Jesus and His Mother - Matthew 12:46-49 - Skip Heitzig
Happy Mom's Day to you moms. Hey, this is a lot of fun, doing a parking lot service. But can I just say, I miss you all. I miss seeing your faces. I know I've seen some of them through the windows.
But I can't wait till we can meet in the big church, like normal. And we're trusting, and praying, and preparing for just a few weeks from now, we're hoping we'll be able to do exactly that.
But this morning, I want to bring a message to you from the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 12. So if you have your Bibles with you, or you have your electronic device, please turn in your Bibles to Matthew, chapter 12. It's a message that I'm calling Jesus and his Mother. It's that simple. Jesus and his mother.
I heard about a teacher who was teaching her second grade class all about magnetism. She brought a magnet. She would put it in the sand and draw out different things. And so the teacher was teaching about magnetism.
And then she gave her students a test the next day. And the test, basically, said this, my full name has six letters. The first letter is M. And I pick things up. What am I?
And she discovered that half of the students got the answer correct, magnet. But 50% of the students, mostly boys, said mother. My name is mother. I pick things up. And you know, that's true for a lot of families.
Now, the purpose of our gathering today is, first of all, to worship God simply because God is worth worshipping. We gather together. We make the effort. We get on our cars. We do what is allowable because we worship the king of the universe, and he is always worth it on any day.
Number two, we come here to encourage one another. And I hope you're encouraged just looking through the window and seeing people who are next to you. It's so encouraging to get together like this, even if it is like this. But we come to encourage each other.
Then third, we are here today specifically to honor mothers. Because motherhood is the oldest occupation in the world. In fact, there wouldn't be a world unless there were mothers. But you know, we relate to moms differently at different ages in our lives. We think of mom, we perceive mom, differently.
So when you're four years old, you think my mom can do anything. When you're 12 years old, you think my mom doesn't know everything. When you're 14 years old, you might think Mom doesn't know anything. But when you're 18, you think, well, you know, Mom is just out of step with the times and reality.
When you get to be 25, you start thinking like this, my mom, she knows a few things. At age 35, you start thinking, before we decide, let's get Mom's opinion. When you're age 45, you think, I wonder what my mom would say about this. And when you're age 65, you simply say, I wish I could talk to my mom one more time.
You know, my mom went to heaven a few years back. And I miss my mom. I wish I could see her face. I miss her smile. I miss the kind words she said. She had a magnetic personality. And I miss my dad. They're both in heaven now.
But there's something special about the relationship of a mother to her son. And she had four sons. I'm the youngest of four. A mother's love is like the gold standard of human love, because no matter who you are or what you've done, your mom will always love you. It seems like you could be the worst person on earth, but there's always a mother who will love you.
Now, let me give you a little trivia about Mother's Day. Mother's Day is not a biblical feast. But it is a recent observation in American history. It started around the Civil War. Just before the Civil War, a woman by the name of Anna Jarvis came up with the idea to celebrate and honor mothers.
And what she did is she got a little group together called the Mother's Day Work Club, where she would teach gals, teach young women, how to care properly for children. The ironic thing about Anna Jarvis is she never married and she never had children. But I tell you what, she came up with a great idea to honor mothers.
So we as a staff, as a team, just want to extend that to all of you who are here in our parking lot, those of you who are watching us, those of you who are tuning in on the internet, those of you who are tuning in on the radio in different parts of our state-- happy Mother's Day to you.
Now, today, we want to look at five verses of scripture, only five, in the Gospel of Luke chapter 12. But these five give us insight into the relationship that Jesus had with His own mother. You know, we don't know a lot about the childhood of Jesus. There's only a few verses that describe the first 30 years of Jesus' life.
We know all about his birth. That's covered amply in the scripture. And we know how he started his public ministry. But there are 30 years where only a few verses give us insight.
The Bible simply says Jesus grew in wisdom, He grew in stature, He grew in his relationship with God and men. And then we have that story when Jesus was 12 years old and He went to the temple. And then His parents searched for him. Other than that, the Bible is relatively silent about the early years of Jesus' life.
However, we have enough scripture about his mother, Mary. Her Hebrew name was Miriam. She was from the tribe of Judah. She was from the line of King David, the royal line. And she got married to a man by the name of Joseph.
Joseph was-- if I were to ask you his occupation, you would all say he was a carpenter. That's because that's the English translation of the Greek word tekton, which simply means a craftsman. Joseph was a craftsman. He worked with wood and stone. He was like a mason, a stonemason, and he worked with wood. He was like this all-around tradesman. That was Joseph.
Every Jewish woman in ancient times dreamed about the possibility of being the mother of the Messiah. It was the hope of every young girl that her womb would be the receptacle to bring the Messiah, God's chosen deliverer, into the world. The Bible tells us in Galatians chapter 4, in the fullness of time, God sent forth his son, born of a woman, born under the law. God chose the womb of a young peasant woman named Mary who lived in the town of Nazareth.
And when Nathaniel later asks, can anything good come out of Nazareth? Mary came from Nazareth. And of course, Jesus came from that town after he was born in Bethlehem.
Now, in Matthew chapter 12, Jesus is in the town of Copernium. That's His new headquarters. That's where He is basing his ministry. The crowds are growing. Jesus is teaching. He's performing miracles.
And on one particular day while our Lord is teaching, a crowd gathers around Him. And as the crowd gathers around Him and gets larger and larger, it's sort of interrupted by somebody telling Jesus that His family has come, His mother and His brothers. And Jesus uses this as an opportunity to tell the crowd the need of a spiritual relationship to Him.
The story is found in verse 46, where it says, While he was still talking to the multitudes, behold, His mother and His brothers stood outside, seeking to speak with Him. Then one said to Him, 'Look, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, and they want to speak with you.' But he answered and said to the one who told Him, 'Who is My mother and who are My brothers?'
And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, 'Here are My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.'
Jesus had a special relationship to His mother. We sometimes forget that Jesus had a biological family. We know He is the Son of God. He's the Messiah of the world. He is our Savior. But we sometimes forget that He had a biological family.
And the Bible mentions four half brothers by name and a group of sisters. We don't know exactly how many. All of them had the same mother, Mary. Joseph was the father of Jesus' siblings, while Jesus himself was the only one born of a virgin, had a virgin birth. Before Joseph and Mary naturally came together, Jesus was born, conceived by the Holy Spirit, in the womb of Mary. But He had brothers and sisters later on.
Matthew chapter 13, While Jesus is in the synagogue at Nazareth, the people say, is this not the carpenter's son? Is this not His mother called Mary, and His brothers, James, Joses, Simon, and Judah? All four are named. James, Joses, Simon, and Jude, or Judah, Judas. And his sisters, are they not all with us?
So we know that Jesus had four half brothers and at least two sisters, because it's in the plural. He may have had more. Now, at first, the brothers of Jesus did not believe that Jesus was the Messiah. They didn't believe He was the Son of God. They didn't believe He was the deliverer. They had no personal faith in Him at all.
We're told that in John chapter 7. It says, even his brothers did not believe in Him. On one occasion, because our Lord was so busy teaching the multitudes, healing people, not even spending time to eat, that his brothers came to rescue him. For it says in Mark chapter 3, they said he is out of his mind.
So not only did they not believe in Jesus at first, they thought Jesus was a bit crazy. I mean, think about it. If you had a 30-year-old brother who left a nice paying job as a carpenter and is running around telling people he's the Messiah, you're going to think he's one enchilada short of a combination platter. And that's what they thought of him. They thought that he was out of his mind.
And I want to encourage you, if you have unsaved family members and you find it difficult to witness to them, to share the gospel with them, they don't understand your faith in the Lord, don't give up. Because over time, those unbelieving brothers of Jesus eventually came to believe He was the Messiah, the deliverer, the Savior. After the Resurrection, they had a personal faith in him.
In fact, they show up in the first church in Jerusalem. Acts chapter 1, it says they all continued with one accord in prayer with the women and Mary, the mother of Jesus, with his brothers. So his brothers came to a personal faith in Jesus Christ.
In fact, one of them by the name of James became the senior pastor at the church in Jerusalem. And he wrote a book called The Book of James in the New Testament. And another one wrote a book. The book of Jude was written by one of the half brothers of Jesus.
And both James and Jude, when they begin their letter, call themselves bond servants. James, a bond servant of Jesus Christ. Jude, a bond servant of Jesus Christ. Not James and Jude, brothers of Jesus, but bond servants. They came to place themselves under Him and submit to Christ.
Now, in this story in the Gospel of Matthew chapter 12, when Mary comes and our Lord's brothers come, there is no mention of Joseph coming. It's just mom and her four boys. And that's probably because by this time, Joseph is dead. We're not certain, but it seems, because he is absent from the record in so many places, that he had died some years before.
And we don't know why they came exactly. It could simply be they were trying to rescue Him. This was a rescue mission. The animosity toward Jesus was growing so greatly. And the scribes, and the Pharisees, and the chief priests had a plot afoot already to kill Him. They thought, it's too dangerous. We have to rescue Him out of this.
So Jesus is teaching a message. And in the middle of the message, He is interrupted by somebody saying your mom's here. For most men, this would be embarrassing. I mean, you're preaching the gospel. The power of God is in the words you are using from the scripture. You're just getting to the main point of the message, and somebody stands at the door and says, excuse me. Your mom's here to talk to you.
Most men would say, oh, great. But not our Lord. He was the master of every situation. And He uses this to speak to the crowds about this issue.
And listen, Jesus loved His family. He cared for them. And He had a special relationship with Mary, his mother. I think it's safe to say that Mary knew Jesus from a human point of view better than any other human in the world.
She remembered when the angel Gabriel came and gave her the announcement that she had a child growing in her womb from the Holy Spirit. It was miraculous. And this child would be very special, would be out of the ordinary. She remembered when the Magi came to Bethlehem with the gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
She remembered going to the temple when Simeon held Jesus up in the temple at dedication and said, this baby is God's salvation. She remembered when Herod tried to kill Jesus by killing all the babies in Bethlehem. She remembered when Jesus was just 12 years old and was teaching the theologians in the temple of Jerusalem in a magnificent way.
And she was there at the first miracle Jesus ever performed in Cana of Galilee. She remembered all of those things. And twice, the Bible says that she treasured these things and pondered them in her heart.
Now, some people actually think that Jesus was a little bit disrespectful to his mother, when at the first miracle of turning water into wine at Cana of Galilee, when she said, they have no wine. You have to do something. And Jesus said, woman, what is your concern to me? My time has not yet come. People think, well, He was acting very disrespectful to his mother by calling her woman.
No, He was not acting disrespectful toward His mother. Six times in the New Testament, Jesus uses the term woman. It was not a sign of disrespect. It was a sign of respect. It's a polite way to address women. It's like saying ma'am, yes, ma'am, or Miss, or Mrs. It was a very polite term 2,000 years ago.
It was polite, but it was not intimate. Intimate would be Mom. Come on, Mom. But He said woman. He placed her a little bit at a distance simply because Jesus was individuating. He was saying, I'm not on your timetable. I'm on my Father in heaven's timetable. This is about His agenda, not your agenda.
But Jesus had a special relationship with His mother. Not only did He have a special relationship with His mother, Jesus had a sensible relationship with His mother. In verse 47 of our text, one said to Him, look, your mother and brothers are standing outside seeking to speak with you. But He answered and said to the one who told Him, who is my mother, and who are my brothers?
Listen, Jesus honored His mother, but He did not worship His mother. Jesus never prayed to His mother. He never venerated Mary. And He never told anyone to do so.
I know this has become a huge issue historically because some people worship Mary as the mother of God. They say that she is sinless. They say that she had an immaculate conception. None of that is found in the scripture.
They say her body was assumed into heaven, that she was crowned the queen of heaven, the queen of the universe, by Jesus himself. None of that is found in the scripture. There is even a church in Rome, a basilica, that has a cross. And on one side of the cross, it shows Jesus dying for the sins of the world. But on the exact other side of the cross, it shows Mary hanging on the cross, as if to say she also died for the sins of the world.
So here in Matthew chapter 12, if Jesus was going to worship His mother, this would have been a perfect opportunity. When the man said, look, your mom is standing outside and your brothers, He could have said, oh, sweet Mary, I bow down before you. But instead, He said, who's my mother, who are my brothers? And then He pointed to the crowd.
Now, here's what you need to know. Mary is a wonderful example of motherhood. She's a wonderful example of womanhood. She's a wonderful example of godliness. The angel Gabriel even said that she is highly favored, that the Lord is with her, and blessed are you among women. Even her cousin Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, said, blessed are you among women.
You need to know, Mary is blessed. But she doesn't bestow blessing. Mary is favored by God. But she doesn't give favor. She is not sinless. She is not the co-redemptrix. She is not the co-mediatrix. She is not the queen of heaven. And she doesn't answer prayer.
Let me tell you what Mary is. Mary is a disciple of her son, the Lord Jesus Christ. She said so herself. She admitted her need all on her own. In that great prayer found in the Gospel of Luke chapter 1 called The Magnificat, Mary prayed and said, my soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God, my Savior.
Did you hear that word, savior? Savior is somebody who saves people. And she recognized, I need mercy and I need grace. I also need to be saved. I too need a savior.
Frankly, I think Mary would be embarrassed if she knew that people worshipped her. John Calvin was right when he said Mary cannot be the advocate of the faithful, since she needs God's grace as much as any other human being.
Listen, if Mary were here, I think she would tell all of us what she told the guests at the wedding feast at Cana of Galilee. She said, whatever Jesus tells you to do, do it. That's what she would tell us today.
Mary was never given special honor by the church. She was never written about in the epistles. She was never worshipped in the New Testament. She was never prayed to in the New Testament. She was never venerated in the New Testament.
In fact, she was hardly even mentioned in the New Testament after the gospel. She was only mentioned once in Acts chapter 1. And after that, the scripture is silent, all the way through the book of Revelation.
There was even a time when Jesus was teaching in a different time and a different place to a crowd. And somebody in the crowd shouted out these words. They said, blessed is the mother who gave you birth and nursed you. And Jesus didn't say, yes, you're right. Blessed is the mother who did that. Blessed is the one who did that.
What he said to that man was this, blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it. Now, that would have been a perfect time to institute Mary worship. But Jesus did not. He said blessed are those who listen to God's word and who obey God's word.
Listen, if you want to honor Mary, honor the God that she loved and worshipped. If you want to honor Mary, honor the Christ that she bore and receive Him as the savior for your sin. That's how you would honor that mother.
So Jesus had a special relationship with his mother. But He had a sensible relationship with His mother. And finally, Jesus had a spiritual relationship to his mother. For in verse 49 and 50, the last two versus we look at, He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.
You notice that Jesus always appealed to his father in heaven, always made everything about doing the Father's will. Even when He was 12 years old, He turned to his mother and said, don't you know that I must be about my Father's business? On another occasion, Jesus said, I always do those things that please the Father.
So here, He says, whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my mother, sister, and brother. Now, if you read this passage and all you hear is Jesus rebuking his biological family, you've missed the point. Jesus is not renouncing His family. Jesus is extending His family.
He is basically saying the spiritual is more important than the physical. He used the presence of His physical, natural, biological family to emphasize the more important family. And that is the spiritual family that includes all of us. Basically, Jesus is inviting anyone, including Mary, including His brothers, to be a part of a spiritual family.
See, they were a part of Jesus' first family. He invites them to be part of His forever family. And that's the family God is building. That's the family Jesus is building today. He's building His forever family, and He wants you to be a part of it.
There are many references in the New Testament to the church as the family of God. Hebrews chapter 2-- it says about us, Jesus is not ashamed to call us His brothers and His sisters. In Ephesians chapter 2, verse 19, you are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God's holy people. You are members of God's family.
And I've made a discovery over the years, being a Christian, that my spiritual brothers and sisters are often closer to me and the relationship is more profound than even with my physical brothers. When I was first saved, there was some discord in my family over my decision to follow Christ. And we since made it through and reconciled.
But I discovered my relationship with Christian brothers and sisters is much deeper. It's a stronger bond than even with my family. The question is, how do we get that kind of relationship? How do we become his mother and his brothers?
Verse 50 says, for whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother, sister, and mother. Notice the word whoever. It's a pretty broad term. There's no limit on that term, whoever.
Like John 3:16, For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whoever would believe in Him would not perish but have everlasting life. Anyone can come. Anyone can be a part of this family. Anyone can become a member of His family.
So He says whoever. But then He narrows it back, and He says, whoever does the will of my Father-- now that broad term, whoever, is narrowed only to those who do the will of the Father. As some people hear this and they go, wait a minute. Isn't everybody a member of God's family? We're all God's children in the human race.
After all, I remember that great Christmas song by Gene Autry, Here Comes Santa Claus. The third verse-- Here comes Santa Claus. Here comes Santa Claus. Right down Santa Claus Lane. He doesn't care if you're rich or poor. He loves you just the same. Santa knows that we're all God's children, and that makes everything right. So fill your heart with Christmas cheer 'cause Santa Claus comes tonight. We all remember that song.
Well, let me tell you, Santa, you're a good guy. But you're a bad theologian. Because the Bible never teaches that we're all God's children. The Bible actually teaches there are only two families with two fathers. There is God's family with God as the Father, and there is the devil's family with the devil as the Father. Jesus said to the religious people who had animosity toward him, He said, for you are children of your father, the devil. And you love to do the things that he does.
So yes, we're all part of mankind, all part of humankind. And on one level, we're part of that family that God created. But we're not part of the family of God spiritually. We may be-- we may be all children of God by creation. But we are not all children of God by redemption.
And the Bible teaches plainly and clearly that there must be a deliberate acceptance, taking, receiving of Jesus Christ to enter that family. John chapter 1, As many as received Him, to them He gave the right, the power, to become children of God to everyone who believes in His name. That's the real family of God.
Jesus said, not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord, is going to enter into the kingdom of God. Only those who do the will of my Father in heaven. And so here's the will of the Father. Here's the way you get in. You believe in the Son. You come the same way Mary came and the same way those brothers of his came, by believing in the one that God has sent.
Now, before we sing a final song and drive out of here to wherever you're going, maybe you're going to go to a drive-through. Maybe you're going to have a drive-through tailgate party. Maybe you're just going to go right home. Don't know.
But before you leave, you need to understand the bottom line of all this message is this. Being related to Jesus Christ is the most important thing in life. I'll say it again. Being related to Jesus Christ is the most important thing in life.
It's more important than the economy, even if the economy completely collapses. It's more important than the economy. It's more important than your physical health. It's more important than finding a vaccine to the coronavirus or a therapeutic to shorten its efficiency.
Being related to Jesus Christ is the most important thing in life. And God wants everyone to be a part of his forever family.
I know many of you are with your families today. Others of you maybe have lost family members. You're feeling alone and isolated because maybe they died or they're on a different part of the country or a different part of the world. You can have a family. You can be in a family where God is your father and Jesus is your brother.
And all the rest of us sinners, imperfect people, will be your loving brothers and sisters. We'll walk with you through life. We want that privilege. But you need to enter that family by faith. You need to say, I receive Jesus as my Savior, my Lord, the one who stood in my place and took my punishment.
I'm going to give you that opportunity right now. If you're listening by radio, if you're on the internet, if you're in your cars, right where you're at, your life can begin brand new change today by saying yes to the Savior. So pray this prayer. If you'd like, pray it out loud. If you want to pray it inside your head, go ahead. But pray this prayer and mean it from your heart.
Say God, I know that I am a sinner. Forgive me. I believe in Jesus, your son. I believe you sent Him to this earth. I turn from my sin. I turn to Jesus as my Savior. I repent. I leave my past behind. I turn to Jesus as my Savior. Because I believe not only He died, but that He rose from the dead.
I pray that you would change my life. As I follow the Savior, I thank you that I can be related to you, Father, and to Jesus my brother, and I can become part of the family of God. Fill me with your Holy Spirit and help me to live a life that is pleasing to you. For I ask it in Jesus' name. Amen. Amen. Amen. Come on, give it up.
Now, first of all, if you prayed that prayer, we just all want to say congratulations to y'all. And welcome to God's family. There's a whole lot of love for you and a lot of prayers for you. If you said yes to the Lord and you prayed, then I want you to do a couple of things.
Text. On your phone, text the word Saved, S-A-V-E-D. Text the word Saved to 505.509.5433. That's 505.509.5433. Text the word Saved, or go to calvarynm.church. That's calvarynm.church on your computer. And you're going to see a little button there that says Know God. Click on that.
If you do one of those two things, there will be somebody reaching out to you. And we want to put something in your hands that explains what it is to walk with the Lord, to follow Him every day. And we'll get you started in your walk with the Lord. God bless you, guys. Happy Mother's Day.