To pick up where I left off, sharing our faith and proclaiming the Good News of Jesus to our families has its particular obstacles. Some choose to remain quite about their faith when they encounter resistance, while others choose the route of anger and judgmentalism when speaking of faith. To summarize my previous post, the first route values “unity” over the openly expressed Gospel; the second route isn’t concerned with discord because they believe that such imposed tension from them will get their unbelieving family member to “think rightly” about the Good News. That being said, let’s return to the words of Jesus.
Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. (Lk 12:51)
Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. (Mt. 10:34)
Division? A sword? These are hard words from Jesus, especially when we consider all of his conversations about loving one another (Mt 5:43, Mk 12:31, 33; Jn 13:34, 35; Lk 10:27). When I read these two difficult texts I feel compelled to ask, “am I missing something here?” In seems I have a few responses available to me as the reader. I can retreat upon hearing that Jesus came to “divide my family”, or maybe I can embrace Christ’s imposed division and carry his sword on; marching toward my family with a message that will separate us all. Again, am I missing something?
I’m inclined to ask if Jesus is up to something here, perhaps invoking memories of texts previously read by his followers.
[For the sake of space, I won’t include the Old Testament text that Jesus is quoting from, but it is found amidst Micah 7:1-20.]
Upon reading this Old Testament chapter, what is your personal response? I would love to read your thoughts!
PART3 COMING SOON! (and by soon, I actually mean soon)