Luke 5:33-39 What To Do To...?
The scribes and the Pharisees watched [Jesus] closely to see if he would cure on the Sabbath so that they might discover a reason to accuse him…they discussed together what they might do to Jesus.
If you spend some time with someone, you are bound to get to know them. Once you get to know them, you are bound to get upset with them. From a distance, they can do no wrong. Up close and personal, all they seem to do is wrong.
This is the paradox of friendship. In order to make a friend, you have to get to know them. Once you get to know them, you know everything about them. Once you know everything about them, you can easily get annoyed by them. That’s why very few brothers or sisters are very good friends. It’s not because we didn’t get to pick them. It’s because we got to know them!
To be a friend means to love a friend. To love a friend means to forgive a friend. A friend is not someone you find. It is someone you forgive.
This morning I told a group of high school senior girls that the best way to prepare for College life is to invite their little sister back into their room. What better way is there to prepare for dorm life; for a roommate you didn’t pick! What a great way to prepare for someone who will snoop into your affairs; complain night and day; and have little to no respect for your property, feelings or ideas.
Friends do not make us better prepared for college life (or life). Family does!
The scribes and Pharisees were watching the Lord closely to see if they could accuse him of something, anything. Boy, that must have taken a lot of work! It couldn’t have been an easy task. And there lies the irony of it all: the scribes and Pharisees were working hard, harder than the Lord, on the Sabbath!
But they couldn’t find anything. So what to do?
Rather than looking to be better or holier, the scribes and Pharisees looked for something – anything - to accuse the Lord of. And the Lord knew it. That’s why He went along his way and spent very little time with them. Sure, He talked to them and dealt with them, but He gave very little of Himself to them, and this irritated the hell in them! While the Lord continued to cure the sick and heal the sinners, the scribes and Pharisees continued to attack Jesus: viciously and aggressively. They called him names. They twisted his actions. They distorted his messages. In the meantime, the Lord continued doing what He did best.
What do you do when someone does you wrong? Do you leave them alone? Do you try to help them? Or do you strike back in a vicious manner? We all know what the Lord did.
What do you do when someone doesn’t fall into your trap? Do you leave them alone? Do you learn your lesson? Or do you strike back in a vicious manner? We all know what the Pharisees and scribes did.
Does name calling or throwing mud at someone’s name or reputation make you a better person? Does calling someone a bigot, a racist, an extremist or a chauvinist make you feel any better? Would it have made the Lord any better? Did it make the Pharisees any better?
There are some people in this world that, regardless of how much you try to help them, will end up attacking you. Christ knows! The perfect man experienced it himself. Would you expect anything different; especially you being imperfect?
Honest people make mistakes and give us a great opportunity to rise above the mud and forgive… just as we hope to be forgiven.
To forgive someone does not require a lot of time. Don’t expect too much time to be given.