Knocking on Locked Doors

Friday, Oct. 21                       

The second context is the kingdom of God (Luke 13)—who will enter it and how does one qualify for entering it.  It’s a message of salvation and it starts with a call to repent.  It soon became an on-going debate between Jesus and Jewish leaders, who held the view that they were special people in God’s eyes.  Why would they need to repent?  Because these leaders were not seeking the truth, Jesus disguised His message by using  parables.  He told them they needed to repent or they would perish (v. 3).  He called them hypocrites (v. 15).  But many “common people” who witnessed this dialogue were “delighted.” (v. 17).  At one point, someone asked Him “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?”  Jesus answered by saying that there was a narrow door and many would try to get in, but the door would be locked and the owner would tell them “I never knew you . . . away from me, all you evil doers”  And then he said that people would come from all parts of the earth and will take their place.  That can only refer to the Gentiles, a totally offensive thought to the Jewish leaders.  This is where Jesus said “there are those who are last that will be first, and first will be last.”  The point is that those who had the first opportunity will be replaced by those whose opportunity came later.  It’s not who got the message first; it’s who responded the right way first.

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