Sunday – July 16, 2023
Word On Worship – Sunday – July 16, 2023
So Jesus, perceiving that they were intending to come and take Him by force to make Him king, withdrew again to the mountain by Himself alone.
Many people come to Christ in the hopes that He will make them happy. They struggle with personal problems and they hear that Jesus can help, so they trust in Him to gain the peace and joy that they long for but has always eluded them. Whether they feel unfulfilled with life, find themselves in personal crisis or are just having problems with their kids- they have been told Christ can help, so they decided to “try Christ.” Whatever the need, they want Christ to make them happy.
But after they come to Christ, they find that the problems get worse, not better. Things aren’t exactly like the salesman—I mean evangelist—promised! They feel like when you sign up for some offer, only to find that it was a bait and switch. If you had known what you were in for, you never would have signed up. So, why do you follow Jesus? Is it so that you can use Him to make you happy? Or, is it because He is the sovereign Lord of creation, who demands your submission and loyalty, even if His ways are not what you expected?
John wrote his Gospel, and especially the miracles or signs that Jesus did (20:31), “so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.” However, many of us come to Christ with incorrect expectations. We want to believe because if we do, Jesus will make it all better and I will be happy. It’s important that we believe in Jesus for the right reasons and that we grow to know Him as He is, not as we might wish for Him to be.
As I’ve often said, the crucial question in life to answer is Jesus’ question to the disciples (Matt. 16:15), “But who do you say that I am?” If Jesus is who He claimed to be and who the Scriptures show Him to be, then we must follow Him as Savior and Lord, even if it results in being tortured and killed. The Bible is quite clear that many godly saints have suffered terribly because of their faith. In fact, Paul promises (2 Tim. 3:12), “Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.” The main reason for following Christ is not because He can make you happy—although He can, even in your suffering—but because He is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6). He is the eternal Son of God, sent from the Father to provide the only way to heaven through His death and resurrection.