Thursday, August 28, 2008

I believed in Jesus right up until I didn’t.

What do you make of comments like that?

“I used to be a Christian.”

“I was a strong Christian.”

“I used to believe in Jesus.”

When I read posts by people who make comments like that, I inevitably find that what they mean is, they went along with everything they were taught, or they diligently went through the motions of the religion in which they were raised. They acted as though they believed in Jesus. Yet for virtually every single person, the so called “belief” in Jesus that they had ended when Jesus or God didn’t come through for them in a time of need. There was a theory of the reality of Jesus, but there was no relationship. If there had been a relationship with Jesus, then when He disappointed the person, their belief would have remained intact, but the relationship would have ended. The words, “I believed in Jesus” have a totally different meaning for those people than what I mean when I say those words.

I believe in the reality of Jesus like I believe in the reality of my wife. He’s as real to me as are my kids. No I can’t see Jesus. No I don’t touch Him. But His presence, His working, His correction, and comfort and counsel, well, there’s no denying His reality. I can identify totally with the apostle Peter. When Jesus asked him and the other disciples if they were going to leave Him, Peter answered, “Lord, where would we go? You alone have the words of eternal life.

So to have my wife disappoint me in some way and to then say that for me she no longer exists is as strange to me as to hear someone say, “I believed in Jesus right up until I didn’t.

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