Summary: How do we respond when we see others not living for the Lord? Perhaps we sometimes get frustrated with family members or friends that keep running from God.
We have a responsibility to ourselves our families and our community to bring the light of the gospel to those who live in darkness and without Christ. Perhaps we get discouraged with how we see other people living.
How do we respond when we see others not living for the Lord? Perhaps we sometimes get frustrated with family members or friends that keep running from God.
Christ is always our example for everything…
Text: Matthew 9:35 thru 38
There are many people who do not have a desire for the things of God. Sometimes their interest is only for shallow philosophy instead of the bold message of repenting from their sins and living for Christ.
This is what Jesus saw in these four verses.
That is, there are disgruntled sheep who are blind and do not follow Jesus – the Good Shepherd. They are sheep that scatter and run off in different directions.
When Jesus saw this, the Bible says that He was
“moved with compassion”.
It was (no doubt) bad then, but (many believe) that it is even worse now. What do I mean?
1. Christian churches have a lack of commitment and loyalty to God. Finding servants who will faithfully serve God is fading. This is evidenced in many of the churches in the U.S. Surprisingly, the big churches have the same problems the small churches do. Finding committed servants of the Lord is typically the same…everywhere…
2. Righteous living is considered old fashioned and often too much to expect in our culture.
3. Church attendance is considered (by many) to be a secondary option, while things like weekend recreation ranks first in priority.
How do we respond to this growing problem?
What we see must cause us to be moved with compassion as Jesus was. We must not look at what the world is doing this morning and become resentful and (certainly not) judgmental of others.
Our friends and extended family members need something much more than just being in church.
That is, they simply need to follow the Good Shepherd.
In our text - Jesus was moved with compassion when He saw all of the scattered sheep.
How do we respond?
· Many folks we know are indifferent to the Gospel. Their lives are filled with (what the believe is) greater priorities and responsibilities.
· Many gratify themselves with what the world is doing instead of making themselves accountable to the One Who created them.
· Many have little or no concern for their soul or their eternity.
How do we respond? Are we discouraged, or are “moved with compassion”?
In our passage, there is no mention of Jesus sighing or moaning. Our reaction to scattered sheep must be the same reaction that Jesus had. Jesus saw weary sheep that were “scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.”
The response of Jesus was simple and direct.
“The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”
As a church – how are we responding to these “scattered sheep”?
1. Lighthouse Assembly of God will soon ship the necessary Bible Training courses to the shepherds located in one of the most remote and darkest regions of the world. In the bush country of Zambia and the Congo, there are literally thousands upon thousands of sheep who are scattered and without a shepherd.
2. Lighthouse Assembly of God (also) continues to train and mentor men and women and (even) boys and girls into being spiritual leaders for the scattered sheep of Southern Illinois.
In our text, Jesus was grieved by the sin of the weary sheep. This Man from Nazareth experienced the heartache and had sympathy for those who were lost and without a shepherd.
The people saw the heart felt compassion for the sheep who were lost. And this is one of the reasons why the people followed Christ and listened closely to Him. Simply because He had a heart for SCATTERED SHEEP.
Jesus Christ is our example to live by…
In the scriptures we never see where Christ condemned the SCATTERED SHEEP. We never see where He felt that the sheep were too stupid, too ignorant, too evil, too sickly, or even too self-righteous…
Jesus remained so practical, and was never too discouraged or disheartened to reach out to the lost sheep. Jesus only saw the multitudes that needed Him.
And this (frankly) is our downfall. Sometimes we do not see the multitudes. We may drive through downtown areas of big cities like Chicago or New York and think we have seen a multitude of people, but we really have no idea. We have no comprehension of the multitudes that Jesus saw.
I cannot imagine the endless sea of people who are out there…who are lost and scattered this morning. In our little town we see those we know and maybe grew up with, but Christ saw the all of the multitudes who are living in darkness.