“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not the things I tell you” (Luke 6:46).
“If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them” (John 13:17).
I apologize for the title. Everything our Lord said was “big.” It’s just that some of His statements in particular seem to have been muted in recent years. See what you think.
10 Big Things Jesus Said That We Keep Forgetting
1. We keep forgetting the second commandment is a command.
We want our religion to be private, just “me and the Lord.”
Jesus refuses to play that game. After being asked to identify the “greatest” command, He said, “And the second is like unto it. Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Matthew 22:39). We must note that this is a command, not an option, an opinion, a wish, a Facebook “like,” or a good idea. To love one’s neighbor strongly is a key component of the kind of witness Jesus envisioned His people extending to the world.
So, why don’t we obey it? Answer: We have found it inconvenient, difficult, and demanding. When we love people–truly care for them to the point that they know it–they might need us and that would interfere with our schedule. It’s much easier to love the lovely, to care for the appreciative, to give to the deserving, and to reach out to those who need little or nothing.
2. We keep forgetting two things about His command to feed the hungry, clothe the needy, visit the sick, etc., in Matthew 25.
First, we forget that this is a command and is not optional, something the Lord hopes we might find time to do along life’s way while attending to more important matters. Jesus honestly expects His people to do this. I’m happy to report many churches are taking this seriously, and are involving their people in strong ministries to the down and out, the voiceless, the forgotten.
Secondly, when we do these things “unto the least of these my brethren,” He takes it personally. We are to do good to everyone, but brothers and sisters in Christ have first dibs on our assistance. Paul said, “As we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10).
A side note: Nowhere–underscore that–nowhere! does the Bible tell the church to take care of all the poor of the world. I hear people say that the government would not have to get involved in welfare if the church did its duty. (Imagine Jesus telling the handful of disciples in Jerusalem they were to go into all the world and meet the physical needs of the billions. He did not do this. Let us give thanks.)
3. We forget that loving people and loving the Lord is all about action, not emotion.
When our Lord told us to “love your enemies” in Luke 6:27ff, He immediately explained that what He’s calling for is action. We are to do good, bless, pray, give, etc. Throughout the Upper Room discourse (John 13-16), Jesus emphasized that whoever loves Him keeps His commands. Words are important, of course, and emotions can be, too. But nothing packs more punch than actions, the works we do. The Lord said, “Whoever hears these words of mine and does them is like one who builds his house on a rock” (Matthew 7:24).