In Matthew 12, we come across an event in Jesus’s life where his family, including his mother came to see Him. Someone tells Jesus, his mother and brothers are outside waiting for him. Jesus response must have confused not only his family but those that were with him.
He replied to him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.” – Matthew 12:49-50
What was Jesus really saying? Was he rejecting his mother? Are we too supposed to reject our families as well for the work of the Lord?
What Does A Family Look Like?
Some of us have grown up without knowing our fathers, siblings, or mothers. Some have witnessed their families being torn apart by divorce leaving a feeling of rejection and possibly a feeling of guilt.
“What if I was the reason mom and dad broke up???” Rings in many minds.
I have a big family, 4 sisters and 1 brother. Yes, there are many of us. Even though I didn’t grow up with a family destroyed by divorce or not knowing my father, or lost someone close by death, I’ve seen the hurt it has caused many people. I cannot say to them I understand because as they make it very clear, I don’t and couldn’t understand; however, God has placed families on my heart.
A father of the fatherless and a judge and protector of the widows… – Psalm 68:5
A father is known as one that nourishes, supports, and protects the family. So what does it mean when God says He is a father to the fatherless?
It means just that! He is our source, supporter, sustainer, nourisher, and protector. He is all that and more.
We were born in a sinful world where everyone’s natural intentions are to be better and get better. We all do it, it’s part of our sinful nature. But the penalty of sin is death. This means we are separated from God for eternity.
God had a plan to restore the family. He sent His son to start a new family where everyone will be accepted. A family with many different races and cultures. It is the biggest multicultural family you have ever seen!
If you noticed in the bible, all those that followed Jesus, dropped everything they were doing. They made a choice to drop what they were doing to follow Jesus.
What Does The Bible Say About Being A Family?
Once choosing Jesus, you become a child of the Most High God, and He cloths you in His righteousness. He takes you in as His sons and daughters.
For you (who are born-again have been reborn from above –spiritually transformed, renewed, sanctified and) are all children of God. – Galatians 3:23
Chapter 4 continues to note you also become an heir through God. Once you receive Jesus, you get adopted into a family, with many brothers and sisters and a father that will never abandon you.
Not everyone is going to accept your life with Christ and it can be hard as well when you have to choose between God and your family, but He said no one that lays down their life for His sake will lose it. We all have to make decisions in our lives but choosing Jesus was the best decision I’ve made.
Jesus didn’t deny his mother and brothers. This is clear at the crucifixion where Jesus presents John to his mother as her son and his mother to John as a mother. I believe Jesus was revealing to us what is the family of God.
The family of God is a group of people that have dedicated their lives for the kingdom of God.
Having many siblings is not always a walk in the park. We don’t always agree with each other. We may not always like each other, but we always love each other. So it is with the kingdom of God.
Is Blood Thicker Than Water?
But on a serious note, God has chosen your family. And you are to respect your family that you were given. Choosing to follow Jesus is a personal decision. One that no one can make for you.
But I am not suggesting for you to walk away from your family. Many families may not understand your decision, but will respect it. If you have to chose one, chose Jesus. He has a way of working things out. Trust me I know from experience.
Let’s close with a prayer.
Thank you God for accepting me in Your family. You have said all those that are born again are children of God. Help me to remember what You did for me and let me be a light for those that need to receive your acceptance as well.
In Jesus Name. Amen.