As the time drew near for him to ascend to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. He sent messengers ahead to a Samaritan village to prepare for his arrival. But the people of the village did not welcome Jesus because he was on his way to Jerusalem. When James and John saw this, they said to Jesus, "Lord, should we call down fire from heaven to burn them up?" But Jesus turned and rebuked them. So they went on to another village.
— Luke 9:51-56 NLT
Some folks just aren't ready to meet Jesus at his coming in glory. Some reject him because they don't believe in the divine or struggle with any life based on faith. Others reject Jesus because of his race, his gender, his time in history, or the prejudices they have developed about his followers. Our response must not be anger or hostility — these attitudes use up too much energy, damage our hearts, and alienate unbelievers. Instead, our response should be doing good when and where we can, and when we are rejected, we just move on to the next open door. Hopefully, sometime in the future, the closed door may open, and many may come to know Jesus when the time in their hearts is right — just as happened at other times with the Samaritans (see John 4:1-42 and Acts 8:4-25).
Father, when folks reject Jesus before even giving him a chance, please keep me patient and hopeful, not bogged down or resentful. Help me see the open doors you have placed before me. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Related Scripture Readings
- Luke 9:5
- John 4:39-42
- Acts 8:25
About This Devotional
What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.
What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.