By Not Known
They say that God moves in mysterious ways. This seems to be so when we look at
the people that God welcomes into his kingdom.
- the coward who passed off his wife as his sister to protect himself and then
became the father of God’s people (Abraham)
- the murderer who became the means of his people’s rescue (Moses)
- the prostitute who become a heroine of faith (Rahab)
- the foreign woman who broke the rules of boy-girl relationships (Ruth)
- the adulterer and murderer who was a great king (David)
- the cheating tax collector who became an apostle (Matthew)
- the persecutor who became a missionary (Paul)
And on and on the list goes. This is especially so in Luke’s Gospel. Shepherds,
peasants, sinners and foreigners are highlighted as entering the kingdom while the
rich and powerful are often the objects of Jesus’ ire.
This theme comes out in our morning passage (Luke 14:1- 14). Jesus speaks of how
the humble will be exalted and the proud humiliated. He continues by speaking of
how God’s invitation goes to outsiders such as poor, crippled, lame, blind and such
like. This would be an offensive list to a Jewish audience for each of these people
was ‘unclean’ by definition. We would have trouble electing them as church leaders
How can such unlikely people be part of God’s kingdom? The answer lies in our
evening passage (Eph 1: 3-14). The Bible teaches that we belong to God by his loving
choice to save and who to save. Further, it is God who saves and he is powerful to
save even the worst of people through faith in the blood of his son Jesus.
This is good news for all of us. for, underneath our outside respectability, we are
rather like those in the list above. Perhaps our outward life is not as messy, but
what of our inner and private world?
This is also relevant to today’s Missions Sunday. Our outreach works are to be to all
manner of people. No one is beyond the powerful love of God to save through Jesus.
So let us be glad that God welcomes unlikely people. And let us tell this glad news