Store up for yourselves treasures in Heaven
where moth and rust cannot destroy and thieves cannot break in and steal

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Who Do You Say That I Am? 5

Jesus said, “Come to Me, all of you who are loaded down with the burdens of life. Come to Me and I will give you rest for your souls.” Jesus said that He alone held the solution to the problems of the world. Jesus said that He was God’s representative on earth. The Gospel writers, those who had come to know Jesus best, either through close personal contact or through interviewing those who knew Him best described Jesus as God in human form. If these people are correct then it would seem foolish beyond compare to ignore Jesus. But why would He be described this way?

The first reason was found in how He taught.
The second reason was found in Jesus' demonstrated power and authority over sickness
The third reason was Jesus' demonstrated power and authority over nature.
The forth reason was Jesus' demonstrated power over life and death.
The fifth reason given by those who knew Jesus best for confirming His claim to be God was His demonstrated authority and power over sins and forgiveness.

In Mark 2:1-5 Jesus said that He had power and authority to forgive sin. This is vitally important because sin is our biggest problem. Virtually everything that brings pain and suffering into our lives is the result of sin. Sin can be defined as living without God being our main reference point. Sin is what leads to eternal death. As the account goes, Jesus is sitting in a house filled to overflowing with people listening to Him teach. A man is brought to Jesus for healing. He’s been crippled since birth. Jesus looks at the man and says, “Your sins are forgiven.” Those who understand God and His relationship to sin and forgiveness naturally asked, “Who does this man think he is? Only God can forgive sin.”

If you think that you feel offended in the presence of someone with a holier than thou attitude, how would you feel in the presence of a guy from the hood who equated Himself with God and said that he would forgive your sins?

Of course, if sin is ignoring God, then in reality only God can forgive that. To prove His right to make such an outlandish statement, Jesus said to those finding fault with Him, “Which is more difficult? Healing this man or forgiving his sins?” He then said to the man, pick up your mat and go home. Instantly the man’s legs were normal. He picked up his mat and walked past the people who were challenging Jesus. The response of the people? Pretty normal I think. “We’ve never seen anything like this!”

Jesus does this to point out who He is. Jesus has done this to help us answer the question, Who do you say that I am?

This is not some abstract question. Many people think that we can make Jesus be whoever we want Him to be. That is not an option. Some people think that we can call Jesus a good man without allowing for the option of Him being God incarnate. That is not an option.

When Jesus asks you, Who do YOU say that I am:

Do you recognise Him as YOUR teacher, regardless of whether you want Him to be?

Do you recognise Him as having authority over YOUR death whether you want Him to or not?

Do you recognise that He has the authority to forgive YOUR sin or leave it unforgiven?

Someone with the authority that Jesus demonstrated is not someone to be ignored.

So the question remains, "Who do you say that I AM?"

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