28. Mother, brethren would speak to Him
Mother, brethren would speak to Him……WHILE Jesus yet talked, behold, there came his mother and his brethren, desiring to speak with him, and could not come at him for the press. Then one said unto him, Thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee. But Jesus answered him that told him,
Who is my mother? and who are my brethren?
He looked on them which sat about him, stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said,
Behold my mother and my brethren! My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it. For whosoever shall do the will of God my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.
¶The same day went Jesus out of the house, and sat by the sea side. Much people were come to him out of every city; so that he entered into a ship, and sat. The multitude stood on the shore. And Jesus spake many things unto them in parables, saying,
Hearken: Behold, a sower went forth to sow his seed: and it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up.
Some seed fell on stony ground where it had not much earth: and immediately it sprang up, because it had not much deepness of earth: but when the sun was up, because it had no depth of earth, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away.
And some fell upon a rock: as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture.
And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up with it, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit.
But other fell into good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up, and increased; and bare fruit, some a hundredfold, some sixtyfold, and some thirtyfold.
He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
When he was alone, his disciples came and said unto Jesus, Why speakest thou in parables? He answered,
Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given but in parables: unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables.
For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.
Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.
And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: for this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them, and their sins should be forgiven them.
But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.
And he said unto them,
Know ye not this parable? And how then will ye know all parables?
¶Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower. Now the parable is this:
The seed is the word of God. The sower soweth the word. When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh immediately Satan the wicked one, and catcheth away that word, which was sown in his heart: the devil taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. This is he which received seed by the way side, where the word is sown.
They on the rock received seed into stony places: these are they who when they have heard the word, and with joy receive it, and for a while believe; yet have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time; and in time of temptation fall away: for afterward, when affliction or tribulation or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended.
And they which received the seed among thorns, are they, which, when they have heard the word, go forth, and are choked with the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches and the pleasures of this life; and bring no fruit to perfection: the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.
But he that received the seed into the good ground is he that in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, understandeth it, and keepeth it, and beareth fruit with patience, and bringeth forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.
Another parable put he forth unto them, saying,
The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?
¶He said unto them, An enemy hath done this.
The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?
But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
¶And he said unto them,
Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick?
No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but setteth it on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light.
For there is nothing hid, neither was anything kept secret, which shall not be manifested; but that it should be known and come abroad. If any man have ears to hear, let him hear.
Take heed what ye hear. With what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you; and unto you that hear shall more be given: for he that hath, to him shall be given; and he that hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he hath.
¶And he said,
So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; and should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come.
Scripture: Matthew 12:46-50
Meditation 1 of 1:
Who do you relate to as your closest family and friends? God did not intend for us to be alone, but to be with others. He gives us many opportunities for developing relationships with family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers. Why does Jesus seem to ignore his own relatives when they pressed to see him? His love and respect for his mother and his relatives is unquestionable. Jesus never lost an opportunity to teach his disciples a spiritual lesson and truth about the kingdom of God. On this occasion when many gathered to hear Jesus he pointed to another higher reality of relationships, namely our relationship with God and with those who belong to God.
What is the essence of being a Christian? It is certainly more than doctrine, precepts, and commandments. It is first and foremost a relationship – a relationship of trust, affection, commitment, loyalty, faithfulness, kindness, thoughtfulness, compassion, mercy, helpfulness, encouragement, support, strength, protection, and so many other qualities that bind persons together in mutual love and unity. God offers us the greatest of relationships – union of heart, mind, and spirit with himself, the very author and source of love (1 John 4:8,16). God’s love never fails, never forgets, never compromises, never lies, never lets us down nor disappoints us. His love is consistent, unwavering, unconditional, and unstoppable. Nothing can deter him from ever leaving us, ignoring us, or treating us unkindly. He will love us no matter what. It is his nature to love. That is why he created us – to be united with him and to share in his love and unity (1 John 3:1). God is a trinity of persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – and a community of love. That is why Jesus challenged his followers and even his own earthly family to recognize that God is the true source of all relationships. God wants all of our relationships to be rooted in his love.
Jesus is God’s love incarnate – God’s love made flesh (1 John 4:9-10) . That is why Jesus describes himself as the good shepherd who lays down his life for his sheep and the shepherd who seeks out the sheep who have strayed and lost their way. God is like the father who yearns for his prodigal son to return home and then throws a great party for him when he repents and comes back. Jesus offered up his life on the cross for our sake, so that we could be forgiven and restored to unity with God. It is through Jesus that we become the adopted children of God – his own sons and daughters. That is why Jesus told his disciples that they would have many new friends and family relationships in his kingdom. Whoever does the will of God is a friend of God and a member of his family.
An early Christian martyr once said that “a Christian’s only relatives are the saints” — namely those who have been redeemed by the blood of Christ and made sons and daughters of God. Those who have been baptized into Christ and who live as his disciples enter into a new family, a family of “saints” here on earth and in heaven. Jesus changes the order of relationships and shows that true kinship is not just a matter of flesh and blood. Our adoption as sons and daughters of God transforms all our relationships and requires a new order of loyalty to God first and to his kingdom of righteousness and peace. Do you want to grow in love and friendship? Allow God’s Holy Spirit to transform your heart, mind, and will to enable you to love freely and generously as he loves.
“Heavenly Father, you bless us with family and friends, both spiritual and natural. Help me to love with charity, compassion, and kindness. May I always prefer your will and seek to do what is good and loving in all of my relationships.”