Summary: Man rejects man and man rejects God, but God will never reject man.
Scripture Reading: “Matthew 21:33-46
Message: “He was Rejected”
Text: “He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering” (Isaiah 53:3).
What is rejection?
The American Heritage Dictionary defines the word reject as follows: to refuse to accept, recognize, or make use of.
Have you ever been rejected or has there ever been a time in your life when you were not accepted or recognized?
I believe every person has the basic human need of acceptance. Every person wants to have the feeling of belonging; belonging to a loving family, belonging to a church family, belonging to the group of people they work with, belonging to a club or social group, or belonging to the neighborhood in which they live.
As nice as we try to be, as good as we are, as loving as we are, as compassionate as we are, as accepting as we are probably will not make us immune to rejection. We will face rejection everyday in some manner. Someone may say ugly things about us for no apparent reason. Maybe something upsetting has happened in their life so they lash out against us because we happen to be at the wrong place at the right time.
There are times when children are rejected by their parents because they now interfere with life of the parents. A new father may reject a child because now the wife’s love has to be shared with the child. The father becomes jealous and makes life miserable for the mother and the child. The mother and the child are now victims of rejection. They feel unloved, unworthy, useless and insignificant and it is nothing they have done.
Rejection is something that we have no control over. We cannot control the way people feel about us. We cannot control the thoughts the people have toward us. We cannot control the way people talk about us, but we can control how we accept rejection.
Rejection is in the Eye of the Beholder
A young salesman became discouraged because he had been rejected by so many customers he approached. He asked a more experienced salesman for some advice.
“Why is it that every time I make a call on someone I get rejected?”
“I just don’t understand that,” answered the older salesman. “I’ve been hit on the head, called dirty names, and thrown out the door, but I’ve never been rejected.”
Rejection isn’t what happens to us but how we interpret what happens to us.
(Kent Crockett, I Once Was Blind But Now I Squint, Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 2004, 44)
Rejection is difficult to accept. When you are rejected by someone for something, you can let the devil take over your life and retaliate with harsh unkind words, throw a temper tantrum, feel sorry for yourself, become emotional to the point of crying, contemplate taking your life, hurting someone else, physically or mentally or just going off the deep end.
Each of us has been created in the image of God and each of us is important to God. God did not create worthless, useless, or unimportant people. He loves us with an unconditional love. He loves us so much that he sent his Son into the world to pay for our sins; sins committed in the past, sins committed in the now, and sins that we may commit in the future. We will continue to commit sins because we do not live the way he expects us to live and we don’t always treat people with kind, considerate, understanding love. We use words that we should not use when we let the devil control our emotions.
God will never reject us. He may not always agree with our actions, thoughts or words, but he will never reject us. During his walk upon the face of the earth, Jesus never rejected anyone. For example, when Jesus went into the temple courts and found men selling and buying cattle, sheep and doves he made a whip and drove them from the temple area. He did not reject the people, but he rejected what they were doing. Jesus considered the act of using the temple courts as a market place offensive to God the Father. He considered this practice to be disrespectful.
When Jesus met the Samaritan woman at the well, he did not show her any signs of rejection. He knew that she was a Samaritan and the Jews did not associate with or talk to the Samaritans (John 4:9). Jesus knew her back ground; the fact that she had five husbands and lived with a man who was not her husband (John 4:18). He did not reject the woman for who she was or what she was. Jesus was kind, considerate and understanding and in return, the woman was a witness to the Messiah. “And many of the Samaritans of that city believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified, ‘He told me all that I ever did’” (John 4:39).