Jesus who?

Does Satan love Jesus?

Isn’t a follower of Jesus somebody who simply acknowledges him as ‘Lord’ and behaves as though this is so? Is that what God really wants from us?

If you answered ‘yes’, then what is the problem with Satan?…

‘When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, ”What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beg thee, torment me not.” ‘ Luke 8:28

Here is external worship. The devil is religious; he prays: he prays in a humble posture; he falls down before Christ, he lies prostrate; he prays earnestly, he cries with a loud voice; he uses respectable, honourable, adoring expressions – ‘Jesus, thou Son of God most high’… Nothing was wanting but love. (From The Good God by Mike Reeves, 2012)

Becoming a follower of Jesus causes a change in heart, rather than simply a change in actions. God wants our love, not for us to mindlessly carry out religious acts because we feel we have to. I dread to think of a God who gets kicks out of that.

The triune God is a million miles away from a ‘policeman in the sky’. I’ll be posting more on this at some point…

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What’s so good about Good Friday anyway?

Most people have asked this at some point… The answer normally being some generic story about Jesus dying for our sins – what does that even mean? Are you seriously telling me that Good Friday makes any difference to us in this day and age? Get real.

 

I’ll try to make my answer as concise as possible. As spoken about in a previous post, there is a problem with the human heart, the cancer of the human race that is ‘sin’. None of us are perfect, but is that really such a problem? It’s fair to say we tend to agree on what is wrong, but differ on what wrongs are excusable. That time I let my friend down, that lie I told, all those times when I put myself first… Surely God can let me off?

 

But what happens when someone does something against you, your family or friends? If someone stole from your Father, lied to your brother, bullied your daughter or cheated on your best friend. To what degree do we deem something excusable? Why is it that we cry out for justice but only when it suits us? I must add, I’m as guilty of this as the next person!

 

God is the perfect standard. The only one who is fully good, loving and totally pure. So it’s only natural for God to hate sin; for where there is love, there is also the opposite- anger. Or as C.S Lewis puts it ‘anger is the fluid love bleeds when you cut it’. In comparison to God we’re all polluted. There is no way we can remove the stain of sin ourselves. We can try to achieve our way back to God; give some money to charity, help out at the soup kitchen, all of which are great but, the baggage of sin is still there on our shoulders.

 

Since God is perfectly loving yet perfectly just, He must punish sin. But this is the best part… God took the punishment for us. Jesus i.e. God the son, came down to us and made himself the lowest of the low. He lived the perfect life and willingly died to take the ‘cup of wrath’ for us. Perfectly loving, perfectly just. Jesus not only experienced one of the most horrific, degrading physical deaths ever, he also experienced the worst spiritual pain. Full judgement and complete separation from His Father. In other words, Jesus put on the clothes of the most despicable man ever, he took on sins of the whole world… A world that put him to death! I find that difficult to comprehend. How bad is sin that God needed to do that to save us (whilst still dealing with sin justly)? He’s well within his rights to simply wipe us out. How can God love us so much to do that?

 

Not only are we given a clean slate, we get a shining reputation in our place. God the Father looks upon us as though we are Jesus himself! He adopts us as his own children. This grace is not forced upon anyone though; God has given us a real will, so we can accept or reject/ignore this gift. If we truly accept that offer, we’re sealed forever, and there is no sin we can do to remove it. Jesus sets us free from all sin, all guilt… The chains are gone. What a saviour.

 

That is why it’s Good Friday. Nah actually, I still think it’s a rubbish name. It should be Fantastic Friday!

 

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16

 

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The time is NOW.

This time last year:

I thought Christianity was dull.

I thought it was irrelevant.

I thought it was untrue.

Have you ever thought about how we’re passengers of time?

It picks us up… And at some point, time lets us go and carries on it’s way.

The only thing that remains constant with time is the truth.

But have you ever stopped and considered, what is really true?

Jesus said ‘I am the way, the truth and the life…’

What kind of nutter goes around saying stuff like that??… Is there really any truth to his claim?

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Would you invite Jesus to your party?

I used to think Jesus was just a good, moral teacher. I assumed he was always serious and probably a bit of a drag to have around.

Since reading the historical accounts of him, I couldn’t have been more wrong! There is an aspect of Him that I once overlooked, that is, Jesus was extremely sociable!

It’s shocking just how much people wanted to be around Jesus. He was hugely popular considering at the time on paper he was just a random homeless guy.

But the crowds swarmed around him. People were desperate to even touch his clothes. Many travelled for days just to see for themselves what the fuss was about.

He was that guy who got invited to all the parties.

He was popular with the ladies (especially unique considering how women were viewed back then)

The children loved him.

Jesus genuinely cared for every single person; he even hung out with the biggest outcasts in his society, including prostitutes, lepers and tax-collectors.

He was simply a delight to be around.

Sounds like the ultimate guy.

Of course, that’s not the whole story. What with tearing down temple markets and coming out with controversial claims such as ‘I have not come to bring peace but a sword’ – Jesus didn’t come simply to be Mr Happy Chap. If this man was telling the truth, he came to bring the most important message of all time. That he was coming to save the world… Sounds pretty outrageous doesn’t it?

What kind of guy claims to be equal with God? 

Consequently, all of this exasperated the people around him… Leading to a mixed bag of views.

What is your view?

Those that didn’t seem to like him were ironically, the most religious folk of his day.

I wonder why?

Taken the other morning... It looked like a (many fingered) handprint in the sky!

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Feeling lonely this New Years Eve?

I’m writing this post no more than five hours before the new year 2012, as I’m drying my hair for the big doo!

It struck me that on a day when most people are expected to be ‘happy’, actually that probably causes a lot of people to be more sad, or lonely. Think about it…

Not everyone has a party to go to, which must make you feel worse if you’re imagining people having a fantastic night.

Or even those that are out at a party… That big countdown at midnight may not turn out as  as great as you expected. Often these big days leave us a little disappointed. I know I’ve been in nightclubs where although it’s packed, I’ve felt like the loneliest person in the world.

I suppose Jesus is the only person to have ever been truly lonely- when He undeservedly took on all of our burdens on the cross, being cut-off from His Father. At least we still have God with us, even though most wouldn’t acknowledge it.

So if you are feeling lonely, bear in mind that the greatest act ever was given to us partially by loneliness. And more importantly, if you haven’t found God yet- remember that we’re the ones that turned our backs from Him… He is the one seeking you!

Have an awesome New Year!

MEOW

Crooked cat I found (in co. Donegal, Ireland)

Categories: Always look on the bright side..., Jesus who? | Tags: , , | 7 Comments

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