WHO IS JESUS?
JESUS CHRIST, THE SON OF GOD, IS FULLY MAN AND FULLY GOD.
He is the perfect reflection of God’s character and glory. He lived a sinless life and offered himself as the only perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on the cross. All who believe in Him are declared righteous on the basis of His death. He rose physically from the dead and will return again to earth to reign forever with those who are His.
Those are the basic details. But there is more….
THE REVOLUTION OF JESUS
Jesus has been, and always will be, a threat to the established order of things. If we understand His birth as a revolution, then we may glimpse the revolution that His life will bring.
Instead of being born into a well-established and powerful family, Jesus was born to a couple of teenagers who couldn’t even stay with their family in Bethlehem, most likely because of the scandal of her pregnancy before their official marriage.
This is how love invaded our planet. This is how the revolution began. It’s unlikely, even absurd. but the last thing it should be is boring or predictable or explainable. This should incite passionate joy or passionate disdain. This is either the greatest thing to ever happen or the most ridiculous idea ever suggested. That God should come among us as one of the “least of these”.
Not only did Jesus’ birth turn everything upside down; so did His life and what He taught. You must die to live. You must lose to gain. Weakness is strength. Joy exists in the midst of suffering. Power is restraint. Love those who persecute you. Pray for those who hate you. It is not the strong or the wealthy who will inherit the earth, but the meek. The Kingdom of God won’t be given to the religious leaders, but to the spiritual idiots [the poor in spirit]. Mourners, peacemakers, the merciful, and the persecuted can all find blessing in the Kingdom of Jesus.
Jesus Christ is the most subversive man to have ever walked the earth.
This is revolution.
If you follow Jesus, you follow the most radical man who ever existed. He marches into the world with kindness, peace, and love, and offers people a whole new way of looking at the world and living within it. His is the most radical message you can preach or live. He turns everything upside down and calls us to do likewise. Jesus is not vitally committed to our comfort and safety; He is committed to the advancing of his kingdom revolution in the hearts of people everywhere.
In talking about what His kingdom is like, Jesus announced, “from the days of John the Baptist until now, the Kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing. And forceful men take hold of it.” In other words, God is doing something so powerful and dangerous that only those who are willing to embrace it with forceful intensity may take hold of the movement of God’s Kingdom. The revolution of Jesus isn’t for the faint of heart or the middle-of-the-road. It isn’t safe. It isn’t comfortable. It costs us a great deal to say yes. We take hold of the revolution by abandoning ourselves to Jesus and letting go of everything else.
Will we choose to follow a safe Jesus of suburbia – who exists to provide us with health, wealth, comfort, and happiness? Or will we press on to find the Jesus of Nazareth, the most dangerous and radical man to ever walk the face of the earth? We want the real thing. We don’t want to worship the counterfeits and settle for less than the revolution Jesus brings. We are moving beyond the unbiblical idea that the primary work of Jesus is giving us a ticket to heaven, and now understand that He is asking us for everything, to stand with Him against all that is unloving and untrue in our world.
Together, we are pursuing this revolution of Jesus.
WHAT IS THE GOSPEL?
The Gospel is a story of “good news.” Thousands of years ago, God created this world and everything in it. He created people, men and women like you and me, so that they would know Him and be with Him. But God’s people quickly turned their backs on Him and chose their own way. When they did, a new reality of darkness and distance from God ushered in. However, God set a plan in motion to reclaim this creation that He loved and longed to be with. He sent His Son, Jesus, into the world as a way back to Himself. Through His life, Jesus taught us what God is like. Through His death, He took the judgment for our rebellion. Through His resurrection, He opened the door for us to have life with God for all of eternity. And now, through His Holy Spirit, He continues to draw people into His story and make their lives new.
WHY DOES IT NEED TO BE LIVED OUT?
The Gospel is a story that changes lives. For centuries, this story has rescued all kinds of people from lives of brokenness and has brought hope, meaning, and newness. In view of that, this is not just a story to be told. As we continue to encounter the Gospel and find our place in it, we want to live in light of its hope and promises. This means that we see our place in the world through a new lens – as men and women who show the people around us what the Author of the Gospel story is like.
The Gospel is a story of togetherness. God did not create us to be alone. He created us for community with Himself and with the rest of His creation. So as we find our place in this story, we don’t have to live it out by ourselves. God has given us one another with the intent that we would do this together. Not only does that benefit us, but as we step into the kind of Church that God wants us to be, we want our love for each other to represent Him to the world in compelling ways.
FIND OUT MORE
Join us at any of our weekend services to learn more about this Jesus of Nazareth that we given our lives to following.