Matthew 16:15 ~ He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
It was a great discussion in our teen class yesterday when we posed the question “When you think of Jesus, how do you envision Him?” My co-teacher and ex-Marine envisioned Him in dress blues, a real man’s Man; some of the teens thought of Him in a glorious white robe, another teen thought it might be a more humble attire, I envision the Lamb now Lion in royal array, tastefully “blinged out.” The truth of the matter is we don’t know exactly what He’ll be wearing other than what we read in Revelation 19:13-16 ~ And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
How He is dressed may not matter, but how we perceive Him personally matters a great deal. Modern day images today often paint Him as a small in stature man with beautiful eyes of compassion, long flowing hair and pastel garments. Well, I’m not even going to get into the hair argument because hairstyle just doesn’t make it or break it for me, I just love Jesus. But when it comes to stature, I’ll have to debate that one. The Revelation texts said He would smite the nations, and Jesus upsetting the tables in the temple and driving the religious thieves out with whips doesn’t strike me as a weak and small in stature Man. (John 2:15)
Our perception of God matters because how we approach Him matters. Matthew 11:29-30 ~ Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
Many mistake meekness for weakness. Meekness shows great restraint, weakness is giving yourself over. HUGE difference. Christ yoke and burden are light because He carries the greater share of it. As Dennis Legg preached in our Sunday sermon yesterday, all Christians must pick up the cross, but Christ carries the heavy end.
The forgiving nature of Christians is often considered weakness but rather it too is meekness. If you’ve forgiven someone a huge debt, you know it is truth that it takes great restraint. It would be far easier to lash out at that person than to love them and never mention it. On that same note, when we sin it is often far easier to think of Jesus as the small in stature God rather than the One who is the Holy and Righteous Judge.
I fully believe that God is all to all. He has arms of compassion that I may run into when I’m hurt or afraid, and He has stern hands of judgment when I treat His grace carelessly. He is my Prince who rescues me, my Father who defends me from evil.
Who is He to you today?