True Spiritual Radicalism
Praise God for the work he’s doing in you now. Ask him to work through you today, also.
Read Mark 9:42-50
 “If anyone causes one of these little ones-those who believe in me-to stumble, it would be better for them if a large millstone were hung around their neck and they were thrown into the sea.  If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out.   And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell.   And if your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell,  where “‘the worms that eat them do not die, and the fire is not quenched.’  Everyone will be salted with fire.  “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among yourselves, and be at peace with each other.” Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat lesson do you think Jesus is teaching here?
There is something very appealing about the demanding spiritual radicalism of today’s reading. The younger we are, the more attractive it may appear. It’s as though we long for absolute demands that cater to our desire to sacrifice ourselves gloriously for some cause. Then we can appear good to others; then we shall please our Master by our efforts on his behalf. Indeed, Jesus does command his followers to be salty (50), but look at how he finishes v. 50: “and live at peace with each other.” Jesus is still addressing the problems of his followers’ status-seeking and self-promotion, and their lack of humility and servant spirits. To treat a child dismissively is spiritual suicide (42). If any part of you leads you into sin, take the most radical action possible to ensure that you can be followers of Jesus in the kingdom of God (43-48). Clearly, testing will come and the “saltiness” of our commitment will be tested. That’s not done to make us look glorious, but to test our worth before Jesus, the Servant of the Lord. As ever, it is our commitment to him that matters most.
Examine your own heart before God. Do you seek status, or despise others as humble and unworthy of your attention?
Lord Jesus, keep me humble when I begin to get proud. Help me love and value others as You do.
Click here to sign up to receive the EXTRAs via email each quarter.