51 As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. 52 And he sent messengers on ahead, who went into a Samaritan village to get things ready for him; 53 but the people there did not welcome him, because he was heading for Jerusalem. 54 When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?” 55 But Jesus turned and rebuked them. 56 Then he and his disciples went to another village.
Although Chapter 9 is only about a third of the way through Luke’s account of Jesus’ life, we see a subtle but dramatic turn in the story here. We see Jesus turn his face resolutely towards Jerusalem. It is impossible to even conceive how hard it was for Jesus to know that he was heading to Jerusalem to give his live and take the punishment for all sins.
In this section of scripture, we see that Jesus’ resolution to do what he was called to do has an impact on those around him: When the people of the Samaritan town see that he is headed resolutely to Jerusalem, this causes some negativity towards him. Jesus’ response to this and to his disciples’ negativity was also motivated by his single minded, goal driven attitude: He comes back to his purpose for being here and uses this to avoid being pulled into a needless conflict over unimportant issues.
I need to make sure that I clearly know God’s calling and purpose for my life, but more than this, I need to make sure that the purpose that he has called me for effects all aspects of my life and that I don’t get side tracked. I need to continue to press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus has taken hold of me.
Written by Justin Ware