The Way DAY 5 - Specific Change

DAY 5 - Specific Change

Luke 3:10-14

Let's explore the third aspect of change on the Way of Jesus. After John encourages the crowds to produce fruit, they ask, "What should we do?" John responds with specific instructions, addressing various roles like tax collectors and soldiers.

We glean two insights from this exchange. 

First, some changes are universal. In his commentary on Luke, Justo Gonzalez points out that John’s advice has a social justice bent. Everyone on the Way of Jesus must care about justice and practical help for others. 

Second, change must be specific. The general principle - “help other people” - has to be applied to unique situations and individuals.

I might give two people with similar problems different advice. Why, because I don’t believe in moral absolutes? No, of course not! It’s because they’re different people, starting in different places, standing in different places along their path of spiritual growth. Pope Gregory I recognized this 1500 years ago. He urged pastors to tailor their advice to the unique person standing before them. The opportunities and responsibilities to help people are different for a 6 y/o versus a 16 y/o versus a 65 y/o.

Personal application is crucial to grow in the Way of Jesus. After hearing Scripture and a sermon, we should always ask, "God, based on what I heard, what do you want to change in me?" Repentance opens the door for God to work, but meaningful change requires specific application.

Think back over your time following Jesus. What is one positive change that you see? What is one thing God might want to change in you at this point in your life?

Lord, what do you want to do in me today or in this season of life? I’m listening. Amen.