Who is your teacher?

Luk 6:39-49  He also told them a parable: “Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? (40)  A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher. (41)  Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? (42)  How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye. (43)  “For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit, (44)  for each tree is known by its own fruit. For figs are not gathered from thornbushes, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush. (45)  The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. (46)  “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? (47)  Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: (48)  he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. (49)  But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.”

In Luke 6:39-49, Jesus explains what it means for him to be our teacher as well as what it means for us to be his disciple. He does this by first contrasting himself with blind guides who lead other blind men into pits. In so doing, Jesus provides us with a good, widely applicable definition of a teacher, “One who gives direction to the lives of others.” He then says this of disciples, “A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher. (6:40)” From this passage we can discern Jesus’ definition of a disciple or a student, “somebody who is with another and becoming like them.” A distinction that Jesus makes elsewhere when talking about “the world,” “the leaven of the Pharisees,” and the example of the “leaders of the Gentiles” is this: explicit vs implicit teachers. An explicit teacher is somebody to whom we intentionally look for guidance in order to become like them. An implicit teacher is somebody from whom we unconsciously receive direction and to whom we unconsciously conform.

With this distinction in mind, it is important for us to ask three questions:
Who/what are our implicit teachers (think friends, entertainment, etc)?

Who/what are my explicit teachers (think authors, actual teachers, mentors, great people you’ve chosen to emulate)?

What direction will they lead me and what kind of person will I become with teachers like these?
Now, with these questions in mind, how does Jesus present himself to us? In Luke 6:39-49, Jesus presents himself as a teacher who can fill your heart with good things that come out of your actions. Not only so, he presents himself a Lord (which most certainly means “Master” quite probably is a circumlocution for God). Finally, he presents himself as providing teachings which are the foundation for an invincible quality of life which can withstand all the storms one might experience in the world. This leads us to one final question.
Is Jesus your teacher?

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