Posts Tagged ‘Luke 11’

Confirmation Questions 12-15-13

Last Sunday I preached on Matthew 11:2-11 and focused on John the Baptist’s doubt that Jesus was truly the Messiah. You can find that sermon here.

The confirmation students presented some great questions on their sermon notes, which I will attempt to address here.

-If you had the chance to be perfect, would you?
This is an excellent question, and it really points towards the nature of sin and the human condition. If perfection was possible by our own actions or will, then there would have been no reason for God to come to earth. Jesus would not have had to enter into our sinful reality to overcome it. This poses a difficult notion for me on a personal level. On one hand, it would be absolutely wonderful to be perfect, to never disappoint God or anyone else. But on the other hand, my own experience of extreme gratitude for the grace of God, the free gift of salvation from my sinful nature made possible through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ defines me. I hesitate to think about what my life would be like if that wasn’t present…or more specifically, if there was no need for it.

-How is the least in the kingdom better than John?This is another great question. Jesus makes this statement right after he credits John with being the greatest of the prophets. I believe what Jesus is trying to say here is that at this moment of doubt for John…or perhaps it is better to say the disbelief of John…in this moment, John does not have salvation from sin. He lacks faith at this moment because he is questioning if Jesus is the Messiah. He doesn’t believe it.  And so when Jesus says that the least IN the kingdom…that is to say anyone that has a saving faith in Jesus…is ahead of John in this moment.  Now that is not to say that John is excluded from salvation in the long run, because I don’t believe that is the case. Rather, Jesus is making a point about belief. It needs to be there. Belief in Christ for the salvation from our sinful nature.