"Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying:"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations." Jeremiah 1:4-5

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Misconception of Biblical Proportions

We’ve all seen it: the radiant painting of Jesus with the glowing halo of sunshine and bubblegum. He stands glorious among the beggars, thieves, prostitutes and blue-eyed Italian children, with arms outstretched promising a life filled with hope, joy, money, love, more money, peace, and twenty-four hour confidence that you are AWESOME! YES, LORD, HALLELUUUUJAH! If you’ve never seen that painting, just Google “images of Jesus,” and you’ll most likely find something quite similar. So, if a picture can speak a thousand words then there’s no need to crack open the Bible, right. Well, let’s crack that baby open anyways and see if “Disco Jesus” is an accurate depiction of Jesus, or just another misconception of biblical proportions.
James 4:10 says, “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.” I always think its really cool how God works in opposites. Like when Jesus says to His twelve disciples, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.” So in order for you to be lifted up you have to make yourself humble, but if you try and make yourself great you’ll be humbled. I guess everybody’s knee will bow eventually, but your success is found in your desire for humility. Let me explain by painting a picture of Jesus that won’t make the front page of “People” or sell out arenas, but will and does change lives.
In John chapter 13, when Jesus and the twelve were at the last supper, Jesus washes the disciple’s feet. This act is so unique because of the attitude of Jesus before going into this action of servant-hood. John says about Jesus that, “Jesus knew that the Father had put Him in complete charge of everything, that He came from God and was on His way back to God. So He got up from the supper table, set aside His robe, and put on an apron. Then He poured water into a basin and began to wash the feet of the disciples” (John 13:3-5a, The Message). This action of humility was manifested and birthed out of a reality that Jesus had about Himself: that He was God! Out of that recognition of His Lordship, He did what any manifest creator of all things would do, He made himself the lowest, most abased being at the last supper, and took on the role of a slave by washing the dirty feet of mere men. The apostle Paul describes Jesus like this, “And being found in the appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:8). It is the character of God to be humble and take on the form of a servant.
There is nothing more glorious to God than the lowly form of a nobody who serves only because they take joy in it. Look at the story in John 12 when Mary anoints Jesus’ feet with expensive oils and then she wipes it with her hair. You can see the portrait of a woman who took on the lowest position in the house so she could bless the heart of her Savior. And there’s the bottom line, the point of it all. To bless the heart of the Savior.
Oh God, that we would be a church that serves the lowest of the low and desires no applause, no credit, no appreciation or promotion. That we would serve only to bless the heart of our Savior.

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