"Once you get ahold of truth, truth becomes addictive. You can no longer use your old methods after you have TASTED and SEEN! After that nothing else can be done, except to go and follow HIM! - Pastor Jeremy Johnson
This is a four part sermon series by Pastor Jeremy Johnson called "Status Quo".
As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” He said to another man, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.” Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”
Luke 9:57-62 NIV
Have you ever stopped to think that the Jesus we have learned about here in America may be very different from the Jesus He really is? We hear about this Jesus who makes us happy and comfortable, who fits inside of a 1 hour 15 minute service, who wants you to be successful and have everything you want. But what if all that we thought we knew, really did not even begin to expound upon who He is?
You see, we have Americanized Jesus. We have made Him a nice, fluffy Jesus that fits into our comfort. But when we look at the Bible and see who Jesus really was, we actually see that He was very different than what we’d like to accept. He told people to follow him, while refusing to let them know where they were going. He told people to give up everything they owned to follow Him. He offended the culture by telling people they must eat His flesh and drink His blood. And unlike many of us in the Church today who are constantly trying to figure out new growth strategies, Jesus seemed to always be trying to shrink the crowds. I don’t know if that’s the Jesus we like to embrace.
Maybe we have embraced a Jesus that we have dulled down to be more like us. Maybe we have made a god in our own image so that we will not be challenged to live fully surrendered to Christ. So that we can feel comfortable, secure and successful in the world’s eyes, while He called us to find success in simple obedience.
We were called to simply say, “Yes” when He says, “Follow me.” We are called to lay down all earthly security, earthly delay, and any plan B that we may have as fallback. Following Jesus and being the Church is not about us, which so many have made it about. It is about laying down everything, yes, everything, to follow Jesus, the one who gave all for us. Let’s lay aside our Americanized Jesus and follow the Jesus from the Bible, the one who makes us uncomfortable, who is not about earthly security or success, and the one who says “Pick up your cross and follow me.” This is where we will find true purpose, security, and life.
Are you following a comfortable Jesus?
How did this past Sunday’s message challenge you?
Do you have a hard time following Christ when he doesn’t tell you where you’re going?
Have you ever allowed earthly security, earthly delay, or needing a plan B, get in the way of you following Jesus?
- Have you ever found yourself making church about you, or dulling down God to be what you want Him to be like?