Jesus is a very practical leader.
He uses a great number of imperative verbs, teaching us how we should behave.
Imperative verbs are just like commands – do this, or say that, or go there. They are what leaders use to teach and instruct.
I will list only a few here. Let’s start with a couple familiar ones:
“What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” (Mark 10:9, NASB) This is a command that means divorce must be an absolutely last resort.
“He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” (John 8:7, NASB) Even righteous anger is for God alone, since we all have sinned at least as badly as those we accuse.
But now consider a couple less familiar ones:
“I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear my voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd.” (John 10:16, NASB)
“The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me.” (John 17:22-23, NASB)
There are many others. For example, count the imperative commands in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5 – 7) alone!
But now a question: given the direct commands of Jesus, the direct commands of God through Jesus, and the imperative commands of Jesus, is there any valid reason for no obeying them?
This is why Streamside was written. Are we one flock with one shepherd in one pen? Have we been perfected in unity? As a result, does the world know that God sent Jesus, who loves them every bit as much as God loves his son?
We have failed. But it is not too late.
Please join me in sincerely repenting for disobedience to the commands of Jesus and pray that we will turn toward each other at last.