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Majoring on the majors

At our local church the pastor has been preaching his way thematically through the Gospel of Matthew and just recently touched on some verses that sparked an idea for a post. While he didn't spend a lot of time on the Transfiguration, somehow, as he was speaking about this and directing our thoughts forward to the Great Commission, this idea came to mind. I'd like to believe it was prompted by the Holy Spirit.

For me, one of the most significant things about the Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8) as Jesus is standing, talking together with Moses and Elijah is God's voice from the shining cloud, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!" Peter had just expressed how great it would be to enshrine these three most notable biblical characters on the mountain and it was at that moment that God spoke those immortal words. We are left with the thought of, listen to Jesus! It's always possible to build religious systems on our feeble, earthbound insights of Kingdom issues, but the most important thing is to listen to Jesus and to understand and go along with whatever is the level of importance that he places on things.

That takes me through to the Great commission in Matthew 28 (verses 16-20) where the final instruction given to the disciples is, "...make disciples of all the nations, ... teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you." (verse 20, TNIV) The operative words here are, 'teaching them to obey all that I have commanded you.' Connecting the two thoughts, 'listening (only) to Jesus' and 'discipling/teaching others to obey all that I have commanded you.
  • Where do you find anywhere in the recorded words or teaching of Jesus anything that remotely suggests that men are ordained to be the spiritual directors of women?
  • Where do you find anywhere in the recorded words or teaching of Jesus anything that remotely suggests that because man was created first, men are superior to women?
  • Where do you find anywhere in the recorded words or teaching of Jesus anything that remotely suggests that women are not valued equally as his disciples?
  • Where do you find anywhere in the recorded words or teaching of Jesus anything that remotely suggests that men are more capable of leadership than women?
  • Where do you find anywhere in the recorded words or teaching of Jesus anything that remotely suggests that he agreed with the culturally acceptable treatment of women?
  • Where do you find anywhere in the recorded words or teaching of Jesus anything that remotely suggests that he viewed women as being less spiritually capable than men?
  • Where do you find in the recorded words or teaching of Jesus anything that remotely suggests that men are ordained to be the spiritual leaders of the family?
  • Where do you find anywhere in the recorded words or teaching of Jesus anything that remotely suggests that men and only men are to be the leaders of christian assemblies?
I don't believe that you will find any of the things that I've listed above, and which have been 'enshrined' in church tradition and teaching, as a part of the required discipleship process. If Jesus did not consider these things to be of such importance, why should we?

Why not just, 'listen to Jesus' and encourage others, who choose to be his followers and our fellow travellers, to do diligently the things which he specifically commanded?

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