I am gradually learning to listen to my 22-year-old son. I am learning to respect his insights instead of thinking that I am the one who needs to bring him around all the time. It’s a big stretch for me. He says things differently than I would say them so I have to weigh carefully what says lest I miss something important. Ever since he said he had my back in reaching the younger generations I am taking him seriously. Like when he brought up yesterday about knowing the warmth of Jesus in our hearts. I suddenly realized what a beautiful expression that was of what it feels like to have a relationship with God through Jesus.
There’s a reason why it’s all about Jesus, and it’s a simple one. Only Jesus can save. No-one else and nothing else can save us. We can’t even save ourselves (especially that!). I am often amazed at how obvious this is and how it seems everyone would believe it if they heard the whole story. Yet they do not. Why? I’m not sure everyone gets the right message. Why did so many young people come to Christ fifty years ago? Certainly it was a move of the Holy Spirit, but it was also the fact that people were getting the right message for a change. Christianity wasn’t about going to church and being good and behaving yourself. It was about being sinners, saved by Jesus.
When you think of Christianity as one of the four major religions of the world (Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism being the other three), you miss entirely the whole point. You can’t compare it this way. Talk about Christianity as one religion among four, and you completely misunderstand this. Talk about Jesus Christ and you have something else entirely. In the four religions (Christianity included), you have a creed, a set of values, a list of expectations, a code of behavior, a number of rituals, a rich history. In Jesus you have none of that. You have a living, current relationship with God, who became man for the purpose of doing what no other human being could do — save us all by taking on Himself the punishment for all our wrongdoing and restoring us to a desired relationship with him. And having done that — having removed the barrier between us and God — He now wants to fellowship with us. It’s simple, beautiful and unbelievable. God wants a meaningful relationship with us and He wants us to be in meaningful relationships with each other around Him.
Things are quite different than they were during the Jesus Movement fifty years ago, but some things remain the same, and this is one of them. It’s still all about Jesus, and Jesus is not a religion; he is a relationship.
Like Chandler said, that’s how you know you have come into a relationship with Christ. You know because of the warmth of Jesus in your heart. We knew that fifty years ago; we know it “fifty years ago today.”
We are committed to our Go Live campaign that still has roughly $4,000 to go. We are committed to bring the Jesus Movement forward to today. We are committed to our Jesus Music originals who are helping us do that as we interview them around the 14 characteristics of the Jesus Movement for today. Help us carry this message to the next generation of pioneers into a new frontier. HELP US REACH OUR GOAL so we can introduce the Gospel of Welcome — Grace Turned Outward — to everyone, everywhere!
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