Stumbling blocks. You don’t need to be one. And you don’t need them in your life, either. However what do you do when the stumbling block comes from someone you’re keen on dearly, or from somebody with whom you recognize you are called to labor in God’s Kingdom?
With a view to avoid hindrances, we have to acknowledge them after they come up alongside the slim path. At the most elementary degree, a stumbling block is an obstacle to our progress in the Lord; it’s something that gets in between us and God’s perfect plan for our lives; it is anything that leads us into temptation. It’s a snare. Sturdy’s Concordance defines a stumbling block as “any individual or thing by which one is (entrapped) drawn into error or sin.”
The phrase “stumbling block” is used 14 instances in varied translations of the Bible. I am going to give attention to just one in this exhortation—one that got here straight from the lips of the Anointed One to my spirit. It’s an example that shows how even these closest to us—even these called to stroll with us and do nice things for the Lord alongsideside us—can at times present a stumbling block in our path. How to we cope with family members who current obstacles in a spirit grace, mercy and love without falling into the trap?
Jesus called Peter a stumbling block after he rebuked the Lord for confessing that He should go to Jerusalem and undergo many things by the hands of the elders, the chief priest and the lecturers of the regulation, and that He should be killed and on the third day be raised to life. Peter insisted that such a thing would never occur to Jesus. Selfishness was at the root of Peter’s words. Let’s listen in to how Jesus responded:
“Jesus turned and mentioned to Peter, ‘Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns’” (Matthew sixteen:23, NIV). Peter was more involved about himself than the plan of God, and subsequently presented a stumbling block.
Imagine if Jesus had entertained Peter’s words … “You recognize, Peter, you might be right. That shouldn’t occur to me. That’s not really fair. I’ve never sinned. Why should I die for the sin of the world? Maybe I will call on the angels to deliver me. Humankind can cope with its own issues!” Thank God that Jesus didn’t fall into the snare.
Right here’s the purpose: How often do these round us—even these with the very best intentions—converse the opposite of God’s will into our lives? How typically do they discourage us from following our God-given desires because of their unbelief? How often do not be a stumbling block they get us stirred up when persecution comes and tempts us to retaliate or merely defend ourselves when God needs to vindicate us in His time?
Jesus was quick to discern the stumbling blocks along the path to His destiny—a destiny that might take away the sin of the world—and He was quick to confront and press by means of them. That’s because He had in thoughts the concerns of God, not merely human concerns—not even His own concerns. Jesus’ mantra: Not my will, but yours be achieved even when it kills me. Jesus was quick to discern and deal with the stumbling block, however that didn’t mean that Jesus instantly cast the one who put the stumbling block in His path alongside the roadside. Jesus used wisdom. He knew Peter was an integral part in God’s plan to build the early church.
No, Jesus didn’t forged Peter aside. However Jesus didn’t enable Peter’s hindering words to live in His heart, either. Jesus instead taught Peter the proper approach to respond: “Whoever needs to be my disciple should deny themselves and take up their cross and comply with me. For whoever needs to save lots of their life will lose it, however whoever loses their life for me will find it” (Matt. 16:24-25). Jesus didn’t exclude Peter from His inner circle and even sit him down for a season. In His mercy and charm, He helped Peter get his focus back on the considerations of God moderately than merely human concerns.
Indeed, six days later, the Bible says, Jesus took Peter, James and John to a high mountain where they witnessed His configuration (Matt.17:1-11). What a privelege! Then got here Peter’s test. Jesus predicted His dying a second time: “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the arms of men. They will kill him, and on the third day he will be raised to life” (Matt. 17:22-23). Though the disciples have been full of grief, Peter did not stand in opposition to the desire of God. He did not present a stumbling block.