Impossible to Possible

impossible-possible
tick possible

When His disciples heard it, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?”  But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” — Matthew 19:25-26

Men, earlier, Jesus has spoken to a rich man who was not willing to give up possessions to follow Jesus. Jesus said it was easier to pass a camel through the eye of a needle than for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God. The disciples, hearing this, were astonished and asked, “Who then can be saved?” Some think they can inherit the Kingdom upon their own merit, riches, or efforts, but when presented with the truth of where that line of thinking ends, the disciples are disheartened and fearful.

We too become embroiled in doubt and fear when we hear such passages. Perhaps that is good for many of us. If doubt creeps into one’s mind, it is reasonable to ask Holy Spirit for affirmation. It is also good to ask Holy Spirit to search out our hearts, if there be anything hindering “a closer walk with thee”. The disciples are not rich any longer. They have walked away from trades and positions. They now wonder what this all means for them. Jesus answers their hearts. “With men, this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible.”

The rich man, the 12, you sir, and myself as well, we can accomplish no good thing to inherit the Kingdom upon our own strength, wisdom or resolve. But! Praise the living Lord God, that through Him a provision is made, a way has been given unto men to be called children of God. The impossible: the cleansing of tainted hearts and unclean hands, the repair of a severed connection to the Spirit of God, the appointment of dominion which had been forfeited earlier by our common earthly father Adam, has been restored, and made possible by the Lord God of Heaven.

This is a passage to sing and shout about. What was lost, stolen, cut off, and removed has now been returned, restored, and given unto us all to share in abundantly. Entering the Kingdom of Heaven is no longer restricted for those who call on the name of Jesus.

Move forward men, as sons, and if sons then heirs. Walk into the “possible” which has been supplied to us.

Vance Durrance

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Surrender Your Life

White Flag

 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.  And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” — Matthew 19:23-24

Men, after Jesus has interacted with the rich ruler, He turns to His disciples and tells them “it is hard for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven”. The rich man could not give up his things to gain the one thing his heart needed most. He had made his things and his wealth his god. Wealth too often grants a false sense of security, importance, and even bondage.

Jesus goes on and says it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God. There is some argument for a small gate called the “eye of the needle”. Perhaps, but I argue for a literal interpretation. The only way for a camel to pass through a hole that small is to break it down into its smallest parts and pour it through. It cannot pass through intact. The camel must die to its original form, use, splendor, value and identity to be liquefied and poured through. Once it passes through, there is nothing of the original camel which could then be self-sustaining.

Dying to self, self-sacrifice, humility, brokenness, wholesale surrender, are themes found elsewhere. Nowhere does Scripture say to wait in line and squeeze through a small space to find everlasting peace. Jesus is the narrow gate and we are raised to new life in Him.

“Raising to new life” means leaving behind the old life. Have you, sir, died to the old life of self-sustainment? Are you still propped up on your accounts, investments, assets, and provisions? Is there anything you couldn’t walk away from if Jesus asked you to?

Move forward, men, asking the Lord to search you and I out. Is there anything in our hearts hindering the Lord God from pouring us into a new form, a new life, and a new identity in Him?

Vance Durrance

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Little Children

Children reaching to Jesus

Then little children were brought to Him that He might put His hands on them and pray, but the disciples rebuked them.  But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me, and don’t forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” — Matthew 19:13-15

Men, little children are brought to Jesus, but the disciples rebuke them. Jesus answered them “Let the little children come to Me,  don’t forbid them, for of such is the Kingdom of Heaven”. The Jews understood that we are all born in to sin.

These parents brought their children to Jesus with this knowledge clear in their minds, hoping Jesus would bless them, recognizing that Jesus was a person of significant notoriety. Having important people bless your child was a common practice in these times, and Jesus probably got a lot of these types of interactions with people. It’s unclear what Jesus’ day has held but the 12 seem to think Jesus shouldn’t be bothered. Regardless, Jesus welcomes them and lays His hand on each of the children. “For of such is the Kingdom of Heaven”.

The Kingdom, through Jesus is wide open to any who come with humility. These little children needed Jesus and He welcomed them. A child sees life simply. They are in need, or they are satisfied. They are welcome or they are not. Especially small children. It’s not complicated. Kingdom is available to such. We’re in need, we are welcome through Jesus.

Move forward men, embracing Jesus in simple terms as a child. Be welcomed into His presence that He might place a blessing on you. Be sure not to rebuke any who come unto Him. Little children play where they are and don’t know they’re dirty. Most of us don’t know how dirty we are inside as we engage life where we are. Jesus still welcomes us all, as dirty as we are.

Vance Durrance

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Follow Him Forward

Follow Forward
“Do not say, ‘Why were the old days better than these days?’ for it is not wise to ask that.” –Ecclesiastes 7:10
As we proceed into the election and a pivotal point (one of many) for “we the people” who determine the direction of our great country, let us ponder this verse. Are we trying to grasp at “better days” in memory past? Are we trying to return to simpler times when this country better suited our own comforts and preferences? Not only is it foolish to desire yesterday and miss the blessing of today (Psa 96:2), but we overlook the errors of our past (Deu 9:7). We cannot dwell in regret (2Co 7:10, but if we do not learn from our history (Ecc 1:9-11), then we despise God’s mercies (Lam 3:23) and return to our vomit (Pro 26:11).
We cannot keep looking back as if we can return to Eden—that way is blocked (Gen 3:24). Nor should we think we can find our own way forward, thinking ourselves god, determining our own responsibility and trying to captain our own destiny (Jer 10:23). Rather, we must set our eyes upon the One who has carried us thus far (Deu 1:31) and will see us through till the end (John 6:39).
Jesus is our only Hope (Titus 2:13). Jesus is the only one we should seek to make great (Phi 3:8). Jesus is the only one who can rescue and save (Acts 4:12). Focus on Him and follow Him forward.
“Instead I am single-minded: Forgetting the things that are behind and reaching out for the things that are ahead, with this goal in mind, I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” –Philippians 3:13b-14
Billy Neal
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