At the Wesley Foundation Bible Study tonight we talked about why we follow Christ. This conversation was more of a “prep-talk” before we watched the Rob Bell Nooma video called “Dust”. This discourse in part produced such a sense of shame in my soul because of my reluctance and utter inability to express my opinion, just because it might have been viewed as “controversial” or even “splitting hairs”. At a Christian Bible Study, no less!! I feel ashamed to call myself a Summit Alumni, especially with my being on Staff for the second half of the summer. If I can’t be a good example of an ambassador for Christ in my immediate sphere of influence, how can I expect to teach these kids anything?
The point of contention was as follows:
The leader was asking the general question, Why Do You Follow Christ? Some of the answers included (Note – these are replicated as close as I remember, but still paraphrases):
1. II Corinthians 5:21 – We are no longer slaves to sin, but slaves to righteousness. Following Jesus frees me from having to sin and makes me instead a slave to goodness.
2. I have peace, even when I have to make difficult decisions and go through difficult things.
3. I follow Him because I believe in Him.
4. Luke 9:23 – Jesus commands us to.
5. Jesus gives me true, pure joy.
What do all these reasons have in common? They all are based on the assumption that this Jesus Christ figure and all the things written about Him in the Bible are TRUE!
All of these reasons are based on the TRUTH of Christ! You can believe in many other things. Other things can bring joy and peace. But if they are not based on truth, the previous five reasons are moot – they mean nothing. It is vanity. It is like any other flippant superstitious ritual.
So, why do I follow Christ? Because He is the Truth. He is the Answer and the Fulfillment of the questions that have plagued mankind from its birth. The Question of Origins. The Question or Purpose. The Question of Worth. Why do I follow Him? Because there is no one else TO follow, and I don’t mean that Jesus was the last resort that I turned to after all other paths proved fruitless.
Or do I? How many times have I fallen away, being trapped by the wiles of the world, only to come crawling back to the feet of the Saviour, bleeding and torn? How many times have I decided to try the ways of the world apart from Christ “just this once”, to see if it would work out better this way, only to be proven dumb and blind once again?
The answer is, of course, too many to count, but always one less than the Lord is willing to forgive. And you know what makes His mercy completely redeeming and sanctifying? The fact that His redemption and sanctification are not based on fiction. They are not based on feelings. And they are not based on folklore.
These are the facts, ladies and gentlemen, pure and simple.