Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.
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by George C. Clark and John David Clark, Sr.
“There was no room for them in the inn.”
When Jesus came into this world, there was little room for him – just a manger. The inn was full. Yes, our Lord was born in a stable and cradled in a manger, for there was no room for him in the inn. Not long after his birth, Herod the king had all the children in and near Bethlehem who were two years old or under put to death, trying to kill the baby Jesus. There was no room for Mary’s holy child in the land. Thankfully, God out-witted the wicked king, for He forewarned Joseph in a dream, and Joseph had taken the tiny stranger and his mother to Egypt.
After the death of Herod, Joseph and Mary returned with the little lad from Egypt, but after being warned again in a dream, they did not go to Bethlehem, but to the despised city of Nazereth, a city that was so hated that even Nathanael, when told by Philip that they had found Jesus, asked the question, “Can anything good come out of Nazereth?” It was there that Jesus was hidden, safe from the machinations of evil men.
Once, a certain man came to Jesus desiring to follow him, and Jesus told him the price of discipleship: “The foxes have dens, and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of man has nowhere to lay his head.” The officials frowned upon him; the social elites made no room for him; and the religious leaders put him out of the synagogues. In other words, “He came to his own things, and his own people did not receive him.” Think of it. Our blessed Savior had no place on earth – the earth that he had created – to lay his tired and weary head. On one occasion after Jesus had finished a day’s teaching in the temple, “every one went home”, but “Jesus went to the Mount of Olives” to pray – God’s homeless Son.
He was rocked in a borrowed cradle; he slept in a borrowed home in Bethany; he paid his tax with a borrowed piece of money from the mouth of a fish; and in the end, he was buried in a borrowed grave. But, thank God, he “became poor so that you, through his poverty, might become rich.” Moreover, he knew that every beast of the forest belonged to his Father, and the cattle upon a thousand hills (Ps. 50:10). The whole world was his Father’s (Ps. 50:12), and he rested in his Father’s love. And he also knew that he was worshipped and adored by myriads of angels.
How strange it is that now, as it was then, millions don’t want the Savior in their homes! Why? Because they know he will not endorse their sinful pleasures. Dishonest business men make no room for him. He is barred from the doors of many churches. Evil hearts everywhere shut him out, and social clubs exclude him. What a day it is going to be when those who have rejected the Son of God realize that the great Judge of all the earth will make no room for them in the kingdom of God. On the other hand, those who made room in their hearts for Jesus here, in this life, will be given a place with him on the new earth that he has promised. As Peter said, “We, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells” (2Pet. 3:13).
Just as there was no room for Jesus when he came into this world of sin and sorrow, so there is no room for those who are like him. They, too, are “strangers and pilgrims”. The apostle Paul emphasized this when he said, “We have become like the scum of the world, the offscouring of all things” (1Cor. 4:13). The righteous beggar, Lazarus, received “evil things” while on earth; but afterward “he was comforted”. On the other hand, the wicked rich man received “good things” on earth, but after he died, he was tormented. Some believers have attempted to promote, popularize, and socialize “the way of holiness”, but true holiness will never be popular in “this present evil world”. And those who try to make it so find themselves backslidden and stripped of their anointing from God. Remember, “the friendship of the world is enmity against God. Therefore, whoever would be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (Jas. 4:4).
Paul said that “we brought nothing into the world, and it is obvious that we can take nothing out. So, having sustenance and clothing, let us be content with them. Those who want to be rich fall into temptation, and a snare, and many foolish and harmful lusts which plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all evils, for which some, craving after, have been led away from the faith and have pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of the faith; lay hold on eternal life, for which you were called and have made the good confession before many witnesses” (1Tim. 6:7–12). Moses beautifully exemplified this spirit of holiness when he “refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with God’s people than to enjoy the pleasure of sin for a season, esteeming the reproach of Christ to be greater riches than the treasures of Egypt, for he looked ahead to the reward” (Heb. 11:24–26).
Child of God, do not be surprised if the world hates you and excludes you. You can be satisfied with the “lowest room” here in this life, if you remember that the world treated Jesus this same way. “If the world hate you,” Jesus said, “know that it hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would befriend its own; but since you’re not of the world – on the contrary, I’ve chosen you out of the world – the world does hate you” (Jn. 15:18–19).
Praise God, that we belong to Christ and not to the world! We “rejoice in our hope”, Paul said, because “the sufferings of this present time are unworthy of comparison with the glory that shall be revealed to us” (Rom. 5:2; 8:18). Yes, dear Friend, look up and rejoice, for although we have no place in this world, the Lord has made room for us.