The Overflow (Matthew 17-18)

Whenever I try and imagine what the transfiguration looked like, I always end up imagining something like in the “reveal” scenes from Touched By and Angel. However, I’m 98% sure none of you know that show since its 10 years old, so here’s a picture.

touched by an angelBasically they suddenly have light shinning around them….I couldn’t find a really good picture 😦

 Anyhow, back to the Bible

It is interesting that the disciples that didn’t go up with Jesus to the mountain don’t have faith enough to cast out a demon. They too were traveling with Jesus and seeing his miracles, why couldn’t they do it? I heard a sermon once that used the two “camps” of disciples as an illustration of people who were either A. filled with God’s presence and worshiping, and B. not filling up on God’s presence and relying on themselves.

The disciples who went with Jesus, while they tried to build tents (not so sure why), were spending time with him in God’s presence. I would be willing to bet that they had more faith after that than the ones who stayed behind, and probably could have been able to cast out the demon (they had already been told they could earlier in Matthew). It’s so easy to think we can do things on our own, especially in this culture, when we should be relying on God to do things so that the actions we do point to him.

I have to wonder though, why did he only bring three?

I’m not 100% sure what the implications are for verses 24-27 with the sons/others thing, so ……moving on

Chapter 18 covers a few aspects of Christian living:
1. Humility
2. Avoiding being tempted to sin
3. Taking care of “little ones”
4. Forgiving

All of these actions can be sort-of done on our own strength, trying to be “good” ourselves, or they can come from an overflowing heart. The latter is better.

Just like how the disciples who spent time filling up on God had more faith etc., if we spend more time with God and seeking after a heart like his, it becomes easier to take care of others. When we come to deeper understandings of the gospel and how much we are forgiven, forgiving others comes easier (unlike the man in the parable who clearly has some issues).

Over and over again in scripture (both OT and NT), God calls into question our hearts, or comments on the status of our hearts. David is king because he is a man after God’s own heart. in Hosea, God asks for “steadfast love”  instead of sacrifice (6:6), and wants people to call to him from the heart (7:14a).

I’m left at the end of this passage wondering “Where is my heart today? Has it begun to drift away from the fulfilling presence of God? How can I continue to go deeper in my relationship with God”

As a note to my fellow Bootcamp-ers, I will be away this weekend and catching up on the posts when I get back, so either Monday night or Tuesday. Looking forward to see what you learn while I’m away!

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