Years ago, I heard a preacher say, “if you cut the Bible anywhere, it would bleed.” Why? Because the Bible is about one character, and His name is Jesus.
One of my friends, Pastor Tom Parrish, has a teaching ministry known as Stepping into Eternity
Pastor Tom Parrish writes with the swiftness of a two-edged sword, and I want to use his thoughts as I begin this blog posting.
JESUS IS THE FOCUS OF THE ENTIRE BIBLE
How often do you hear the name of Jesus used as the center of the sermon, the center of the worship, the center of our mission, or the center of our purpose in the local church? Look at your church’s mission statement. How many of your church’s statements even have the name of Jesus in their statement? Why do we keep missing the point? What can we do about it?
Let’s begin with these statements:
· The purpose of the Bible is not about Abraham, Isaac, or Jacob
· The purpose of the Bible is not about Israel or the Promised People
· The purpose of the Bible is not about knowing times and dates
· The purpose of the Bible is not to be like Peter or Paul
· The purpose of the Bible is not to make us better people
· The purpose of the Bible is not to give us wealth or health
In the next couple of Verses, we will see the entire purpose of the Bible in both the Old and New Testaments:
Colossian 1 15He (Jesus) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.
IT’S ALL ABOUT JESUS!!!!
Our response is to know Him, to daily walk as His disciple, and to make disciples of others. Loving others, serving others, even seeking justice and peace are the byproduct of knowing Jesus and pursuing Him and Him alone.
If you want real power and purpose in life, stop pursuing everything but Jesus. Know Him, seek Him, honor Him and you will have what you need to live effectively in this world.
Pastor Tom gets to the point.
If the Bible isn’t about Jesus, it doesn’t have much to offer. Judaism is definitely the basis for Christianity, but without the Cross of Jesus Christ, what can it offer humanity? I know they would say that we have principles, wisdom, and guidelines to live in harmony and we have the Ten Commandments that give boundaries to relationships.
All that may be true, but Judaism isn’t complete without a Savior/Messiah. Judaism gives us the laws to live by, and the stories of faith that can inspire us. But Jesus is the culmination of what Judaism isn’t. I respect the Jews, and we are in great debt to them for the scriptures which are the foundation of faith, and then ultimately, we are indebted to them for the Savior.
I know this may sound like a one-sided argument, but without Jesus, there are no eternal promises of an afterlife.
John told us that the great promise of believing in Jesus is eternal life. How can you top that through any other religion on earth?
As one commentator said, “God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 is probably one of the most concise summaries of the major themes in the Bible.”
I challenge you to put this Verse to the test. Place all other promises from all the religions on earth up against it, and you will see Jesus has them all beat, hands down.
Do you know why it is so hard for people to accept Jesus and who He said He was? Because they don't think anyone can have the power to declare they are God. They cannot accept a religion where the main character is killed, buried, and rises again on the third day. It doesn't make sense to them. To them, Jesus was a good man with some wise things to say, but that is about it. Yet, of all the philosophies, ideologies, religions, and psychologies that people do accept as truth … they are all are bankrupt when it comes to Jesus.
He had the power back in His day to heal the sick, raise the dead, and change a person’s life. That didn’t go away … it is still true today. When people trust Him in faith, they will carry on His ministry of supernatural power today.
So, Pastor Tom Parrish is right. “If you want real power and purpose in life stop pursuing everything but Jesus. Know Him, seek Him, honor Him and you will have what you need to live effectively in this world.”
Challenging the Culture with Truth … Larry Kutzler