Saturday, February 26, 2022
26 Jesus looked hard at them and said, “No chance at all if you think you can pull it off yourself. Every chance in the world if you trust God to do it.”
27 Then Peter chimed in, “We left everything and followed you. What do we get out of it?”
28-30 Jesus replied, “Yes, you have followed me. In the re-creation of the world, when the Son of Man will rule gloriously, you who have followed me will also rule, starting with the twelve tribes of Israel. And not only you, but anyone who sacrifices home, family, fields—whatever—because of me will get it all back a hundred times over, not to mention the considerable bonus of eternal life. This is the Great Reversal: many of the first ending up last, and the last first.”
-Matthew 19:26-30 The Message
Verse 26: And looking at them, Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
The Disciples’ Reward
Verse 27: Then Peter responded and said to Him, “Behold, we have left everything and followed You; what then will there be for us?”
Verse 27 study: God gives rewards to his people according to his justice; this is in the Bible. In the Old Testament, obedience often brought rewards in this life (Deuteronomy 28), but these immediate rewards and obedience are not always linked. If it was linked, then good people would always be rich, and suffering would always be a sign of sin. The true award as believers is God’s presence and power through the Holy Spirit. At a later time in eternity, we will be rewarded for our faith and service. If material rewards in this life came to us for every faithful deed, we would be tempted to brag about our achievements and act out of wrong motivations.
Verse 28: And Jesus said to them, “Truly I say to you, that you who have followed Me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man will sit on His glorious throne, you also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
Verse 29: And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or farms on account of My name, will receive many times as much and will inherit eternal life.
Verse 29 study: Jesus assured the disciples that anyone who gives up something valuable for his sake will be repaid many times over this life, although not in the same form. For example, a person may be rejected by his or her family for accepting Christ but he or she will gain a larger family of believers.
Verse 30: But many who are first will be last; and the last, first.
Verse 30 study: Jesus turned the world’s values upside down. Consider the most powerful and well-known people in our world. A question to ask yourself is how many of them got to where they are at by being humbled, self-effacing, and gentle? Not a lot. But in the life to come, the last will be first, if they got in lust by choosing to follow Jesus. Don’t be forceful in forfeiting eternal rewards for temporary benefits. Be willing to make sacrifices now for greater rewards later. Be willing to accept human disapproval while knowing you have God’s approval.