SERVANTS' MINISTRY, Inc.
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Jesus Brings Division
Jesus clearly told the disciples that He came NOT to bring peace to the world, but a sword. Jesus’ sword never was a literal one, and when Peter did take up a sword to defend Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus rebuked him and told him to put away his sword, for all who draw the sword will die by the sword (Mat.26:52).
SO . . . Why did Jesus say, Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. What kind of sword did Jesus come to bring?
Matthew 10:34-36 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. (KJV)
Think not ye that I am come to send peace on earth . . . this is a verse that a peace lover has great difficulty. But dear one, until ALL unrighteousness is put down and suppressed, the Person of Jesus will cause trouble because the hostility of Satan will bring many battles in this world. Christ did NOT come to bring peace at His First Coming. Sin still exists and God says that there will be no peace for the wicked (Isa.48:22; 57:21). The Jews thought there would be great outward peace and prosperity in the days of the Messiah.
I came, not to send peace, but a sword . . . I believe the sword here may mean the Gospel, which divides and separates the people of Christ and their principles and practices, from those of the unbelieving world, and from and one member of a family from another. 1 Cor. 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. (KJV)
For I am come to set a man at variance against . . . if a father believes in Christ, embraces His Gospel, and submits to His leadership, he is contradicted, opposed and persecuted by his own family.
And the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law . . . in reality, families have been divided by the preaching of the Gospel, and family members have been separated. Daughter against her mother . . . this hits home! My mother forbid me to speak ‘religion’ to her, because MY way (Jesus) was not the only way to Heaven. The Gospel brings unity to believers, and that unity causes a division with the unsaved world.
And a man's foes shall be they of his own household . . . this is possibly the strongest pressure. When Jesus advises His apostles about counting the cost of commitment to Him, He mentions family members. Luke 14:26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. (KJV) . . . As a rule, no one can motivate you like a deeply loved mate or family member. Christ has dealt fairly and faithfully with His apostles, in telling them (and us) the worst we can meet by serving Him. They and we, must count the cost. Persecutors are worse than beasts, because they prey upon those of their own kind. The strongest bonds of love and duty, has often been broken through from enmity against Christ. Sufferings from friends and relations are very grievous; cutting to the bone. It seems clear that all who will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution in some form. “Hate not his father” . . . hate here means to love less. We should not, we cannot love anyone more than Jesus or we are not His disciple!
Matthew 10:37-39 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. 39 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. (KJV)
He that loveth father or mother more than me . . . God is LOVE! Jesus is God! Jesus is absolutely NOT teaching the apostles (and us) to lessen the proper affection of children to their parents; nor to take away the respect and regard we have for them. The intent of this Passage is to show, that since Christ is infinitely above all creatures, He is to be loved more than the nearest and dearest relations, friends or spouse. Anyone therefore, that prefers father and mother over and above Christ, breaks the commands of Christ (Mat.22:37), rejects His Gospel, and either denies Him, or does not confess Him.
Is not worthy of me . . . Jesus was speaking to the apostles, BUT it applies to us today as well . . . any such person who loves someone more than Jesus, should NOT name the Name of Christ, or be called by His Name (CHRISTian), and should NOT be considered one of His disciples. They are not fit for the Kingdom of Heaven, but deserve to be rejected by Him, and banished for ever from His Presence. On the other hand, anyone who puts Jesus first and foremost in their heart and life, is worthy of Christ, and His grace, His righteousness, His Presence, His Kingdom and His glory. The same goes for the following . . .
And he that loveth son or daughter more than me, is not worthy of me . . . anyone who delights in their child, more than Jesus, drops the profession of Christ (Christian), renounces His Gospel, and neglects His commands. They are NOT worthy to bear the Name of Christ, NOT worthy to be accounted as one of His (Jn.1:12-13; 10:28-30; 1 Jn.3:10). Is not worthy of me . . . meaning not fit to be considered as a follower of Him and is NOT a Christian. (Lk.14:26). The meaning of this is quite clear. Christ must be loved supremely, or He is not loved at all. He will NOT submit to second place in our life. If we are not willing to give up all earthly possessions, and forsake all earthly friends and family; and if we do not obey Him rather than all others, we really do not love Him and have no true affection to Him. He will not use us unless we love Him and are really devoted to Him.
And he that taketh not his cross . . . when persons were condemned to be crucified, part of the sentence was that they carry the cross on which they were to die, to the place of execution. Accordingly Christ carried His cross, until He fainted from fatigue and exhaustion (Mat.27:31-32). The cross was an instrument of death. To carry it was burdensome and disgraceful, and was an addition to the punishment. So, to carry the cross is a symbolic expression, meaning that we must endure whatever is burdensome, trying or disgraceful in following Christ. It means to do our duty, let the world think or speak as they may. This every follower of Jesus is required to do.
And followeth after me . . . the apostles (and us) were/are to be led by His example, to preach or profess the Gospel, to submit to the ordinances of it, and cheerfully and willingly suffer for the sake of it. If anyone is not willing to do this, but avoids it, complies with his friends, conforms to the world, and turns his back on Christ; to these He may well say . . .
Is not worthy of me . . . these are not fit to be counted as His disciples and followers.
He that findeth his life shall lose it . . . Jesus contrasts the life which we have here in the flesh with the gift of eternal life which comes only through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is possible that when a person comes to Christ, he/she may be put to death because of his/her faith. This is not true in the United States yet, but it is true in other parts of the world even today. Anyone who loses his physical life for Christ shall find eternal life which takes him into the Presence of Christ. 2 Cor. 5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. (KJV) . . . Anyone that is anxious to save his temporal life, or his comfort and security here, shall lose eternal life . . . . meaning they will not make it to Heaven.
And he that loseth his life for my sake, shall find it . . .but, anyone that is willing to risk, or lose, his comfort and life here, for Jesus’ sake, shall find life everlasting. On resurrection day, there shall be a great advantage. They shall live with Christ in body and soul in the utmost happiness, for all eternity in Heaven (Mat.16:25).
Matthew 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. (KJV)
Then said Jesus unto his disciples . . . Jesus knew that all the apostles had the same idea of a temporal kingdom, with Him as King; and were expecting glory and honor. Jesus took this opportunity of preaching the doctrine of the cross to them, and of letting them know, that they MUST prepare themselves for persecutions, sufferings, and death; which they must expect to come, as well as He, if they were to be His apostles.
If any man will come after me . . . meaning IF anyone wants to be a disciple and follower of Jesus, it is usual for the Master to go before, and the disciple to follow after Him. Rich or poor, learned or unlearned, young or old, male or female, Jew or Gentile (Gal.3:26-29), that have any desire to follow Jesus, ALL are welcome . . . BUT . . . there is something you must do . . . Let him deny himself . . . deny his sinful self, deny ungodliness, deny worldly lusts; leave behind former sinful companions, which were as a part of himself:; deny righteous self, and renounce all his own works of righteousness . . . for NONE of these have anything at all to do with justification (Rom.3:24-25; 5:1) and salvation (Lk.12:8; Jn.3:16; Rom.10:9-11). The hardest person in the world to deny is yourself. To deny self is to put self completely out of the picture and to put Christ in the place of self.
Take up his cross . . . gladly receive and patiently bear every affliction and evil (1 Thes.5:18), no matter how shameful and painful it may be, for we always have One to help us. We are to quietly submit, and carry our cross (denial of self), totally accepting the will of God, as we imitate our Lord. We do not to take up Christ's Cross but our own cross. There absolutely IS a cross for you and a cross for me . . . IF we are sincere in our desire to follow Him.
And follow me . . . following Jesus is an exercise of grace, humility, zeal, patience and self-denial. No more ME, ME, ME! Following Jesus is all about Jesus! Following Jesus is to surrender to God your will, affections, body and soul. Following Jesus is NOT to seek your own happiness as the supreme object, but be willing to renounce all, and lay down your life, if that is what is required. See: Matthew 10:38.
When anyone Takes up his cross, they will make a division with someone or something!
Luke 12:49-52 I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?
50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!
51 Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division:
52 For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. (KJV)
I am come to send fire on the earth . . . at this very hour, the world is experiencing the deepest darkness we have seen in centuries, because the Lord Jesus Christ is being blasphemed and His Holy Word is being disobeyed! The fire (Gospel) has been thrown out on the Earth today. That fire that gives both light and heat, which warms the hearts of God's people, and causes them to burn within. BUT that same fire is very troubling and torturing to wicked men. The Word of God is compared to fire (Jer.5:14; 20:9; 23:29).
And what will I? if it be already kindled . . . Jesus came for the purpose to kindle the human heart. Matthew 10:34 says: Think not ye that I am come to send peace on earth . . . until ALL unrighteousness is put down and suppressed, the Person of Jesus will cause trouble because the hostility of Satan will continue to bring battles in this world. Jesus did NOT come to bring peace at His First Coming! Sin still exists and God says that there will be no peace for the wicked (Isa.48:22; 57:21). The Jews had thought there would be great outward peace and prosperity in the days of the Messiah. Matthew continues: I came, not to send peace, but a sword . . . I think that the "sword" here means the Gospel, which divides and separates the people of Christ and their principles and practices, from those of the world, and from and one member of a family from another. 1 Cor. 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. (KJV)
Consider the following:
#1. The Gospel of Jesus Christ can be expected to produce many battles and bitter feelings.
#2. The heart of man is very wicked, or it would not oppose the Truth of the Bible.
#3. Although God does NOT look on evil with any approval, still for the sake of the benefit which may possibly come from it, He is willing to permit it, and allow it to come into the world.
Luke 12:50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished! (KJV)
But I have a baptism to be baptized with . . . NOT water baptism, for Jesus had been baptized with water already (Lk.3:22); nor the baptism of the Spirit, which He had also received without measure (Jn.3:34) . . . His sufferings and death are here meant, which are here compared to a baptism, because of the size and abundance of them; Jesus was, as it were immersed, or plunged into them.
And how am I straitened until it be accomplished . . . this expresses the distress Christ was in, at the anxiety of His sufferings as Man; which were similar to the distress of persons, diligently overwhelmed by an enemy; or like that of a woman, whose time of travail draws near, when she dreads it, and yet longs to have it over with. This means Jesus’ restless desire was to have the end come. Since these sufferings of Jesus must be endured, how anxious He was that the time should come! Such were the feelings of the Redeemer in view of His approaching death.
Consider the following:
#1. It is not improper to feel deeply at the prospect of dying. We all must one day die a physical death unless Jesus comes and calls us home at the Rapture (1 Thes.4:13-18). BUT, death is a sad and terrifying event to unbelievers; and it is impossible that they can look at it without fear and trembling.
#2. It is not improper to desire that the time should come, and that the day of our release should draw nigh (Phil.1:23). To the TRUE Christian, death is simply the beginning of eternal life in Heaven; and since the pains of death must be endured, and since we must walk through that valley of the shadow of death (Ps.23:4), and since they lead to the bliss of Heaven, it matters little how soon we pass through these sorrows, and rise to our eternal rest.
Luke 12:51 Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: (KJV)
Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? . . . the Jews thought that the Messiah would set up a temporal kingdom, in great splendor, with outward peace and tranquility. Jesus came to make peace with God for men, and to give the Gospel of peace, and spiritual and eternal peace to men! NOT temporary, external peace, but SPIRITUAL peace!
I tell you, nay . . . whatever guesses they had made, or whatever ideas they had in their minds, He is telling them that He did not come into the world to establish outward peace among men.
But rather division . . . Jesus goes on . . . He came to bring division! In Matthew 10:34, He calls the Gospel a "sword". My friend, the Gospel is the sword of the Spirit, which divides asunder soul and Spirit (Heb.4:12), separating a man from his former viewpoints and sets him apart from others, even the closest relations.
Luke 12:52 For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. (KJV)
For from henceforth there shall be five in one house . . . the five are mentioned in the next verse; the father and the son, the mother and the daughter, and the mother-in-law, they would be,
Divided, three against two, and two against three . . . from one another, three that did not believe in Jesus, against two that did believe in Him; or two that did not believe, against three that did.
Luke 12:53 The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. (KJV)
The father shall be divided against the son . . . . . . . . Matthew 10:35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. (KJV) . . . if a father believes in Christ, embraces His Gospel, and submits to His leadership, he is contradicted, opposed and persecuted by his own family. In reality, families have been divided by the preaching of the Gospel, and family members have been separated. The Gospel brings unity to believers, and that unity brings a division with the unsaved world. Matthew 10:36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. (KJV) . . . this is possibly the strongest pressure. When Jesus advises His apostles about counting the cost of commitment to Him, He mentions family members. Luke 14:26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. (KJV) . . . As a rule, no one can influence you like a deeply loved mate or family member. Jesus has dealt fairly and faithfully with His apostles, in telling them (and us) the worst we can meet by serving Him. They and we, must count the cost. Persecutors are worse than ravishing beasts, because they prey upon those of their own kind. The strongest bonds of love and duty, has often been broken through from enmity against Christ. Sufferings from friends and relatives are very hurtful; cutting to the bone. It seems clear that all who will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution in some form. “Hate not his father” . . . hate here means to love less. We cannot love anyone more than Jesus.
When a person believes God (1 Jn.5:10-13), and by faith accepts Christ Jesus as their Saviour, he is immediately separated from the unbelievers around him. This is true whether the unbelievers are his relatives or his friends.
John 15:18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. (KJV)
If the world hate you . . . anyone who loves Jesus is cannot be expected to be loved by the world. The people hated Jesus they will hate us too! They had Jesus as their Example. NO opposition of the proud, the wealthy, the learned, or the powerful . . . NO persecution or mockery had ever stopped Him from His work. Jesus wanted them (and us) to remember this, and keep His example always in mind. They were to NOT to work less because wicked men would oppose and ridicule them. It is a blessing for the disciple to be as his Master, and the servant as his Lord (Mat.10:25; 1 Jn.3:13). Of the world: (1 Jn.2:15-17; 3:1; 4:5,9; 5:4-5; 5:19)
Ye know that it hated me before it hated you . . . these words are a plea of Christ to His apostles, for He had met head-on with the hatred of the wicked and unbelieving world of the Jews. They had expressed their hatred in many ways: #1. in words, calling Him a glutton, a winebibber, a sinner (Lk.7:34), a Samaritan (Jn.8:48), a madman, one that had a devil (Jn.10:20), and even Beelzebub himself (Lk.11:15), #2. and by deeds, taking up stones to stone him more than once (Jn.8:59; 10:31), leading Him to the brow of an hill, so they could cast Him down headlong (Lk.4:29), trying different ways to take His life, as Herod did in His infancy (Mat.2:13). If He, Who was their Master was hated by the world, they should not think it strange that this would also happen to them as His servants and friends.
Matthew 5:10-12 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.  Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. (KJV)
Jesus said before, "for righteousness' sake." Here He says “for My sake” which identifies Him and His cause with that of righteousness, coupling the cause of righteousness in the world with the reception of Himself. Would Moses, David, Isaiah or Paul have so said this? NO, even though they certainly suffered for righteousness' sake. But they would NOT have called this "their sake." When Jesus speaks here, being Righteousness incarnate (Mark 1:24; Acts 3:14), He speaks only like Himself, who is Himself God.
This is Luke’s version of Matthew 5:10-12. Luke 6:22-23 Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake.  Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets. (KJV) Luke also names insults and humiliations that tries flesh and blood, that will probably befall those who are faithful to Jesus.
(1) People will hate us. John 15:18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. (KJV) Are we better than Jesus? (2) People will separate you from their company, whether from their church, by excommunication, or from their society. Matthew 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. (KJV) (3) People will reproach you. Luke 18:32 For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: (KJV) (4) People will cast out your name as evil. Mark 6:3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him. (KJV) Luke uses a word that is even stronger than in Matthew: "leap for joy." The Beatitudes describe what it means to be Christ’s follower; they are standards of conduct; they contrast Kingdom values with worldly values, showing what Christ’s followers can expect from the world and what God will give them; they contrast false devotion (piety) with true humility; and they show how Old Testament expectations are fulfilled in God’s Kingdom. We are blessed indeed when Christ blesses us, but those people will be extremely miserable who fall under His woe and curse! What a great advantage the saint will have over the sinner in the other world!
Those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake are blessed (have God’s approval). This saying is characteristic to Christianity. But, there is nothing in ANY of our own sufferings that can merit the approval of God. But IF we are persecuted for Christ’s sake, we should be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven! God will provide that those who lose for Him, shall not lose by Him in the end. Precious Jesus!
How different are the things of God from the things of this world! People call the proud happy, they admire the famous, the rich, the powerful, and the victorious. May we find mercy from the Lord; may we strive be His children, and inherit His Kingdom. Even though we may suffer for Christ in this life, it will be different in Heaven! With these enjoyments and hopes in mind, may we cheerfully welcome disgraceful or painful circumstances when they come, when we suffer from them for Christ. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness sake. NO ONE was ever persecuted like Jesus, the Righteous One was persecuted! (Rev.12:4). He was afflicted and ready to die from His youth up: (Ps.88:15). At the start of His ministry in Nazareth, people rose up, and thrust Him out of the city, and led Him unto the brow of the hill that they might cast Him down headlong (Luke 4:29). The Jews took up stones to cast at Him (John 8:59). The religious leaders said He had a demon (John 8:48). He was the song of drunkards (Ps.69:12). At His trial, people plucked off His hair (Isa.50:6). They spit on Him, buffeted Him, smote Him with their hands (Mat.26:67). Scourged by soldiers and crowned with thorns (Mat.27:29) before they crucified Him (Mat.27:35). NO one was persecuted for righteousness sake more than our precious Saviour and Lord, Jesus Christ.
Blessed = approved by God. When God approves of us, we shall be blessed abundantly! And when we are blessed by God, we certainly shall be happy!
Meditations of the Beatitudes can not be complete unless our thoughts and hearts are on our Lord Jesus. Since TRUE Christian character is formed in us by the Spirit of Christ (Rom.8:9; 1 Pet.1:11), it means that our character must mimic the character of Christ! He is the believer’s Perfect Pattern! In Jesus we find ALL the spiritual graces found in the Beatitudes. ALL the perfections were and are displayed in Christ! Let us seriously strive to mature and be more like our precious Lord Jesus with each passing day!
Some other Scriptures abot division because of Jesus!
John 7:40-52 Many of the people therefore, when they heard this saying, said, Of a truth this is the Prophet. 41 Others said, This is the Christ. But some said, Shall Christ come out of Galilee?
42 Hath not the scripture said, That Christ cometh of the seed of David, and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David was? 43 So there was a division among the people because of him.
44 And some of them would have taken him; but no man laid hands on him. 45 Then came the officers to the chief priests and Pharisees; and they said unto them, Why have ye not brought him? 46 The officers answered, Never man spake like this man. 47 Then answered them the Pharisees, Are ye also deceived? 48 Have any of the rulers or of the Pharisees believed on him?
49 But this people who knoweth not the law are cursed. 50 Nicodemus saith unto them, (he that came to Jesus by night, being one of them,) 51 Doth our law judge any man, before it hear him, and know what he doeth? 52 They answered and said unto him, Art thou also of Galilee? Search, and look: for out of Galilee ariseth no prophet. (KJV)
Acts 14:2-4 But the unbelieving Jews stirred up the Gentiles, and made their minds evil affected against the brethren. 3 Long time therefore abode they speaking boldly in the Lord, which gave testimony unto the word of his grace, and granted signs and wonders to be done by their hands. 4 But the multitude of the city was divided: and part held with the Jews, and part with the apostles. (KJV) . . . . . . . . http://www.godcannotlie.org/book_of_acts_ch14.htm
Matthew 25:32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: (KJV)
Luke 6:22 Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake. (KJV) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . http://www.godcannotlie.org/matthew_ch6.html
2 Corinthians 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, (KJV) . . . IF you are still a child of the devil (1 John 3:10), come out from among them, and be ye separate!
Jude 1:19 These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit. (KJV) . . . The unbelievers separate themselves from believers! . . . . . . . . . . . http://www.godcannotlie.org/book_of_jude.htm
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Characteristics of Jesus
Christ in the Old Testament
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Contrasting Believers With Unbelievers
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Gospel Dead Without Faith in Jesus
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Great Drops of Blood
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Hopes Because of Christ Jesus
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Jesus Acknowledged By God and Man
Jesus Brings Division
Jesus Died for Sinners
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Old Testament Prophecies of Christ Fulfilled
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