¹⁶”But to what shall I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the market places, who call out to the other children, ¹⁷and say, ‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn.’
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, ‘Behold, a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ Yet wisdom is vindicated by her deeds.”
The Unrepenting Cities
²⁰Then He began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent.
²¹”Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles had occurred in Tyre and Sidon which occurred in you, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. ²²Nevertheless I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment than for you.
²³And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You will descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day. ²⁴Nevertheless I say to you that it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you.”
Playing together, sharing together…
Children play in the street.
Playing together is nice.
But sometimes there is a big fight.
Why don’t you join in?
There is nothing good enough for you!
When we played it was a party and we made music, but you didn’t want to dance.
When we played that someone had died, you didn’t want to mourn.
That’s how it goes with child’s play sometimes.
One child doesn’t feel like what the other is doing and so the game dies.
Later the children come home and say to mother: ‘I’m so bored, I never have anything nice to do!
With this scene, Jesus comes with a scathing reproach to adults.
For no matter how the Kingdom of God is brought, it is never good.
It doesn’t come exactly the way people want it to, so it’s rejected. Convicted.
And then they complain: ‘There is never anything to see of God in our lives!’
- John the Baptist came. His sobriety was rejected. ‘Imagine, do I have to participate in that?’
- Then Jesus came. Very different from John, enjoying life. “Is that a man of God?”
However God comes with His Kingdom, it is never right.
It never suits people.
At the bottom line it is because God is not welcome.
Jesus had to conclude that God’s Kingdom had been rejected by the people.
Either way, it didn’t fit.
People wanted to remain independent, not participate in the seriousness and celebration of the Kingdom of God.
“Woe to you!” says Jesus. “For he who is thus called, but does not answer, shall not partake of the glory of God’s kingdom” (Matthew 11:20-24).
Only in our own little world, which no one can reach, we feel at home.
Imagine having to give yourself to another, to God!
But whoever keeps focusing on maintaining self-preservation, misses out on the blessing of sharing.
Whoever keeps closed to God, misses out on His blessings.
Children sing: ‘Playing together, sharing together is so nice!’
And so it is: whoever allows God into his life in the way He comes, will receive riches he never thought possible!
- What would disturb people about the Kingdom of God?
- Is this also a problem to you?
- Ask God to teach you to receive Him in the way He comes to you.
□ ■ □
Read more of these messages at: https://devotionals.harryschoemaker.nl
Download your Bible pictures from: http://bijbelplaatjes.nl
Follow me on Twitter: @schoemakerharry