Tuesday, December 8, 2009

daily text 12/08

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009
"All these things I will give you if you fall down and do an act of worship to me." (Matthew 4:9)

Showing Jesus “all the kingdoms of the world and their glory,” Satan blatantly said the above to Jesus. Fully aware that the Devil did indeed have control over “all the kingdoms of the world,” Jesus showed where He stood on the issue of sovereignty by replying: “Go away, Satan! For it is written, ‘It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred service.’” (Matthew 4:8-10) Jesus’ life course demonstrated clearly that for him, upholding Jehovah’s sovereignty was the paramount objective. Jesus well knew that he must remain faithful until death at Satan’s hand in order to prove the rightfulness of God’s sovereignty. (Matthew 16:21; 17:12) He also had to bear witness to the fact that the Kingdom of God is the instrument empowered by Jehovah to subdue the rebel Satan and to restore peace and order to all creation.—Matthew 6:9, 10.
(Watchtower issue: 12/1/07, 2:4, 5)

*this is the perfect example for explaining why Jesus expects his followers to remain neutral when it comes to the politics of the world.
With all the influence Jesus had on people, can you imagine the level of impact he could have made on society back then if he had allowed the Jews to make him king, like they originally attempted to do? (John 6:14, 15) Even his disciples didn't understand 'the plan' at first, because they thought Jesus had come to establish his kingdom on earth at that time.

And who would have made a better ruler than Jesus? Aside from the *miraculous* and philanthropic benefits he could provide, consider just his leadership-skills alone. He could persuade and outwit almost anyone, (including large groups of prominent business men, intellectuals and religious leaders, all bombarding him at the same time with trick questions and false accusations). He was unmatched in his teaching ability and oratory skills, and he had a powerful way of inspiring & motivating all sorts of people to action...including his enemies. Men even left their homes and jobs just to follow him around! lol.

Plus, he accomplished more during his short 3 1/2 yr ministry than any ruler or leader has done in a whole lifetime! Imagine how much more he could have accomplished if he had stuck around Jerusalem and the Roman Empire for a few more decades.

So if supporting an earthly government was God's 'plan' for mankind, Jesus could have laid the groundwork for a new form of world government right then and there, instead of doing just the opposite...staying out of politics, telling his followers that his kingdom is "no part of this world" (John 18:36) and promoting God's kingdom as the only hope for mankind.
The pattern he set for his followers is pretty clear.