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Jesus' Moccasins
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 11:1; Luke 10:25-28; Luke ...
Track 5 of in the series
To walk in Jesus shoes is like wearing Jesus moccasins. The walk and experience waking in Jesus shoes will take us places we never thought we would go and the trip can produce several; blisters along the way. We will feel the natural side of people, both their joy and their heartache. Not only did Jesus become like us, He moved into our neighborhoods and lived amongst us.

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Mike Nobis Speaker: Mike Nobis
Sunday School Teacher, Former Elder at Madison Park Christian Church. Mike is President of JK Creative Printers & Mailing in Quincy, IL. He is married to Pam and has three children, Tom, Tyler and Jennifer. Mike has three grandchildren: Ryne, Ivy and Alicia.

View all sermons by this speaker.

Jesus Moccasins

Can someone tell me what the incarnation is of Jesus? How important was it to God, to Jesus and to us?

Have you ever thought that we are also an incarnation? Just like Jesus was God on earth as a man, you and I are to be like Jesus just as though he were here with us. When man looks at us and the action within His church, the world should see a true picture of Jesus and understand who He is. God sent Jesus as a man so the world could see and understand God and His love. We are the same in Jesus name.

How many of us can say to others, if you want to be like Jesus, come and follow me, do as I do? If not, why?

1 Corinthians 11:1 (NIV) Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.

Are you comfortable making the statement Paul made to the Corinthians?

Moccasins are shoes used by native Indians. They fit like gloves and they don’t have heals; the soles of the shoe is sown in the upper part of the shoe almost seamlessly. With those shoes you can feel the terrain and help the person wearing the shoes to move about unheard. But if you aren’t use to wearing them, they will wreck your feet within a short period of time.

To walk in Jesus shoes is like wearing Jesus moccasins. The walk and experience waking in Jesus shoes will take us places we never thought we would go and the trip can produce several; blisters along the way. We will feel the natural side of people, both their joy and their heartache. Not only did Jesus become like us, He moved into our neighborhoods and lived amongst us.

It is not enough to be like Jesus, we also must move in and be with the people Jesus chose to be with. Jesus’ incarnation included two aspects; He became like us and He lived amongst us. He became our neighbor and moved into our neighborhood. When we follow in Jesus’ footsteps within our daily lives, we put on the moccasins of Jesus. The best definition of Jesus moccasins is, “the shoes of others”. The incarnation was an example of God walking in our shoes. We too are called to walk in our neighbor’s shoes like Jesus did.

Our neighbor’s shoes challenge us with the following questions:

• Who are my neighbors?
• Who are we excluding?

Luke many times wrote about Jesus wearing the shows of other people. In both the Gospel of Luke and in Acts, he was very careful to show how being a neighbor to our fellow man was the core of who Jesus was. In most cases, Jesus’ demonstration of being a neighbor was quite radical. The story of the Good Samaritan sits at the top of what it is like to be a neighbor and an example that was considered unreasonable.

Luke 10:25-28 (NIV) On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?" "What is written in the Law?" he replied. "How do you read it?" He answered: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'" "You have answered correctly," Jesus replied. "Do this and you will live."

Jesus applied a great technique when someone asks questions only to keep asking questions not really wanting to know the answer. Jesus simply answered a question with a much better question. The man speaking with Jesus wanted to get Jesus to make a mistake or to say something the religious leaders could use against him. But Jesus was too smart for that and used the occasion to teach a very important lesson about the Messiah and believers in the one true God.

Basically the man asking Jesus the question already knew the answer. Jesus knew that he knew the truth. The trick was to get the man to see and agree to practice the truth. Basically Jesus was inviting the man to train naked. Jesus said, “If you do this, you will live”.

What did Jesus mean about “living”. Did God consider the man dead already. What life did Jesus mean?

Nike used a slogan for many years: Just Do It! But that was not original; in fact, Jesus used it first way before Nike ever existed. Jesus basically said to the man, Just Do It! But this man wasn’t looking to do the right thing, he was looking for the loophole in the law by asking, who is my neighbor? The religious leaders of the day had many loopholes built into their system of religion. Here was another attempt to find a loophole.

What loophole was the man looking for? How was Jesus answer loophole free?

Luke 10:30-37 (NIV) In reply Jesus said: "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. 'Look after him,' he said, 'and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.' "Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?" The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him." Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."

The man questioning Jesus would rather argue over and discuss the real definition of a neighbor. Jesus simply told the man, Just Do It. Basically, every person you and I meet every day is considered by God, our neighbor. But are we any different than the man questioning Jesus? Just as he looked for the loophole in dealing with his neighbor, do we also look for the loophole or the excuse not to have to deal with those who are really inconvenient?

What loopholes have you used to escape the neighborly act or duty when someone was in need that you knew about?

“He who eats the bread of a Samaritan is like to one who eats the flesh of swine.”

In the Book of Sirach the Samaritans are called, “those stupid people living at Shechem”.

This gives us a glimpse of the hatred the Jews had for the Samaritans and yet Jesus sets the story up where the Samaritan is the neighbor to the man needing help. Jesus wasn’t trying to put the Jewish leaders down, He was trying to point out that the real neighbor is one who comes to the need of someone, especially if that person in need is a stranger.

What is interesting here, both men who walked by the man on the side of the road had legitimate reasons not to stop. They had legal loopholes that were at their disposal. What were some good reasons not to stop?

Put in modern times today, what are the reasons we use not to help when someone is in need?

Basically, the Samaritan put on the moccasins of the Jewish man on the side of the road. Incarnation, our incarnation moves us from the highway to people. No longer are we detached from real situations, we choose to walk in the shoes of others especially those we don’t know at all. It is one thing to come to the aid of a friend, it takes spiritual guts to help a stranger we don’t know and to experience their life and problems we are unaware of. This action requires naked love for others who come into our lives. It is not easy and most likely, it will be inconvenient. But Jesus tells us to Just Do It.

A survey of churches found an alarming statistic or pattern, a healthy, growing church is perceived to be one where its membership is composed of basically one kind of people. People like to become Christians without crossing racial, linguistic or class barriers. A homogeneous unit is simply a group of people who consider each other to be “our kind of people”. They have many areas of mutual interest. They share the same culture, They socialize freely. When they are together they are comfortable and they feel at home. Even their shoes look the same.

True or False: Only when we move from the highway toward people will we have the ability to respond.

How many of you have ever passed a car on the side of the road not stopping to help or see if they needed help? Are you capable in helping? What loopholes do we use to keep us from getting off the highway and helping?

True or False: The reason I don’t leave the highway is because I am better.

To be honest, I had to think about this one a bit. Am I arrogant enough that I am not concerned about the needs of others? I know by nature I am more comfortable to give than I am to receive. I don’t like being dependent. Maybe that is why it is not as natural for me to be in a receiving position thus also not knowing what that feels like. If I were more in a position to need help, I might have a greater compassion for those who are in need.

There is a very interesting twist in this story of the Good Samaritan. It was a Jew who was in need. The Jewish life always revolved around the belief that God wanted the Jews to be the givers, never the receivers…be the lenders, not the borrowers. But here the Jews find themselves in a position of receiving and someone they hate comes to their rescue.

How much does arrogance or pride diminish our ability to respond to the needs of our neighbors and those we don’t know at all?