Peace family, today, I just wanted to encourage you with part of what I read in my Bible this morning. It was a good reminder that Christ is merciful.
Read with me: “51 As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. 52 And he sent messengers on ahead, who went into a Samaritan village to get things ready for him; 53 but the people there did not welcome him, because he was heading for Jerusalem. 54 When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?” 55 But Jesus turned and rebuked them. 56 Then he and his disciples went to another village.” (Luke 9:51-56, NIV)
Peace family, when I recently traveled to Israel, I found out that you have to travel through Samaria in order to go south from the area around Galilee to the area containing Jerusalem (Judea). The Samaritans had a long history of tension with the religious leaders of Jerusalem; Samaritans were looked on as half-breeds and considered unworthy of fully connecting with God, and Jerusalem was the elite religious center of the area.
It’s not surprising, therefore, that the Samaritans would feel indignant about helping Jesus on a journey to Jerusalem, nor is it surprising that the disciples would be so ready to punish the Samaritans with complete destruction. What is surprising, is Jesus’ simple choice to scold his disciples, and go to another village without demanding that this particular Samaritan village bend to his needs, or even be sorry.
Peace family, just because Jesus deserved to be honored and revered, did not mean that he lorded his authority over other people. This is meekness, and his decision was merciful. What are some ways that we can also be merciful to others today? Even if we don’t deserve the treatment that others give us, let’s be kind to one another today.