** Update ** Please read the comments for further discussion of this post. -dip
I was a little disturbed when I saw a preview of a new documentary called “Jesus Camp”. I knew they weren’t talking about the type of Christianity that I know. The problem is that many people will look at this and conclude that all “Christians” are crazy. There’s a pretty good review of the documentary here. I pretty much agree with what he has to say. There will always be people trying to portray followers of Jesus in a bad light. Crazy people like this Becky Fischer don’t do much to help the cause. They miss the whole point of Jesus’ message:
We all have sinned. We will always sin. That sin seperates us from God. Since God is a just God, He demands a consequence for our sin. The consequence for sin (all sin) is eternal seperation from God – a spiritual death. But – and this is the good part – God is also a loving God. He wants a relationship with us and He knows that there isn’t anything thing that we can do on our own to reconcile ourselves to Him. So, he sent his son Jesus to this earth to be the one human on earth who was perfect. He was blame free. Then, in the ultimate act of love, Jesus allowed himself to die, to pay for the sins of every human being. He demonstrated the power he had over death by physically raising from the dead and after a few weeks, went physically into heaven.
What was Jesus’ message? To be saved from eternal seperation from God, we only have to admit that we are sinners, acknowledge that we are seperated from God, believe in what Jesus did for us. Our faith should be in the fact that Jesus’ sacrificial act is our path to salvation. As a result of placing our faith in Jesus, we now have the ability to have a personal, intentional relationship with God directly. We don’t have to go through anyone.
Do we become perfect? Of course not. We are all still sinners. But as we acknowledge our sin we also know that God is faithful and forgives our sin. Does that mean there are a bunch of rules to follow? Nope! Does it mean you become some crazed Jesus freak? Most likely not! But here is what it does mean. Jesus said the most important commandment was to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul and all your mind. The second most important commandment is similar – to love others like your love yourself.” If we strive to practice these two ideas – everything else will fall into place.