It seems evident from the gospel accounts that Jesus enjoyed going to the homes of certain people. The home of Zacchaeus, for example, is a place where Jesus invited Himself as He told Zacchaeus “today I must stay at your house” (Luke 19:5). Why Zacchaeus’ house? Because it was the house of a man who was diligently seeking Him. We find Jesus, in Matthew 9:10, at the house of Matthew, where He had occasion to teach many individuals who did not have a relationship with God. Consider how Jesus enjoyed coming to the house of Mary and Martha (Luke 10:38), but why? Jesus tells us that the “one thing that is needed” happened in that house: Mary “sat at Jesus feet and heard His word.” This, friends, is the one thing needed in every house. In John 12:2, we find Jesus in a house with Mary and Martha once again. Here we see that this is a house that not only heard Jesus, but served Jesus. In the account we are shown how Mary took very costly oil and “anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair.”
The examples of these homes demonstrate where Jesus chooses to abide. He abides in the homes of those who diligently seek Him, and want Him desperately in their home. He is found in the homes of those who understand that “one thing is needed:” to open up the scriptures and sit at Jesus feet each and every day. He is found abiding in the homes of those who give up whatever things are of value on this earth in order to serve Him.
Paul uses an interesting word in Ephesians 3:17, when he writes “that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.” The Greek word for “dwell” is katoikeō, and Strong defines the word this way: “to house permanently, that is, reside.” Have we given Jesus a permanent and prominent residence in our hearts and homes? Do we sit at His feet day by day gleaning from His instruction? Or have we even invited Him into our house? Have we allowed Him even a breath to speak to our families?
Jesus told His disciples, in Matthew 10:12-14, “And when you go into a household, greet it. If the household is worthy, let your peace come upon it. But if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet.” Consider how the disciples were told to only spend their time in homes that were worthy, that is, homes that would receive them and hear their teachings of Jesus. I fear that many Christians have not built worthy homes. Remember when Jesus preached on building a house? In Matthew 7:24, Jesus said “whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.” Allow me to speak bluntly for a moment. Some Christians are failing to be wise. Jesus’ words do not abide in their houses, nor have they structured their lives by them. The Christian family is far too spent on sports, social networking, entertainment, politics, friends, careers, and countless other things, that no one is paying any attention to the “one thing that is needed.” Where does Jesus fit into the schedule? Where is the spiritual instruction? How much time is spent on that? On Sundays they say. I believe then that you who are building your house on the sand. The structure of your life will not hold up to the force of Satan. You will fall, your spouse will be crushed under your house, and as for your children, you will have committed spiritual abortion to their precious souls. Truly, if Jesus does not abide in your house, your house, although seemingly lively, is a morbid place.
This is something that I do not understand. Jesus said, in John 14:2-3, “In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” I understand the promise of Jesus, that He prepares room in God’s house for His faithful. But what I do not understand is how we have expectations that Jesus has prepared a place for us in His house, when we have not prepared a place for Him in our house! How could we have any hope of abiding in God’s house eternally when we do not allow Him to abide in our house?
If we do not give Jesus His rightful place in our house, who will take His place? In Ephesians 4:27 the Christian is commanded not to “give place to the devil.” Have we violated this command? Are we living under the same roof of the murderer of our families? The words of Jesus, in Matthew 10:25, are very clear and sensible. “It is enough for a disciple that he be like his teacher, and a servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more will they call those of his household!” A disciple is like his teacher and a servant is like his master. If our teacher and master is Christ, then we will be like Him. However, if no one can even tell that we are like Christ, then logically, He really isn’t our master. Further, if that which takes place in our homes is just that which takes place in every home of this world, we will know who our master is, we will know that it is Satan who we’ve invited to abide in our house.
So then friends, I ask again, would Jesus enjoy living in your house?