Sermons by Michael Howell (Page 12)
Have you ever thought to yourself, “I’ve done a lot for God. What reward will he give me for all I’ve done?” Well one of Jesus’ disciples, Peter, asked a question a little like this. He said to Jesus, “We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us?” (Matthew 19:27 NIV). Beneath this question lay an assumption. That assumption was that in God’s kingdom, people are rewarded according to their merit, their effort and their ability. But Jesus wanted to break down that assumption. So he answered Peter’s question by telling him a story. A parable that demonstrated that the way things are in God’s kingdom, is totally different from how we expect them to be. So different that it is possible in God’s kingdom for “the first to be last and the last to be first.” How can this be!? Listen as we explore this parable and consider the implications of it’s message for us, servants in God’s kingdom.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could choose our neighbours? You could choose those who were pleasant and easy to get along with, but ignore those who weren’t! That’d be a perfect neighbourhood! There was an expert in the law who came to Jesus who wanted to live in a perfect neighbourhood. He knew that the Bible said he had to love his neighbour and he thought that if he could just choose nice neighbours, loving them would be a whole lot easier! But Jesus had news for him. He told him a story which challenged him to think differently about his neighbourhood and how he should be loving his neighbours. Sometimes we want to pick and choose the people we allow into our lives. People that are nice to us and don’t cause too many headaches are welcome but the different, the difficult and the dirty are not. Are we any different to the expert in the law? Listen as Pastor Michael explores the parable of the Good Samaritan. Let us consider what response this parable demands of us today