He carried about with him a tattered copy of the New Testament. It was evident that he read it all the time. He talked to everyone he met about Jesus—Jesus—Jesus. He was a self-appointed evangelist for Jesus. He did not belong to any established religious community. He lived in prison and would live there until he died.
She was a professor at a prestigious university. She authored many books and was recognized as an authority in her field. Wherever she lectured, in the classroom or elsewhere, she always referred to Jesus as a great moral teacher and urged her listeners to read and learn about Jesus in the New Testament. She was a self-proclaimed atheist, but she thought everyone should know about Jesus—Jesus—Jesus.
He was “born again” while attending an evangelistic crusade. He had always been a church member. After his “born again” experience he felt his church was lacking in its love for Jesus—Jesus—Jesus. He became a self-appointed evangelist for Jesus and eventually founded his own church.
Jesus—Jesus—Jesus. What an impact this historical figure has made in the lives of many. Anyone who daily confronts Christ, as revealed in the Gospels, is sure to become a better person for it (the prison inmate, the university professor and the “born again” man). Even if the person is unaware of what scholars have discovered about the Gospels over the last one hundred years, the captivating figure of Jesus still emerges as a force for good. The character of Jesus attracts.
Jesus—Jesus—Jesus. While there is value in concentrating only upon Jesus, there are also dangers in this simplistic approach to the Christian faith. Jesus alone does not represent a full gospel. There are other aspects of truth. Many of those who lift up Jesus make little reference to God. Jesus said that his primary purpose was to reveal God, pointing people beyond himself to the one he called “Father” and “Lord of heaven and earth.” Jesus prayed. He certainly did not pray to himself. Elton Trueblood suggested that this exclusive emphasis upon Jesus is like a new Unitarianism (Unitarians focused exclusively upon God). At the risk of being called a heretic, I suggest that the gospel (and the Christian faith) is much, much more than just about Jesus—Jesus—Jesus!
|The old wall of Jerusalem. All walls need to come down,|
all gates need to be unsealed and opened.