Have you ever saw someone that you’ve known most of your life in a different circumstance and not recognized them? We get to the root of who we are when we encounter these unexpected meetings. We tend to think of ourselves in the best of terms, but sometimes the mask is pulled back and we can see how sinful we can be.
What would we do with Jesus if we didn’t know who He was? I found myself not liking the answer I had to give.
Recently, I encountered the story of Jesus, His life, His sacrificial death and His resurrection but in a different setting and I never recognized Him in the story until it was too late. I was right along with the characters in thinking He was blasphemous for His teachings. I never recognized His servant heart, instead I saw it as a traitor’s heart. It was not until he had been betrayed and was being killed, did I finally understand who was being put to death – and I wept.
I realized, beyond what I may want to think about myself, that if I had been in the crowds the day of Jesus’ trial and crucifixion, I would not have realized it was Him until too late. If I had not been screaming “Crucify Him,” I would be one who did not care enough about Him to do anything – until it was too late.
Sure, as Christians we all say that we are responsible for Jesus’ death, but at least for me, in the back of my mind I held out the hope that I would be different. I would believe and have faith even when all others doubted and fell be the wayside. I would be the one who would stay at His feet ignoring the possibility of my own death. But I wouldn’t be the one; I would be part of the fickle crowd or the fleeing disciples.
This honest and open evaluation of myself caused me to consider what I do in my life, what I value and what I think about myself. I love to come here and discuss different topics and debate the issues of the day, but my first passion must be to present what Christ was done – as Paul said, to preach Christ and Him crucified.
I enjoy debating (sometimes arguing ;) ) with Sam, Louis and Stewart. They present reasoned arguments and I hope I present reasoned responses. But as much as I may want to convince them that social conservatism is right, I want so much more for them to understand the love that God offers to them and to everyone.
Again to paraphrase Paul, to be right about the war, gay marriage, taxes and every other issue of the day, but to be without God’s love is to live an unfulfilled life, to miss out on so much that is out there.
There are numerous issues within Christianity to debate (gay marriage, problem of pain, end times, etc.), but apart from all those stands Jesus – the unfiltered, unadulterated truth of Him. He offers love, peace, forgiveness, hope, joy and abundant life, and all He asks for in return is all of the junk and trash that we have accumulated over the course of our lifetime.
As I have saw, when you are able to remove yourself from all of the cultural surroundings you can learn a lot about yourself and others. For those of you who do not know Jesus, please take an opportunity to investigate Him, not all the controversy surrounding this church or that, this person or that person, but Jesus Himself. See what He did, what He claimed and evaluate both His and your life honestly. Don’t realize after it is too late who Jesus is and how you should respond to Him.
This has nothing to do with stances of gay marriage, the war or other social issues. You can be a homosexual, peace activists liberal and still be my brother in Christ. I believe that my opinions on those issues are right, but I KNOW that my belief in Jesus is well-founded. He has proved Himself to me countless times, give Him the chance to prove Himself to you.