Are Christians allowing themselves to be led by sheep instead of being led by The Lion of Judah?
Someplace along the way, over the last two thousand years, it seems that many of the people calling themselves Christians, have come to assume that Jesus was either some kind of a ‘progressive left-wing ideologue’ or a pacifist and have modeled their lives as such. Let’s be crystal clear: Both assumptions are wrong. Dead wrong! (If you are thinking, “I don’t believe either one of those attributes about Jesus”, then, please take this little test, just to make certain:
|The Bible CONTAINS the Word of God. We can subjectively pick and choose what parts of the Bible are true. YES__ NO__|
|Jesus Christ was a GOOD MAN, probably the BEST MAN that has ever lived, but He was not necessarily God. YES__ NO__|
|The birth of Jesus Christ was NATURAL and not SUPERNATURAL. YES__ NO__|
|God is the FATHER OF ALL MEN and not just Christians. YES__ NO__|
|Man is the product of EVOLUTION YES__ NO__|
|Man is the unfortunate VICTIM of heredity and environment, but through self-culture and self effort, he can save himself. YES__ NO__|
|There are MANY ROADS that lead to Heaven YES__ NO__|
|ALL PEOPLE WILL EVENTUALLY BE SAVED YES__ NO__|
|A loving God would never condemn anyone to hell. YES__ NO__|
|The judgment and wrath of God was Old Testament. YES__ NO__|
|It is OK to have “MANY FAITHS” and “many faith expressions” YES__ NO__|
|It is OK to UNITE all churches and all faiths to believe in God. YES__ NO__|
|THE GOSPEL is equal to Social action YES__ NO__|
|It is OK to meet a person’s PHYSICAL NEEDS (food, clothing, medicine, etc.) without giving the Gospel message. YES__ NO__|
|Concerning the RESURRECTION: Jesus did not literally come back from the dead, it was “The influence and example of Jesus that lives on” YES__ NO__|
|THE PROPHETIC TEACHING of the second coming of Christ is all allegory. YES__ NO__|
|Jesus was a good man and a good teacher, but, He is not God. YES__ NO__
IF YOU ANSWERED “YES” TO MORE THAN ONE QUESTION, PLEASE GO TO THESE LINKS. READ, PRAY AND THINK.
The examples being set by many post-modern preachers and pastors is appalling. Their agenda and practice ranges from CEO-types, dictators and control-freaks, to showmen, and the timid pacifist. (Finding an authentic ‘Fully devoted follower of Jesus styled pastor’ is a tough assignment. But, they are out there, and I strongly suggest you keep looking until you find one. And, for your own sake, don’t put anything ahead of finding a Church and pastor who models and follows the One and Only, Jesus.)
You may be asking, “So, what does the REAL JESUS look like?” It would take more time and space than I can afford at this time to describe all of the characteristics and traits of Jesus, found in the Bible. But, referring to Him as ‘The Lion of Judah’ will get started in the right direction. You can do that in your spare time. I want to focus on just one trait: The dependability and resolve of Jesus.
WHY DID JESUS COME INTO THE WORLD?
1. 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.”
2. TO BRING A SWORD
Matthew 10:34, “Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. Verse 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; verse 36, and A PERSON’S ENEMIES WILL BE THE MEMBERS OF HIS HOUSEHOLD.”
3. TO FULFILL THE LAW
Matthew 5:17 “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.”
4. TO CALL SINNERS
Mark 2:17 “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.”
5. TO SAVE THE WORLD
John 12:47 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.”
6. TO CAST FIRE & BRING DIVISION UPON THE EARTH
Luke 12:49 “I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and how I wish it were already kindled! Verse 50, But I have a baptism to undergo, and how distressed I am until it is accomplished! Verse 51, Do you think that I came to provide peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather to create division;
“WHAT HE REALLY MEANT?”
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 commentary 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.
Jesus’ time on earth was spent fulfilling the purpose, and will of His Father (Matthew 5:19, Matthew 5:39). Jesus was on a singular mission (John 6 :38) and nothing would stand in the way of accomplishing that mission: “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
Jesus had a divine appointment with a cruel Roman cross. Read what He said when Peter proposed to get in the way of His mission:
Matthew 16:21– 23, “From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day. Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You.”But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.”
Jesus always, taught the Will of His Father, then, demonstrated what He taught. He expects us to do the same. Ephesians, chapter six, gives us a clear teaching and picture of the type of preparation and resolve we are to assume.
Strong’s Concordance: STAND FIRM (histémi): to make to stand, to stand
Definition: to make to stand, to stand
Usage: make to stand, place, set up, establish, appoint; mid: place myself, stand, set in balance, weigh; intrans: stand, stand by, stand still; met: stand ready, stand firm, am steadfast.
to stand, i. e. continue safe and sound, stand unharmed: Acts 26:22.
to stand ready or prepared: Ephesians 6:14.
to be of a steadfast mind; 1 Corinthians 10:12.
(Who does not hesitate, does not waver, of one who vanquishes his adversaries and holds the ground, also of one who in the midst of the fight holds his position against the foe, to persist, continue, persevere: (so as not to fall from thy faith).
Ephesians 6:10-17, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For 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. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand firm therefore, HAVING GIRDED YOUR LOINS WITH TRUTH, and HAVING PUT ON THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, and having shod YOUR FEET WITH THE PREPARATION OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take THE HELMET OF SALVATION, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
Jesus’ demonstration of steadfast, unmovable courage:
CONFRONTING THE STORM
Mark 4:35-41, “On that day, when evening came, He said to them, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd, they took Him along with them in the boat, just as He was; and other boats were with Him. And there arose a fierce gale of wind, and the waves were breaking over the boat so much that the boat was already filling up. Jesus Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Hush, be still.” And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm. And He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They became very much afraid and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?”
Luke 8:26-33 “Then they sailed to the country of the Gerasenes, which is opposite Galilee. And when He came out onto the land, He was met by a man from the city who was possessed with demons; and who had not put on any clothing for a long time, and was not living in a house, but in the tombs. Seeing Jesus, he cried out and fell before Him, and said in a loud voice, “What business do we have with each other, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me.” For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had seized him many times; and he was bound with chains and shackles and kept under guard, and yet he would break his bonds and be driven by the demon into the desert. And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion”; for many demons had entered him. They were imploring Him not to command them to go away into the abyss.
“Now there was a herd of many swine feeding there on the mountain; and the demons implored Him to permit them to enter the swine. And He gave them permission. And the demons came out of the man and entered the swine; and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and was drowned.”
John 19:8-12 ”Therefore when Pilate heard this statement, he was even more afraid; and he entered into the Praetorium again and said to Jesus, “Where are You from?” But Jesus gave him no answer. So Pilate said to Him, “You do not speak to me? Do You not know that I have authority to release You, and I have authority to crucify You?” Jesus answered, “You would have no authority over Me, unless it had been given you from above; for this reason he who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.” As a result of this Pilate made efforts to release Him, but the Jews cried out saying, “If you release this Man, you are no friend of Caesar; everyone who makes himself out to be a king opposes Caesar.”
BEFORE THE SANHEDREN
Matthew 24:57-67, “Those who had seized Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas, the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were gathered together. But Peter was following Him at a distance as far as the courtyard of the high priest, and entered in, and sat down with the officers to see the outcome.
“Now the chief priests and the whole Council kept trying to obtain false testimony against Jesus, so that they might put Him to death. They did not find any, even though many false witnesses came forward. But later on two came forward, 61 and said, “This man stated, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and to rebuild it in three days.’” The high priest stood up and said to Him, “Do You not answer? What is it that these men are testifying against You?” But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest said to Him, “I adjure You by the living God, that You tell us whether You are the Christ, the Son of God.” Jesus *said to him, “You have said it yourself; nevertheless I tell you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
Then the high priest tore his robes and said, “He has blasphemed! What further need do we have of witnesses? Behold, you have now heard the blasphemy; what do you think?” They answered, “He deserves death!” Then they spat in His face and beat Him with their fists; and others slapped Him.”
Jesus did not draw back. He proceeded boldly to the Cross and secured our salvation!
Remember, Jesus came to earth for these stated reasons:
TO TESTIFY TO THE TRUTH. This, too, is our calling!
TO BRING A SWORD. This, too, is our calling!
TO FULFILL THE LAW. This, too, is our calling!
TO CALL SINNERS. This, too, is our calling!
TO SAVE THE WORLD through Jesus. 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. This, too, is our calling!
Don’t be led or misled by the sheep. Follow the Lion of Judah!
Your Brother and Friend,