Friday, January 24, 2014

Would you recognize Jesus if He were standing right in front of you?

John 5:41-44 (MSG) “I’m not interested in crowd approval. And do you know why? Because I know you and your crowds. I know that love, especially God’s love, is not on your working agenda. I came with the authority of my Father, and you either dismiss me or avoid me. If another came, acting self-important, you would welcome him with open arms. How do you expect to get anywhere with God when you spend all your time jockeying for position with each other, ranking your rivals and ignoring God?

While reading the gospel of John, I just can’t help but think about what it must have been like for the people back then…the disciples, the Pharisees, the Jews, the Samaritans, etc.  I wonder why so many people didn't accept Christ for who he really was during his earthly ministry….especially the Pharisees. They were blind to the truth – even when HE was standing right in front of them. I’d expect the religious leaders of the day to know exactly what the scriptures foretold regarding the coming Messiah….wouldn’t you? But their quest to keep the law perfectly filled them with so much pride that their hearts were hard and their eyes were closed. Jealous of His authority and following, these men clearly refused to see Jesus as a life-changer and instead saw him as a “law” breaker.  

Think about it…you've followed the law handed down through the generations. You understand from scripture that there is a Messiah coming, but you haven’t heard or seen anything that would point to someone…until now. Some man from Galilee is walking around healing people and talking about living water and eternal life. What begins to run through your head? Is this guy for real? Could it be Him? Are you even the least bit curious? Do you see the signs and miracles taking place around you? This man is crossing all types of boundaries (social, political, racial, etc.) to heal and help others?

After hearing of and perhaps witnessing the signs and miracles Jesus performed, I'd like t think I'd be more like the woman at the well (the story is told in John 4:1-26) and less like the prideful Pharisees.

What if Jesus walked this earth today? Would you recognize Him and follow him without hesitation? Or would you look for signs and wonders, and ask 20 questions just to confirm the man standing in front of you is Christ?

I'd like to think I'd recognize Him...because I have studied and memorized His word. Getting our heads into the scripture is the only way we are ever going to know who Christ is and HIS Plan A for our lives.

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