Stumbling blocks. You don’t want to be one. And you don’t want them in your life, either. But what do you do when the stumbling block comes from someone you’re keen on dearly, or from somebody with whom you understand you’re called to labor in God’s Kingdom?
In an effort to avoid hindrances, we need to recognize them after they arise along the narrow path. At the most elementary stage, a stumbling block is an obstacle to our progress within the Lord; it’s something that gets in between us and God’s excellent plan for our lives; it’s anything that leads us into temptation. It’s a snare. Sturdy’s Concordance defines a stumbling block bible 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 am going to give attention to just one in this exhortation—one which got here straight from the lips of the Anointed One to my spirit. It’s an instance that shows how even those closest to us—even those called to walk with us and do nice things for the Lord alongside us—can at times current a stumbling block in our path. The way to we deal with family members who present hindrances in a spirit grace, mercy and love with out falling into the trap?
Jesus called Peter a stumbling block after he rebuked the Lord for confessing that He must go to Jerusalem and undergo many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priest and the lecturers of the regulation, 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 at the root of Peter’s words. Let’s listen in to how Jesus responded:
“Jesus turned and said to Peter, ‘Get behind me, Devil! You’re a stumbling block to me; you would not have in thoughts the considerations of God, however merely human concerns’” (Matthew 16:23, NIV). Peter was more involved about himself than the plan of God, and subsequently introduced a stumbling block.
Imagine if Jesus had entertained Peter’s words … “You understand, Peter, you’re right. That shouldn’t happen to me. That’s not really fair. I’ve by no means sinned. Why should I die for the sin of the world? Perhaps I will call on the angels to deliver me. Humankind can deal with its own problems!” Thank God that Jesus didn’t fall into the snare.
Here’s the purpose: How typically do these around us—even those with the most effective intentions—speak the opposite of God’s will into our lives? How usually do they discourage us from following our God-given desires because of their unbelief? How usually 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 quick to discern the stumbling blocks along the path to His destiny—a future that may take away the sin of the world—and He was fast to confront and press by them. That’s because He had in thoughts the issues of God, not merely human considerations—not even His own concerns. Jesus’ mantra: Not my will, but yours be completed even if it kills me. Jesus was quick to discern and take care of the stumbling block, but that didn’t imply that Jesus immediately solid the one who put the stumbling block in His path alongside the roadside. Jesus used wisdom. He knew Peter was an integral part in God’s plan to build the early church.
No, Jesus didn’t cast Peter aside. However Jesus didn’t enable Peter’s hindering words to live in His coronary heart, either. Jesus instead taught Peter the appropriate option to reply: “Whoever needs to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever desires to avoid wasting their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it” (Matt. sixteen:24-25). Jesus didn’t exclude Peter from His inside circle or even sit him down for a season. In His mercy and grace, He helped Peter get his focus back on the concerns of God fairly than merely human concerns.
Certainly, six days later, the Bible says, Jesus took Peter, James and John to a high mountain where they witnessed His configuration (Matt.17:1-eleven). What a privelege! Then came Peter’s test. Jesus predicted His demise a second time: “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the fingers of men. They will kill him, and on the third day he will likely be raised to life” (Matt. 17:22-23). Although the disciples were stuffed with grief, Peter did not stand towards the need of God. He didn’t current a stumbling block.