Depends on the Translation

Posted: August 29, 2014 in Uncategorized

How many pastors does it take to screw in a light bulb? I already told you. Yes I did. Look at the title of the blog. See now you get it. Okay it was lame but on a serious note, regardless of the translation of the Bible we have, why are we so far off base when it comes to imitating Christ?

It’s not like the Bible and the Church of 2015 are just two ships passing in the night, they are not even sailing in the same ocean. So how do we navigate our way back to the shores of truth? How do we escape the waves of compromise?

Let’s look at some of the differences between the actions of Christ and the behavior of the 2014 Church. This will hopefully show us some action steps to reconcile the differences.

Jesus called us to be fishers of men. We want to be cleaners of fish.
Jesus said to go and make disciples. We sit and wait for people to come to our churches.
Jesus created disciples that were willing to die and many did. We create teens who are indifferent to God.
Jesus hung out with sinners. We avoid them at all cost.
Jesus loved his enemies. We boycott ours.
Jesus loved people, met their needs and taught them in interesting and practical ways. We tell people to say a prayer or burn in hell.
Jesus was about his Father’s business. We are about everything else but that.
Jesus spent countless hours alone in prayer and communion with his Father. We don’t have time for that.
Jesus said to hide God’s word in our hearts. We update our Facebook, Twitter, and other social media pages and watch countless hours of television.
Jesus said take up you cross and he led by example. We avoid suffering at all cost.
Jesus preached the Peter and Paul package of discipleship. We preach the feel good Jeremiah package.
Jesus commanded us to make disciples. We make churchgoers.
Jesus did not say make disciples and if you can’t make disciples, just make Christians.
Jesus said not to be ashamed of him. We are embarrassed to tell our friends and colleagues about him.
Jesus warned us not to store up treasures on earth. Our basements, attics and garages are so jammed packed with stuff that we are forced to rent storage units for the overflow.

Jesus commanded us to take care of the poor and widows and orphans. We walk by the homeless on our way out to dinner and let government programs supplement the poor.

Jesus said we should produce a crop 30, 60, 100 fold. We produce nothing.

Jesus said people will know we are his disciples by how we love each other. We are known more for what we stand against than who we stand for.

As you can see by just a few of the examples I’ve listed, we are far better imposters of Christ than imitators. How do we turn the ship around, re-chart our course, point the compass of our hearts towards Christ and reach our desired destination?

Study, Study, Then Study
Every actor studies for the part. When Will Smith played Muhammad Ali he not only under went extreme physical exercise but he trained with professional boxers. He studied videos of Ali’s fights. He learned Ali’s mannerisms and facial expressions. He probably knew as much about Ali as Ali knew about Ali.

This is the same approach we need to take when it comes to imitating Jesus Christ. But we cannot genuinely imitate someone we don’t know. We cannot act like Jesus if we don’t know how Jesus would act in a situation. Makes sense, right? The thing that turns most people off from hearing about Jesus is us and our attempt to “act” like the way we think Jesus should act or how he would treat someone, based off our lack of knowledge of Jesus himself.

I want to challenge each one who reads this blog to join me in a journey, through a series of blogs to help us better understand Jesus and how he really lived and taught. I also want to challenge you to dig into your Bible for at least 30 minutes a day with the specific purpose of studying the ministry of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Ready, Set, Study

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