Hold Still! This Will Only Hurt a Bit

This is the season of flu shots and vaccinations.

Every year, my father receives his flu shot and then insists that THAT is what makes him ill. Every year. Like Charlie Brown and his football.

Vaccinations are fascinating. Injecting ourselves with a weakened form of a disease, actually invites our bodies to develop a resistance to catching the illness in its more powerful form.

That happens with faith in Jesus Christ, too.

Some of us have watered down the truth of Christ to the point where it’s almost benign and when we share THAT with others, they actually become resistant to the real truth in its pure and powerful form.

There is a saying about this problem that goes like this: Only Jesus. Nothing more. Nothing less. Nothing else.

Often it’s a challenge to separate what is Biblical from what is cultural.

For example, in some cultures, punctuality is highly valued and being on time is a form of respect. In other cultures, timeliness is not of great concern and no one takes offense if events don’t happen right on schedule. So, one group of Christians values being on time for worship and another group of believers values worship services that last for hours and no one is right or wrong because the Bible doesn’t prescribe for this.

We need to take care that what we share with others is Biblical, not simply cultural. Only Jesus. Nothing more. Nothing less. Nothing else.

But we also have to be careful that we don’t try to communicate Jesus like He’s only one of the ways to eternal life. Like He’s a flavor of grace, an option on the road to enlightenment, one entrée on a full menu of spiritual options on a par with all the false gods begging to be served.

Jesus is not our religion. He existed in time and He entered history but unlike Abraham Lincoln or Ghandi or Buddha or Muhammad, Jesus transcends time, divides time, exists outside of time and history is actually HIS – story.

So, today, I have no better warning than to caution you not to inoculate people with a weakened version of our message that makes them resistant to the Truth! Do not add to the gospel as though it needs seasoning or sides lest these needlessly put off those who would otherwise respond.

And I have no better words about our message than were recorded by Paul in the book of Colossians 1: 13-23

13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

21 Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. 22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— 23 if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.”

This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven! Do not move from the hope held out in the gospel, loved ones!

Only Jesus. Nothing more. Nothing less. Nothing else.

Sometimes the truth hurts. But it’s a short-lived pain that brings healing and life.

Deception is less painful in the moment, but the pain grows like a disease of the soul and it lasts forever.

Be well, loved ones. And spread the truth that leads to complete healing.

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    The Conversation

  1. KB Cook says:

    BINGO! You hit the nail on the head on a subject near&dear to my heart. I think the Gospel of Christ has been in the “spin-cycle” wa-a-ay too long! Good words.

  2. Karin says:

    And Jesus is enough! It’s not Jesus and…. and…. Thanks for this post!

    I did have to laugh at the photo though!! Can’t even feel these needles nowadays; they glide in so smoothly.