Thursday, December 15, 2011

Forgiveness Formula - “C” students vs. “A” students

Today's guest post is by CJ Hitz, co-author of the bestselling book Forgiveness Formula: Finding Lasting Freedom in Christ.

“C” students vs. “A” students
(Matthew 4:18-22)

Up until the second quarter of my 8th grade year, I garnered my fair share of “Cs” in school.  My grade point average went from 2.7 the first quarter to 3.63 the second quarter.  Why the sudden improvement?  My mom motivated me more than she ever could have imagined by telling me that college basketball scouts looked at the grades of players all the way back to the middle school years.  This wasn’t completely accurate information but it worked.  Though I still had a “C” from time to time, they came fewer and further between.  Back in those days, I ate, drank and slept basketball and my dream was to play in college and eventually the NBA.  My grades weren’t going to stand in the way of that dream.

It was similar for teens back when Jesus was alive. Jewish boys & girls would often attend school until age 10 where they would literally memorize the Torah which is the first five books of the Old Testament.  From this point only the best and brightest boys would go to the next level where they would study the rest of the Old Testament Scriptures until age 13 or 14.  And finally, only the cream of the crop would be chosen to “follow” the local rabbi. This elite group of disciples would go where he went and eat what he ate—modeling their lives after the rabbi. Those who didn’t make the previous cuts would pick up the trade of their mother & father like carpentry, sheep-herding, or fishing.

Guys like Simon, Andrew, James, and John hadn’t made the cut. So instead of following the local rabbi, they were down by the docks, working the family business.  It’s interesting that Jesus went after men the local rabbi had rejected. Instead of targeting the cream of the crop straight “A” students, Jesus offered His invitation, “Follow Me,” to former “C” students.  They would become followers of the ultimate Rabbi.

Can you imagine schools like Harvard or Yale going after “C” students?  Once again, this sort of ‘math’ wouldn’t fly in today’s competitive, dog-eat-dog society. 

No wonder Matthew 4:20 says these guys ‘left their nets at once and followed Him.’  They were being given an opportunity they thought was lost.  To follow a rabbi in Jewish society was the greatest of honors. 

The qualifications for Jesus’ honor society are different…boy am I grateful!

CJ Hitz is the co-author of Forgiveness Formula: Finding Lasting Freedom in Christ, along with his wife Shelley.  Visit their book website to check out the full virtual book tour schedule and special gifts with purchase at:


  1. Thanks so much Saundra! Really appreciate all your support in helping us launch our book.

    Lord bless,

  2. Sounds like a great book! New follower from MBC, have a happy New Year! You can find me at
    Stop by when you get the chance :)

  3. 1 little issue with his history. The deciples called Christ "Rabbi" because this translates to "teacher." Christ was not a Rabbi of the Synogoge like the ones he mentions earlier.

    However, Christ was trying to seperate himself for the teachings of that time because they had become so currupted. (We see this throughout the new testiment including the point where Christ destroies the temple calling it a "den of theives.) Christ took those who he knew were strong and just needed healing. He gave them something to look forward to and a way to serve in what they believed in. (This I am in total agreement with the author.)

    This may be long, but the author is correct. God can take "C" humans and turn them into "A+" followers. We just need to let go of the nets holding us back.

  4. wow! interesting things to think about! I am your new follower from MBC..pls follow back if you can!

  5. That is true, though I never thought about it like that before. Thanks for bringing that perspective to light.

    New Networked Blogs follower.


  6. Great article ... kudos to your guest writer.
    Also, I am a new follower from MBC. Hope you will visit me at The Blessed Couponer and follow back, if you wish. Thanks!