Sermons

Jesus Divides | Matthew 10:34-11.1 (Mville)

July 13, 2014 Speaker: Christopher Rich Series: Mission of the King | Matthew Part II

Topic: New Testament Passage: Matthew 10:34–11:1

Jesus Divides - Matthew 10.34 - 11.1 from Damascus Road Church on Vimeo.

 

Introduction

Good Morning! We are continuing to preach through the book of Matthew, the gospel account

of Jesus as the Savoir-King of God’s people. We are in Part 2 (Chapters 8-13) the Mission of the

King. Jesus is the great savior and king of God’s people. Jesus is God in the flesh. Jesus sees

there are many hurting and lost people who need the message and healing of the kingdom.

Jesus commissions and Jesus sends. Before he sends his troops into battle he gives marching

orders like a general in the form of a sermon. He has given methods for a mission motivated by

compassion. He has given them clear warnings about persecution and trials they will face, and

encourages them not fear men while maintaining a healthy fear and respect of the power and

holiness of God. As this Sermon of the Mission concludes, we see Jesus wants his disciples to

fully understand the purpose of His mission is controversial. Jesus came to divide. Jesus divides

for conflict, he divides families, he divides lives, and he divides rewards. We will look at the

purposes of each of these divisions and ultimately how Jesus brings together through His work

on the cross.

Matthew 10:34-11:1 34

come to bring peace, but a sword. 35For I have come to set a man against his father, and a

daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. 36And a person's

enemies will be those of his own household. 37Whoever loves father or mother more than

me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of

me. 38And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39Whoever finds

his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

“Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent

40

me. 41The one who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet's reward,

and the one who receives a righteous person because he is a righteous person will receive

a righteous person's reward. 42And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold

water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.” 11 When

Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and preach in

their cities.

V 10:34 Jesus Divides for Conflict to Bring Peace

Jesus heals, Jesus restores, Jesus save, all we have seen about ministry and mission to this

point seems to give us the understanding Jesus is here to bring peace. Jesus is the fulfillment

“Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not

of Isaiah 9:6 as the Prince of Peace. Jesus tells his followers different purposes for why he

came at different times, he says he is here to seek and save the lost (Lk 19:10), Jesus is here to

give abundant life (Jn 10:10), Jesus says he is here to give witness to the truth about Truth (Jn

18:37). Which one is it? Jesus mission is multifaceted. One simple mission statement cannot

contain the complexity of all Jesus is here to accomplish; so he emphases different aspects at

different times. Here Jesus says “I came” and proceeds to tell us what he is NOT here to do.

He is not her to bring peace, but the sword. Luke 12:51 says “division”. Jesus mission will bring

conflict.

The Jews understood the Messiah was going to lead God’s people triumphantly into battle

against the armies of oppression and secure victory that would lead to a time of ultimate peace.

Jesus is telling the disciples the battle is here, the conflict is here, the division is here but the

time for peace has not come yet. What are we do with this hard saying of Jesus? First we need

to acknowledge we are not currently in a state peace. The arrival of Jesus into human history

does not bringing a new conflict into the world but highlights the one that is already here. It is not

as though everything was peaceful and smooth until Jesus arrived and then things got conflicted

and divided. In fact it is the opposite, Jesus brings clarity.

There was peace in the beginning, in the garden, why? Because, God made it so. Because of

sin, man choosing to declare his independence from the God who made him and a war began.

We are divided, divided from ourselves as conflict rages inside of us. We are divided from each

other in our relationships with others individually and groups/sects/nations corporately. Most

importantly, we are not at peace with God. Jesus didn’t start the conflict, but He will finish it.

Jesus comes to offering us terms of surrender to His Father’s kingdom, pays our war debt with

his own blood on the cross, and says you will be on my mission.

Second, we need to understand Peace is not the absence of conflict; it is the restoration of order

and relationship. Hebrew word for peace is Shalom, a much more comprehensive term. The

word peace here is in Greek and means simply, freedom from worry. Freedom from worry is

not here for those divided from God, defined by sin, and in open conflict with the holy, perfect

Creator. You should look at the world and your heart apart from God and be worried. The

absence of conflict is not always the best place to be. There is very little outward conflict in

places like North Korea, there is no decent. There is only slavish acceptance to a status quo

that is less than what God desires for people. God the Father rightly sees the current state of

His creation because of sin is not good, not the way he made it. So He send His promised Son

into the world on mission for the world. God loves the world and those in it enough not to let it

remain the way it is. We need Jesus to bring conflict to our world because without out conflict

there is no hope for things to change, only for them to remain in a perpetual state of division

separated from God.

Third, we need to understand Peace can only come through conflict. Specifically Peace

can only come from victory, victory over evil and overcoming sin. Where evil and sin dwell,

peace is not possible. This means for followers of Jesus, we are in battle. Ephesians 6:12

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities,

against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the

heavenly places. There is evil, there is sin. If you are not waging war on sin in your own life

in some fashion, then you have given yourself over to it. If you are not sure there is hostility

to the message of Jesus as King and the values of the Kingdom being necessary for human

flourishing, Go ahead, stir the pot, try talking about biblical sexually with your coworkers, try

telling the guys that come to your door they don’t know Jesus like they think they do, try telling

someone Jesus is king over everything and our government is but a mere shadow of real

authority. The good news is we are in a battle where ultimate victory is assured by our King

Jesus., but it is a conflict that currently still rages. Jesus knows there is a temptation to water

down this gospel and to try to make it more appealing to more people to unify based on their

personal preferences. This is not the final reconciliation time, this is time for division.

2 Cor 2: 14-16 14But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession,

and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. 15For we are

the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are

perishing, 16

gospel leads victory, but the gospel still divides.

V 10:35-37 Jesus Divides Families to Restore Relationships

Our family relationships are so fluid and the structures are often a confusing and as sound

as a house of cards. Some of us are close to our families and others are not. For the people

Jesus was talking too what he was saying was completely inconceivable. For 1st

there was no great duty or loyalty then to your family, particularly to the father as patriarch. A

newlywed couple often lived with the groom’s parents as they were starting out, this meant

the relationship between mother-in-law and daughter-in-law was a formal one of training. This

meant at some point MILs and DILs we supposed to get along. I am betting Jesus didn’t have

to do too much work on splitting up those too. Here Jesus is saying he is going to set a man

against his father, a daughter against her mother. Why? How can this be an improvement?

Micah 7:6-7 6

mother,

the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; a man's enemies are the men of his own house.

to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life. The

century Jews

for the son treats the father with contempt, the daughter rises up against her

7 But as for me, I will look to the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear

me. Jesus quote verses not talking about a time of peace, the prophet Micah was talking about

at time of so much tribulation even people’s closest friends and family would not be trustworthy,

yet the Lord still comes to save.

In Luke 14:26 Jesus lays out the cost of discipleship and says we are to “hate” our parents

and our children. Really? No, the word specifically means to “love less” than. Where is your

highest loyalty placed? It is an easy question to answer, when two completing priorities come

face to face which one wins? There is to be a hierarchy of relationships, with Jesus #1 and ALL

others secondary. Our family relationships are not insignificant or non-existent but they are to

be completely “less than” our relationship with Jesus. Jesus is restoring an order that is often

inverted. “Family First” sounds great, but not at the expense of Jesus second. We can’t make

the mistake of turning our families into idols and worship them above Jesus. Jesus doesn’t say

this because he is an ego manic or because he doesn’t not want us to be loving to our families.

Jesus knows the best way for us to love to our families, is to love, sever, follow Jesus faithfully.

Jesus tells us citizens of His kingdom will love God and love people. Loving God, serving Jesus

restores our relationship to their proper order. Jesus doesn’t tell his follower to dust their feet off

and disengage when it comes our families, OR to actively seek conflict with them. He is saying

for those who are faithfully following Him, those in your family who don’t follow Jesus will oppose

you when you display your ultimate allegiance to God as your Father. Stay engaged with your

families AND follow Jesus. We don’t sacrifice the truth or goodness in an attempt to keep

peace, lack of conflict, with our families. Jesus experienced this, his own brother and sisters

didn’t believe he was God, they thought he was “out of his mind”, until the resurrection. He was

betrayed by Judas who was one of his closest partners in ministry for 3 years.

V 10:38-39 Jesus Divides Lives to Save Souls

Jesus calls all His disciples to obey his commands and identify with Him at the expense of all

our personal, self-centered goals, aspirations, or even fears we work against. He tells us to

actively divide out our own wills, desires, and preferences, hand them over to Jesus and take

up a new life with Jesus as King. It is an exchange, we give Jesus our life of selfish rebellion

against God for a life of self-denial and he gives us the salvation of our souls now and forever.

No longer under wrath, we begin a new abundant life Jesus promises for those who follow Him.

It is abundant because we are with God, no longer divided by our sin.

Matt 16:26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what

shall a man give in return for his soul? There is an alternative path, but it does not save your

soul.

Following Jesus is a one way road, one where you are taking on a path you know won’t lead

to universal earthly acclaim or acceptance and will likely lead to greater difficulty and conflict

as you continue in faithfulness in an unfaithful world. This is Jesus instructions to the 12 on

what being on mission is going to be like. We talked a few weeks ago about how ordinary, or

even extraordinarily unqualified for effective ministry the 12 apostles were. Yet, Jesus set them

apart for His mission and their road leads them to great suffering here on earth and by worldly

standards tragic ends to their lives that mirror the death of Jesus. Church history teaches us

Peter was crucified upside down. Thomas was run through with spears and burned alive. James

was thrown down from the top of the temple spire. Matthias, Simon the Zealot, Nathanael,

Philip, were all crucified after severe beatings. Paul after suffering in multiple prisons was

beheaded by Nero in Rome. John was the only one who died of old age; but even he was boiled

in hot oil scaring his skin before being exiled to the island of Patmos. These men are all in glory

enjoying abundant eternal life.

V 10:40-11:1Jesus Divides Rewards to Continue the Mission

Yes there will be pain on the road of faithfulness and mission. We should be empowered for

mission knowing when we are rejected they are not rejecting us, they are rejecting Jesus. When

we are received they are receiving Jesus. There is a purpose in the pain and rewards during

the mission. Jesus is clear, there are rewards. However, they may not always be for you. The

rewards Jesus talks about here are not rewards for those who are being sent but to those who

we are sent too, that receive Jesus. Our mission is not about our rewards, but understanding

there are those who need to receive what we have been given. This means we pour into people

regardless of what we expect to get in return. Who has poured into you?

Our church has benefitted from the work of other faithful servants on mission for the king

pouring into those they have been sent to and they are not receiving any benefits from them

other than they see the benefits to the kingdom being of more value than any personal success

or gain. We reach people for Jesus, call them to Jesus, train them for Jesus, send them for

Jesus. When they go, we hope we are following Jesus example, we keep preaching and

teaching in the places we’ve been called to go to or stay at.

CROSS Jesus Brings Together

Jesus came to divide, Jesus came to bring conflict. But Jesus also came on a mission to endure

conflict. The cross is a place of immense conflict where creation sought to kill the Creator. Jesus

didn’t come to suffer and die on the cross because of a selfish reward he would receive, he did

so for the joy of saving sinners.

Heb 12:2 2

set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the

throne of God.

Jesus reward for the cross was the joy of know the shame of sin that divides us from God is

removed by his blood. Jesus’ reward was knowing those in conflict with God, destined for wrath

could now be saved and real peace, shalom, could come to those who surrender to Him. The

cross is a place of infinite peace as Jesus secured victory over sin and death.

Col 1:19-20 19For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to

reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his

cross.

Jesus does bring peace and Jesus reunites God to His people by the cross. Trust Jesus!

looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was

More in Mission of the King | Matthew Part II

September 14, 2014

Rejecting Jesus | Matthew 13:53-58 (Mville)

September 7, 2014

Parables of Kingdom Power and Price | Matthew 13 (Mville)

August 31, 2014

Parables of the Kingdom | Matthew 13 (Mville)