Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Luke: Jesus, The Son Of Man For All Mankind
Part XLIX: Christ's Identity As God's Savior By His Teaching On Holy Relationships
(Luke 12:49-59)
  1. Introduction
    1. One of the great tensions we face is the tension between a holy God and an evil world, for we are created to desire both a right relationship with God as well as a good relationship with other people around us!
    2. However, a holy God and an evil world are incompatible entities, so we must choose the fellowship of one or the other, not both, and Luke 12:49-59 reveals why we must face this fact, and how to adjust to it:
  2. Christ's Identity As God's Savior By His Teaching On Holy Relationships, Luke 12:49-59.
    1. While still speaking to His disciples in Luke 12:49 (cf. Luke 12:41-42), and having introduced the subject by talking of judging the disobedient in Luke 12:46-48, Jesus announced He wished He could already be executing the severe judgment on the world that He would need to wait to dispense until His Second Coming to earth, Luke 12:49 NIV; Ryrie Study Bible, KJV, 1978 ed., ftn. to Luke 12:49.
    2. However, before executing that judgment, He explained He had to be baptized with a baptism that distressed Him until it was accomplished, Luke 12:50 NIV. This "baptism" is a reference to the cross, meaning Jesus stated He had to go to the cross before He judged the world! (Ibid., ftn. to Luke 12:50)
    3. In light of this tension that exists between a holy God and a wicked world that God is ready to judge, two sets of individuals stand caught between the lure of fellowship with the world and the need to fellowship with God -- the believer and the unsaved! Luke 12:51-53 gives Christ's admonition to believers who have believed in Him, and Luke 12:54-59 admonishes the lost, and these passages are insightful (as follows):
      1. Believers caught between a holy God and the evil world must accept the tension their fellowship with a holy God creates with people in the world, opting to fellowship with the Lord, Luke 12:51-53:
        1. Still speaking to His disciples (see Luke 12:41-42), Jesus admonished them to cease assuming that He had come to produce peace for them with the world around them, Luke 12:51a. Rather, they must realize that in their experience in this life, they would face difficult divisions, Luke 12:51b.
        2. Explaining Himself, Jesus claimed that households where people in a family would normally be united would become divided over spiritual issues due to the holiness the believers had been led of God to live in contrast to the unholiness of the unsaved members of their own families, Luke 12:52.
        3. Indeed, divisions would occur between fathers and sons, between mothers and daughters and between in-laws, and these divisions would be mutual as there would be no grounds of fellowship between such differing parties due to the difference between the godly who had been led of a holy God to trust in Him and the sinful who were at enmity with God and faced judgment, Luke 12:53.
      2. Unsaved people facing judgment by a holy God must see the evidences of their need to repent in God's work through Christ and believe in Him to escape judgment, Luke 12:54-59:
        1. Beginning at Luke 12:54, Luke revealed that Jesus turned from His disciples to speak to the people.
        2. Thus, He admonished them to heed the signs He was giving them in His works and teaching that they might trust in Him for salvation like paying heed to signs of the future weather, Luke 12:54-56.
        3. Jesus admonished the lost to make good judgment, to make amends with God by trusting in Him before He administered judgment (12:57), and He illustrated this with a court scene: just as one had to made peace with his legal foe before he ended up in court lest the judge sentence him severely, they needed to trust in Christ before God's final, consuming judgment fell on them, Luke 12:58-59.
Lesson: We are caught between choosing to please a holy God by trusting and obeying Him or by living at peace with an evil world around us that God is highly motivated to judge. Thus, (1) if we are not yet saved, we must trust in Christ to escape God's wrath! (2) If we are saved, we must accept our lack of fellowship with the world and keep heeding and fellowshiping with God!

Application: Since a holy God is in great conflict with the evil world around us, and He is very spurred to judge it, may we (1) accept this fact, and (2) adjust to it (a) by trusting in Christ to be saved or (b) by continuing as a believer to live uprightly and to fellowship with God! There are no other options!