He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad.” Matthew 12:30
Christianity is not for spectators. For the believer, there simply is no such thing as taking a neutral stand. There are no passive observers or ones who teeter on the fence. When Jesus encounters people, He does not give them multiple options to choose from.
If He says, “Follow Me”, either you do or you don’t. Your feet move, or they don’t. As much as we’d like Him to, He does not come to bring peace but a sword. He disturbs and disrupts. Truth can be annoying, or hurt!
If you think He comes to clean up and sanitise your world, think again. He may just start to flip your tables over and all you can do is watch as your neatly stacked coins take flight.
While Jesus walked the earth, He was not moved by intelligence, position, or eloquence. Right thinkers and smooth talkers were not a part of His band. It’s the Good Samaritans, the Action Takers – the ‘worry about the blood stains later’ folks – who earned His praise and embrace.
In Luke 11:31-32, Jesus contrasted the men of His generation with the Queen of the South and the citizens of Nineveh. What was special about these two examples?
When the Queen of Sheba heard of the wisdom of Solomon, she did not simply ‘like’ it or post some feel-good emojis; she made the tortuous journey just to sit at His feet and learn.
Nineveh was special because they were serious. Others heard the same urgent message; but the Ninevites declared a fast and repented in sackcloth at the preaching of Jonah.
Doers have always captured His attention. Yet Jesus does not only exhort us to action, He also warns us against inaction. It’s not just weapons that kill. If I know there’s danger and say nothing, my silence can take a life too.
That’s why Jesus’ words in Matthew 12:30 are rattling. If we’re not pursuing and promoting Him in tangible ways, the implication is clear: passivity has real life consequences.
The world was shockingly catatonic as 6 million Jews were exterminated. Those who were not opposing the ‘Jewish problem’ abetted it by their complacency. Ignoring Hitler did not make the evil go away, it fertilised it.
Beloved, nobody drives in the median of the highway. Truth is, all our ‘vehicles’ are either going in the right direction or the wrong one. Jesus’ words could not be clearer: there’s no such thing as spiritually standing still. This world’s relentless treadmill keeps sucking us gullibly away from the Saviour’s side and mission.
Unchannelled, rainwater winds its way down until it reaches the gutter. To be idle is to be vulnerable. If we’re honest, we’ll realise just how many of us are numbed by our screens. We camp in an imaginary space and engage in imaginary battles where, when we or our teammates get shot, just need to press reset and voila, we’re up and firing again!
How many around us succumb to depression because people they’ve never met beat them to a virtual pulp? They suffer no black eyes, wounds, or even scratches, yet these Wi-Fi-borne sticks and stones are breaking bones, hearts, and dreams like toothpicks.
Mistakes in the virtual world lead to a loss of points or fewer clicks. Being unprepared in the real world can lead to loss of security, or limbs, or the most cherished things in life.
You may be able to send an assignment or report through the web, but it’s contradictory to believe you can be a disciple of Jesus without getting your feet wet and hands dirty. Good luck sending the hungry a virtual hamburger or covering the naked with a CGI jacket.
Want to truly follow Him? Get into the fray. Cornerstone family, the tools and gadgets of our age have empowered us and given us advantages in so many ways. But we’d be duped if we think that we can be just a disciple of Christ virtually.
Roll up your sleeves and pick up your cross. Live in the real world where your favourite action hero is not in the theatre but the gutsy guy or gal in the mirror who’s making His Lord proud.