by Kim Josephson
We say we're Christians. By definition it means Christ-like. Do you know many Christ-like people? Are you really Christ-like? Frankly, it's easier for me to be religious than Christ-like. If I fulfill the spiritual demands of my peers, that is, if I look the way they expect me to look - talk the way they expect me to talk - act the way they expect me to act - my Christianity is never really questioned. But I can fulfill all these expectations and come nowhere near being Christ-like! And so can you. That is why the “Christian” religion doesn't look much like Jesus at all.
Jesus is so unlike us. He's not boastful or proud or arrogant. He's not jealous or petty or self-pitying. He's not covetous or selfish or insecure or worrisome. He doesn't crave attention or fear criticism. Praise never goes to His head and condemnation never seems to touch Him. He never walks around with His feelings hurt. He never blames someone else for His situation. He won't gossip - never lies - never compromises the truth to fit in with the group. Look at Jesus. He's so wonderful - so strong - so forgiving - so supernatural.
Now think about the Church for a minute. The Church is full of so-called Christians. Unfortunately, we're just not much like Jesus. We get our feelings hurt - walk around in unforgiveness - feel sorry for ourselves - blame everybody else for our sins, (I mean mistakes) and everything else. Jealousy, covetousness, lust, fear - all these things abound in the modern Church. We love to gossip. We live in absolute fear of criticism. God forbid someone should think or say something they didn't hear from Tulsa or Springfield or Nashville or some other denominational headquarters first.
We are to be imitators of Christ but I'm afraid all we imitate is each other. God hates the hypocrisy that is inherent in this whole carbon-copy religion. The facets of Jesus are so dazzling, so unique, and so precious that the Church should radiate with diversity and color. And by all means it should be radically alive with the supernatural presence of the Living God. Again, it is a travesty that we continue to maintain the status quo and just have church as usual.
Frankly, I believe if Jesus were walking the streets as He did 2000 years ago, He would blast us for our complacency and our pride. His words would hurl like thunderbolts against the religious spirits that keep the Church turned inward while letting the whole world go to hell! I believe He would weep like Jeremiah over the strutting and showmanship of our namby-pamby religious programming. He would condemn our empire building and our worldly-mindedness. Can you imagine what He would say about the begging for money that goes on and on and on? I know He would cry aloud and spare not! (Is. 58:1) What do you think He thinks about today's gospel showbiz? I don't think He's impressed. In fact, so much of it is so unlike Christ that I think it makes Him sick! Jesus is not a sponsor of a show. In fact show has no part in it. Jesus wants reality not show.
Can you imagine? What if at the on-set of some “Christian Broadcast” the Spirit of the Lord just came down on a congregation in such heaviness that no one could sing their song or preach their message? What if a spirit of brokenness just swept over the place and with bitter tears and groaning the Church went to her Master for cleansing and renewal? But it doesn't happen. Why? Because everybody just puts on their little plastic smile and just goes right through the program by the numbers. How the angels must weep - the world is going to hell and rather than crying for revival, we pretend that things just couldn't be better in our program. We've got to keep up that image - look successful - sound positive. What a sham!! It is so unlike Jesus!
Look at Jesus
weeping over Jerusalem. Broken-hearted at their lostness, He cries out His
invitation. Look at Jesus seeking out the lost and going to the unlovely -
finding the hurt ones and restoring them. Look at Jesus, never too busy for
individuals or children - nothing else mattered. What matters to us - are we
Jesus showed us what to do. Unfortunately we've left His example and joined up to every other kind of thing under the sun - supposedly doing His will. Look at Jesus. He's walking in the Spirit - spending time in prayer - knowing the will of the Father and dedicating Himself to it. Can we do that? Sure we can if we want to. Prayer meetings are a thing of the past but that's only because we've walked away from the godly pattern of our fathers to embrace some worldly junk.
0 Church, I'm not
trying to condemn you, but to open your eyes. To be a Christian is to be
Christ-like. To be Christ-like, we have to look at Jesus. What was He really
like? We know. We just need the courage to walk like He walked and to talk like
He talked. We need to stop messing around and dedicate ourselves to His example.
The bottom-line is, He came to seek and to save those who are lost. It was His
mission and His passion. It must become ours.
This article is a
reprint from Bro. Kim's book entitled Cries from the Wilderness. This is one
book that you definitely need and it is
So, write for your