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  • Writer's pictureCody Chesser

Do You Know My Jesus?

Do you know who Jesus is? I mean, do you really know who he is? What was he all about? What kind of life did he live? Who was this man that we are trying to model our lives after? I think it’s safe to say that Jesus is very often misrepresented in today’s world. Ask someone who is not a Christian today what Jesus was like, or what people who follow him (Christians) are supposed to be like, and see what they say.


I read a quote from a man who is not a Christian, and he made this statement:

“I hate Christians because they are not loving of others. They show an intolerance for other belief systems and they condemn actions that they claim to be immoral. This intolerance is not the way you should be living if you claim to follow a loving savior, Jesus.”

I would have to ask this man, and others who make similar statements, to consider this thought: What if Jesus really was who you say he is? What if he was loving and accepting of all beliefs, tolerant of all people and lifestyles, and hesitant to condemn anyone for their actions? That sounds like a pretty nice guy. But people who have this view of Jesus forget one very important detail about his life.


He was killed...because people hated him...


Clearly, people weren’t too fond of Jesus, seeing as how they numbered him among the criminals. Yet Jesus being proclaimed as a criminal, and killed because of it, ended up being the sacrifice that we needed for our salvation. If Jesus had been that incredibly tolerant guy that many people claim he is, then people would have loved him. If Jesus hadn't called out the sin around him, he likely wouldn't have upset people and we wouldn’t have a hope for salvation through his death.


This claim, that Jesus tolerates all sin and lifestyles, doesn’t just exist outside of Christianity. Even people who claim to be Christians have become tolerant of many different lifestyles and allow sinful things to exist in their own, as well as others', lives all because they fail to recognize just who Jesus was. Was Jesus a loving and tolerant person? Absolutely he was, but that doesn’t mean that Jesus ever tolerated sin. In fact, Jesus, many times, called people out when the situation demanded it, even if that meant offending the people around him.


In Matthew 23, Jesus, speaking to the Pharisees, calls these men “white-washed tombs…full of dead men’s bones.” These were men who had an appearance in front of others, as being really spiritual God-fearing people, but Jesus calls them out and says ‘Not even close!’ In John chapter 4, Jesus calls out a woman, whom he had just met, for living a life with many husbands & divorces because, though she might not have wanted to hear it, he knew more than anything she needed it. In Matthew chapter 12, Jesus calls a crowd of people a “brood of vipers.” This doesn’t really sound like a man who is trying to be tolerant of the lives around him. In fact, this sounds like a man who never lowered the standard but told people that he, as their judge, held them to a higher one. Nothing about Jesus’ life ever changed to adapt to the world around him. He called for the world to adapt to him and held strong even if they wouldn’t.


Our savior Jesus Christ was definitely a loving and caring person. That much is evident by the fact that he was willing to die for us. But let’s not forget just what it was that caused him to end up on that cross; it was the truth that he stood for and the enemies he made while defending that truth. He brought this truth to us, knowing full well the effect it would have and the consequences it would bring. He says to his disciples, “Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.” (Matthew 10:34)


We too are to recognize the effect that our message will have on people and the consequences that it may bring. Jesus says, “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this, the world hates you.” (John 15:18-19)


People may not like that we refuse to be tolerant of their sinful lives. In fact, people may hate us because we proclaim a higher standard enforced by Jesus. But none of that should cause us to stray from the truth of Jesus Christ. We need to be loving and caring for all people, but we cannot tolerate sin just because the world accepts it. We must hold fast in truth despite its consequences.

“Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.” (Revelation 2:10)

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