January 12, 2007 - It's All about Jesus

Genesis1315

Ladies
It’s all about Jesus
By John Fischer

“When I came to you … I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.” (1 Corinthians 2:1-2 NIV)

The Gospel message has gotten a little foggy these days with all the attention being paid to politics, family values, and culture wars, and a lot of folks have lost track of the fact that it’s all about Jesus. Ask the man on the street what a Christian is today and you’re likely to ask a long time until you hear anything about Jesus or the cross. Our message, from beginning to end, is Jesus – who he was, what he said, and what he did.

The last recognized revival in this country was a movement primarily among baby boom youth in the early 1970s that was quickly dubbed the Jesus movement. It got that name because everything was focused around Jesus. When you think about it, Jesus was the ultimate hippie – he wore long hair, sandals, and he was against the establishment – and a generation of ideological kids embraced Christ, even while they rejected religion and the institutional church. Jesus was the central figure in all of this. What is now called Christian music was originally called Jesus music. Christians were called Jesus freaks. Now I’m not suggesting we all go back to tie-dyed T-shirts, bell-bottom pants, and Jesus rock, but I am suggesting we could learn something from this emphasis that transcended politics and religion.

Our message is all about a person, and our mission is to share that person with the world. God made us to belong to him; we wandered away; Jesus is the way back. A whole generation of young people found that out 30 years ago and nothing’s really changed about the heart of the message. It’s a personal message. It’s non-threatening. It’s all about a meaningful relationship with God that comes to someone by way of a meaningful relationship with them. There’s not a lot of baggage here. Our main concern is to introduce ourselves to people and in doing so, to introduce them to Jesus, because, as far as we’re concerned, that’s who it’s all about.

Jesus came to save us, unite us, and teach us to love one another. We’ve added a lot of other stuff to this and I’m not so sure it’s helping us do what we’re supposed to be doing. If it makes you more loving to your neighbor, then it’s probably a good thing. If it makes you your neighbor’s enemy, then it’s probably not. If it’s all about Jesus, then it’s definitely “right on!”

The above content is provided in its entirety from purposedrivenlife.com and used with the full permission of the website. Additional archives of the Purpose Driven Life devotionals can be found in their archive.
 
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Durruck

Pirate!
a hesitation... are you looking for more discourse? Not sure that you agree with the content? Wondering if anyone actually reads down far enough to see a second post?

Seeing that I'm not old enough to remember the mid-70s (okay, I barely remember what happened in the mid-80s), several of the cultural references don't make sense to me.

I can understand the rejection of organized religion while still liking the idea of what Jesus brought to us...when I first came back to Jesus, I wasn't interested in a church or an establishment to tell me what to think. But I grew to realize that not only could I get out of this life alone (ie, I needed Jesus), but I needed there rest of his family to help guide me along the way. However, when it comes to the 70s and how the people went about their lives... at no point did Jesus sit down and roll a joint. The disciples didn't sit around getting high and eating Cheetos. If I understand my history correctly, wasn't the tie-dye, etc, more of a "party scene" or "hippie acid rocker" thing... at least in the beginning? How would that play into following Jesus?

I'm also curious - what would be wrong with going back to "Jesus Rock"? Compared to many of the poor role models that modern music stars have become, shouldn't we want to make sure that we're keeping good influences in our lives (and our children's lives, for those of us with kids)? It's possible to rock, jam, jive, beat-box, rap, or twang your love for Jesus. It's not the style of music, it's the content that makes music Christian.

Our main concern is to introduce ourselves to people and in doing so, to introduce them to Jesus, because, as far as we’re concerned, that’s who it’s all about.

I see the point, and understand it fully. But doesn't the point of "love the sinner, hate the sin" also apply here too? Through a lot of high school, some of my best friends were druggies. I never once picked up any of it, and they didn't do it around me in respect of me. I talked about going to church, how much fun I was having, etc... does that not accomplish the same thing? I don't need to go to the bar and get drunk to make friends that need Jesus. But I know that I can go sit at the bar and drink my Coke while I talk to them about Jesus' love.

On my missions trip last summer, I went into the slums and talked with people about God. I didn't stand up on the corner and scream through a bullhorn, but got right down on their level. I brought them food and drink, and took the time to listen to their stories. Some people I saw several times and got to plant seeds. Other people I saw only once. But I still gave them what they needed to get started.

Anyway, enough rambling for me. It's late and I'm tired. Can you tell? :)
 

Tek7

CGA President, Tribe of Judah Founder & President
Staff member
If that extended ellipses was to see if anyone is reading these devotionals, then yes, I am. :) I believe several others are as well, though I could probably stand to send out an e-mail to CGA affiliate leaders and ask them to promote this forum.

If your ellipses were intended to convey a raised eyebrow and a baffled "Whaa?" then I can understand that, as well. As an amateur historian, I see little "fruit" from the anti-establishment movement of the 60s and 70s. As individuals, we can learn from our mistakes. As a race, humanity can and does not learn. We make the same mistakes our ancestors did, just with better technology and more advanced weapons.

I'm not particularly familiar with the "Jesus movement," as it was before my time, but I haven't always heard of it referred to in a positive context. If our faith is based on feelings, then it won't have a significant impact.

And as for the Gospel message being non-threatening, I can't imagine what the author is basing that claim on. The notion that a person is salvation is solely through grace runs contrary to American culture, not to mention human instinct. We believe there is a price to be paid for everything, and something as wonderful as salvation must cost a great deal. What we forget is that any gift is free only to the recipient, not to the giver.

And don't forget that Jesus asked his disciples to "eat his body and drink his blood." Shortly after that, many people (who were likely tagging along because they liked the "warm fuzzies" they felt when Jesus performed a miracle, and who didn't trust Jesus enough to know that he had a good explanation for such a strange command) up and left. The trend of people abandoning Christ because following him is sometimes difficult has continued ever since.

And even after we accept the free gift of salvation, we can't just "feel" our way into a life of meaningful service to Christ. We have to discipline ourselves to read the Word, hold ourselves accountable to other Christians, and work through our own issues in an effort to be more like Christ.

Pardon the rant; I believe in a simple Gospel, but I don't want anyone to get the idea that Christianity is all "kittens and sunshine." It is difficult, but it is worth it. We, as Christians, are called to do more than encourage other Christians and praise the Lord through song. We are called to serve, even when we don't feel like it.

Still, I agree wholeheartedly with the idea that Jesus and his sacrifice is central to the Gospel message. Perhaps it's more a matter of semantics than focus.
 

Genesis1315

Ladies
actually, it was a bump, but I just did not want to type bump. Looks like it served the purpose though (no pun intended LOL) I was trying a new way to post which didn't work out to well and since I wanted this one in sequential order, I bumped it.

Glad to see that people are reading these.

Durruck, I think you are saying the same thing as the devotion, just in words that are meaningful to you

Gen
 

Durruck

Pirate!
I re-read the original posting (er, at least the parts that were fuzzy to me the first time I read it) and still found that the bubbly language left me confused. I need simple directions and examples. Perhaps that there are just cultural references that I don't understand that are hanging me up, and that's why my personal experience is saying the same thing that the original author did.

I don't know what my deal is, but I need it simple. I used to go to a church where the pastor stood in the pulpit and spoke in flowery metaphors, big bubbly words, and a dreamy voice. Maybe that's what some people needed, but I found myself quickly leaving that church because I need instructions that I can follow, you know?

And as for bumping and getting other areas looking here, I'll post a link in the TF forums. I think we can at least get Neirai in here to look around... and probalby a few others. I know that several of our members said they were looking for a place to learn. :)
 
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