What if Jesus showed up today? I’m not talking about the second coming of Jesus that the Bible speaks of in Revelation. I’m saying what if Jesus came back to earth to visit your church this weekend?
Answering this question presents the problem with Christians in America in today’s world.
If Jesus stepped foot into (most) churches in America today, He would not have any power. I immediately think about a well-known passage of scripture found in the gospel of Mark.
“Jesus could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. He was amazed at their lack of faith.” – Mark 6:5-6
Jesus’ lack of power in this town wasn’t because it was full of people who weren’t Christians. It wasn’t that people weren’t living a life that was honorable to God. It was because the people in this town knew so much about Jesus.
I’m sure that many of the older people watched him grow up. The adults that were around Jesus’ same age were his friends that he played with as a kid. Yes, this town knew all about this Jesus character.
Jesus was unable to perform miracles in his hometown. It wasn’t because the Devil was stopping Him (Not possible). It was because of people’s lack of understanding of who He was. They would argue that they already knew all the facts about this Jesus guy.
Christians in America have reached a similar place.
In America, we have unlimited resources to teach us about Jesus. We have a church on every corner. You can buy a Bible in any store that sells books. Worship music is on the radio. Christian films and books are available that can teach you all about Jesus. We more or less know all Jesus’ stats, but that’s about as deep as it goes.
In America, even the decision to follow Jesus doesn’t cost most of us anything. Some countries around the world it costs everything to follow Jesus. For us, myself included, we give up a few friends or hanging out in certain places, right? That’s about all it takes!
A close friend of mine shared her story of becoming a Christian on a Paradigm Shift Podcast episode. Her decision to follow Jesus cost her almost everything she knew. I encourage you to listen to the episode.
Related Post: My Decision to Become a Christian [Podcast]
If Jesus were to step foot into your church, would this knowledge of Jesus be your downfall? What would Jesus say to you?
Imagine a Hollywood actor or actress that you are a fan of. Likely you know almost everything about this person. But, imagine running into them and getting the chance to speak to them. No matter how much you know about them, they’d still say “I don’t know who you are.”
This is because you’re a fan of this person. You only know of them, you don’t KNOW them on any level past the facts of their lives.
There is a great book that speaks toward this topic called ‘Not a Fan‘. In this book the author (Kyle Idleman) talks about how many of us are fans of Jesus, not true followers. I encourage you to pick up a copy of this book. It goes into detail on this same topic.
Would Jesus say the same thing to us? Or are we just “fans” of Him?
The problem is our failure to see the devil working through Christian resources. Many of us are blind to this. The resources that are teaching us about Jesus are causing us to become distant from Him. The devil has made us believe that this is what it’s all about but this is not what it means to be a Christian.
Christianity does not stop at the knowledge of Jesus, that is only where it begins.
Believe it or not, the devil doesn’t want you to drink or do drugs. The devil’s only goal is to keep you from encountering intimacy with Jesus. He isn’t afraid to use the unlimited number of “Godly resources” to keep you away from intimacy Jesus.
If you’re only learning about Jesus instead of getting to know Him on an intimate level, the devil isn’t mad about it.
Many Christians in America have become blind by what we have available to us. We have filled our time with learning and gaining knowledge of Jesus instead of getting to know Him. We’re numb to who Jesus is. We know a lot about Him, but we don’t know Him.
There are only two ways to intimately know the Jesus:
#1. Prayer (Listening and Talking)
I urge you to begin spending more time listening during your prayer time. Don’t just pray your “to-do” list. Listen and seek intimacy. When you read the Bible, remember that it is 100% about Jesus; it’s not about you.
Related Post: 3 Key Ways to Hear God’s Voice [Video]
#2. The Bible (Opening God’s word)
You cannot find Jesus through anything other than time in the word and time in prayer. Resources help guide you. But, that is a person’s perspective about Jesus, the Bible is God’s perspective about Jesus.
Related Post: The Bible is Not Just Words on a Page
Please understand my heart in this. There is nothing wrong with Christian resources. God has used many of them to change my life. All I am saying is that resources can never replace intimacy. Intimacy with Jesus is only found in prayer (both listening and speaking) and the Bible.
The goal of every Christian is to fall more in love with Jesus, not learn more about Him.
As we all begin doing this we will begin to know Jesus intimately. When He does return to us on earth, I want Him to call my name from across the room because He knows me.