JESUS ACKNOWLEDGES WOMEN
After choosing seventy disciples and sending them ahead to towns and villages, Jesus explained to an expert on Jewish Religious Laws that the result of loving God, is, love for one's fellow-man, to the fact that every human being in need is our neighbour and needs to be loved and respected.
With the story of The Good Samaritan, Jesus described this love and compassion for others. A Jew on a trip was attacked by bandits, taking his clothes and money, leaving him lying half-dead on the road. A Jewish Priest came along, when seeing the man lying there, he crossed over to the other side of the road and passed by him. A Jewish Temple-assistant came and looked at the man, but went on, but a despised Samaritan came and felt deep pity for the beaten man and bandaged his wounds, put him on his donkey and took him to the nearest Inn, where he nursed the wounded stranger through the night. He then paid the Inn keeper to take care of him till he was well.
An incident that helps establish priories happened in the home of Martha, at Bethany, a follower of Jesus. Her younger sister, Mary, sat at Jesus' feet and listened to His teaching. Martha wanted to provide an elaborate meal for Jesus and complained that her younger sister was not helping her and asked Jesus to intervene. Jesus tenderly explained to Martha, that Mary had chosen to learn from Him, which was the more important choice at that time. Jesus affirmed Mary in a discipleship role, with equality. (NEED TO KNOW TEXT)
The priority of personal relationship with Christ, a role usually reserved by Jewish men and their Rabbis. (NEED TO KNOW TEXT)
The Jewish people viewed all illness as punishment from God and Jesus' disciples asked Him, as they walked towards a man who had been born blind, who had sinned? Jesus told them that no sin was the cause of the man's blindness, but it was to demonstrate the power of God. Jesus then healed the man and the Pharisees could not deny the miracle. This happened on the Sabbath in Jerusalem. These Leaders were so furious at this evidence; they willfully chose not to believe The Truth. As the man, who could now see, knelt and worshipped Jesus, Jesus accused the Pharisees of spiritual blindness. They were blind to the spiritual things of God the same as the man had been blind to the physical world.
A few women whom Jesus had healed,
traveled with Him and His disciples. These women, by their own private
means, supported the ministry of Jesus financially and practicably
In Jewish Synagogues women were segregated, by a partition, from the men and their only access into the building was via an outside staircase.
At a local Synagogue in the valley of Jordan, in the area known as Parea, Jesus stopped teaching and healed a crippled woman, bent double for eighteen years. During this one incident Jesus broke seven Traditional Jewish Laws, which were man-made extensions of God's Laws.
1. He acknowledged a woman in public. 2. He called to her and asked her to come to Him in public.
3. He allowed her to enter the men's section of the Synagogue. 4. He touched a woman in public. 5. He brought her onto the speaker's podium in the centre of the Synagogue. 6. He allowed her to be in the place of honour in front of the important Jewish Teachers of the Synagogue. 7. He healed her on the Sabbath. The woman praised God, but the Local Ruler of the Synagogue was very annoyed, but public opinion was on Jesus' side.
COMMAND OVER DEATH
Beyond the Jordan River, Jesus taught in synagogues and healed many people, including the infirmed woman on the Sabbath, with the crowds praising God. The right to heal on the Sabbath was an on-going controversy. Jesus was always victorious when confronted about this issue. Mary and Martha sent a message to Jesus, their brother, Lazarus and much loved friend of Jesus, was very ill. Jesus waited two days before traveling to Bethany to Martha's house, for He knew that Lazarus had died. When Jesus arrived four days later, he comforted the two sisters and they both affirmed their faith in Jesus, but did not grasp what He was going to do. Jewish Teachers and Leaders were there and told Jesus where Lazarus was buried. They also saw the tears that came to His eyes. Jesus was moved deeply with anger, it was death itself that was the object of His controlled anger. Jesus ordered the stone blocking the tomb to be removed, to the people's dismay.
"I am the One who raises the dead and gives them life again. Anyone who believes in Me, even though He dies, like anyone else, shall live again. He is given ETERNAL LIFE for believing in Me and shall never perish".
Jesus called to Lazarus and he became alive. Many of the Jewish Leaders who saw this happen finally believed in Jesus and who He is. Some reported it to the Chief Priests in Jerusalem, and the High Priest pronounced that Jesus had to be killed and taken out of the way, for they feared another political uprising, and were concerned selfishly, about their own positions.
The Roman Empire threatend that Jewish Laws would be taken over completly and the Religious Teachers would have no more freedom and control of the Jewish Religious system. Because of ongoing Jewish outbursts against Christianity, Jerusalem and The Temple were destroyed, which Jesus predicted. This did happen in 70 A.D.
Jesus traveled back beyond the Jordan
River to the countryside of Parea. Tax collectors as well as many other
sinners, gathered to hear Jesus. The Teachers of The Law muttered how He
welcomed sinners and ate with them. Jesus told the Leaders PARABLES
to demonstrate God's concern and joy at the repentance of a sinner, in
contrast to the attitude of the Pharisees.
"If a man has a hundred sheep and one wanders away and is lost, what will He do? Won't He leave the ninety-nine others and go out into the hills to search for the lost one? And if he finds it, he will rejoice over it more than over the ninety-nine others, safe at home?",
"A woman has ten valuable silver coins and looses one.(These wedding coins are the equivalent to engagement and wedding rings today) Won't she light a lamp and look in every corner and sweep every nook and cranny until she finds it? And won't she call her friends and neighbours to rejoice with her? In the same way there is joy in the presence of the angels of God when one sinner repents".
A man had two sons, the younger son asked for his inheritance straight away instead of waiting until his father had died. The father agreed and the young son packed his belongings and took a trip to a distant land and there wasted all his money on parties and prostitutes. He persuaded a local farmer to hire him to feed the pigs. When he finally came to his senses, he realized he was better off at home working for his father, so he returned home and asked forgiveness. The father embraced him and rejoiced and provided a feast for all the household. The older brother was angry, but the father explained, "Every thing I have is yours, but it is right to celebrate, for your brother was lost and now is found".
The forgiving love of the father in the parable symbolizes the Divine Mercy of God. It shows a great contrast between the self-centeredness of the Pharisees, who failed to understands God's Love, Concern and Joy at the repentance of sinners, those who do not know the Truths of God and His Purposes.
Jesus, as prophesied, told parables, they referred to the use of possessions, the importance of eternity instead of the importance of money, the necessity to pray persistently, the need for prayer. God acknowledges the person who recognizes his sin and repents and turns to Him, rather than a righteous person who is proud of himself for doing good.
As Jesus was talking, little children were brought to Jesus for Him to lay hands on them and pray. Jesus blessed them. He stretched out His arms and welcomed them, for children have openness, sincerity and full trust.
Jesus made it clear there will be rewards for all who respond to His call and all reward is the result of God's grace, not of human merit. (NEED TO KNOWTEXT)
Jesus told a parable which describes how God does not evaluate people by how long or how hard they work, but is generous in rewarding whatever the task or time. The benefits of the Kingdom of God are the same for all. The person who decides to obey God early in life does not mean he is entitled to better treatment and blessings from those who experience the new birth later in life. A land owner hired workers at different times during the day, but each one was given a full day's pay. Those who worked hard all day complained, but the owner was generous. Their complaints were not of injustice but of jealousy. When God's saving grace is offered, the response He requires is trust and loyalty.
Jesus left the region of Parea,
and travelled to Jericho. He again told His dicipls of His approaching
death and resurrection. Arriving at the City, Jesus healed two blind men.
Zacchaeus, one of the most influential Jew in The Roman Tas Collection
buisness, tried to get a look at Jesus. He ran a head of the crowds and
climbed up a sycamore tree to watch from there. Jesus saw him and called
him by name. Zacchaeus climed down the tree and took Jesus to his house.This
displeased the crowd, for Zacchaeus was considered a collaborator with
Rome. The striking evidence of what Jesus'visit had done for him was shown
by the fact that Zacchaeus announed the gift of half his goods to the poor
and those he had over charged, he would repay four times the amount.
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The Passover Week
Last updated August 2017
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