Are you a Jesus follower? He said that we would be easy to spot. How? Through love in action. Jesus put it very simply:
"Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples-when they see the love you have for each other." John 13:34, 35 (The Message)
Semper Vita exists to be his hands and feet in action
Jesus told his followers that people would know that they belonged to him by their love. The way they treated each other would demonstrate that they were a contrast community. It would be visible. Through this love, people would come to know and experience Jesus.
As Jesus' followers, we should be known through love in action. I really believe that we can make a difference to our friends, families and neighbors if we actively love people through acts of service. It will bring us closer as a Christian community. And, it will allow us to demonstrate the truth and love of Jesus to people around us. Obvious, right?
Which Jesus will they experience?
Most of us know this truth from the Bible, but are we living it? Do we love others in our Christian community? Are we demonstrating Jesus' love to people around us?
Last week at Life at the Ridge, Pastor Josh Hebert talked about the different versions of Jesus that people understand. Here's a few he mentioned:
- spooky Jesus - mystical and beyond practical reality, therefore doing no earthly good
- moral teacher Jesus - the one who teaches great truths for us to chew on
- buddy Jesus - a good friend who accepts us and doesn't call us out on things
- Sunday school Jesus - a sweet version who loves everyone
- slot machine Jesus - who produces wealth for those who get things to line up right
- boyfriend Jesus - emotional, sensitive and always there when you need him
- designer Jesus - who has great conversations and isn't offensive
It was funny at first until I thought about it. Is this what people see? When we represent Jesus and try to demonstrate his love in action, which Jesus do people experience? Is it one of the versions above? Or do people experience the true Jesus who is fully man and fully God? Do we really know Jesus so that we can accurately represent him? Does he live in us and do we allow him to live through us?
Know him before you show him
People will only experience the love of Jesus if we really know him. As his followers, each of us needs to know him before we show him.
Which Jesus do we believe in? Do we know him as the Son of God, the one who claims to be the Way, the Truth and the Life? Do we know his teachings and grace? Do we know his truth and mercy? Do we know his power for us who believe? Do we know his love that knows no bounds? Do we know that he died for each one of us, paid the price for our individual sins, and offers us forgiveness and eternal life? Do we know the real Jesus?
Let me know your thoughts. Who is Jesus? Do you truly know him?