Ministering in His Name
As the time drew near for him to ascend to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. He sent messengers ahead to a Samaritan village to prepare for his arrival. But the people of the village did not welcome Jesus because he was on his way to Jerusalem. When James and John saw this, they said to Jesus, “Lord, should we call down fire from heaven to burn them up?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them. So they went on to another village. Luke 9:51-56 From the text, Jesus was on His way to Jerusalem where the culmination of the purpose of His coming in this world would take place. There are people already recognizing that He is the Messiah. Peter made the declaration when Jesus asked him who people say He is. And Peter said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Luke 9:20). After that declaration, once again Jesus told them the purpose of His coming. “The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). Jesus was set in accomplishing the Father’s will. “Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem” (Luke 9:51). So when they were passing through a village where Samaritans are residing, He was rejected. They recognized Jesus that He was a Jew and they do not have anything good to say about the Jews. This rejection affected James and John that they requested Him to retaliate. Instead Jesus took the opportunity to teach His disciples that His mission is to bring people to the saving knowledge of God. He took the time to minister to the Samaritans and started to show the love of God. He even sent out His disciples into the surrounding towns to minister to people (Luke 10:1). This is the Father’s will, to bring people to be reconciled with God. There will be times that the people around you would seem to be distractions for you to accomplish God’s will for your life. You might think that to devote time ministering to them will take away precious time for you to do what you think God’s purpose for your life. Always remember that when you came to know Christ as your Lord and Savior, you became His co-worker in reaping the harvest where you will be involved in the lives of others so you could minister to them the love of God. “For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building” (1 Corinthians 3:9). Jesus was set to go to Jerusalem, yet on His way He healed lepers (see Luke 17:11-19), He brought salvation to the family of Zaccaheus (see Luke 19:1-10), He continued to teach His disciples following God’s will for their lives (see Luke 15:1-32). Don’t look at the opportunity to minister to others as distractions but a privilege to live out His purpose for your life. “To be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles. He gave me the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:16).