What would you think, if in passing, you were to ask me, “What are you up to now-a-days?”, and I were to answer, saying…
“Oh, just testifying to the Truth,
“bringing a sword to the world and
“turning sons against their fathers, daughters against their mothers.
“I am working at fulfilling the Hebrew and Judaic law and that of their prophets, and
“calling sinners to righteousness.
“I am bringing fire upon the earth and to creating a lot of division.
“I guess you might say I have been busy working at saving the world”.
It is interesting that Jesus commanded His disciples (Christians) to do the works that He has done and even greater works than these. We are to continue in His mission, using His methods and His ways. (John 14:12, Matthew 10:1)
It can be a bit confusing, but He promised us that He will be with us, in His authority, giving us direction and even giving us the words we should use. (Matthew 28:16-19, Luke 21:15, Luke 12:12)
WHY DID JESUS COME INTO THE WORLD?
“For this purpose I have been born, and for this I have come into the world: to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to My voice.” This, too, is our calling!
TO TESTIFY TO THE TRUTH
John 18:37 “Therefore Pilate said to Him, “So You are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say correctly that I am a king. For this purpose I have been born, and for this I have come into the world: to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to My voice.” This, too, is our calling!
TO BRING A SWORD
34 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I came to TURN A MAN AGAINST HIS FATHER, AND A DAUGHTER AGAINST HER MOTHER, AND A DAUGHTER-IN-LAW AGAINST HER MOTHER-IN-LAW; 36 and A PERSON’S ENEMIES WILL BE THE MEMBERS OF HIS HOUSEHOLD.” This, too, is our calling!
TO FULFILL THE LAW
17 “Do not presume that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill the Law and the Prophets.” This, too, is our calling!
TO CALL SINNERS
17 “And hearing this, Jesus *said to them, “It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick; I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” This, too, is our calling!
TO SAVE THE WORLD
47 If anyone hears My teachings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world.” In a very real sense, This, too, is our calling, by lifting the Name of Jesus, telling others and leading them to Him
TO CAST FIRE & BRING DIVISION UPON THE EARTH
49 “I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and how I wish it were already kindled! 50 But I have a baptism to undergo, and how distressed I am until it is accomplished! 51 Do you think that I came to provide peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather to create division; This, too, is our calling!
WHAT HE REALLY MEANT, WAS…
John 14:12 “Truly, truly I say to you, the one who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I am going to the Father. 13 And whatever you ask in My name, this I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.”
I have heard so many preachers and bible teachers try to justify or explain away these Words of Jesus because they just cannot fathom the gentle and sweet ‘dashboard Jesus’ saying such things as we find in the verses cited. These same confused preachers really get tied in a knot over John 14:12. They will begin their commenary of teaching it with, “what this really means is…”.
Jesus said what He meant and meant exactly what He said. We need to get over it and get on with it.
The year is now 2021. A recent president of the United States has declared that America is no longer a Christian nation. Postmodernism is a term used to describe this new paradigm. Our churches are practicing a new version of the Gospel of Jesus Christ often described by a “3-line motto” which can be seen across the spectrum of churches in America: “Gather, Grow, Give” or “Love each other, Enjoy Jesus, Share Him with others”, etc.
These mottoes are an attempt to describe the church and its ministry to the watching world or to the ‘church shopping Christian’. But, if these mottoes or labels are supposed to describe Jesus and His Church, they fail.
Jesus’ purpose in coming to earth was not to teach a social gospel, create a ‘family life center’, to make you a better you or to shake up the existing religious institutions. Jesus was on a specific Mission from God the Father as is reflected in the foregoing Bible verses. Jesus confirms that He is on His Father’s mission,, in John 5:19, “Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in the same way.”
With this in mind, can you, in your most vivid imagination, see Jesus announcing “mother’s morning out”, “cookies and campfires for kids”, “fishing with fathers and sons”, “financial workshops”, etc? You might say “what’s wrong with that?”. I would respond that there is nothing wrong with these activities, but, they have nothing to do with Jesus Mission and our calling to that mission.
THE BOTTOM LINE
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life. 17For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but so that the world might be saved through Him.”
Everything Jesus has done is IN THE CONTEXT of what God the Father said. But, the world, both Christian and secular worlds seem to have decided that Jesus is exclusively a gentle little lamb. But, if you make a closer inspection and take an honest look a what the Bible says, you see a different picture: Jesus is both the Lion of Judah and the Sacrificial Lamb. He is both careful with His words and brutally honest. He is both gentle and forceful.
THE HOUSE IS ON FIRE
If you came home and saw your house on fire, knowing your family was inside, what would you do? Would you politely suggest everyone might want to step outside or would you take immediate action, sparing no effort or words to alert everyone to the immediate danger and move them to safety at any cost?
Likewise, God’s creation is perishing because of lack of knowledge of Him and Jesus is doing what is necessary to save the world. We may not always understand His words, His methods or His ways, but it would be prudent to observe, listen, think and obey Him.
The world has long held a misconception, a distorted view of God. We have made Him into a “kinder and gentler” image which we would prefer.
Jesus is setting that record straight in order to save the world from itself.
SO, WHAT ABOUT JESUS BEHAVIORS?
Most who have read this far, should have been shocked by the opening paragraphs of this article, but, that is EXACTLY what Jesus said and did. These are EXACTLY the behaviors of our Savior. Jesus’ words and behaviors are the perfect balance of love for this world coupled with rebuke, correction, and training in righteousness This, too, is our calling!
His words and actions must be kept in context, lest we misuse them, ourselves. Read John 3:16 again, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life. 17For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but so that the world might be saved through Him.”
Jesus’ words and behaviors are the perfect balance of love for this world coupled with rebuke, correction, and training in righteousness. This, too, is our calling!
WE ARE IN AN END DAYS WAR
We are locked in the eternal Spiritual struggle. Millions upon millions of souls are at risk. We cannot fight and win this battle using our own means, methods and ways. It is urgent that we return to Jesus, to His methods and His ways. It is urgent that we have the mind of Christ at all times and in all matters. Anything less ends in defeat.
If you dispute or dismiss the idea that God’s ways may seem strict harsh or unfair, remember, God sacrificed His own Son for you. That seems strict, harsh and unfair.
Jesus willingly gave up His own life for this Cause which also seems strict, harsh and unfair.
And, if God did not spare the natural branches (His own Jewish / Hebrew people), how will you stay secure in this Cause without following Him? Does this also seems strict, harsh and unfair? Perhaps. But it is the only way!
WE MUST GET THIS RIGHT
Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. We cannot fight this war with conventional earthly method, means or way. WE MUST GET THIS RIGHT in our minds and do this in real-time!
This is the only way, for it is written. This will shake the very foundations of your life, your church and the world!
TESTIFY TO THE TRUTH
BRING A SWORD
FULFILL THE LAW
CALL SINNERS TO REPENTANCE
CAST FIRE & BRING DIVISION UPON THE EARTH
WHAT HE REALLY MEANT, WAS (John 14:12 ) “Truly, truly I say to you, the one who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I am going to the Father. And whatever you ask in My name, this I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.”
From one Christian to another: Time is short. His return is near. It is time each of us, individually and collectively, to really pick up our cross and really follow Him. Now! Today!
Your Brother and Friend,
(Contact me and let’s get to work, together!)
PS: Just in case you were wondering. The Bible is clear: I am not talking about us saving ourselves. No one can earn their way into the Kingdom of Heaven by what they say or do apart from Jesus. Our salvation and place in heaven is secured solely by God’s Grace and through our faith in Jesus.
How we act, that is, our words and our behaviors are a reflection of our attitude. And our attitude, our mind set, must be the same as Christ. Philippians 2:5 exhorts us to “Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,
Your attitudes and resultant words and behaviors are what will free you or will limit you.
You will overcome because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of your testimony, and that you do not love this life even when faced with death.