THE DANGER OF SITTING IN CHURCH: A Lesson From Korazin, Israel
Is it dangerous to go to church, year after year? The Bible says it can be–especially if we just sit and listen–and do not truly surrender to Jesus as Lord.
The ancient Jewish village of Korazin is mentioned in chapter 11 of Matthew’s Gospel, but not in a positive light. Listen to Jesus’s harsh words about this small conservative, traditional village,
“Then Jesus began to denounce the towns in which most of His miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. ‘Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes…But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.’”
Why such harsh language by Jesus?
Becky and I have been to Korazin several times. It sits near the Sea of Galilee, close to Capernaum and Bethsaida. These three Jewish villages formed the Jewish triangle in the days of Jesus. These are small villages (maybe 20-30 acres) with no hippodromes, no libraries, no theatres, or marble walk ways. Just small villages made out of basalt rock. Just simple people—religious people! Yet, Jesus had extremely harsh words about their eternal destiny.
The reason for Jesus’ harsh words has to do with this principle: those with the most access to Truth will be held most accountable. Korazin had great access to Truth itself in the person of Jesus. He walked there, taught there and performed miracles there. But the people rejected Him–thus His strong words of judgment. And they are strong: “More bearable for Sodom, than Korazin on judgment day!” Wow!
The lesson is clear: America is a modern day Korazin. We’ve been saturated with the gospel, but have rejected our Messiah for the most part. How great will be our judgment and accountability. This small village is a powerful, haunting reminder of those who should know better. May we be true and sincere worshippers of the living Jesus. As Paul said, “We are not following cleverly devised fables.”
by Jay Childs, Senior Pastor
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