January 20, 2011 § Leave a comment
Even though it is only the fourth chapter of the Gospel of Matthew, it is already the third time in this Gospel that Jesus finds himself a new hometown (in Matthew 4:12-23). From Bethlehem (2:5-6) to Nazareth (2:23) to Capernaum (4:14-16), Jesus was constantly on the move to preach God’s kingdom and to heal the sick (4:17, 23). Jesus was never allowed the comforts of the familiar for the sake of finding those in need of God’s healing touch wherever they might live. And when He called his followers, they also became constant wanderers (4:20, 22). Later in Matthew 10:7, Jesus send his followers to preach the same message that God’s kingdom is near. Throughout the Bible it became evident that God’s people are a pilgrimage people who cannot afford the luxuries of comfort zones. Not only is our identity frequently at odds with the dominant cultures within which we live, but we are also detectives of divinity that move around to seek out those that God is sending us to for the sake of participating in His work in the world. Unfortunately, many churches became stagnant in the forms of social clubs and vendors of religious goods that focus on God-for-the-self. What kind of church is your church going to be as God’s constant wanderers in your neighborhoods and communities?