WHY?

Why should we focus any more on Jesus Christ than on Abraham or Moses or Isaiah? Or on the laws in the Bible, or prophecy, or the end of the world?

Is focus on Jesus more needed than pointing out sins – especially other people’s sins?

Is Christ actually more important today than Obama or McCain? Or economic crisis? Or threats of violence around the world and at home?

Should we focus mostly on our friendship with Jesus – or on why our beliefs are better than other people’s beliefs ?

We should talk and think a lot about Jesus Christ. We should pray to him frequently.

BECAUSE

Because he is the key to all of the above. Christ is the one human specially designated by God to truly bring the Kingdom of God to the human race.

Christ is also the one through whom we have forgiveness of our own sins and real experience of our own lives changing.

Christ fulfills the meaning and the prophecies of the Old Testament, and makes possible the hope and transformations offered in the New Testament.

So we should each one be close to the living Christ before we talk a lot about sin — or political issues — or baptism – or forgiveness – or church membership – or the end of the world. We should be in touch with him daily!

Those other things are important. But all find their significance and solution in the person of Jesus Christ.

SETTING US FREE

You know, Jesus didn’t just say “the truth shall set you free.” He was a little more specific.

He said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” [John 8:32]

PERSONALLY

It’s personal.

It doesn’t do to look around and think, “Well, I’m more religious than so-and-so.” Or, “They don’t understand science and the Bible and I do.” Or, “They don’t really see how important [fill-in-the-blank] is, but I do.” Or, “I can’t believe they support that other political party.”

The real question is, are we staying truly in touch with Jesus? THOSE who continue in touch with him are the people who will be finding truth and freedom.

SAINTS

All down through the last 2000 years great “saints” who did great good in the world, and who often got amazing answers to prayer, told us we need to be close to Christ. They said to think about him every day – to read the Gospels to be helped in that. They said to pray to him many times a day.

Of course you can sustain a religious commitment without being so attentive.

But we want more than that. We want the presence and power of Christ in our lives, our communities, and our world.

John 8:28-32 “Jesus said, ‘When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am the one I claim to be.’

We can “lift up” Jesus Christ in our own lives, and we will get the same result! “You will know that I am the one.”