I’ve had some interesting conversations with people of different faith perspectives through the years. Some of the most intense discussions have focused around the person and work of Jesus Christ. After all, the consequences of unbelief are eternal. Jesus, in one of his intense conversations, declared, “I told you that you would die in your sins; IF YOU DO NOT BELIEVE THAT I AM THE ONE I CLAIM TO BE, you will indeed die in your sins.” (Emphasis – mine)
False teachers, false doctrines, false beliefs are not new challenges to the genuine followers of Jesus Christ. As godly shepherd-leaders warn the flock today of wrong doctrine and challenge wrong practice, so the early senior leaders did likewise. John declares, “Many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist.”
John did not hold the view that any view of Christ was acceptable. A graphic, posted on a Facebook page recently, showed “The Golden Rule” as the common denominator between all faiths. I’m not sure that is a true assessment. Genuine followers of each faith have distinct convictions which they are not prepared to sacrifice for the sake of some man-made ‘unity.’
There were many deceivers in the first century, and many more today. They have been deceived themselves and they give themselves to deceiving others. O, they think they are holding tightly to the ‘truth,’ but their view of Jesus Christ will not face the test of Biblical scrutiny. They are wrong about who He is. The Son of the Living God, the eternal Word, took upon Himself human likeness and entered our world in the person of the God-Man, Jesus Christ. He was and is GOD with us. We celebrate the INCARNATION and rejoice that He came.
His coming meant a spiritual showdown with Satan. John, in his first letter, declared, “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy/render powerless the devil’s work.” (1 John 3:8) This spiritual enemy of Christ and His followers pushes back against the truth with a mixture of lies and recruits messengers with the skill of a proven sales manager.
So learning about the person and work of Jesus Christ is not an optional side pursuit. The deity of Jesus Christ – that He is GOD in human form, is the real deal breaker. We may want to have lots of conversations about ‘spirituality’ and ‘moral ideas,’ but we cannot truly be “standing up for Jesus” as “soldiers of the cross” if we don’t declare boldly, gracefully, truthfully and prayerfully who Jesus Christ is, what He has done and how anyone who believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.
Let’s find creative ways to write, speak, paint, sing, draw and communicate the truth. Maybe some of you need to consider some formal Bible training. Why not join a small group in a Bible-believing church and “search the Scriptures” with the help of the Spirit of God and others who desire ‘to know Jesus Christ and make Him known?’