Out of the Fog
Out of the Fog
Words of Faith 9-14-18
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2018
Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL
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 He said to the crowd: "When you see a cloud rising in the west, immediately you say, 'It's going to rain,' and it does.  And when the south wind blows, you say, 'It's going to be hot,' and it is.  Hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky. How is it that you don't know how to interpret this present time?
 "Why don't you judge for yourselves what is right?  As you are going with your adversary to the magistrate, try hard to be reconciled to him on the way, or he may drag you off to the judge, and the judge turn you over to the officer, and the officer throw you into prison.  I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny."
One moment Jesus was talking about the weather and the very next He was giving legal advice? The abrupt change sounds almost like a commercial interruption! The two statements we have here appear to have nothing to do with one another. Were these scraps left in the bottom of Luke box of research notes? Actually... not.
Remember for a moment that Jesus was on His way to Jerusalem, teaching as He went. The topics had turned very much toward living in readiness. Speaking to the Disciples and then to the crowd, Jesus had used the image of a Master going out for the evening and the importance of the servants in the house to be waiting upon the Master's return. In this time of waiting, Jesus was clear that He brings fire, distress and division. He was clear about accountability. But those listening just did not seem to be getting it.
Apparently, the crowd was acting oblivious to the times they were living in. In spite of the teaching of Jesus Himself, they were in something of a fog. So Jesus pressed them. He suggested that while they were able to predict the weather with relative ease, they were being deliberately blind to the spiritual dimension of life. Jesus called this hypocritical.
"Hypocrite" was a word that Jesus did not typically hurl at a crowd. He normally reserved this word for the religious leader types who "acted" holy or wore religious masks. Now Jesus was accusing those who lived without concern for the times of a different, but equally perilous masquerade.
The message of readiness was not just for the disciples. These folks could not slough it off as something for others to worry over. They really did know better. They were not sincere in their professed inability to interpret the present time. Jesus asked, Why don't you judge for yourselves what is right? Why don't you open your eyes and figure this out?
Jesus uses an illustration from the ancient legal system. It sounds at first like an ad for legal services or at least a practical teaching on the court system. In this context, most scholars agree that Jesus was talking pointedly about the need to settle our accounts with God, the very readiness He had been preaching about.
The image Jesus used was from a debtor's court and strikes at the obvious wisdom of settling out of court. Once a person was thrown into debtors' prison there was no way out except by the generosity of friends or family. Waiting until the day of the judgment to deal with such matters, especially if one had a friend to call on, was simply a stupid thing.
The point here is really very simple. Pay heed to the times in which you live and use the time available to be reconciled to God before the coming of His judgment.
We are blessed to live on this side of the Gospel events. We live in a time when an account has been made available that covers the entire debt for our sin. Our personal account can be reconciled by trusting wholly the account of Jesus, by faith. Jesus has deposited His righteousness for us. Failing to be reconciled "on the way" is simply stupid. Stop walking in a fog.
Where are you today in your walk with God? You may think that you don't even have a walk with God. You may think that you are just part of the crowd that doesn't really know what is going on. Jesus says, it is time. It is time to settle accounts before the judgment. A provision has been made for you to trust by faith. Look at the times in which we live. Don't be dumb. Step out of the fog.
Father God, I thank You for the provision You have made in Jesus. I give thanks for the payment He made for me upon the cross. I trust by faith the work of Jesus on the cross to pay my sin account. Thank You for calling me to Yourself by Your Spirit. Forgive me of my sin and create a spirit of true repentance within me. Walk with me in new life. In Jesus' name.