TITLE: The Real Jesus
DATE: November 26, 2018
TEXT: Matthew 28:18-20 (ESV) -18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[a] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.
It wasn’t so very long ago I was talking with a fellow about his non-involvement with Church.
When I asked him, “Why?”, his answer was a pretty simple one: He said, “Church is boring.” I had to concede… I, too have been at some churches where the best I could do was stay awake. Even so, I suggested his comment, “Church is boring” might be a gross generalization. “After all”, I replied, “You haven’t been to every church, you can only speak about the ones you attended.
To his credit, the fellow did back up… a little bit. But even then he maintained most Christian worship was a boring Christian preacher telling his boring congregation to be even more boring.
In truth, today there is a widespread opinion that Jesus was boring, that is the ancient world’s version of meek and mild Mr. Rogers (who was a very nice and very mellow guy.)?
To be totally fair, the folks back then who counted themselves as enemies of the Christ, that is the high priestly family, along with the Jewish Supreme Court, the Sanhedrin, never used those adjectives to describe the Redeemer. On the contrary, the very people who most hated, vilified, persecuted and were most responsible for crucifying the Christ, thought Him too extreme to be safe; too dangerous to let live.
Shortly after Jesus had performed the most significant miracle of His career, that is the raising of Lazarus from the dead, these leaders went into a panic. The Gospel of John (11:47-48) reports how “the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered the council and said, “What are we to do? For this man performs many signs. If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.”
No, Jesus was not boring to them. On the contrary, He was so dangerous they felt that He could, if left unchecked, destroy their way of life and their nation.
So, was Jesus boring and irrelevant to them?
Not hardly. It has been left to later generations to demote the Savior and wrap Him in robes of dingy dullness. When He walked among us, Jesus stilled storms and healed lepers. He resurrected and restored a son to his mother and a daughter to her father. He fed thousands with a few loaves and fish, and ripped demons from their victims and unceremoniously sent them back to hell. Not once but twice He forcefully cleansed the temple of those who were desecrating it. He threw out man-made laws, and restored the love of the Lord to His people.
Amazing, the world has still made Jesus bland and boring.
It’s a position where he will not stay. Jesus is not going to fit the world’s mold.” And it’s true. In ancient times, He was the Savior who gave a thrashing to Satan; but not to the Romans as everybody expected.
Today, Jesus, refuses to be confined and contained by the boring “meek and mild” mold into which the world tries to force Him. Remember, what the Apostle’s Creed says about Him. The fellow Whose glorious resurrection showed He had the power and the authority to defeat death is also the Fellow Who is going to come back to Judge the living and the dead.
In these next weeks of Advent we shall take a serious look at the many facets of God’s Son, our Savior, Who has come to seek and save the lost.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord I give thanks that You, and not me, are in control. For the Savior’s sacrifice; for His resisting of temptation and for His defeat of death, I am most grateful. May I help the world to see Jesus as loving Savior and fair-minded, forceful Judge. This I ask in His Name. Amen.