Being like Jesus - What do you make of it? Usually it is preached from pulpits that nobody can be like Jesus, but what does the Bible say about it? Of course, nobody can bring salvation to people - it is something that Jesus has done. But what about the rest? To be like Jesus, we must know, above all, what he has been like. We must get to know his character and his attitudes towards various aspects of life. So let's look through all gospels and some prophecies of the Old Testament relating to Jesus as well as some passages from the letters of the new covenant. I believe that, at the end of the analysis, we will get quite a precise picture of Jesus and be able to answer the question whether we can be like Jesus and if so, how to achieve that.
Let's start with looking at whether we can or are supposed to try to be like Jesus. The answer is YES in both respects. Jesus came to the earth circa 2,000 years ago to reveal God's character and nature. As there is harmony between God the Father, Jesus and Holy Spirit, it does not matter whether the Scripture says we should resemble Jesus or our heavenly Father or we should not grieve the Holy Spirit by our behaviour and thinking. How can we see there really is harmony between God the Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit? Let's have a look at the following verse:
John 14, 26: But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
If we have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Saviour, God has accepted us as His sons and daughters. Yes, God has granted us enormous grace. He has not only forgiven every sin of ours thanks to Jesus' sacrifice but we have become sons and daughters of the creator of the whole universe.
John 1, 12: But as many as received Him, to them He gave the authority to become children of God, to those believing into His name:
And this heavenly Father of ours, His son Jesus and the Holy Spirit long for us to present Him to people as Jesus did and to reflect His character; simply to be like Him. In the following text, every thought of mine will be supported by a verse or several verses from the Scripture:
Matthew 5, 48: Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in Heaven is perfect.
The word translated as "perfect" is "teleos" in Greek, which means "mature (especially in respect of moral and character development), complete, lacking nothing, perfect. If you read again the above-mentioned verse from the gospel according to Matthew 5, 48, you will find that it is not a suggestion by Jesus or a theoretical possibility, rather, it is his command!
Let's have a look at another verse where it is written quite clearly that we, in our behaviour and character, are supposed to bear the likeness of our heavenly Father:
Matthew 5, 44-45: But I say to you, Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who abuse you and persecute you, that you may become sons of your Father in Heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
Jesus has set a perfect example of how to behave as God's children and what our attitudes should be like. In fact, this article is a "quest" for the character, the attitudes and the priorities of Jesus. Jesus set the task to transform into his likeness not only for a selected group of particularly "anointed" servants, rather, for each of his disciples (followers). In fact, Jesus is not very demanding, he says it will suffice if we are like him:
Matthew 10, 24-25: A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his lord. It is enough for a disciple that he be like his teacher, and a servant like his lord.
1 John 2, 3-6: Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, I know Him, and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His Word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.
To understand the main principles, we do not even need to study Paul's letters, which pose a problem even for present-day "expert theologians". The most important things can be found in Jesus' "Sermon on the Mount" (5. - 7. chapters of the Gospel according to Matthew). As it is three whole chapters, I won't copy them in. Read it in your own Bibles or click on the link to read it in a window.
Well, let's return to the character and the attitudes of Jesus and try to arrange them, at least roughly, by importance. Actually, it seems to me now that all could be summed up in a single attitude, which is: In every moment of life the first thing is love for God, learning and fulfilling his will. Let's have a more thorough look at Jesus' attitudes, character and examples of his behaviour.
1) God and His will shall occupy the first place
Matthew 4, 8-11: Again, the devil takes Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and shows Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he says to Him, All these things I will give to You if You will fall down and do homage to me. Then Jesus said to him, Go away, Satan! For it has been written, You shall do homage to the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve. Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.
While under the test of his faithfulness and readiness, Jesus refused to receive the glory of all kingdoms of the world in exchange for his falling down before Satan (worshipping him), saying that it is God alone who shall be revered and worshipped. In his circa 30 years, Jesus could have had all kingdoms of the world, however, I believe he did not hesitate a second. I feel like crying when I realize how many times we accept incomparably meaner offers of the "world", rejecting and offending God, our real source of life, for a momentary pleasure, respect from other people etc.
Matthew 16, 22-23: Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, Far be it from You, Lord; this shall never be to You! But He turned and said to Peter, Get behind Me, Satan! You are a snare to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.
Jesus never compromised. In any moment he was focused at seeking and fulfilling God's will. Although he had said Peter that he was blessed because God Himself revealed him the truth about Messiah, "only six verses further on he said: "Get behind me Satan...!", because, for that moment, Peter preferred the "natural, intellectual" human wisdom. The friendship with Peter could not prevent Jesus from seeking and fulfilling God's will concerning his life. God's will always occupied the first place in his life.
Matthew 22, 36-40: Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law? Jesus said to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.
In fact, the service of Jesus here on earth was driven primarily by love for God the Father. People fondly mix up love with infatuation, however, the Scripture shows us what love is like. The most detailed description of love can be found in the 13th chapter of the 1st letter to Corinth. Also the 14th and 15th chapters of the Gospel according to John are very interesting. Jesus does not describe the love for Him or for his Father as a feeling, rather, he simply says that anyone who loves God keeps His commandments.
Matthew 6, 24: No one is able to serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. It is not possible to serve God and mammon.
Yes, it is as simple as that. Only one "thing" can occupy the first place in our life. It can be almost everything. And anything we place first in our life becomes our God. However, it cannot be both acquisition or accumulation of assets (mammon), quest for fame and respect of people, the spouse, the children, drugs, meal, sports, TV etc. and the true God at the same time. It is not possible. The result of such an "attempt" is anticipated in the above-mentioned verse. It does not matter what we say. If something else than the true God holds the first place, a fight will take place in our heart. Try as we might, there will always be an unspoken "hatred" of God, who want to "rob us of pleasures", which we would be able to enjoy if we did not know him. Submitting himself to Father's will, Jesus firmly refused to assert his own will and intentions.
Luke 12, 29-31: And do not seek what you shall eat or what you shall drink, nor be agitated. For all these things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things. But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things will be conveyed to you.
God knows every need of ours, and Jesus has made a wonderful promise to us. We can (and should) put out of our heads the everyday business of living and seek God's will in the first place; then God Himself will take care of meeting our needs. We can either exert all our resources to satisfy our needs, with no energy and time left for doing anything else, or seek and fulfil God's intentions for our lives, with God sustaining us in His own way - as a bonus :-).
2) That's why I have come (to fulfil God's will)
Knowing what he had been appointed to and what was his task, Jesus devoted himself to the completion of his mission. I believe that if God calls somebody to service, then the person knows what their mission is. The service of Jesus was incomparable to that of other people in some aspects (thus he was able to read a prophecy about himself and his service in Torah (a part of the Old Testament)), nevertheless, a vast majority of its traits and principles was not any different from the service and attitudes of all other servants of God.
John 6, 38: For I have come down out of Heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.
Jesus did not come to show what he is able to achieve. He came in the human body with all its limitations, ready not to assert himself, rather, to fulfil the plan of (the task from) his Father.
Matthew 4, 17: From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, Repent, for the kingdom of Heaven has drawn near.
Mark 1, 14-15: Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.
Mark 1, 35-39: And in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there prayed. And Simon and those who were with Him followed after Him. And when they found Him, they said to Him, Everyone is looking for You. But He said to them, Let us go into the neighboring towns, that I may preach there also, because for this purpose I have come forth. And He was preaching in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and casting out demons.
Until his being called to service (before he passed the "test of maturity" and faithfulness in the desert), Jesus lived quite an ordinary life. He made tables and chairs and, as a child, he was probably more obedient than is usual. As soon as he was called to service he started to fulfil it. In his case it was the preaching of the good news of the Kingdom of Heaven and the need to repent (to turn away from one's evil deeds), the calling of the disciples, the healing of the sick, the raising of the dead, the expelling of demons, the prophesying and all other what was needed at the moment.
Note that Jesus did not act according to his own will. He did not make miracles from childhood, he did not preach from childhood, he started only after he was appointed, doing only what he knew his Father wanted him to do. We often have a big problem with patience, usually much bigger than with unwillingness to do something. We are often saying: "God, do send us somewhere at last! Give us a task, a work, a service, give us miraculous power, give us Your Holy Spirit in full, give us all gifts of the Holy Spirit!", while God is working on our character, teaching us patience, giving us a glimpse of our true motives that drive us ahead.
John 5, 19: Then Jesus answered and said to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son is not able to do anything from Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does likewise.
John 5, 30: I am able to do nothing from Myself. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.
Jesus walked the earth as a man in full sense of the word, bearing all human limitations. He did not use his "divine power", rather, he offered himself fully to do God's will.
Matthew 12, 47-50: Then one said to Him, Behold, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, seeking to speak with You. But He answered and said to the one who told Him, Who is My mother and who are My brothers? And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, Here are My mother and My brothers. For whoever does the will of My Father in Heaven, that one is My brother and sister and mother.
As you can see, Jesus not only sought and fulfilled God's plan for his life, but also highly esteemed those who did the same.
3) Making one's body available
it is nice that we are often saying: "God, I offer myself for anything you want. May your will be done, not mine!" However, the reality is that if God wants His will to be done, he will probably have to do it Himself or somehow make us do it as he did to Jonah, for instance. As long as God does not interfere with our comfort, blesses us in respect of money, family, health, job etc., everything is all right. What will happen, however, if problems arise or if God sends us to do something we do not like? Something that will cost us some effort, something that will humiliate us, "rob" us of our sleep and our comfort? Will we still be saying: "„Hallelujah, your will, God, may be done, not mine! Here I am, send me!"? How was it with Jesus?
Psalms 40, 7-9: Then I said, Lo, I come (in the volume of the Book it is written of Me): I delight to do Your will, O My God, and Your Law is within My heart. I have preached righteousness in the great assembly; lo, I have not restrained My lips, O Jehovah, You know.
At this point, the Psalmist wrote a prophecy about Jesus. And later Jesus fulfilled this prophecy. It is not much we can give or offer to God. God does not find pleasing our would-be pious sacrifices, fasts made for wrong reasons and with wrong attitudes etc. Do you know what really can move God's heart? The unconditional love for Him and for people around us that makes itself manifest by offering our lives, bodies and strength to God, preferring to seek and fulfil God's will rather than ours.
Hebrews 10, 5-9: Therefore, when He came into the world, He said: Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, but a body You have prepared for Me. You did not take pleasure in burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin. Then I said, Behold, I have come (in the volume of the book it is written of Me) to do Your will, O God. Previously saying, Sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings, and offerings for sin You did not desire, nor were pleased with them (which are offered according to the Law), then He said, Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God. He takes away the first in order that He may establish the second.
The same confirmed Paul later when he was writing a letter to Rome:
Romans 12, 1-2: I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
Romans 6, 12-13: Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.
4) Serving rather than being served
One of the things that made Jesus different from other teachers was that he as the true Master did not let himself be served, rather he served to others. And how it is with "great servants of God" nowadays? I cannot imagine Jesus in the place of some of them, requiring accommodation in a many-star hotel and first class airline tickets (neither can I imagine Jesus having a multi-million dollar account and preaching to the hungry about the merciful and loving God). Rather, I would expect from Jesus (and from his disciples) something like he did in the case of "Zacchaeus" (Luke 19, 5: And when Jesus came to the place, He looked up and saw him, and said to him, Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must stay at your house.). I would reckon that Jesus accepts hospitality in a family where he would be able to instruct, encourage, free, heal or save anybody. Yes, the rules of God's Kingdom differ from those of the world. Jesus did not come to be served, rather, to serve.
Matthew 20, 25-28: But Jesus called them to Himself and said, You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. But it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave; just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.
Matthew 23, 11-12: But he who is greater among you shall be your servant. And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.
5) Seeking appreciation from God, rather than from people
This is really a frequent problem of present-day "God's servants". The quest for acceptance and appreciation from people makes them convey only the pleasant messages from God, not the negative ones. This quest prevents them from saying the God's Word clearly and in full - both the offer of remission of sins and the warning against the upcoming judgement. How it was with Jesus? Jesus came to seek and fulfil the will of his heavenly Father; it was His appreciation he sought, not that of people. Jesus was downright zealous for God's things.
Matthew 21, 12-13: And Jesus went into the temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. And He said to them, It is written, My house shall be called a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves.
John 2, 13-17: Now the Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And He found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the moneychangers sitting. And when He had made a whip out of rope, He drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers' money and overturned the tables. And He said to those who sold doves, Take these things away from here! Do not make My Father's house a house of merchandise! And His disciples remembered that it was written, Zeal for Your house has consumed Me.
Yes, Jesus was so focused at the things of his heavenly Father that he could not bear "desecration" of His temple. Nowadays, many people would call him a fanatic. And they would not be far from truth. His zeal for God's matters could not slip past notice, he radiated it wherever he went. He did not need to trumpet it, it could not be overlooked. What was important for him was his pleasing his heavenly Father.
Romans 15, 1-3: We then who are strong ought to bear with the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to building up. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.
If you are zealous for something, you will be hurt by anything that is against it. When somebody defamed his heavenly Father in any way, it was as if they hurt Jesus himself.
It amused me when I read somewhere that Jesus would completely fail the test of assertiveness.
Matthew 22, 16: And they sent to Him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, Teacher, we know that You are true, and teach the way of God in truth; nor do You care about anyone, for You do not regard the person of men.
How could they know it? Simply. He did not care about what the lawyers and Pharisees would say about him. He told them bluntly the truth. He sought acceptance from his Father. In any circumstances, he conveyed the true message from God, notwithstanding the status of the people who listened to it.
John 5, 41: I do not receive honor from men.
John 5, 44: How can you believe, who receive honor from one another, and do not seek the honor that comes from God only?
John 7, 18: He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who seeks the glory of the One who sent Him is true, and unrighteousness is not in Him.
Of course, the same rules as for Jesus apply for all his disciples and followers:
Galatians 1, 10: For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ.
The apostle Paul was keenly aware of the fact that nobody can serve two masters - please both people and God. He rightly observes that anybody who seek acceptance from people cannot become a true servant of Jesus.
1 Thessalonians 2, 3-6: For our exhortation did not come from error or uncleanness, nor was it in deceit. But as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God, who tests our hearts. For neither at any time did we use flattering words, as you know, nor in pretense of covetousness; God is witness. Nor did we seek honor from men, either from you or from others, when we might have been authoritative as apostles of Christ.
6) Renounceing oneself
This is a real headache for most of Jesus' disciples. Perhaps one may say: "God, give me all the gifts of the Holy Spirit and I'll go and preach and pray for the sick." But to renounce oneself? What's the meaning of this? God, whatever do you want of us?
Exactly what you are reading. Renounce yourselves, stop being focused at your business, stop caring about satisfying your own whims. Stop doing things for your own benefit, for your own fame, for your own profit. Forget about the word "I", erase it from your vocabulary; seek and fulfil God's will instead. Consider others more important than yourselves. Celebrate God rather than yourselves with your life.
Philippians 2, 3-11: Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or self-glory, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others as surpassing himself. Let each of you not look out for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider clinging, to be equal with God, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found comprised as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him a name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in Heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
This world obeys different rules than those of God's Kingdom. This world is saying: "Grab whatever you can! Enjoy yourself! You deserve a better car, house, wife, job etc. than your neighbour. Show what you are able to do! Show how tough you can be! Be pushy and you will succeed! Tell people what they want to hear and you will have them over the barrel! Forget about decency, otherwise you'll get nowhere!"
God, however, teaches us humbleness and dependency on Him alone, he teaches us to consider others more important than ourselves. God want us to be like Him, to stop thinking only of ourselves, our fame, our comfort etc., to serve people instead having people serve us. We are supposed to reflect the character of our heavenly Father - follow the example of His son and our Lord Jesus Christ. One of the main attitudes required is renouncing oneself.
Matthew 16, 24-25: Then Jesus said to His disciples, If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.
7) Following Jesus (or What to do?)
Luke 14, 33: So likewise, whoever of you does not bid farewell to all that he has is not able to be My disciple.
Mark 8, 33-38: But when He had turned around and looked at His disciples, He rebuked Peter, saying, Get behind Me, Satan! For you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men. And when He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel's will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.
Luke 14, 26-27: If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, and wife and children, and brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.
Matthew 10, 37-39: He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life on account of Me will find it.
1 Peter 4, 1-3: Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has been released from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh in the lusts of men, but in the will of God. For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in licentiousness, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries.
Luke 6, 35-38: But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful. Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over it will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.
2 Corinthians 6, 4-10: But in all things commending ourselves as ministers of God; in much endurance, in afflictions, in needs, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in sleeplessness, in fastings, in purity, in knowledge, in longsuffering, in kindness, in the Holy Spirit, in sincere love, in the Word of Truth, in the power of God, through the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, through honor and dishonor, through evil report and good report; as deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold we live; as chastened, and yet not put to death; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.
Colossians 3, 1-17: If then you are raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on the things of the earth; for you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory. Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: sexual perversion, uncleanness, passion, evil lusts, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience; in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them. But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his practices, and have put on the new man who is renewed in full true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all things and in all. Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also do. And above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God, even the Father, through Him.
To be able to follow Jesus we must brace ourselves with endurance and patience! We need to learn obedience, which is possible only through trial and tribulations we undergo. It was the same with Jesus and it will be the same with us!
Hebrews 5, 7-8: who, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries and tears to Him who had the power to save Him from death, and was heard because of His godly fear, though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered.
Hebrews 10, 35-38: Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise: For yet a little while, and He who is coming will come and will not linger. Now the just shall live by faith; but if anyone draws back, My soul is not pleased with him.
Hebrews 12, 1-3: Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so persistently harasses us, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such opposition from sinners against Himself, that you not become weary and faint in your souls.
It is not possible to summarize this article because it itself is a brief summary aiming to show the biblical legacy of Jesus (and consequently, his disciples). The whole message differs from the teaching of the last days, e.g. teaching of the so-called word of faith or super faith. Instead of the teaching of prosperity, the Scripture presents the teaching of humbleness and modesty, instead the teaching about a man aspiring to the position of a "little god", the Bible offers us a teaching about serving others, renunciation etc. Think it over, please, whether your church teaches the authentic biblical view of life and the following of Christ! To be a disciple of Jesus of Nazareth means to be like him. It is something else than the convenient "Saturday or Sunday Christianity" - attending a meeting once a week, listening to an encouraging preaching, singing HALLELUJAH and then returning back into the turmoil of life, no different from that of people who do not know God.
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