Jesus First

Luke 8:19-21 (NIV)

Jesus’ Mother and Brothers

19 Now Jesus’ mother and brothers came to see him, but they were not able to get near him because of the crowd. 20 Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.”

21 He replied, “My mother and brothers are those who hear God’s word and put it into practice.”

Luke 8:19-21 is one of those interesting passages that make you scratch your head and say, “What does Jesus mean?”  It sounds like He is being harsh and is rejecting His family.  He is not doing that, but is making an important point about the family of God.  Our biological ties are very important, but the ties that bind us spiritually are even more important.  Jesus made a similar point in Luke 14:26 (NIV):

If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple.

Does Jesus want us to hate our parents, siblings and even our own selves?  Not at all!  Jesus wants us to love Him most.  He wants us to love God most.  Our ultimate allegiance is not to family, country or even ourselves.  Our greatest allegiance is to Jesus.  Why?  Because He suffered and died for our sake.  He gave up His very life on the cross to bring us the joy and hope of eternity.  Without Jesus we are lost.  Without Jesus we have no hope.  We have no promise of eternal life.  We are lost and dead in our sins.  Jesus wasn’t rejecting His biological family in Luke 8.  He was expanding His family to those who hear God’s Word and obey it.  If we are not willing to do put Jesus above everything in full surrender and devotion, we are not truly following Him.  Jesus has to come first.  Period.
PRAYER: Help me to put Jesus first in my life today, O Lord.  I cannot thank You enough that He put me before Himself when He went to the cross.  Give me the strength to put Him first.  In His name I ask this, amen.

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