Man Of Sorrows

May 1, 2011

I just heard a excerpt from a sermon on revival only coming when there is anguish in God’s people. There should be anguish over the state of worldliness in the Church and its lack of impact on the world. It is odd that most people are coming to church to be entertained. We want to feel good and do not want any “hard” preaching as that does not seem graceful or loving.

We are called Christians and that name was given to us by our enemies in the 1st Century just as Baptists were given their name by their enemies centuries later. Yet, what does it mean to be a Christian? There are many facets to it, but if we are to be like Christ let’s look at some of the names He was called or how He was described.

The title of this post is man of sorrows. Indeed He prayed and wept many times over His people, death, His mission. He was despised and rejected of men. Certainly, not a situation of thrills and entertainment. He was not a celebrity. When He appeared before people of notoriety it was to be accused, criticized and abused not to wined and dined with questions about His latest book or how large His congregation had grown. Indeed, His last public appearance was to be paraded through the streets carrying His cross after having been beaten and abused to end up naked on that cross to die for our sins. Indeed, He was despised and rejected of men, not admired by the religious and politically elite.

The results of His preaching ministry? After having had crowds of four and five thousand men not counting women and children, as long as He was feeding them or doing miracles, His crowd diminished when He started preaching deep theology. He even questioned Peter if he also was going to leave after that sermon. In the end, He had only 120 disciples waiting as they were told by Him on the day of Pentecost.

So are we really Christians in 2011? Paul said that it was not only given to us to believe on Christ, but also to suffer for His sake. (Phil 1:29) We are to endure hardness as a good soldier. We have a long history of saints being martyred starting with the Apostles and plenty of them being martyred around the world.

Does that speak of a soft, effeminate Christianity that Horatious Bonar saw coming about in the late nineteenth century? Does that speak of grand buildings that almost make the Taj Mahal look like a slum house? Does that speak of grand entertainment? Does that speak of sermons geared to scratch itching ears with great care given to not offend even the devil? I don’t think so.

When will Western Christians, especially American, give up their foolishness and seek to be like their Master though understanding that if they crucified the Teacher they will surely not use kid gloves on His true disciples that want to follow Him and not just wear WWJD materials as fad accessories. What would Jesus do? He was obedient unto death. Now that you know what He did are you willing to follow Him? It may not be entertaining or smooth, but their will be joy in the fellowship of His sufferings!! Maranatha!


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