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HolyGround >> Matt 20:29-34

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5/11/11 3:16 PM
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reverend john
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So we need to ask why did Matthew write this event into his gospel. Sure he was inspired, but what was the reason for this inspiration?

This is truly a wonderful little passage about two blind men being healed. Because there is so much more going on. Look at its context. For two chapters Jesus is going on about what type of community the kingdom community should be. He confronts them about forgiveness, about confronting wrong doers, about causing offense. He talks to them about not overlooking those that get overlooked in the parable of the vineyard. And then he confronts the kind of driven and ambitiousness of the worlds leaders and says, "come on guys, you need to be a servant, laying your life down like I am going to"

So we have all of this talk about an alternative community. One that tries not to make offense, the confronts and tries to make right, one that forgives over and over again. One that values people the world looks over, and one that is not ambitious but service oriented. And then, seemingly out of the blue this story of two blind men on the side of the road.

But it isn't out of the blue at all. Jericho at this time was the summer home for the rich in Jerusalem. It was a key trade city and was very wealthy. These two were outside of the city walls, even their families were too poor to take care of them. They were ritually unclean, cast out, and reliant on the alms of the wealthy, but not worthy to even stay in the city.

But when a crowd comes by they ask whats happening, and they hear Jesus is here. They start being obnoxious, loud, irritating. Begging and pleading for help. The crowds are shamed and embarrassed by these two disgusting beggars, making so much noise. They tell them to shut up, but these two cannot, because in Jesus, they see hope, their only hope.

And in the midst of the throngs, the crowds of middle class worshippers, and hangers on...

Jesus stops

He demonstrates what he told them in the parable of the vinyard, what the world passes up over and over we treat equally.

He asks, "what do you want me to do for you?" he lives out, don't lord it over others. Don't assume what they need, be a servant and ask.

And finally, he welcomes them into the family, as they "follow on with them"

What a wonderful living out, of his own teachings.


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