In the world of Christianity, it is easy to fake it and at times not even realize you are doing so. Christianity is about being in a relationship with Jesus and others, individually living out the Great Commission. It is Jesus and our relationship with him that produces a change in our hearts and lives, not our ability to be better.
Verses – Matthew 21:28–32.
Josh: Hello. Hello. Hello. We’re just two normal dudes trying to live this Jesus’ life. My name’s Josh.
Andrew: Hey, I’m Andrew. And we are this Jesus life podcast.
Josh: So Jesus gathered some individuals around us. He responded to a question and he tells this parable, he says, say, there’s a man with two different sons. One of the sons, he goes up to, he says, son, go out for the day and work in the vineyard.
This son answered. Well, I don’t want to. And later on, he decided better. And he went out, the father went to the second son. He commanded him. Hey, go do, as your brother has done. And the guy and this son responded with, I’d be glad to, I would love to, and then never went. And Jesus’ question was which of these two sons did what?
Andrew, how goes it, dude?
Andrew: Josh man. I’m doing well. I’m doing really well. I, uh, I’m wearing a smartwatch these days. And last night my sleep score was an 80 out of 100, which is the highest it’s been, uh, since the birth of our second daughter. So I’m doing great, man. I’m feeling good. How are you? It’s
Josh: pretty good.
Yeah. Nice. I’ve always wanted my watch to track my sleep patterns. It’d be curious what they are, but that’s I, my watch. And if I don’t then went away, I charge it. If it’s not what I’m sleeping, it just seems like, I don’t know. I’d be curious to know what my sleep patterns are. I have this feeling that I wake up a lot.
Right. I don’t remember waking up, but I have this feeling that I am waking up. I’m not sure my dog are you
Andrew: talking like style, wake up where you, where you go in and like in your kitchen and just thrash it. And, uh, I think
Josh: it’s possible. I think it is possible. Uh, my dog always seems a little bit like hesitant to engage me in the morning.
And I don’t know if that’s just because he’s not a morning dog and he wants to keep sleeping or it’s, I’ve abused him all night, hit him, throwing them around and he’s just like, I don’t like you anymore. So I probably should set a camera up in my room just to watch me sleep. She doesn’t see what’s going on.
There was this one time that I found a chair in my, in my kitchen. That for the life of me, I don’t remember putting there. So I was convinced somebody was in my house. So I went to like, I have a camera that like looks at the back door, which is near the kitchen. So like it’s part of the kitchen. Uh, and like that camera wasn’t set up to record anything.
So yeah, nothing. So there could be someone entering my house. I could be sleepwalking, moving chairs around my house. I could be beating up my dog while we sleep. I’m really sure he seems to get over it pretty quick. At least when the food comes out in the morning. And he’s in so sure. Every night he’s like, he knows I’m talking to Josh and somebody else in nighttime.
That’s so funny. Yeah, man. That’s awesome. I’m curious. Yeah, no,
Andrew: I’m doing pretty well though, man. No complaints. Nope, no new blizzards here. We’ve got more snow. We still have a ton on the ground, but no more blizzards. So, uh, I’m hoping we’re nearly done with that for the year. We’ll see.
Josh: We’ll see. Yeah, it’s cold here.
Uh, I think it’s like teens today. Um, so I’m not a fan of the cold. Um, I always remind myself living in Colorado when it gets cold, like, Oh yeah. I don’t like this. Um, But thankfully in Colorado we get sunshine like 360 days a year or some crazy thing like that. So it doesn’t happen often where it’s just miserable.
So we’ll take it right. We’ll
Andrew: take it. Yeah. Yeah. That sunshine it’s hard.
Josh: So Andrew, you gotta be parables, right?
Andrew: Parables, parable of the two sons, man. That’s where we’re at. So what is this? Our force? Is this our forces? I
Josh: think I was just wondering. I think this is our
Andrew: fourth one. Yeah. I’ve been liking it so far or long
Oh, yeah. Well, I like it. Um, if, if you’re following along and you have a Bible, uh, will be Matthew chapter 21 today. Uh, if you don’t have a Bible, um, you can just download the Bible app from any smart device and you have all languages of the Bible right there in the book. You
Andrew: could also go to a hotel room and just take the Bible out of the, uh, out of the shelf there, you could steal it
And then it’s not that it’s the book of Mormon. So they’ll have to take that instead of the Bible. Right. Which is a fine read. It’s pretty entertaining. Oh, you can definitely dig into a lot of the stories found in there. I am taking shots, but.
I need to piss off our friends. Sorry. If you’re listening to us, I’d be curious if they did, I guess. Um, but yeah, please let us know. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Andrew: Good reviews and angry letters. That’s all we ask. Leave us a five star, very
Josh: angry letter. Yep. Yep. We should rerecord our X or what do you call it? The, the audio of that passenger in the episode. With that statement, like, Hey, give us a great review. Give us angry letters. Do not do that in the reverse. Yeah.
Andrew: printed letters. Great digital reviews. Thank you.
Josh: That’s what we’re looking for. And we’ll give you Andrews and we’ll post your address, Andrew. So we can send them all there for how to do my address. That’s right.
Andrew: Dude parable of the two sons. What, what do you make of this at a, at first glance? I gotta be honest with you.
I did not do the, uh, historical kind of research around it just because life has been really nuts in the last week. Uh, so I didn’t get that done, but what, uh, how do you read this? How do you interpret this story? It’s terrible.
Josh: I read it in English. Um, usually, um, and in terms of Terp interpreting the story, uh, I think Jesus is essentially, uh, setting the stage that he’s, he’s bringing in something new.
Um, I don’t know how applicable these parables are to us today. Um, as you know, we’re not. We’re not Jews. Um, and essentially what he’s, what he’s saying, because he’s responding to the Pharisees. Um, the Pharisees asked a question, I’m going back a verse,
um, the teachers in the temple demand, uh, that Jesus show his credentials. Um, like why are you authorized to teach here? And then Jesus describes his authority where it comes from in comparison to John, uh, John, the Baptist, um, and kind of where his authority came from. And then he goes into the story. And so I think what’s happening here is there’s a shift being happened.
And we’ve talked about this shift before from the old covenant to the new covenant, the new covenant fulfilling the old covenant. That’s why Jesus came. So there’s elements of the old covenant no longer apply to our lives. You know, there’s global elements that do, but in general, A majority of it doesn’t um, and essentially what Jesus is saying here is, you know, um, the kingdom of God was entrusted to you.
You bear no fruit with that kingdom. Um, so now we’re, we’re ushering in something new, um, which will be. Both Gentiles and Jews coming together under what we call the church today. And I think that’s what Jesus is just describing. Even if you keep going. And we went into the parable of the tenants or the farmhands, and Jesus tells that story of, you know, um, a wealthy man had had this farm.
I’ll just briefly give it to you. Um, sent, um, some of his. Uh, helpers to that farm to collect pay, or whatever it was. I don’t remember. Uh, and they killed him. Yeah. You’re like, wait a second. So the F the, the owner of the farm sent his son so well, if it’s my son, and then they killed him too. Uh, uh, and, uh, eventually the owner, uh, kind of comes back in and takes not necessarily revenge, but takes authority and takes his, his kingdom back.
Um, and it it’s the story that that’s being described in, in the first parable that he told before that, but that parable is the end of this chapter. If you wanted to read it, Um, so yeah, that’s kind of my hand. What, what were your kind of takeaways?
Andrew: Well, that little like pre opener, I read that truly. I say to you that the tax collectors and prostitutes will get into the kingdom of God before you, or maybe I re I think I actually read a different one, but that’s a, that’s one of the verses in here is that the.
Tax collectors and prostitutes. We’ll get into the kingdom of God before you. And he’s talking to the Pharisees. Jesus was in this. And, um, I was just reminded last week, we kind of spent some time talking about kind of the social hierarchy of Jewish culture at the time where Pharisees were really at the top, you know, teachers of the law rabbis, they were right at the top.
Um, and basically, um, Basically they, sorry, I got distracted by a text. Uh, I will, um, cut this part.
Basically the first thing that came to mind, Josh was about the kind of hierarchy that we talked about, the hierarchy and Jewish, um, social culture, where last week we were talking a lot about how Pharisees are at the top and Gentiles are at the bottom. Uh, but, um, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are kind of right towards the bottom there, um, lowest of the Jewish culture.
Um, so when I look at that, I. I see Jesus kind of saying, um, you got it. Is that think you’re at the top that think you’re first in line to go into the kingdom of heaven. You should probably watch out. You should probably be aware because, um, I’m telling you that you’re actually kind of last in line. And to me, um, this also stirred up a conversation.
You and I had around the book of James where, um, a couple of weeks ago, or maybe a month ago, even we were talking about the book of James and you. Uh, we’re saying that, um, it wasn’t, it was close to not being allowed into the Bible because some, a lot of people read that book and say that James is like, um, or that it’s written from a perspective you got to go and do, do, do like your works are more important than your faith almost.
Um, and even though this parable was written, uh, in the context of being to the Jews, I think about, uh, I think about it. Like we, it could be written down anybody who’s just like kind of paying lip service to God, but not changing anything in their life. Not trying to follow God in any way. Um, it’s like, Hey, like lip service probably doesn’t cut it.
You know, you and I aren’t God and UNR, aren’t the creator or judge. Um, but. Uh, probably watch out if you’re just paying lip service and you think that’s enough to kinda cut the mustard with, with the Lord. It’s really not, you know, it’s about, about heart change. It’s not about, um, outward looks or social status.
It’s it’s about is your heart, uh, committed to the Lord or are you trying to take the steps towards the Lord? So I don’t know. That’s a bit rambling, but that all kind of came to mind pretty quick to me.
Josh: Yeah, like you could, we can apply it in this perspective, kind of going along a little thread that you’re talking about is, you know, those that, that make commitments to Christ normally recognize Christ Lordship Christ’s sacrifice for them. They recognize the need for that sacrifice. Um, and that’s it, they kind of stay in what we would call an infant stage of Christianity.
Um, and they’d never mature past that in relationship with Jesus. So there’s no fruit to their lives. Their life is still, um, um, categorized by maybe, um, self-centeredness, uh, error, arrogance, or, um, Uh, what’s the other word? Not arrogance, but, um, not incompetent when they’re not aware. What’s that word? I’m not aware of something.
Isn’t a word like arrogance, but it’s not aware. Arrogant you you’re that our listener probably like, Oh Josh, it’s this that’s fine. I have a cabinet is not that big. I’ve accepted it. Um, but it’s so, and so I think that can apply here too, is, you know, relationship with Jesus was never fostered. Um, so sanctification processes never really kick-started because they haven’t been in relationship with Jesus.
They just kind of found salvation and then continue to live this life as, as they, they wanted to. Yeah. Um, and miss out on, you know, the obedient life and, you know, found a relationship and not obedience in terms of control. And I think that’s, that’s important to point out because I think a lot of people hear that word and, and start to freak out because they’ve been under.
You know, crappy authority and they’re like, nah, I ain’t going to obey if he’s going to suck. Um, but we are talking about Jesus here. There’s not a better leader, uh, to follow. Um, this is, this is, uh, a great leader. That’s extremely compassionate and kind to those that follow them, um, and are willing to, um, and it is willing to go way out of his way, um, to help us understand truths, to apply to store lives more than, you know, any human would.
So we thank God for that. But, um, so I think there’s that piece too. And then the other side would be those that said, you know, I don’t want any part of this life with Jesus, like screw that. Um, that’s such a waste of my time and then eventually come around to, uh, following Christ and maturing in their faith and living out the great commission as Jesus commanded the student.
Um, you know, I was recently asked, maybe we talked about it in this podcast. I don’t remember. I don’t know. Um, But I was at, maybe it was a conversation with somebody, man. I have too many conversations. Then I have a really bad memory on who I’m talking to. So many conversations I have with people start with, you know, I had a conversation with, and I can never remember who that was.
That’s funny, but I can picture where it was. That’s the weird part. I don’t
Andrew: know. What’s up memory.
Josh: What’s the, what’s the point of Christians? Like what’s the primary goal of a Christian and maybe we talked about his way back. Um, and I don’t remember what my answer was then. Um, I would hope that it’s the right answer and it’s my answer today as well.
Um, but I think oftentimes people believe that the point of, or the primary purpose of a Christian is to worship God. And we don’t find that in scripture, we don’t find that a new covenant. Like Jesus, didn’t say that Jesus did say the greatest commandments is to love God with all your heart, soul, and mind.
Love your neighbor as yourself. Um, and he would continue that line of thinking with what we call the great commission. The last thing he told the disciples who were, um, in charge and commission to start the church. Um, it wasn’t, Hey, love me forever guys. Worship me as best as you can, uh, pull out all the musical instruments and make me feel good.
Um, it was, Hey, go into all the world and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father, the son, and the Holy spirit, teach them to obey everything I’ve commanded you. And surely I am with you always to the very end of the age, that was his final words to his disciples. Um, so I would argue that the point of Christianity, the primary purpose of Christianity is to live that out.
Is to go make disciples that are gonna make other disciples. So teach them the Jesus ways, teach them how you live this Jesus life, how you persevere and continue to have faith in the midst of hardship, uh, how you have joy. Um, no matter what life throws at you, that circumstances don’t dictate how you live this life or how you feel about this life, because it’s, Jesus is still on his throne.
He’s still in control. Um, and, you know, apply that to other people’s lives or help them apply that to their lives as well. And then teach them to do the same thing. You’ve done. Make disciples, baptize disciples, teach them to, um, obey, teach them the Jesus ways and then teach them how to do it themselves.
Um, so I would argue making disciples that make disciples is the primary purpose of all Christians everywhere. Uh, and I think it’s also the place where we find hope. Um, because discipleship can’t happen outside of relationship. That’s the model that Jesus gave us throughout his time on earth and his three years of ministry.
He showed us life on life discipleship, um, with the 12 disciples, eventually 11, um, and helping them become, you know, uh, the, the, the ignition for this movement that we call the church. Um, so I think that’s the primary purpose purpose of Christians today. And I think oftentimes we miss that.
Andrew: That’s a, that’s a good point, man.
And I wonder if that answer of like the primary goal is to just worship God. Um, if that comes from like thinking, you know, in heaven, we’re going to worship eternally basically, or that’s going to be a normal part of everything that we do, um, is worship. So I wonder if somebody’s kind of,
Josh: part of it is old covenant thinking.
Hmm. What do you mean old covenant thinking and part of this old covenant, like there’s coming, like Jews were commanded to worship God, right. Um, with their lives and, and worship is still a massive part of the Christian faith, but it’s not the most important part. Um, and I think that’s the thing that we miss.
Um, so. Jewish faith. They weren’t trying to convert people like that. Wasn’t a part of, of, of the old covenant. They weren’t going into other nations for the sake of them becoming Jews though. Some did, um, that wasn’t their intent. Well, when Jesus came on the scene and, and restored his kingdom through his sacrifice on the cross and his resurrection from the dead conquering death, like.
He, he ushered into something new, like we’re now on this earth to help others experience what we’ve experienced. And that’s why you’re still here. That’s why you still have breath is there’s people that you have in your sphere of influence that you have the opportunity to introduce to a life that is beyond their wildest dreams, a life that is full of hope.
Even when. Um, circumstances say you shouldn’t have hope. I’m like, that’s the life that we want people to experience. Um, you know what we talked about this verse a few weeks ago, uh, you know, the first Peter verse where, you know, be ready to give an account for the reason you have the hope that you have.
So you’ve got to be, you know, you’ve got to be maturing in your relationship with Jesus, your trusted Jesus, your faith in Jesus. Um, so you can have that type of faith, even when everything kind of falls apart around you, or at least feels like it’s falling apart around you. Yeah.
Andrew: As you were talking, man, I was, and I’m sorry if I just keep jumping back and forth.
Um, but as you were talking, I was thinking a little bit more about this parable. It’s super short, the parable of two sons, just a few verses, but, um, the son who. Said to the dad, um, when asked to go into the vineyard, you first said, I’m not going to, no, I’m not going to go do that. But then he eventually went, uh, the other son, uh, basically said, yeah, I’ll go work.
No problem. But he never went. Um, you never did it. You just, you know, paid lip service and did nothing. Um, I think it’s cool that Jesus follows it up with kind of the driving home that the tax collectors and prostitutes are going to get into heaven before the Pharisees. Because, um, you know, if you think about it, like people like the tax collectors who were just notoriously known for saying, Oh, you owe.
This guy owes 10 pieces of silver. So I’m going to charge him 15 and I’m going to pocket five and give 10 to Rome. Um, that’s why the tax collectors were so hated. Um, they were dishonest. Prostitutes were just like, you don’t do that with your body. That’s not, that’s not an honorable form of work in Jewish culture.
So. There are people who basically said like, I don’t care what they think is more. Yeah. Yeah. They’re like, I don’t care what you think is moral. I don’t care what you say is right. I’m going to do what I want to do or gotta do to get by. Um, and it’s this. So they’re, they’re people who I guess I think about it and it’s like, those are the people who have said are, those are people that you could look at their life and, and be like, Oh, they clearly.
Made a choice to kind of reject God. They said, no, no, I’m not interested in that. Not going to do that. And, uh, and then later to kind of regretted it for whatever reason, um, they, in this context heard the preaching of John and something stirred in them and they said, I’m going to turn my life around.
That’s the most true thing I’ve ever heard when that guy’s preaching. It’s like, it’s like nothing I’ve ever heard. And I know it’s right. I know it’s true. So I’m going to change my life. I’m going to make it more about making disciples. I’m going to make it more about following God and I’m going to, um, you could say, go work in the vineyard, you know, with Prince parentheses around it, or air quotes, go work in the vineyard, you know, um, I’m going to go live this Jesus’ life.
Um, Versus the people who were like, yeah, yeah, I’m there. I’m totally there. Maybe they’re the ones that, uh, I don’t know. I don’t even know how you fall asleep, profess faith, but they’re the people who stood up in front of the crowd so that the crowd saw them say, I’m going to follow Jesus with my life.
And then they never thought about it after they did that. You know, they’re the people who got the. The clap, the praise of men and, uh, and just never did anything about it after that, you know? Um, I don’t know. Am I on to anything there? Like, is that, is that off base? What
Josh: do you think? No, I think, I think you’re, you’re on.
Our churches are full of people who show up Sunday, uh, who show up on Christmas and Easter who even give to the church, um, and maybe even serve in chills minister from time to time that aren’t disciples of Jesus. Um, somewhere along the way, they made a confession. And I would argue because of my theology, my background, that, you know, that confession is enough for salvation.
Um, but they never matured past an infant stage of, of Christianity. You know, when, when Paul tells mannequin, which church off the top of my head Corinthians, maybe, um, you know, You’re you’re still on, on your mother’s milk kind of thing. At some point you got to start eating solid food. Um, like this is kind of the, this, the position that the, all these individuals are and the reality of, of an infant.
And you got one right now, right? Like they don’t produce anything, a fruit and produce a lot of poop, produce a lot of screens, screams and throbs. They’re not a other than it’s an object to love. Um, they really. Don’t really provide anything else for the family. They’re just straight up providing anything to family values or purpose or the family purpose.
Like they’re not pushing to anything. And it’s the same as is true of our churches today is because, uh, these individuals that have given their life to Jesus have never really been discipled by Jesus because, you know, they just thought, well, if I go to church, you know, uh, most of the time, and if I give some money to the church, then, then we’re all good.
And this is essentially what the Pharisees were doing, that he was. There was fighting against was yeah. On the outside. You’re doing everything great. Um, like there was nothing that I can, they could say that here here’s the things you’re doing wrong. Um, but on the inside, you’re a dead man’s bones.
There’s no life here. Uh, and that’s essentially, what’s, what’s still happening today. Um, And the fruit of our lives come from living into the kingdom, living into the kingdom purposes of the kingdom purposes to make more disciples, um, and not just converts, but disciples of Jesus. So helping them understand how to walk with Jesus and, and practice, you know, w what we call Jesus habits, um, to help them, you know, foster relationship with Jesus, not to do things that make good Christians look good.
Um, and I think that’s really what we’re trying to get at here. It’s or at least the apical piece that we can apply here. Um, Is like, what is your relationship with Jesus look like? And is it producing fruit? Is he just some distant dude off in the stars that saved you from your sin one time? Um, or are you in deep relationship with him constantly communicating with him through reading of his word as he speaks, you know, this is his recorded words to you already.
Um, and spending time in prayer as a form of communication and not a task to be completed. Um, so Jesus can speak into and shape who you’re called to be, um, you know, help you love people, better help. You love him better to help you understand what this life of making disciples is all about and how to do it well.
Um, and, and digging into all of those aspects. Like that’s, that’s what Jesus does in the sanctification sanctification process. He’s helping you become more like himself, uh, in that process. Um, and this going back to what you said earlier about, about James, like it’s not about your ability or your willpower, um, to do these things, like that’s what the Pharisees were doing and they missed it.
It’s about being in relationship with Jesus and let Jesus the changing inside of your heart, right? Like a disciple is someone that knows, knows God knows Jesus and follows Jesus is changed by Jesus and is on mission with Jesus. And that mission is the great commission. Um, and you know, that’s, that’s really what we’re trying to chase here.
And, and I think it’s easy to find yourself. So we’re not like if you’re someone that attends church, you read your Bible from time to time. Um, but you wouldn’t say your life’s a John 10, 10 life. You wouldn’t say it’s life to the full, like it’s life full of adventure life full of investing in other people’s lives on a daily basis, not just on a.
Yearly basis, or however often it happens in your life, but you fully understand the mission of Jesus and you are 100% committed to it. Um, like if that’s where you are, I get it because in a lot of ways, that’s where churches kind of position themselves. Like if you give to the church, if you serve from time to time, if you’re there every Sunday, then you’re a good Christian.
Um, and. Unfortunately, we don’t see those things in the Jesus life that he’s described. Um, no, we’re, we’re spending time with Christ daily because he’s our source of life. He’s our source of hope. He’s the place that we go with all the struggles and fears of life. So we can, you know, lay him at his feet and let him dig into it.
And the crazy thing is like, I’m not saying anything. That all churches don’t say, right? Like, yeah, you’re supposed to go lay your burdens at Christ’s feet, but in all reality, we just don’t do those things. And that’s why we miss out on it. Um, you know, I haven’t, you know, I’m a part of a discipleship net network.
That’s um, Teaching, how to make disciples that make disciples. And one to mult re reproduce that in a, in a movement. And, and we talk a lot about the characteristics of that process. And in all reality, from the outside, looking in, um, most churches do that. Most churches encourage you to go into small groups, into a relational environment.
Uh, most churches want people to be discipled. Um, they just don’t really. Have a definition of what a disciple is. Um, or it’s not the definition that Jesus gave it and they don’t have a methodology on making that happen. The process of making that happen. Um, so they end up in that cycle, so they lower the bar, lower the bar, lower the bar and it’s Hey, if you come to church, if you give, and if you serve from time to time, you’re a good Christian.
And you’re like, yeah, but you’re missing out on life. Here’s your salvation secured. Sure. It’s not dependent on your, your works and dependent on what you do. Uh, but are you, are you being fruitful? Is, is Jesus, you know, um, compared in, in, in this parable? No, you’re not like you’re not producing any fruit because fruit would be disciples that you’ve made.
And in, and now they’re making disciples themselves. That’s the fruit, like, that’s what Jesus is talking about here. Um, and I think we miss that. That’s so often, um, Because maybe we’ve settled. Maybe that’s we don’t know any better. Like that’s part of my thing is like I grew up in a church. I didn’t know any better.
Like, I didn’t know. There was another way to live this Jesus’ life and no shame to them. They didn’t know better either. Um Hmm. But you know, we go back to scripture and we start watching and reading Jesus, not just the things that he said, but how he did things and how he, you, you and how he entered engaged in relationship with people.
And things start to open up and you’re like, Oh, and then you take that, that concept or that shift in your reality or your view of reality, then you start reading through Paul’s letters and you’re like, Holy crud. I never understood that. Like I understand that verse now. You’re like, that’s exactly what Paul was talking about.
And I thought he was talking about this. It’s like that next, I hate to call it this, but it’s like next level of enlightenment of you’re like, Oh, this may. Reached the new pinnacle and now things make different, you have different understandings of things you’ve always known. Um, it’s kind of that idea or come our dear.
Andrew: Well, and think about it, like, just to simplify that idea of like the next level of enlightenment. Think about it the first time you lived outside of your parents’ house, your first apartment, your first house, whatever, where you suddenly realize. Oh, man. I have to think about all the food I’m going to eat.
I have to think about cleaning up. I got to wash my own clothes. I got to, you know, whatever the things were that your parents did, that you just thought was totally normal, um, that you took for granted, you suddenly have to do, you know, and you’re like, Oh, wow. There is a lot more responsibility in my life.
Then think about first time you go to college, you’re like,
Josh: yeah, I want to go back to my parents’ home. Yeah,
Andrew: yeah, exactly. You go to college. You’re like, I can choose whether you go to class, nobody’s going to know until the end of the semester, um, there’s consequences. There’s responsibility. Get married.
It’s like, bring your spouse into this, this life that you’re in. And you’re like, Oh crap. There’s a lot of things in my life that I got to fix. That’s another level of enlightenment have a kid. That’s another level of like, And there’s all kinds. That’s just the life track I’ve had. So there’s all kinds of other things that bring these levels of responsibilities.
That level of awareness to us that are different. And I think there’s, there’s things that are simultaneously happening, happening in our spiritual life. Our walk with Jesus. Uh, that, yeah, like you said, he sheds light the Holy spirit sheds light on, on a verse you’ve heard or read or seen a hundred times.
And suddenly you understand it at a deep level, in a real way, in a new way. Um, and that’s, you know, that’s why they say like, That’s why the Bible says that, uh, the word of the Lord is living and breathing sharper than any two edged sword, you know, able to port Pierce through bone and marrow, something like that.
It’s it’s sharp and it is a, it’s always sharp. Um, And yeah, man, one thing I want to say is I don’t, I wasn’t trying to bag on or judge people who have, have just stood up in the moment to say, I want people to see me say I’m accepting Jesus, man. The last thing I want to be is the judge of who gets into.
Uh, the kingdom of God and who doesn’t because, uh, I’m very thoroughly aware of the areas of my life that are sinful areas of my life, that, uh, fall short of the upward call of Christ. And I don’t want to be in the position of, of having to look around and say, well, Stan, can’t make it in. Uh, Jan can’t make it in, but I’m definitely good.
You know, that’s like, anytime you find yourself in
Josh: that spot,
Andrew: Stan and Jane are struggling. Uh, no, you find yourself in that spot. Anytime I find myself in that spot of wanting to be in the judgment seat, there’s something going wrong in me, uh, at that moment. Um, so that’s, uh, that’s a check, but yeah, man, I don’t want to be the judge.
And if Jesus wants to let in people who. Um, once the open arms embrace people who stand up, uh, in, in one moment and have a profession of faith, let them do it. So be it. That’s great. You know, um, if not, that’s on him to decide it’s not on my side, but I like your point of you just are missing out on so much.
If you’re not trying to live this Jesus’ life more fully. And I know that that I’ve talked about it. I would assume this
Josh: life is still hard.
Josh: Yeah. I mean, I would assume that there’s times you’re still feeling overwhelmed. Like you just don’t have the relationship to rely on Jesus for those things.
You’re doing it on your own. Like that’s a hard life.
Andrew: Yeah, I’ve been there. It’s no joke. I mean, dude, I’m walking through a season right now that I’m sure I’ll talk about more openly on the podcast at some point all the details, but I’ll just say like, in this season of my life, I am in a spot where if I forget that God has spent over two years, uh, teaching me that he’s faithful.
If I forget, uh, the lesson that he taught me that, that this. Year. And this season is my year, my time of focus. And he gave me my priorities of what I focus on. If I forget these things right now, then I’d be way stressed out. Like I’d be over my head. Um, and, and just feeling like it was on me to, to meet all the needs.
And the reality is it’s not on me. Um, I need to show up, uh, ready to follow God’s. Will I need to try to follow him in my choices in my life, but man, God’s going to provide for my family, not me. I might do the labor, but, uh, but he lines it up, you know, it’s uh, I don’t know. So I guess if you just. If you just pay lip service to the Lord and you never spend time learning these lessons, I just feel like your hat’s going to be way more stressful.
It’s going to be a lot harder life, um, to, to go around just saying, well, that’s just in one little box in the corner of my closet, that relationship with Jesus thing, the rest is on me to figure out. It’s like, man, don’t do that. Life is too hard to do that. I was way too hard to do that. Say no, that little corner in the box is the stuff that Jesus is still working on in my life.
The stuff that my I’m not ready to let go from my heart yet, but then I know I need to, you know, the rest of my life is the stuff that I’ve handed over to God already. Um, that’s a lot easier way to live in my okay.
Josh: Yeah. And I think too, like, um, and they’re listening and you’re trying, you’re trying to evaluate in your own mind where you’re, where you’re at with Jesus, um, or where you’re at with this, this Jesus life as you mature and become a disciple.
Make disciples yourself. Um, like the key to the whole process is you’ve got to spend time with Jesus. Um, and I know you hear us say that on this podcast on a regular basis, but it’s the reality of everything. Like it’s not, Hey, can I get a list of all the things disciples do? And then I can just focus on all those things.
You’re like, no, that’s not, you’re skipping steps. That’s not how this works. You’ve got to spend time with Jesus. It’s all in relationship. Um, or you’re going to end up exactly where the Pharisees are in this moment. You’re doing all the right things on the exterior, but, but inside, you’re just dying. Um, and there’s not a more freeing feeling when you start to understand what the Jesus life is really like.
The Jesus life is full of grace, meaning you have unlimited grace for the sins that you commit, um, that you can commit those sins over and over and over and over again. And if you ask to use forgiveness, he forgives. Over and over and over again, there’s no limit to it. You know, we see this and how we’re supposed to forgive one another.
Jesus says, well, you forgive that person seven times seven times seven, right? Like. A lot. And it’s the same as true with Jesus and us. But we often think to ourselves that no, no, it’s up to me to combat this sin. No, Jesus was clear. You’re not able to combat sin in your life. You don’t have the skillsets or the ability, but Jesus.
Does. So we rely on our relationship with Jesus and we start to see sin showing up less and less and less in our life. Not they’re ever going to be perfect because you’re not gonna be perfect until you stand, you know, in, in the full new creation that you are. Um, on the other side of, of, of Aternity. But like in the midst of it, it’s all about relationship.
And I think oftentimes we get these lists of, okay, I got a picture of what a good Christian does, and these are all the things that he does. So I’m gonna focus on all these things. Okay. That’s good. I guess, to some extent, but you’re skipping so many steps along the way that when hardship shows up in your life, everything’s going to fall apart because you’re, your facade has been built on your own willpower and your own ability.
That’s a hard life. Uh, when, when you lose your job job unexpectedly, when you have a death of, of a child, like these are devastating events in your life. And if you’re not in relationship with Jesus, these are devastating events in your life. That all of a sudden you feel like you’ve got to figure out on your own, um, because you, you don’t have that relationship or that support system.
Um, and that’s a terrifying feeling. And oftentimes we find ourself in that position. It’s well, this is God’s fault. Where’s God in all of this. And God’s saying I’ve been here the whole time. I need you to engage in relationship with me when God says, you know, the greatest girl in Jesus said the greatest command is love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind that’s relationship.
That’s our map. Am I engaging Jesus with the, with my entire being? Am I engaging Jesus intellectually? Am I engaging Jesus from an emotional level found in my heart? Am I engaging Jesus with my hands and feet by, by working in the fields, in the, uh, uh, in the mission of Christ, like, am I chasing after this?
Like, that’s, that’s what he’s looking for. He’s looking for relationships. So if you’re sitting there saying I don’t have this life where I feel like. Uh, I feel like, um, you know, when Jesus says I’m like, um, a person who can toss back and forth by the waves that circumstances in life, just, just mess with me constantly.
Um, if things are good, I’m great. I feel like my relationship with Jesus is great, but when circumstances go into the pooper, um, all of a sudden I feel like my relationship with Jesus horrible. Um, well then you’re living in, in, in the waves back and forth. You’re living in circumstances. You’re doing this on your own, and I’ll be honest with you doing it on your own is so flipping hard.
Why would you want to, um, like living life with Jesus? Oh, there’s so much freedom things. So. You can see we falling apart around us. And we’ve shared stories in this podcast of things, not going the way, the way we expected them to. Uh, but man, when I get to talk to Jesus about those things, when they get to just lay bare over here, here, God, like, this is what I’m thinking right now.
Like, I don’t know if it’s a good thing or a bad thing, but like, this is the, all the thoughts that are running through my head and, and God, here’s the emotions that I’m feeling. I’m terrified. I’m terrified of the unknown is going to happen next. I’m scared of what people are going to think about all this.
I’m scared that I don’t have the ability. Um, to, to tackle the hurdles in front of me, um, um, uh, happy on one side because so-and-so’s getting screwed too. And I don’t like, so-and-so like, we’ll throw all those emotions out there. Let Jesus carry those things for you. That’s communication. That’s relationship.
Like prayer should not be this, this, um, Uh, what’s the word? Um, checklist sterile experience. Yeah. Right. Like checklist sterile. Like it shouldn’t be like, well, I gotta pray for so-and-so so-and-so and so-and-so, I’m going to have to start this with, you know, Jesus, I gotta end this with Jesus. Um, I gotta ask him for forgiveness.
I’m sure those are all elements that show up in our prayer life. Um, but it’s. But that if it’s not built on relationship, it feels sterile. It feels like a checklist, but when it’s built on relationship, it’s like, I’m calling Andrew up and I’m just like, Hey, here’s what’s going on in my life. And, and, you know, uh, so-and-so is going to this job interview and they asked me to pray for him.
So, so guys just kind of give that situation to you. And do you want me to pray anything specific or ask you for anything specific for that person? I know that person doesn’t know Jesus, so I know I’m as, um, I know I’m the connection because, you know, Your scripture is clear that you can’t hear his prayers in the midst of his inequity.
Um, right. Like how do I, how do I pray? Like it’s all conversation. And if we can focus in on those things, you’ll be shocked at the things you’ll start to understand. You’ll be shocked by the ways that you love God and love people. You’ll be shocked at how difficult situations come into your life. And yet you continue to persevere.
You continue to have great faith and you continue to have a great hope because you know that your, your God is still in control. Um, even if life circumstances go to the pooper for you, you know, that God is still in control. Um, as Andrew said, it’s not his job to take care of his family. Mrs. J it’s his job to be obedient to who Jesus called them to be in relationship with Jesus and let Jesus take care of his family.
And that’s a terrifying moment because right. We all want to be in control. It’s nice to be
Andrew: order to feel like you’re in debt
Josh: and that’s where you. And that’s where you end up back in these places where like it’s up to you to live the right life. It’s up to you to, to make sure that you’re not doing these things and you’re doing these things, but we’re in a relationship with Jesus.
It’s up to him to mold us into those people. Now, Not saying there’s no responsibility in this. It’s not like this easy wave of like, do nothing. Jesus is going to do everything. And all you gotta do is read my Bible. No, you gotta dig in the relationship with them. And what you’ll find really fast when you’re digging it.
Yeah. Relationship with them is here’s the thing. They’re going to be things he’s going to tell you to do. There’s gonna be things he’s going to tell you that. And you’re going to be like, okay, there’s still stuff I have to do. And this was James’s point, right? Like going back to the book of James, James starts out with, you know, Show me a faith without works and all right, like that’s, that’s the ideas.
No, when you living in faith with Christ and a linear relationship with Jesus, there’s going to be works that are going to be fruit of your labor, but it’s not the fruit of your labor. That’s the point? The point is the relationship with Jesus. And if you start with the fruit of your labor, you miss the point, you know, the relationship with Jesus.
Now you’re stuck exactly where the Pharisees are stuck right now in this moment. And the other thing is my
Andrew: long rant. No, no, that was a great rant. That was great rant. And the other thing is just that yeah. Aye. Uh, I love the book of James because it feels practical and it doesn’t feel like a simple do this, this and this.
And you’re good. It feels like a natural understood. The way I naturally understand is like, man, if you believe it with your head and you believe it with your heart, then the work of your hands will flow out of that. It’ll be one unified thing. You will try to be doing things to please the Lord. You will try to be doing things that you believe are in God’s will.
Of course, you’re going to mess up. Of course, it’s not going to be perfect, but your, your actions are flowing out of your heart. They’re not flowing out of I’m doing this so that I look good. I’m doing this so that Josh sees me write a big check. I’m doing this so that. Um, w whoever sees me volunteer and thinks, wow, interests a really good guy, you know, like that’s not the intent.
It’s Lord, what do you want me to do with the next hour of my life? What do you want me to do with the next, uh, day of my life? The week, the year, like month, whatever, like, it’s your actions flow out of your heart and yeah, James, his big point is kind of back to the Pharisees, uh, or could be kind of put back to the Pharisees of it.
Don’t just make it all head knowledge and make it all. Uh, looks based, don’t stand high, don’t stand in a high place to pray loudly so that everybody hears you praying with eloquent words and sees you praying. It says, wow, that guy is so Holy that, um, he, his prayers are better than mine. His prayers are, are more honorable than mine.
They’re more inline with God’s will than mine. Oh. Like, that’s not at all what the Bible says. Um, Bible is more like, no, it’s go into, go into a quiet room, close the door and, and speak with the Lord. Have real conversation with the Lord about what’s going on. That’s what real prayer is not, not standing in a high place on a chair to be seen praying and you’re flowing robes, you know, it’s different.
Um, so I dunno all that to say, I think the parable of the two sons. The one thing that’s a little tricky about it or not tricky. Just interesting. Is that the sun, uh, in this little parable that’s more righteous, uh, is the one who initially said no. Who, who was honest at first was honest and said, no, I don’t want to go work in the vineyard.
I don’t want to do that. You know? And then it says later he regretted it and he went out and did the work. Um, the one who was dishonest was the one who was dishonorable and, uh, and, and not righteous. So. I don’t know. I guess that just maybe even goes to kind of exemplify God’s grace in our life where we first start out and often say, no, I’m not going to follow you.
And then at some point, the Holy spirit taps on us, it’s like, Oh, I’m going to follow you. That’s I regret the time I didn’t follow you, but I’m going to dedicate the rest of my life to trying to be more like you. Jesus. I’m to try to be more, uh, God honoring in my life. Um, God fearing in my life. Um, but I don’t know, just, it brings in grace in a couple sentences.
It’s like, no, the one who was more righteous was the one who first said, no, they wouldn’t go do the work. And then did the work. Cause they regretted saying no compared to the one who kind of lied up front instead of course I’ll be there. I’m coming over. I’m going to do that. I’ll work really hard. And played video games all day.
So, uh, yeah man,
Josh: that’s a good one. Yeah.
I think to sum it all up is like, where are you at in the whole situation? Um, Dig into spending time with in building relationship with Jesus practice, Jesus habits. Not because that’s what good Christians do because it fosters relationship with Jesus. Um, pull out your Bible. It’s spend time reading God’s word and relationship with Jesus, not for more information and knowledge.
Um, so let’s start with a prayer of like God and going on in my life right now, the worries and everything. I just pushed him out of my mind. So I could just hear from you in these moments and then dig in his word and then spend time in prayer, talking with God, talking with God about anything and everything about your life.
I’m laying it all out. Bare talking about your emotions, your fears, your insecurities, that play into those situations. You know, that you’re bringing up with God and then let God to shape and mold you into who he’s called you to be. You’re going to find you’re going to end up being like, um, the prostitutes and the tax collectors that turns towards Jesus, you know, rather than the Pharisees that put on the facade of Jesus.
But when you skip steps and you end up in this place where you’re just trying to do all the good and the right things, like you’ve missed so much relationship, that all those things are useless. They’re pointless. You know, Jesus said without him, You can do nothing. And that’s what he’s referencing doing.
All those things without him. They’re pointless. They’re a waste of time. They’re nothing but doing those things in relationship with Jesus when Jesus is the relationship, Jesus, the start and that is the fruit. Um, you’re in a great place with Christ and you’re going to see great fruit in your life and a life full of abundance.
Uh, and, and, uh, A life that is just blowing you away in terms of experience, not going to be an abundance in terms of God’s and give you a lot of money. That’d be nice, but it usually isn’t as emo. So don’t, don’t be waiting for that one. That’s right. Yeah. Um, but yeah. Yeah. Any other thoughts, Andrew, before we close this one for the
No, I just, uh, I echoing what you said. Um, just if you listened to this and felt like it was impossible to live more like God this week, uh, more like God wants you to this week than you have the last week. And. I just would challenge you to take one on a step in the direction of God. If that for you looks like cracking your Bible for the first time in months or praying, honestly, for the first time in a long time, or I don’t know, whatever that looks like spending real time with the Lord.
Um, Then I just challenged to do it, then nothing, nothing bad is going to come from it. And in my, in my limited experience, every time I’m honestly pursuing God in any way. He’s right there. Ready to listen right there. Ready to respond. I’m right there. Ready to teach me something. So, um, don’t feel like you have to go from zero to 100 on day one.
It’s not your job to do that. I think it’s just your job to take the next right. Small step. And the Lord will be there to help carry you, uh, three or four paces after that. So, um, Hope this has been helpful to you. Hope it’s been entertaining and, uh, we’d love to know, uh, what you think on this parable.
Please go and read Matthew 21. Um, you can read the whole thing or you could read the verses. We were talking about kind of 23 through 46 is what we were referencing. Go read that. Let us know, let us know if God says anything to you about it. Um, you can reach out to us on Facebook or Instagram or firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can shoot us an email and, uh, thanks for taking the time to listen. Josh. Good to talk to you. My friend.
thanks for listening to our show. It really means a lot to us, and we hope that it helps bring you closer in your relationship with Jesus and with other people.
Josh: And it also helps us out. If you rate our podcast or leave us a review on whatever platform you’re listening on and also follow us on Instagram and the Facebook.
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You can message us on Facebook and Instagram, or you can just visit firstname.lastname@example.org. But seriously, thanks for listening. .