10:49 AM

It is a shame to be ashamed - Colin K.

Matt. 10:32-33, “Everyone therefore who acknowledges me before others, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven; but whoever denies me before others, I also will deny before my Father in heaven.”

Jesus is speaking to His disciples, so what does it mean to “acknowledge” Jesus as His servant? Is Jesus concerned that His disciples will cure sickness, feed the poor, and cast out demons (verse 8) and then take all the credit for themselves? Why do we need Jesus to acknowledge us before God in heaven? Does how we live deserve to be acknowledged or denied by God? If we are ashamed of God and what He has done, what on earth could we possibly take pride in?

It is a shame to be ashamed of Him.

Comment (1)

Think about what opponents to war endure from a larger society when it is rallying the troops and mobilizing for the killing of war. Jewish Christians endured such persecution during the Bar Kochba Revolt (132-135 AD) and likely faced similar consequences for their discipleship in the run-up to the Jewish War with Rome in 66-70 AD. The issue was certainly wider than war though. Tim K.'s post above speaks to how Jesus' way threatened the social order and drew fire from authorities and others concerned to keep things as they were. In many circles it was simply embarrassing to be loyal to Jesus. It still is. The world shames those who compromise security and prosperity, to say nothing of those who expose its claims to security and prosperity as evil.

As for Jesus' acknowledging us before God, the Bible knows nothing of an unmediated human relation to God. Inadequate mediation in relating to God means death. Jesus and his apostles are proclaiming the imminent judgment and salvation of the long-awaited Kingdom of the God of Israel. Many will be swept away in that judgment (which reaches a sort of acme in 66-70 AD - read Josephus's *Jewish War* on that). Jesus claims to mediate between God and Israel (and by extension the rest of the world) so that being associated with him will spare his disciples from the judgment to come. Many streams in Israel will dry out in the next generation (e.g., Sadducees, Herodians, Pharisees and scribes * as Pharisees and scribes). But Jesus' name was not blotted out (i.e., forgotten, left without legacy). Instead God exalted Jesus so that his name became above every name and the peoples of the world began to stream to him as their standard. Thus Jesus has acknowledged his disciples before God so that his church has passed through judgment and remained to the present, pointing to God's future of life for Israel and with it the whole world.

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