17 Matthew


Bob Relyea


Matthew 17:1-27


  • Jesus selects just three disciples to go with him to the mountain: Peter, James, and John
  • He changed before their eyes, shining white like the sun.
  • Moses and Elijah joined him and they talked together.
  • Peter wanted to keep this event going and build a shrine to each of them: Jesus, Moses, and Elijah.
  • A cloud obscured them and Peter was basically told only Jesus was the one that mattered.
  • This frightened the disciples.
  • Jesus calms them, Moses and Elijah are now gone.
  • Jesus warns them not to tell anyone.
  • The disciples ask why the religious experts say the Elijah must come first.
  • Jesus says they the experts are right, but Elijah has already come and they missed him.
  • Jesus says the experts will miss him too, and they will persecute him.
  • The disciples understood that the Elijah that has come was John the Baptist.
  • A man approached Jesus with his demon possessed son, who he says the disciples could not heal.
  • Jesus is exasperated at 'this unbelieving generation", but agrees to see the child.
  • Jesus rebukes the demon and the child is healed.
  • The disciples asked Jesus why they couldn't heal the child.
  • Jesus said it was because of their lack of faith.
  • Jesus explains that a little faith can move a mountain from one place to another.
  • Jesus tells them his is going to be betrayed, executed, and then raised from the dead.
  • This troubled the disciples.
  • The temple tax collectors come to Peter and ask if Jesus pays the temple tax.
  • Peter replied that he does.
  • When Jesus sees Peter, Jesus says that because they are sons and not foreigners, they are exempt from the tax.
  • Jesus then tells Peter that they won't insist on this right of sons and sends Peter to pull the tax out of a fishes mouth.


  • When God does something amazing, sometimes we miss the real point and want to build monuments to the wrong thing.
  • God's justice is terrifying, but Jesus acts as our mediator.
  • We can easily miss what God is really trying to do.
  • That can happened when God gives us the authority but we don't have the faith to properly exercise it.
  • When God reveals his plan, and we don't really like it.
  • We don't always have to exercise the freedom we have in Christ when it hurts our witness.


Lord help us to see your agenda and not ours. Help us not to build monuments to anyone but you. Give us the faith to accomplish the task you give us, and help us to persevere even when it looks like it's a path we don't want to walk on. Finally help us to be good witnesses for you and focus on what you want to accomplish.

1 comment (Add your own)

1. Jim Asselin wrote:
Thanks Bob, you said ".....God gives us the authority but we don't have the faith to properly exercise it". I can equate this to my learning how to ride a bike. I was trained by someone who knew how to ride a bike, given the body, mind, and will to do it, given the bike so that I could do it, and given permission from my father (authority) to do it, and even been helped to practice. All I had to do was try, and trust the outcome. In my spiritual life, if I don't exercise the authority that God gives me through faith, I will actually begin not to like God's plan. There will be no testing of it, no victory in it, no growth through it, no assurance gained, no faith strengthened, no struggle overcome, no courage gained......there will be no evidence in my life. The result, no authority, and unfortunately, if we don't exercise it, we begin to doubt it. This is where I think much of the church is in America today, "who am I to speak into anyone's life?". You, I, are ambassadors of the living God. He, not I, has all the authority we can handle and more (v20).
Father, help me to use your authority correctly, align my thinking with my joy of knowing you and increase my faith into action in some way today.

Thu, September 10, 2015 @ 9:26 AM

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