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Inspirational Message

Inspirational Message: Jesus Ignored Some Established Social Standards!

The story of the woman at Jacob’s well is an excellent example of Jesus ignoring some social standards to reach out to a woman in need (John 4:7-29). During this time, Jews typically did not socialize with Samaritans. A Jew probably would never have asked a favor of a Samaritan. It was even unlikely that a woman would have spoken to a man who was not her relative. Yet Jesus destroyed many social barriers. What can we learn from these stories? Many people would not have been socially comfortable doing what Jesus did! Let us thank God that the Bible is a powerful reminder regarding human traditions and should not stop us from reaching people of all classes. Jesus’ action on the woman’s behalf was a teaching lesson for others. As Christians we experience both positive and negative reinforcements. Do we always have choices? Do we encounter unplanned circumstances as we grow spiritually? Of course all of us know that no perfect life is encountered by any believers. Jesus was often the center of unwanted attention. In John 8:3-11, we learn how a woman was perhaps dragged and dumped before Him in desperation. This was done to trap Jesus. These Pharisees and teachers of the law cared nothing about justice. If they did, they would have brought both the man and the woman whom they caught in the act of adultery. What a set-up! By presenting her alone to Jesus, He was supposed to have been guilty of ignoring the Law of Moses. They hoped to point Jesus as a trouble maker with no escape. Can this problem occur today? As long as Satan exists, set-ups keep on happening to make our good works be spoken of in evil ways. We should let God fight our battles and keep on working for Him. Of course Jesus saw through the Pharisees’ and teachers’ motives. Instead of answering them directly, He simply stooped to the ground and began writing in the sand. His question might have sounded like a death sentence to the woman when He asked all who were without sin to cast the first stone. Then He bent down again and wrote in the sand. What did Jesus see when He stood up? Only the woman was left. Jesus said He did not condemn her either. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him (John3:17). Let us read Mark 5 to learn about a deranged man who lived in a graveyard. Brave people subdued him and prayed that no one was hurt. In the meantime, he was heard crying out day and night, and he also made cuts on his flesh. Was this man hopeless? Even though he was filled with evil spirits, Jesus was recognized. He shouted (Verse 7) and called Jesus the Son of Most High God. At Jesus’ word, the evil spirits left the man. What was seen by others immediately? When he was approached, they found the man sitting there dressed in his right mind. He even requested to travel with Jesus as a disciple, but was told to go home to his family and tell them what God had done for him. How can we assist people with serious needs of all kinds? Sometimes prayer is all we can offer. We can also affirm that God’s power is available in situations in which nothing more can humanly be done. We must remember that Jesus died for all of us and most especially for those whom we might deem to be beyond our help, but also deserve mercy and respect. No one is hopeless and beyond the power of God! Mrs. Gladys R. McElmore, a resident of Norfolk’s Middle Town Arch Community, is a New Journal and Guide Freelance Contributor on religion. She is a native of Essex County, Va.

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