Sunday, January 5, 2014

We follow Jesus Alone

What if you thought someone was very, very important. Would you think what that important person SAID was important, too? Of course, that follows naturally. 

What if that person said that his words and actions were totally and completely in accordance with God, the creator of the Universe, and that they would last for all eternity? Would those words be important enough for you to consider “important?” Of course. Any reasonable person would consider that to be the case.

As followers of Jesus, we believe, “The words and teachings of Jesus, not any other teacher, savior or man, are the core of our beliefs.”

When we look to Jesus, we believe we see through a glass CLEARLY towards the life God wishes for us. God chose this humble Galilean man, Jesus, to be our model and our example, by which we can know His will for our lives. There is no other person to which we need look as an example – no other person who should be reinterpreting his teachings for us or adding to them, as if they are insufficient or deficient in any way.

Therefore, anyone who calls for us to minimize, ignore, misconstrue, or put aside the teachings of this important person would be asking us to do this to the one whom God has chosen to be our most perfect example.

If Jesus’ words are sufficient for us, no other person’s words, interpretations and examples are required for us to follow him. It’s not “But ____ said…” Instead, it’s “JESUS said…” It can never be said, “Jesus’ teachings CANNOT be followed,” but rather, “Jesus’ teachings MUST be followed, because he said we could, and must, do so.”

For the Jesus Follower, only the true, pure teachings of Jesus, God’s Anointed One (“Christ”) the Prophet whom God sent to us, can Save us and bring us back to God – Who is his Father, and ours.

“Everyone who hears these words of mine and DOES them,” says Jesus, “will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” Who can then claim that his words are unimportant, or that we cannot do exactly as he commands?

We are called to follow his example, heed his words, do Good Works, and then, and only then, we are told, will we be considered “saved.” There is no magic shortcut, no magic prayer that we may recite, that will allow us to ignore the teachings of Jesus and not ACT upon them, and still call ourselves Followers of Jesus.

The words, example and teachings of this Jesus are, therefore, of utmost importance for us to understand, grapple with, and follow, to the very best of our abilities. If we say we follow him, we ought to follow his example, and walk EXACTLY the way in which he walked. To do, say or preach something less would mean that we don’t REALLY believe that his words would not pass away into history.

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