When I was 15 years old we lost our preacher. Yup! He got voted right out of the church. It seems at the time the reasons were valid to many. I mean, things like winning the lost to Christ, preaching against sin, enrolling his children in a Christian school, standing for Christ and the Bible and… Well, I could go on and on, but I think you get the point that his removal from the pastoral position of our church was certainly unjustified.
Our family stood with the preacher but there were not enough of us to keep this good man. So this event clouded my teen years and left me feeling scattered and lost for a bit.
Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones. Zechariah 13:7
One must wonder if Gamaliel (a doctor of the law) was thinking of this passage in Zechariah as he spoke of Theudas, then of Judas of Galilee and their followers in Acts 5:34-39. In each instance these firebrands perished and their followers were scattered, lost and never to be heard from again.
For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were scattered, and brought to nought.
After this man rose up Judas of Galilee in the days of the taxing, and drew away much people after him: he also perished; and all, even as many as obeyed him, were dispersed.
Jesus used the passage in Zechariah to warn the disciples that they would all scatter the night of his arrest.
Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad. Matt 26:31
And scatter they did!
Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled. Matthew 26:56b
Thankfully, we hear from these followers of Christ again. The resurrection changed everything. Our glorious Savior conquered death and arose from the dead. Their faithful witness of His resurrection turned the world upside down.
Matthew Henry assessed “…if the God of peace had not brought again from the dead that great Shepherd, the dispersion of the sheep, at his death, [would have] been total and final.”
But it was not final. Still today the resurrection changes everything! Though one may feel scattered for a time and lost for a moment, we just have to gaze upon the risen Savior for everlasting consolation and good hope.
In my teen years, it was the promise of the resurrection of Jesus Christ that carried me through. The promise of new life gives us the wherewithal to accept loss of every kind. This hope of resurrection will carry us through every heartache, every trial, and every loss.
Certainly one may feel scattered for a bit my friend, but all is not lost. We serve a risen Savior!!
Loser Bible Study Series Theme Verse:
“For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it.” Mark 8:35
“Lose” from the Greek word “Apollymi” means “to destroy fully.” It is translated perished in Acts 5:37, our verse for today.