I Came to Set the Earth on Fire

Sometimes when you read Jesus’ teachings, you feel like you’ve gotten on a horse that’s much too big and much too fast for your little hands and feet, and yet off it goes, galloping away with you. This may be the case with today’s passage. There is not anything gentle about it, but it is so wonderful. 

There are two things we learn about Jesus from this text. First of all, we learn the divisiveness of Jesus. His teaching was self-centered in a sense because he came as the one true God in the flesh. Secondly, we learn about the agony of Jesus caused by his self-denying love. You don’t know the real Jesus unless you know about both of these aspects of Jesus’ ministry. 

This sermon was preached by Dr. Timothy Keller at Redeemer Presbyterian Church on January 17, 1993. Series: Hard Sayings of Jesus 1993. Scripture: Luke 12:49-53.

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