Stumbling blocks. You don’t need to be one. And also you don’t want them in your life, either. However what do you do not be a stumbling block when the stumbling block comes from somebody you like dearly, or from someone with whom you realize you’re called to labor in God’s Kingdom?
To be able to avoid stumbling blocks, we need to recognize them once they arise along the slender path. On the most elementary degree, a stumbling block is an obstacle to our progress within the Lord; it’s something that gets in between us and God’s perfect plan for our lives; it’s anything that leads us into temptation. It’s a snare. Robust’s Concordance defines a stumbling block as “any individual or thing by which one is (entrapped) drawn into error or sin.”
The phrase “stumbling block” is used 14 instances in various translations of the Bible. I’m going to deal with just one in this exhortation—one which got here straight from the lips of the Anointed One to my spirit. It’s an example that shows how even those closest to us—even those called to walk with us and do great things for the Lord alongsideside us—can at times current a stumbling block in our path. Easy methods to we cope with family members who current stumbling blocks in a spirit grace, mercy and love without falling into the trap?
Jesus called Peter a stumbling block after he rebuked the Lord for confessing that He should go to Jerusalem and endure many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priest and the teachers of the law, and that He must be killed and on the third day be raised to life. Peter insisted that such a thing would by no means happen to Jesus. Selfishness was on the root of Peter’s words. Let’s listen in to how Jesus responded:
“Jesus turned and mentioned to Peter, ‘Get behind me, Satan! You’re a stumbling block to me; you should not have in mind the issues of God, however merely human considerations’” (Matthew 16:23, NIV). Peter was more concerned about himself than the plan of God, and therefore offered a stumbling block.
Imagine if Jesus had entertained Peter’s words … “You know, Peter, you are right. That shouldn’t happen to me. That’s not really fair. I’ve never sinned. Why ought to I die for the sin of the world? Maybe I’ll call on the angels to deliver me. Humankind can deal with its personal problems!” Thank God that Jesus didn’t fall into the snare.
Here’s the point: How often do those around us—even these with one of the best intentions—communicate the opposite of God’s will into our lives? How often do they discourage us from following our God-given goals because of their unbelief? How often do they get us stirred up when persecution comes and tempts us to retaliate or merely defend ourselves when God desires to vindicate us in His time?
Jesus was fast to discern the stumbling blocks along the trail to His future—a future that might take away the sin of the world—and He was fast to confront and press through them. That’s because He had in thoughts the issues of God, not merely human considerations—not even His personal concerns. Jesus’ mantra: Not my will, however yours be accomplished even when it kills me. Jesus was fast to discern and take care of the stumbling block, but that didn’t mean that Jesus instantly forged the one who put the stumbling block in His path alongside the roadside. Jesus used wisdom. He oknew Peter was an integral half in God’s plan to build the early church.
No, Jesus didn’t forged Peter aside. However Jesus didn’t permit Peter’s hindering words to live in His heart, either. Jesus instead taught Peter the proper way to respond: “Whoever desires to be my disciple should deny themselves and take up their cross and observe me. For whoever desires to save their life will lose it, however whoever loses their life for me will find it” (Matt. sixteen:24-25). Jesus didn’t exclude Peter from His inner circle or even sit him down for a season. In His mercy and beauty, He helped Peter get his focus back on the issues of God moderately than merely human concerns.
Indeed, six days later, the Bible says, Jesus took Peter, James and John to a high mountain the place they witnessed His configuration (Matt.17:1-eleven). What a privelege! Then got here Peter’s test. Jesus predicted His loss of life a second time: “The Son of Man goes to be delivered into the palms of men. They’ll kill him, and on the third day he will be raised to life” (Matt. 17:22-23). Though the disciples had been full of grief, Peter didn’t stand in opposition to the desire of God. He didn’t present a stumbling block.