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Ordinary People

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Ordinary People
By Terry Cavanaugh
Summary: Jesus saved his greatest moments for the ordinary people
Luke 9:28 About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray.
Luke 9:29 As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning.
Luke 9:30 Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus.
Luke 9:31 They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem.
Luke 9:32 Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him.
Luke 9:33 As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.)
Luke 9:34 While he was speaking, a cloud appeared and covered them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud.
Luke 9:35 A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.”
Luke 9:36 When the voice had spoken, they found that Jesus was alone. The disciples kept this to themselves and did not tell anyone at that time what they had seen.
As I read this text, I asked myself, what am I to peach from this? It’s great story, yes, but where is the message, the sermon, the Bible teaching, that will speak a word of hope to the people who gather on Sunday. What is the story really about; ordinary guys go away with Jesus. They go to the top of the mountain, then they see the incredible, the unbelievable, the sensational. Jesus was transfigured. He becomes so bright, so radiant, they must shield their eyes. Ordinary men, as the Bible tells us, ordinary men, sleepy men, men who almost missed the most meaningful experience of their lives. Wait a minute, maybe that is the message, ordinary men. I know you are thinking, Pastor T, have you lost it. But Listen, if you were building a movement, would you save the most magnificent event of your campaign for three ordinary fishermen.
Luke 9:28 About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray.
Our exposure to election campaigns have taught us how to make this a big day, if Jesus had just ask. First, we would hype it. We would plan it in advance. We would invite all the media, CNN, ABC, CBS, MSNBC, and of we can’t forget FOX news. Before the media arrived, we would make sure we had experts there.
We would invite scholars, those of the intelligentsia, Professors from the best universities, educators of the highest quality, and instructors from every field.
We would have invited world leaders. We would have gone through the whos who of decision makers. Face it, if heaven was going to come to earth, we would want to make sure everyone, who was anyone, was there as a witness.
We would have Kings and Queens, Governors, Princes, and Princesses, all seated in the front rows. We would have a large podium, surrounded by microphones. Maybe, a refreshment table, yes, shrimp cocktails, and those little finger food things.
And of course, we would have a table with name tags. You can’t have a real big event like this without name tags.
And then we would follow up with their e-mail.
Think about it, the Scribes, the Pharisees, the Priest, the lawyers, the Roman governors, the Kings, and maybe even the Emperor, all setting there. Reporters from the Jerusalem Journal, the Galilee Gazette, and Bethel Star, with there their photographers.
We would do it up right. When Jesus was transfigured, when Moses, and Elijah came to the mountain, it would make news. Every headline, world-wide, would carry the report.
But, that is not how it was done by Jesus. Notice none of these people were there, no leaders, no scholars, no media, no podium, and no microphones.
Luke 9:28 About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray.
Peter, James, and John, were fishermen. That is right, fishermen. You know what they say about us fishermen. “Old fishermen never die; we just smell that way.” I love to go fishing, but anyone who has cast the line knows, fishermen are not known for their good hygiene.
But, what each one of these men.
John MacArthur wrote, “Peter’s name is mentioned in the Gospels more than any other name except Jesus. No one speaks as often as Peter, and no one is spoken to by the Lord as often as Peter. No disciple is so frequently rebuked by the Lord as Peter; and no disciple ever rebukes the Lord except Peter. No one else confessed Christ more boldly or acknowledged His lordship more explicitly; yet no other disciple ever verbally denied Christ as forcefully or publicly as Peter did. No one is praised and blessed by Christ the way Peter was; yet Peter was also the only one Christ ever addressed as Satan. The Lord had harsher things to say to Peter than He ever said to any of the others.
But being outspoken and running amuck is not the whole story. After he is filled with the Holy Spirit he preaches the first sermon in church. From that Sermon there were 3,000 converts.
He was bold-spirited and audacious before the Jewish leadership. He suffered for following Jesus. He became the man-in-charge.
Why was Peter on that mountain? Remember this:
What about James and John? There were known as the Sons of Thunder. We see that side of them when they want to call down fire from heaven on the inhospitable Samaritans. This was anger brothers.
And who can forget when they recruited their mom, yes, their mom, to ask for a promotion.
Matthew 20:20 Then the mother of Zebedee’s sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favor of him.
Matthew 20:21 “What is it you want?” he asked. She said, “Grant that one of these two sons of mine may sit at your right and the other at your left in your kingdom.”
Matthew 20:22 “You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said to them. “Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?” “We can,” they answered.
Matthew 20:23 Jesus said to them, “You will indeed drink from my cup, but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared by my Father.”
Boy did that tick off the rest of the disciples. Their selfish, self-centered, self-righteous, behavior was over whelming.
What could Jesus do with these two temper filled, self-absorbed, self-serving, disciples.
Fast forward to after they were filled with the Holy Spirit. James becomes the leader of the church of Jerusalem. James becomes one the writers of the New Testament. James and John turn the world over, in Jesus name.
Maybe you feel like I do from time to time. Have you every found yourself saying, “I am not special. I have never done anything that people will remember. I have not written a book that shook the world. I have not made is life altering discovery like the cure for cancer. I am just ordinary”. I am just like Peter, Jame, and John. When you feel that way, remember, “Jesus saved the greatest moment in his ministry, not for special people, but ordinary fishermen.” All because:
God wants to take your ordinary and make it extra-ordinary. Will you let him?
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