Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than it is for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God. Luke 18:25
What? That is a paradox!
G. K. Chesterton defines a paradox as a truth standing on it’s head calling for our attention.
In other words, it is a statement that seems contradictory, unbelievable, or absurd but that may be true in fact.
Throughout the Bible we come across passage after passage “standing on it’s head calling for our attention.” We often wrestle with these verses – even dismiss them because they are sometimes too paradoxical. But could it be that these passages are calling for our intention for a reason? Are they calling us to actually, critically think about what we are reading and adjust our worldview – or at least submit that worldview to the worldview of scripture, Christ and the Kingdom of God?
Here are a few statements to consider:
to receive one must give… Come to think about, we all like to criticize the prosperity preachers, and justly, but I don’t think it is biblically unsound the talk about the grace of “giving and receiving” – in fact that is exactly how Paul understood it. You don’t give to receive, but you always receive when you do.
to reign one must serve
to be exulted one must be humble
to live one must die
to save one’s life, one must lose it
to lose one’s life is to save it
I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a child will never enter it. Luke 18:17
the wise of the world must become fools.
the first shall be last and the last shall be first
the preacher/ Christian is honored yet dishonored
there is evil report about them, yet there is good report
they are call deceivers, yet they are true
they are unknown, yet well known
they are dying, yet they live
they are chastened, yet not killed
they are sometimes sorrowful, yet always rejoicing
they may be poor, yet they make many rich
they may have nothing, yet they have everything
If you have faith a small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, be uprooted and planted in the sea, and it will obey you. Luke 17:6
Oh the blessedness the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Only those who recognize their spiritual bankruptcy can actually enjoy the kingdom of God.
oh the blessedness of those who mourn, they shall be comforted. Only those who mourn over their sins can actually enjoy the forgiveness of God.
oh the blessedness of the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. Only those who are completely submitted to God. The meek is not self absorbed – they are selfless.
oh the blessedness even of those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, they shall be satisfied. Only the hungering ones are satisfied in God.
oh the blessedness of the merciful, they shall receive mercy.
oh the blessedness of those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
oh the blessedness of those who when others revile them and persecute them and utter all kinds of evil against them falsely because of their faith, yet their reward is great in heaven.
Sell everything you have and give it to the poor, and your will have treasure in heaven - than come and follow me. Luke 18:22
It took time for me to see the truth in Jesus’ words, but I have. I think it’s when we live by them that we become people standing on our head, calling for attention. Those around us can’t help but notice. Their curiosity piqued, they ask to be enlightened.
This is a much better way of inviting people to follow Jesus than cramming Scripture down their throats, methinks! 😉
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They are true paradox, Jesus is himself a paradox He came to save but He will judge those who despise Him!!