Lessons Of A Lifetime

Tell The Vision To No One
Or
Obedience – The Hinge Pin To Eternity
Sunday Nov. 15, 2020

Scripture To Consider:
“Now as they came down from the mountain, Jesus commanded them, saying, ‘Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man is risen from the dead.’ And His disciples asked Him, saying, ‘Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must first come?’”

“Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Indeed, Elijah is coming first and will restore all things. But I say to you that Elijah has come already, and they did not know him but did to him whatever they wished. Likewise the Son of Man is also about to suffer at their hands.’ Then the disciples understood that He spoke to them of John the Baptist.”             Matthew 17.9-13

Something To Consider:
Previously, Jesus had taken Peter, James, and John up into a mountain where Jesus was transfigured before their eyes. Moses and Elijah had appeared to them talking to Jesus. Then a bright cloud overshadowed them and a voice out of the cloud spoke forth the remarkable revelation, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!”

After this enlightened event, Jesus, Peter, James, and John came down from their mountain top experience. Jesus then commanded them, “Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man is risen from the dead.” In other words, tell the vision to no one until my resurrection from the dead. Tell the vision to no one until I have been cruelly treated, killed, and buried in a borrowed tomb, and then miraculously raised from the dead!

Peter, James, and John were considered to be the inner circle, or the three closest to Jesus. And yet, this favorable position still called for obedience to His commands. “Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man is risen from the dead.” Are we being obedient to the commands of Jesus? Are we being taught the commands of Jesus? Or are we being taught everything else than the commands of Jesus?

We find in Ecclesiastes 12.13, “Fear God and keep [obey] His commandments, for this is the whole duty of man [humanity].” Solomon followed up by stating, “For God will bring every work into judgment including every secret thing, whether good or evil.” Now is the time to listen to the commands of Jesus. Now is the time to ready ourselves for that all knowing judgment of God. Are we ready? Are we listening to the commands of Jesus and being obedient to what He says?

Something Else To Consider:
Again, in our Scripture to consider, Jesus mentioned His rising from the dead and His disciples seemingly did not hear Him. God the Father had spoken from the midst of a cloud, saying, “Hear Him!” But just moments later it was apparent they had not heard Him. Instead, they asked Jesus a question. “Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?”

In the closing two verses of the Old Testament book of Malachi, God declared, “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to the fathers, lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.”

And so, God the Father sent John the Baptist to prepare the way of the Lord’s first coming. But, the prophet Malachi, in writing the final words of the Old Testament, is writing in chapter 4 of the book of Malachi of the great and dreadful day of the Lord that is yet to come upon planet earth. Malachi is predicting end time events surrounding the second coming of Jesus Christ.

Malachi began chapter 4 with these words of warning. “For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, and all the proud, yes, all who do wickedly will be stubble. And the day which is coming shall burn them up.” Have we made our end time spiritual preparations? Will we be judged as the proud, arrogant workers of iniquity? Or have we been rightfully warned in advance by the commands of Jesus and the commands of the Word of God?

Something More To Consider:
Jesus declared to His disciples, “Tell the vision to no one…” That is, tell no one while I am alive. Could it be that Jesus did not want people to be aroused by a vision in order to believe? “Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man is risen from the dead.” Yes, the time would come to tell of the vision, but that time was not yet. For now, the disciples could only think about those things they had seen and heard there on the mountain top.

Are there things, visions, goals, or desires that God has placed within our hearts that we have not been given the freedom to share with others? Could it be that God does not want us or others to be influenced by a vision in order to believe in Jesus Christ of Nazareth? And that is something more to consider!

These are some of the things that are not answered yes or no for us in the bible. These are perhaps some of those things we are to work out in our own personal relationship with Jesus, the King of kings, and hopefully Lord of our lives, who is coming to judge the wicked and reward the righteous. And when He comes, will we be found among the stubble to be burned, or will we be among the wheat gathered unto Himself to safety?

The answer to that eternal reflecting question hinges on our obedience to the commands of Jesus of which many are conditional. For according to Jesus in John 10.27, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow [in obedience] Me.” And in John 14.15 Jesus proclaimed, “If you love Me, keep [or obey] My commandments.” And also in John 15.10, Jesus affirmed, “If you keep [obey] My commandments, you shall abide in My love.” Obedience is indeed the hinge pin to eternity with Christ, according to Jesus!

A Few Final Words:
Matthew announced in the closing of our Scripture to consider; “The disciples understood that Jesus spoke to them of John the Baptist.” John the Baptist, as if Elijah, did come to proclaim Jesus as the Lamb of God at His first coming. Revelation chapter 11 informs us of two future witnesses coming to prepare the way of the Lord’s second coming!

Jesus, in dictating to His messenger in Revelation 11.3, promised; “And I will give power to My two witnesses, and they will prophesy one thousand two hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth.” This time length is exactly 3-1/2 years based on the Babylonian calendar used in the bible. And Daniel the prophet also confirmed this exact time frame in Daniel chapter 12.

Jesus continued His message in verse 6 of Revelation chapter 11, speaking of the coming two witnesses; “These have power to shut up heaven so that no rain falls in the days of their prophecy; and they have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to strike the earth with plagues, as often as they desire.” These are the miraculous powers displayed by Elijah and Moses in the Old Testament.

We are indeed living in exciting times. And our obedience to the written Word of God is the hinge pin to where we will spend eternity! As spiritual leaders and leaders in training, let us understand that we cannot live forever on the mountain top, for there is much work awaiting us in the valley of decision.

Prayer:
Our Father in heaven, help us and others to believe the sign of Jonah, in Jesus rising from the dead in power over any fleeting vision. In Him Always, Amen!

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