Camel’s Knees

I was doing some reading up on Jesus’ half-brother, James. James thought his big brother was crazy, because he went to stop Jesus from teaching (John 7:5). It doesn’t seem that he became a Christian until after the resurrection, when Jesus appeared to him (1Cor 15:7). He later became a leader in the church of Jerusalem (Gal 2:9). He was later called “the righteous (just) one” and it was said that “his knees grew hard like a camel’s because of his constant worship of God, kneeling and asking forgiveness for his people” (Eusebius, Church History, 2:23). (Camels are known for there thick leathery patches on their knees) I thought that I would share what I just found out. It was a little convicting looking at my non-camel like knees.

Confusion in Worship

Today in Children’s Church, I taught in Matthew six. The chapter talks about not worrying, but “to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness” (v.33). I like to have the teaching applicable to even their age, but I was not really sure if at that age there would be many who would have worries. When I asked if anyone worries, quickly most raised their hand. They went on to tell me some of the things that they were afraid of. I went on to encourage them that when they begin to worry they should “seek after God”. It was neat to see how quick they picked up on this. I asked them, “How can we seek after God?” They quickly responded, “Praying, reading the Bible, telling God what is bothering you,….). It is awesome to see it when little children start grasping the deep things of God. Worship is starting to bud in their lives. Maybe we ought to take some lessons from these little children.

In the Old Testament, when Job lost all of his material possessions and even his ten children, he had a choice whether to worship or to curse God. The same thing is true with us, we have the exact same choice that Job had, blessing or cursing. When life throws us unexpected loops, we can either worship or curse God. If we were all honest, at one time or another, we have all cursed God when things did not go our way. Of course it is better to worship and to put our hope and trust in God, but sometimes there is pain, hurt, and confusion in the worship. The confusion is there because our little minds try to figure out what an all-powerful God is trying to do in our lives.

Throughout the gospels, the disciples saw firsthand the accounts of Jesus showing his authority of the wind and the waves. He was able to defy the natural laws (walking on water) and calm a storm. For experienced fisherman to be afraid and struggling during a storm, it must have been intense. Even though the storm was intense, Jesus was able to handle it and calm it. Likewise in our own storms of life He is able to handle our problems and give us inner peace through the storm.

Matthew 6:25-34 “For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? “And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? “And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. “But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! “Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ “For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Power to Create

I like it when God told Moses, “I am who I am.” God didn’t need an introduction to the sons of Israel (Ex 3:14). He is the all-powerful creator who spoke the entire universe into existence with his powerful word; just “I am” was enough to describe everything that they need to know about God. His presence, power, and glory are seen throughout creation. It is obvious that he is pre-existent and is eternal. Jesus himself made this same claim (John 8:58) to show his equality with the Father and basically claiming to be God.
Christ showed his equality with God several times in the Bible. Many of the times that Jesus made these claims; the religious rulers understood what he was saying because they would pick up stones to try to kill him (John 8:59). People would bow down and worship Jesus and he would even receive worship from them (Matt 28:9). Even the angels worship Jesus in the book of Hebrews.
John chapter one shows Jesus’ eternality, showing how he was there at the beginning when everything was created. Colossians shows his omnipotent power in how he created everything and he is even the super glue that holds all the planets in their orbit. He also reflects the radiant glory of God and he is the exact representation of God himself. (Heb 1:3)
It is interesting to think about Jesus’ life, with the claims of deity that he made. You cannot just accept him as a good moral teacher, the claims that he made about himself were too outrageous. C. S. Lewis said it best when he said that Jesus would either have to be a liar, a lunatic, or God.