A tribalistic Samaritan people would not allow Jesus and His disciples to pass through their village to Jerusalem. They have heard about Jesus and his connection to Jerusalem and decided to use their power of attorney to resist the pass. The immediate response of the disciples of Christ was to request approval to call fire down upon the village so that everyone in the place, including children, elderly, men, and women, will be burnt alive. They thought these villagers must know that we carry power with us as we go to Jerusalem, the City of God, to worship.
How did Jesus respond?
But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye, know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them. And they went to another village.Luke 9:51-56 (KJV)
Jesus simply made them go through another place; if one door is shut, there will always be another one; we do not have to die there or destroy the people because they wounded our pride or took us for a ride.
Before this occurrence, in the same chapter of Luke 9, there was another scene where disciples silenced some people serving God in their location sincerely. The disciples must have felt that those groups of people did not belong to their executive first class of Christ disciples and thus cannot be doing the same thing as disciples. The disciples had their reasons for muting those local people but Jesus corrected them also.
And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name, and he followeth not us: and we forbad him because he followeth not us. But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me. For he that is not against us is on our part.Mark 9:38-40 (KJV)
The disciples were obviously struggling with segregation, self-centeredness, the pride of position, place, race, etc. which Jesus corrected, and was documented for us to learn from, as followers of Christ, the redeemed of the Lord.
It is surprising to see all kinds of dissent, divisiveness, hostility among Christians these days, and one could not but wonder why (what could have precipitated all these). It should be a matter of concern if the salt of the world seems to be losing its savor and turning sour. People we are supposed to show the way of salvation and lighten up their heart, quietly sit in the dark watching the drama.
Many people have left the Christian faith or vowed never to have anything to do with Christianity because of the lives of some of us. Those people probably had seen some of our carnality, hypocrisy, division, partiality, displayed or hidden hatred, segregation, name them. Some of us also have left our first love and withdrawn from our zeal, giving the opportunity to the enemy to paddle our abandoned canoe. False teachers saw the lapses, took advantage of them, and blended in perfectly. Jesus said: “but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat and went his way”, Matthew 13:25. It is time to come back home brethren; Master is beckoning.
It is not too late to retrace our way back to the cross and cry out to God for the restoration of a right spirit within us. Our world still needs its lights and salts. Our world still needs God. Those that have been saved are to stand for the salvation of others and be good ambassadors of Christ.
A blind man was brought to Jesus for a touch of a miracle; Christ touched him, and he got his miracle instantly, but the man could only ‘see men as trees, walking’ (Mark 8:24). But when he acknowledged his incompleteness to Christ, he received the second touch, and this time could see men as men. This second touch experience is what many of us need these days; the Sanctification of our heart. If we can sincerely look inward individually and humbly pray for revival in our personal life, together, we will influence our world for good.