Speaker: Jerry Cisar
F.D. Bruner suggests a translation of Matthew 4:17 that captures well the meaning, “Turn your lives around, for here comes the kingdom of heaven.” What follows in Jesus’ ministry reveals how this announcement calls us to respond; what it means to turn our lives around.
This announcement, “Here comes the kingdom of heaven,” is a bit like one might say, back in the day that trains were the primary means of getting from place to place, “the train is coming.” Suppose you planned to go to NY on the train and someone said, “here comes the train.” They are telling you 2 things: 1) An opportunity exists right now for you! 2) If you don’t act, you will miss your opportunity! Why? Because the train is not parking! Likewise the kingdom of heaven is not standing still. When it comes, we must act!
This Sunday’s text (Matthew 4:18-25), helps us understand what this announcement is like and what it really means to “repent” and to “follow Jesus.” In doing so, it also reveals a foundation for what Matthew, the model disciple, thinks it means to be a disciple.