Monday, May 12, 2014

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          Luke 7:33-34 says that some people are never satisfied. " For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine; and ye say, he hath a devil.  The Son of man is come eating and drinking; and ye say, behold a gluttonous man, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners!"  The Bible describes the people talked about here as hard hearted and stiff necked. 

          Throughout the Bible, people are able to witness miracles; and since it is hard to understand, they either ignore the miracle worker or give credit to something they make up in their own minds.  I give for example the Israeli people , who since 1948 have seen and acknowledged the miracles God has performed on behalf of His People, but some finish their account with "but I'm not religious".

          As we see in the four Gospels, those that have the power are the ones that Jesus has to contend with.  They can't acknowledge Him for who He was, because it might cost them their positions of power and influence. The Sadducees, the Pharisees and the Scribes were the people in power when Jesus was here on earth.  The Father sent Jesus to reconcile mankind to Himself, and He was rejected and ridiculed. Those in power fought Him at every turn, eventually torturing Him and then Killing Him on the cross.  Not all of those in power rejected Him, but the majority who received Him were the "common people".  Examples such as Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea were the exception, rather than the rule. 

          Caiaphas, the chief priest in those days, even went so far as to say the following: It would be better for one man to die for the good of the many, and later, that the Apostles should be left alone because if their movement was not of God it would fade away, but if it was of God it would be impossible to fight against it.  

Prime examples of ingratitude are as follows -

Matthew 12:10-14 describes Jesus as healing a man with a withered hand - "Then said he to the man, Stretch forth your hand. And he stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, like as the other.  Then the Pharisees went out, and held a council against him, how they might destroy him."

Matthew 12:22-24  Jesus healed the man possessed by a devil and they accused Him of doing it by Beelzebub. (unforgivable sin Matt.12:30-32)

In Matthew 21:15, they saw what He did and were sore displeased.

In Mark 3:22, they said he cast out devils by Beelzebub. They saw the devils cast out and accused Him of doing it through the power of the devil.  Jesus explained that to give credit to the devil for the work of the Holy Spirit was blasphemy against the Holy Spirit and unforgivable.

Mark 2:4-12  Jesus forgave the man's sins and the scribes said it was blasphemy, so Jesus reasoned with them and healed the man.

In Mark 3:1-6, Jesus healed the man with the withered hand and they plotted against Him.  (Not the people, but the Pharisees)

In Mark 8:11, the Pharisees had just seen the miracle of the feeding of the 4000 and demanded a sign from heaven. We know that the feeding of the  4000 was looked on as miraculous by the people.  For the Pharisees, the event was not enough of a sign.

In Luke 6:6-11 they looked to see if Jesus would heal on the Sabbath day? Forget the miracle, wrong day.  The scribes and pharmacies saw a healing of a mans right hand and plotted against Jesus.

In Luke 8:26-37, after he delivered the Gaderine demoniac they asked Him to leave.

In Luke 6:10-11, He healed and they were filled with madness

Luke 11:14-16 says: " And he was casting out a devil, and it was dumb. And it came to pass, when the devil was gone out, the dumb spoke; and the people wondered. But some of them said, He casts out devils through Beelzebub the chief of the devils. And others, tempting him, sought of him a sign from heaven." Again, see the miracle and demand a sign - like the miracle wasn't a sign.

Luke 13:10-14  Jesus healed the woman and the leader got upset, miracle - then rebuke - for healing on the Sabbath

In John 5:8-17, Jesus healed the man and the Jews were upset, and sought to kill Jesus because He told the man to carry his bed home on the Sabbath.

John 10:24-39 The Jews asked Jesus if He was the Christ - He told them He was, and they tried to stone Him. 

John 10:32-33 says Jesus did good works, then they accused Him of blasphemy. Jesus answered them, "Many good works have I shown you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me? The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, make thyself God".

In John 11:38-53,  Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and the chief priests and Pharisees plotted against Him because they didn't want the people to believe in Him.  John 12:9-11 - they wanted to kill Lazarus also. After Jesus raised Lazarus they were afraid the people would believe in Him - why didn't they?  "And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave clothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus said unto them, Loose him, and let him go. Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on him. But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done. Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, What do we? for this man doeth many miracles.  If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.  And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, Ye know nothing at all, Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.  And this spoke he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad.  Then from that day forth they took counsel together for to put him to death."

John 12:9-11 says, they wanted to kill Jesus and Lazarus both. "Much people of the Jews therefore knew that he was there: and they came not for Jesus' sake only, but that they might see Lazarus also, whom he had raised from the dead. But the chief priests consulted that they might put Lazarus also to death;  Because that by reason of him many of the Jews went away, and believed on Jesus."

John 12:37 says, they saw miracles and still didn't believe.

John 12:42-43 says, even the rulers believed, but would not confess Him because of the cares of the world.  "Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God"

John 13:37 Though He had done many miracles among them, they still didn't believe on Him

John 15:24-25 says: "If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father. But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause."

Following the resurrection, the Apostles were treated the same way.

Acts 2:22-23 says, "Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:" vs.36 says, " Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ."

Acts 4:5-20 - they were doing to the apostles what they did to Jesus. First the miracles - then the persecution.

Acts 4:16-21 - healing - then threats

Acts 5:15-18 - sick were healed and the Sadducees put them in jail.

Acts 5:38-42 says: "And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nothing: But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God. And to him they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ."

Acts 6:8-15 - Stephen did great wonders and miracles and they accused him and stoned him to death.  (7:1-60 - the rest of the story)

Acts 9:2-23 Paul preached and they plotted to kill him.

          As we can see from the above, in Jesus time on earth, as well as today, many of those who are unbelievers are hard hearted against God and His word.  The price has already been paid in full. The sin of the world has been forgiven. There remains only one stipulation to gain eternal life, with the Lord in Heaven.  In John 3:7, Jesus said: you must be born again.  John 3:16-18 says, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God." Romans 10:9-10 says, "That if thou shall confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in your heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shall be saved.  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."

          The dictionary defines an ingrate as an ungrateful person.  The thesaurus says an ingrate is a person who shows no gratitude.  The Bible demonstrates that an ingrate is someone who fails to receive the blessing and salvation offered freely because of the sacrifices Jesus made.  

          Accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior and you have complied with the Fathers plan.  To not accept or to reject is a decision which lies within your own heart.  The responsibility is yours to accept or reject, because to fail to make a decision is to decide - inaction is the action of non action.  John 3:18 states that "He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God".


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