You The Expected One?
By Ronald G. Currell
St. Stephens Episcopal Church,
Jesus answered, "The blind receive sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have the Gospel preached to them."
By and by, Jesus came back into Galilee and began teaching that the Kingdom of God was at hand, that the Kingdom of God was among them. And He did many great things. Some said that The Prophet spoken of in the Decalogue had come. Others doubted. But His compassion for them fed their minds and their souls, their spirits, and He healed their infirmities.
In Judea, John, called the Baptist, was locked in Herods prison. He pondered over the reports hed heard about cousin Jesus. Certainly, Jesus was doing Great Things. But He wasnt doing the things expected of the Messiah. The Messiah was supposed to come, raise an army, wage war against the Gentiles, throw off the yoke of the Romans, and establish Israel as the central power over the world. That was the Messiah. But Johns cousin Jesus wasnt doing any of these things. This Jesus was talking about a Kingdom already present in the Spirit, not one He would be bringing with a sword. And because John doubted, he sent a question to Jesus from prison, "Are you the expected one, or do we look for another?"
Jesus listened to the question with patience. He let a respectable time pass before responding. That shows the respect of a proper listener. When He spoke, He slowly and deliberately. Jesus answered, "The blind receive sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have the Gospel preached to them."
This was a quote from an ancient prophecy about the coming of the Messiah. It was about the coming of the Kingdom of God. And this Jesus had applied it to what He was doing. It was in this answer that people around Him began to realize that if this Jesus were the Messiah, their expectations about the Messiah were wrong. But how could this be?
Many recovered their equilibrium and were able to accept Jesus as the Messiah that God prepared for them, not the messiah that expectations and political hopes had prepared. Today is no different. We must accept Jesus on His terms and not demand Him to fulfill all our expectations.
|Just as the people of Sweetwater need different Christian experiences, the various Christian Churches offer different expressions of the same faith. St. Stephens Episcopal Church offers a quiet, respectful hour dedicated to God every Sunday Morning at 11:00 AM, preceded by a thought-provoking Bible Discussion Class at 9:45, where we discuss intriguing passages from the Bible. Drop by some time. See us on the Internet and experience our online chapel at www.ststephens.net.|
Please make plans to attend your Church-of-choice this coming Sunday.