I’ll take the Fish!

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It’s time for the annual fish fry and that got me to thinking …

Matthew 7:7-11

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

“Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?  If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

 

This passage comes from a time when Jesus was with his disciples after the Sermon on the Mount.  Jesus was trying to teach the disciples the deeper wisdom of God’s Kingdom.  Jesus seemed to be teaching this message over and over again.  What is the kingdom of God like?  Jesus answered this question over and over.  Yet, we still ask the same question today as if the answers that Jesus gave were too hard to understand.

Bread or Stones?  Fish or snakes?  Which would you want?  Which would you give?

This seems a rather stupid and simple illustration until you understand the context of the day.  In the region where Jesus sat with the disciples there were stones that looked somewhat like loaves of bread and there were snakes that looked somewhat like fish.  But even with that, how dumb did you have to be to not understand what Jesus was saying about God.   I still picture Peter saying, “I’ll take the fish!  Lord, Remember that I said fish before anyone else!”

I believe the reality is that God’s word is not hard to understand – until we make it hard.  It is man that determines that God’s word is not understandable.  It is man that reads new meaning into words.

The message is pretty simple:

God loves you.

God wants to have a relationship with you.

But we have a problem that keeps you from this relationship and it is called sin.

Left to our own device we would die in our sin.

God loves us so much He sent his own son to communicate with us so that we might better understand God.

How many have prayed or even thought “It would be so easy if God would just talk to me!”?

God on the other hand says, “BING! You’ve got Mail!”

Read His word. Commit to reading the Bible.  It really is not hard to understand.  Translations and study bibles are aplenty and make reading and understanding easier than ever.  Don’t let the “thee” and “thou” and the dreaded “begets” be your excuse.

I challenge you to spend five minutes each day reading the Bible.

Do you want to understand God?  Then don’t depend on Sunday’s sermon as your only check of the mail.  You have the book.

What do you want to find in your mailbox? A letter or a snake?  It really is that simple.

In the meantime, I’ll take the Fish and see you on Sunday morning.

Author:

I am a United Methodist Pastor and have the privilege of serving as the Senior Pastor for the church of my childhood. I preach in a place I once was an acolyte. I love to preach, but more importantly I love to teach. I firmly believe that Faith Matters and should affect how we live. This blog is a place where I come to share the randomness that is life and faith ... and the intersection of the two.

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