Being Jesus

This is a summary of the notes from Steve‘s “Be Jesus” sermon this past Sunday for New Venture Christian Church

1 John 2:3-6 – “We know that we have come to know Him if we obey his commands. The man who says ‘I know him’, but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.”

Well, hopefully he didn’t mean to actually walk like Jesus, but to live life like Jesus.So – how can we be Jesus then?

  • Absolutely depend on the Word of God (a.k.a Scripture/Bible!)

When Jesus began his ministry, he fasted for 40 days in the wilderness. During this time, Satan tempted him several times. Each and every time Jesus responded the same with “It is written…”, with the first response being in particular noteworthy: “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God'” (read complete list of temptations in Matthew 4)! How should we do this? A daily “feeding” of the Word – read it every day! A note for people [like me]: and when you don’t always make it, don’t stay off just keep going!

  • Be in the people business

Matthew 4:18 – “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” Life isn’t about quotas, deadlines, stuff, or money – it’s about people! We should see people where we are – and differently! No matter what your role is too – I really feel for this as I work in IT developing software. Users can sometime be hard to see as people much less differently. There is a certain aspect of my job where I listen to users and a certain aspect where I make decisions for users. But let me tell you, seeing people differently and as actual people I relate to changes things!

  • Touching people others pass by

Matthew 8:3 – “Jesus reached out His hand and touched the man.” Who is passed by? Plenty! Homeless, people that are HIV+, mentally ill, people in nursing homes, prisoners, those at a different economic level…

  • Being willing to pay the price of sacrifice and priority

Matthew 8:18-22 – “Follow me and let the dead bury their own dead.” What we aren’t sure of is if this guy’s dad was dead at the time, or even CLOSE to being dead. He might have been a decade away from dying! Are we willing to sacrifice here and now (not later) for the Kingdom of God?

  • [Allow yourself to] be misunderstood

Matthew 13:57 – “Only in his hometown and in his own house is a prophet without honor.” Those who have known you for certain things you have done may find it hard to see a new you. They may not be able to understand the changes. Do it anyway.

  • Willing to be interrupted

Proverbs 3:28 – “Never tell your neighbors to wait until tomorrow if you can help them now.” All of Jesus’ miracles were interruptions! We need to allow ourselves to be spontaneous and not to procrastinate so much…

Quite a list of things! But in trying to be like Jesus, what are the common barriers we will encounter?

  • Self-centeredness

Philippians 2:4 – “Forget yourself long enough to lend a helping hand.” We are too busy all of the time! Don’t focus on our goals all the time and where we need to go to. It isn’t about what we are doing in as much as the experience, is it?

  • Materialism

Luke 16:14 – “No servant can serve two masters. You cannot serve both God and money.” This isn’t a “you shouldn’t” – it is a “you cannot”! Steve said it pretty bluntly – is your goal to serve God or get rich? Well, I know that some may be “blessed” with financial abilities, and I would expect that for them, they are not in it to get rich, but to serve God… but I’m not in that category.

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