(That was mean of me to leave y’all hanging on that last post, wasn't it!? :D :D Bwah-ha-ha!)
At the end of my last post, I posed this question: Even though many of Jesus’ followers eventually turned away from Him, not all did! Many people received His message and flocked to Him--- WHY!?!?
Because His message was different
Different than the hard, cold, dead religion they heard preached and saw exemplified in the religious leaders of their day.
-Because His message was different—it offered hope
-Because His words were laced with kindness—THEY WERE DIFFERENT!
-Because His heart, His eyes, His words, His actions were (undoubtedly) overflowing with a palpable COMPASSION—compassion they could not find anywhere else! (Certainly not from the Pharisees)
-Because His mighty acts of power were different—He could do things nobody else could! Things everyone felt were impossible!
-Because His love was evident—blatant—obvious—THAT was DEFINITELY different!
-Because His life was different!!! (Mark 1:35)
-Because He had authority—He WAS Authority- where others did not, no matter how much they pretended to the contrary—and that was different! (His genuineness as He spoke. He lived what He taught, unlike the religious leaders.)
Are we sensing a theme here? :D
Jesus’ life, words, actions, attitude, lifestyle was different~~ and it was obvious~~ from that/those of the world’s. And that OBVIOUS DIFFERENCE ATTRACTED SINNERS TO HIM. And when they came to Him—out of need, intent search, or simple curiosity—He was able to give the GOSPEL (Mark 1:15) whether or not they stuck with Him after that…whether or not they chose to believe the Gospel… because of His obviously different, yet attractive life, people heard—and often received!! :D His Message!
And why is that such a big deal???????
Because that is how my life, YOUR LIFE, by His grace and only for His glory, should look! Attractively different! To allow Jesus to seep out of me and draw others to Him! To bless others through me! That’s now it should be!!!
There can be this mixed up message in modern Christianity today that says “in order to reach the (lost and dying) world, we need to act, behave just like them We need to wear what they wear—we need to enjoy what they enjoy. In order to reach them, we need to listen to and sing their genre of music. We need to accept societies rules and conform to them instead of seeking to reform them. We need to conform to these societal norms so that they will see that we’re not a threat—we are no different from them and that there’s no need to be “freaked out” by our “religion”. :(
Jesus never did that!!!
And yet… people flocked to Him!
Jesus was different, but that difference was joy, LOVE, health, compassion. That difference was TRUTH.
Difference doesn't have to be stifling
Difference doesn't have to be frumpy.
Difference doesn't have to be forced, religious, or legalistic.
Difference needs to be genuine.
Difference needs to be Joy :D :D :D
Difference needs to be Jesus living through us and loving others through us
(not condemning them though, because Jesus doesn't condemn us!)