Summary: This sermon deals with how we should respond when people misunderstand our words and/or actions.
It's Easy To Be Misunderstood
2 And when John had heard in prison about the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples
3and said to Him, "Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?" 4Jesus answered and said to them, "Go and tell John the things which you hear and see:
5The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them.
6And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me."
7As they departed, Jesus began to say to the multitudes concerning John: "What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? 8But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed, those who wear soft clothing are in kings' houses.
9But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet.
10For this is he of whom it is written: 'Behold, I send My messenger before Your face,Who will prepare Your way before You.'
11"Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen
one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of
heaven is greater than he.
12And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven
suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.
13For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
14And if you are willing to receive it, he is Elijah who is to come.
15He who has ears to hear, let him hear!
16But to what shall I liken this generation? It is like children sitting in the
marketplaces and calling to their companions,
17and saying: 'We played the flute for you, And you did not dance;
We mourned to you, And you did not lament.'
18For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, 'He has a demon.'
19The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, 'Look, a glutton
and a winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!' But wisdom is
justified by her children."
A doctor entered the hospital in hurry
after being called in for an urgent surgery.
He answered the call as soon as possible, changed his clothes,
and went directly to the emergency room.
He found the boy's father in the hall waiting for the doctor.
Once seeing him, the dad yelled:
"Why did you take all this time to come?
Don't you know that my son's life is in danger?
Don't you have the sense of responsibility?"
The doctor smiled and said: "I am sorry, I wasn't in the hospital.
I came as fast as I could after receiving the call......
And now, I wish you'd calm down so that I can do my work" "Calm down?!
What if your son was in this room right now,
would you calm down?
If your own son dies now what will you do??"
said the father angrily.
More of that story a little later!
The title of today's sermon is: It's easy to be misunderstood.
Misunderstanding happens all the time.
It is very, very easy to be misunderstood.
What if someone misunderstands you?
Not just what you say, but who you are?
What if you find that your motives are suspect
and your character is called into question?
What if they say that you are ineffective at what you are doing,
and they devalue you as a person?
What do you do about it if you are misunderstood?
You really don't want that!
Jesus was misunderstood.
In the passage of Scripture for today from the Book f Job,
there are two levels of misunderstanding that Jesus encountered..
I'd like us to see how Jesus responded to each of these.
Point #1 There is the accidental misunderstanding.
Accidental misunderstanding results
from incomplete communication.
It's the misunderstanding that comes about
because someone hasn't communicated clearly and thoroughly.
John the Baptist was in prison.
He is hearing rumors.
All kinds of things are being said about Jesus,
and some of them are disturbing.
John doesn't know what it means.
So John sends out a question,
"Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?"
"Jesus, are you really the chosen one of God,
or do we have to wait for another several hundred years
for God to keep His promises?"
Jesus was misunderstood;
but it was the kind of misunderstanding that comes
from incomplete communication.
Now look at what Jesus did with this misunderstanding.
First, Jesus brought other people into the picture.
He brought in other people who could witness
to what they knew and what they had seen and heard.