2020-05-08 Like Dung On The Open Field

“Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road,
while he opened to us the Scriptures?”
Luke 24:32

The bible is such a cool book. I’ve been reading for a relatively short period, thirteen years now, and am still fascinated every time I open it. I don’t expect that to change. Even though I am discovering new things all the time, I’m also noting how much I don’t yet understand. I’m not concerned by this in the least because I know one day God will reveal the answers. All of them.

There are several people I am really looking forward to meeting in heaven. I just added the last two today:

1. The demon-possessed man
2. Nicodemus
3. The woman at the well
4. The adulteress
5. Cleopas and the other man

I can hardly wait to hear their stories, in their own words. What in the world must have been going on in the mind of the demon-possessed man as he sat at Jesus’ feet? Think about it. This guy was completely out of control for who knows how long! Naked, screaming throughout the cemetery, living there, so wild that no one could tie him up. Then, suddenly, he’s sane, back in his right mind!

Or Nicodemus. What was he thinking in that room that he snuck into at night? Certainly, there was something driving him there for him to take the risk he did to see Jesus in secret. Remember how Jesus responded? I’ll bet he never saw that coming. In fact, he received admonishment. “Are you the teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things?” Wow! The whole conversation was bizarre, yet one day, not long after, Nicodemus helped bury his Messiah. Wow!

How about the woman at the well? Just think about what went through her mind! Someone she rightly assumed hated her asked her for a drink of water then began a strange conversation in which he pointed out her sin (he had never met her before) and revealed that he was the Messiah. That one simple, two-minute conversation turned her instantly into a street preacher! Can you imagine, running into town to get everyone to come see this man? Think about it!

Then there is the woman at the well! She was about to get stoned. To death. She knew it, and everyone else knew it. Then, suddenly, she finds herself all alone with Jesus, and he forgave her sin! Just like that. Can you imagine what she was thinking as she walked away from that scene?

Finally, for my last two. One guy has a name we know while the other doesn’t. We do know something about what was going through their mind, don’t we?

“Did not our hearts burn within us…?”

It reminds me of one of my favorite verses, from the prophet Jeremiah who was complaining to God about how everyone was mistreating him.

Jeremiah 20:9 If I say, “I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,” there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot.

That’s how these other people were! That’s the way I feel, too, although I have to admit sometimes more so than others. But God has his ways to keep blowing on that fire inside of us. One way is through scripture. See how the two men on the Road to Emmaus got fired up? Through the revealing of Jesus through scripture. Sure, Jesus was right in front of their eyes, for a time, but their eyes were opened to him by scripture. The same is true about us. Jesus is with us. We can’t see him, but his spirit is here. That same spirit opens our eyes and reveals him, more and more, as we study his word.

Folks, think about the privilege you have been given, to have your eyes opened to understand the Word of God, to be taught by God himself. Really let this soak in. This is HUGE because it means that you have been made a child of God and are no longer his enemy. You have escaped his wrath, if, indeed, you are born again as Nicodemus learned is required.

Are you born again?

Then get fired up! Can you get fired up about your own salvation story? It’s the same as these other folks. You were once dead, but now your alive; you were blind, but now you see. Not of anything you have done, so that you might not boast, but of the work of God.

Listen, if you can’t get excited about your salvation, then I really wonder if you are indeed saved. You should wonder, too. You really don’t want that. Jeremiah has something to say that you should consider:

Jeremiah 9:22 Speak: “Thus declares the Lord, ‘The dead bodies of men shall fall like dung upon the open field, like sheaves after the reaper, and none shall gather them.’”

Go! Run into town and tell everyone what Jesus has done for you!

Father, encourage me as well! Amen!

Copyright © 2020 Scott Powers

Photo by Ronnie Overgoor on Unsplash

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