Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Just what does it mean to follow Jesus?

Really, what does it mean to follow Jesus? I have heard so many different view points, with the most recent coming from the Episcopal head Schori. She states:

"What does it mean to follow Jesus? How did Jesus live? With whom did he eat? With whom did he converse?"
"Jesus hung out with people on the margins. He hung out with people who were unacceptable to the Judaism of his time," she pointed out. "I think that's what it means to follow Jesus." - christianpost.com

A nice sentiment, and to a point it is true. However, as always, the devil is in the details. Jesus did hang out with the "undesirables", such as Matthew, Zaccheus, and the foot washing lady - to name a few - but somehow I have a feeling that how He hung out with them is far different than what Mrs. Schori means. Jesus went to them because they were sick with a terminal disease called sin and He had the cure: His shed blood on the cross. As Jesus came with the cure, He did what any good prophet would do and called these people to repentance. The lady caught in adultery, for instance: He told her to go and sin no more. Jesus loved her enough to forgive her, but He didn't give her license to continue in her sin. I have a feeling Mrs. Schori probably doesn't even acknowledge that as part of Scripture.

Whereas Jesus went and hung out with the undesirables in order to bring them to him in repentance, I suspect Mrs. Schori is hanging out with the "undesirables" while affirming and encouraging them in their sin by proclaiming a false gospel. You know the one: Jesus loves us and wants us to be happy, so do what makes you happy. You know, the happy gospel that doesn't have any nasty law hanging around to make us feel bad.

Schori goes on to say, "All people – including gay and lesbian Christians and non-Christians – are deserving of the fullest regard of the Church." Again, it would sound good coming out of Daniel Preus' mouth, but sure sounds foul coming out of hers. Namely, because she means it to include and affirm them where they are at, whereas I would bet my last dollar Dr. Preus would mean to call them to repentance and faith in the sacrificial Lamb of God. Yes, people trapped by homosexuality deserve our attention - because they too are a special creation of God, and He wants to see them purified in the blood of His Son - but it isn't going to happen if we coddle them and tell them they are fine when they most definitely are not; that is as stupid as expecting a cancer patient to get better by affirming them in their cancer while not doing anything to treat the disease. I am all for reaching out to the homosexuals and to others, but let's not ignore half of God's message to us just because it makes us feel bad.

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