear. Those who were dead are raised up. The poor have good news proclaimed to them.  Happy are those who don’t stumble and fall because of me” (Matthew 11:1-6, Common English Bible).

Whenever we see things happen, we start to make assumptions. We try to put the things we see and putting together the events and then we start drawing conclusions about what we have seen.

John the Baptist knew something  about Jesus back when he baptized him in the Jordan River. Wait, what am I saying? When John the Baptist was still in his mother Elizabeth’s womb and Jesus was still in Mary’s womb, John knew there was something different about Jesus. He might not have known exactly what that meant, but he knew even before he was born that there was something about Jesus.

Just before John Baptized Jesus, he knew something was different. He knew Jesus should be baptizing him. He still didn’t know exactly what was different.

In our reading today, John has taken all he has seen and started putting it together to draw a conclusion. Everything that John has seen and heard lead him to the conclusion that Jesus was the Messiah. Today’s lesson is about confirmation and I don’t mean the class we send kids through in order to become church members. John had drawn a hypothesis and now he wanted to know if the conclusion he had drawn was indeed correct.

In typical form, Jesus doesn’t give a simple yes or no answer. Jesus responded, “Go, report to John what you hear and see. Those who were blind are able to see. Those who were crippled are walking. People with skin diseases are cleansed. Those who were deaf now hear. Those who were dead are raised up. The poor have good news proclaimed to them.” Jesus is pointing to the words the prophets had said regarding the Messiah. This was the proof. Now John had to draw his own conclusion.

If Jesus gave a simple yes or no answer, it would give John a head answer. What really makes a difference is a heart answer. Jesus, in essence, is telling John, “You have seen and you have heard. I am telling you what is happening. Now it is up to you to decide if you believe in your heart what you know in your head.

The same holds true for us. We have seen the Spirit of God at work in the world around us. We have heard the stories of how God has worked through the Bible and in the lives of people around us. The only logical conclusion is that Jesus is the Savior of the world. Now, will we believe in our hearts what we know in our heads. He is the One!!!

What has God done to show you God is the Hope of the World?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy, Peace and Thanksgiving,
Keith

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Author:

"The Pastor Ponders" is my attempt to share some of my thoughts. I often share what I am thinking with my dog "Bishop," but he keeps his thoughts to himself. He will even go to sleep sometimes while I am sharing my thoughts with him. The truth is, if it doesn't involve getting his ears scratched, his belly rubbed or some kind of treat, he really doesn't care. I will say this for him, he never argues with me or tells me I am wrong. So, I decided to share some of my thoughts with whoever might come across this blog in their ramblings around the Internet. Bishop and I live in Sweeny, Texas where I am the pastor of First United Methodist Church. I have served here for the past two years. For the past 27 years I have served United Methodist congregations throughout East Texas including rural Madison County (Elwood UMC), Lovelady (First UMC) and Kennard (Center Hill UMC), Canton (First UMC), rural Smith County (Mt. Sylvan UMC and Union Chapel UMC), Grapeland (First UMC), Tyler (Pleasant Retreat UMC), Santa Fe (Aldersgate UMC), Freeport (First UMC) and Oyster Creek (Oyster Creek UMC), Diboll (First UMC), and now Sweeny (First UMC). My wife Cindy and I have been married for over 40 years. We have two grown sons. Wayne and his wife Nikki and all our grandsons (Kaleb, Noah, and Jaxon) live in Southern California. Christopher and his wife Morgan and both our granddaughters (Jenna and Natalie) live in Tyler Texas. I enjoy preaching and all aspects of preaching from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading, playing the guitar as well as a bit of drawing. I have spent quite a bit of time over the past two years working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I sing bass with a local barbershop chorus called The Coastalaires. I have also recently begun doing a little wood carving. I also enjoy playing with Bishop, something he likes a great deal better than listening to my thoughts. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, specializing in Microcomputers from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, Texas, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. When I was a student at Carolina, the school was in Iron Station North Carolina. They have since relocated to Manassas Virginia (Yeah, go figure, a school named Carolina geographically in Virginia). This blog is mostly devotional writing, but there are other things here too. Just about every week I will either post my sermon manuscript or a video of the worship service. On occasion, I will post something I see in society. Occasionally I write a short story, a poem, or a song and will post it here too. I will say this, my motivations for writing this blog are really selfish. I write it to get what I am thinking out of my head and onto something a bit more permanent. They say, after all, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. And, should you desire, you can one-up Bishop and actually tell me what you think. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. With Joy and Thankfulness, Keith Sweeny, Texas May 2018

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