Why the warning?
Reading through the Gospels for the last 16 months, it becomes obvious that Jesus warned people as much as He taught them. I think that is significant. Whenever I hear a “warning”, I automatically understand that there will be a cost if I ignore such advice. Therefore, warnings from Jesus imply spiritual repercussions, which He often detailed as He sought to shepherd those who professed faith in God.
Google describes “warning” as,
“a statement or event that indicates a possible or impending danger, problem, or other unpleasant situation.”
No matter the century or language, a warning is a danger that should be considered. History is plentiful of nations and people who paid little heed to this and they paid the price. I want to examine just a few of the warnings Jesus gave in Luke 12:35-13:9 NIV .
Acknowledging the motive of someone’s warning is important, giving weight to why we should listen in the first place. It is a loving act when our Savior warns His people and it is equally a loving act when we heed His advice.It is a loving act when our Savior warns His people and it is equally a loving act when we heed His advice. Click To Tweet
What Jesus Deemed Important
Reading through the passage mentioned above, it is clear that Jesus established the intent of a relationship with God. A saving relationship with the Father is a relationship that comes with certain expectations. What is NOT the case is that we become saved solely for our own personal interest.
As we enter His family through faith in Jesus, then we have certain obligations just as any child would in a family. Children are not expected to live just for themselves but for the good of the whole family. This is equally so for Christians.
We have a personal, spiritual responsibility as believers. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 explains it well.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.
We cannot accept God’s gift of salvation without committing ourselves to His authority/will. Salvation means there is a relationship between God and man and with any relationship, mutual consideration is vital.
We are not allowed to “use” God for the personal profit of a future Heavenly destination without allowing Him to leverage us for the good of His Kingdom agenda. The relationship between God and His children is one of mutual consideration. It isn’t one-sided where all we do is sign up and reap the rewards without any thought to the responsibilities we owe God in return. Matthew 7:21-23 MSG is vital for Christians to understand.
“Knowing the correct password—saying ‘Master, Master,’ for instance—isn’t going to get you anywhere with me. What is required is serious obedience—doing what my Father wills. I can see it now—at the Final Judgment thousands strutting up to me and saying, ‘Master, we preached the Message, we bashed the demons, our God-sponsored projects had everyone talking.’ And do you know what I am going to say? ‘You missed the boat. All you did was use me to make yourselves important. You don’t impress me one bit. You’re out of here.’
4 Warnings from Christ
- Luke 12:35-40 MSG warns us against becoming distracted from service.
- Luke 12:41-46 MSG warns us from being dishonest or self-serving in our service.
- Luke 47-48 MSG warns us of being lazy or rebellious with our service.
- Luke 13:6-9 MSG warns us about being unproductive in our service.
These passages teach us that we have expectations from Jesus to uphold from our salvation. Our faith is not a prize to be kept for ourselves, tucked away like a ticket for future redemption. It is a relationship that requires our attention from the get-go. Salvation is the transaction that begins our relationship with the Lord. God covenanted with us through the blood of Jesus purchasing our redemption and we agree to live our lives for Him in return. During our time before we go to heaven, He promises to love and care for us every moment of every day.Our faith is not a prize to be tucked away and kept for ourselves like a ticket for future redemption. It is to be stewarded with responsibility. Click To Tweet
From these passages, we can learn how to steward the privilege of being part of God’s family as Paul so eloquently described in Philippians 3, especially in verses 12 and 16.
I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.16 Only let us live up to what we have already attained.
These principles can help us steward our gift of salvation as Paul did in his life.
4 Reminders for Faith
- Be ready for service. We are saved for more than just our own benefit but for His good purpose.
- Be mindful of the responsibility of representing Him. We are called to love and serve others as Jesus did and would.
- Be devoted to His Name and purpose. We are to be whole-hearted in our effort and loyalty.
- Be fruitful, proving ourselves His. We are to bear witness that we are followers of Christ in our reflection of Him and our efforts for Him.
By keeping these lessons in mind that Jesus taught His disciples, we too can be faithful in the salvation God grants us. When we remember that our salvation is a gift we must manage wisely, then it helps us be prepared for that day when He returns. We won’t live in fear of spiritual repercussions that could await us. Instead, we will have a joyous expectancy of the reward that He promises!