The Person-Driven Life

medium_4501890462Christian, did you know that everything God has given us is in the Person, Jesus Christ, the Son of God (Ephesians 1:3; 2 Peter 1:2-3).  Paul tells us in Ephesians 1:3 that “every” spiritual blessing is in Jesus Christ.  Not some but every!  So, Christianity knows only the Person-driven/focused life (John 14:6; 2 Cor 3:18) and the Person-driven/focused Church (Ephesians 1:22-23)!

God’s way for us is to live a life focused on the Person of His Son, Jesus Christ (Colossians 3:1-4).  To follow any program is not to follow the Person, Jesus Christ.   I’ll even go as far to say that if you focus on following the Word of God without your primary focus being on knowing the Person of Jesus Christ, following Him, pleasing Him and becoming like Him, then you are outside of God’s way and will not please God or become like Christ.  Let’s expand on all of this.

Think about the famous words of Jesus, “I am the way, the truth and the life” (John 14:6).  Those are very exclusive words.  Jesus is saying, I am the only way, the only truth, and the only life.  First,  Jesus is the only way!  He is the only program! The way is a Person; the person of Christ!  Paul told us how to grow spiritually in 2 Corinthians 3:18.  He wrote: “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.”    How are you transformed into Christ-likeness (“the same image from glory to glory”)?  You focus on the Person of Christ (“the glory of the Lord”)– who He is, what He is Like as a Person and what He has done!  Then you are transformed in His image!   When Christ raised Lazarus from the dead,  he told Martha twice to focus on Him and not on Lazarus in order to see God’s purposes in that miracle (John 11:44, 40).  If she wanted to grow into Christ-likeness, she had to focus on Christ and not the amazing miracle of her brother standing there, risen from the dead. If you had been there and seen Lazarus raised from the dead, where would your focus be? On Lazarus, a man raised from the dead who will die again?  OR, on Jesus Christ, life Himself, your life, your Savior and Lord?

Second, Jesus is “the truth.”  The “truth” does not refer to programs about Christianity or about how to live the successful, prosperous, victorious Christian life!  No!  Christ, Himself, is the truth.  Christ is saying that we must go to Scripture to know Him, and become like Him (John 17:17). We don’t go to Scripture for methods, programs, steps, etc.  It is absolutely critical that we do go to the Bible and study it vigorously, but we do so to know Christ (Ephesians 1:17)!   Is the Word of God the ultimate authority in your life where you come to know and obey Jesus?   If you do not know the Word, you do not know Jesus Christ, because you do not know Him as “the truth”.  As Paul said, we learn a Person, Christ! (Ephesians 4:20).

Third, Jesus is “the life.”  Are you working too hard in your Christian walk?  Have you trusted in programs or methods to be the power in your life?  Be honest, did they really work when the trials and suffering came?   Jesus Christ is “the life” and God’s way is to let His life work through us.  Let Him work through you.   How did Jesus tell us how to become Christians and live the Christian life?  Throughout His Ministry, Jesus said, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me” (Matthew 16:24).  Jesus said this is a Person-driven life!  You are to only follow ONE person!  Either you are following yourself, or you are following Him.  To follow Him, Jesus commands you to “deny” yourself.  That is, to once-and-for-all disown yourself, separate from yourself!  To do this you must confess yourself as a sinner against God, unworthy of eternal life based on your own merit and works.  You are NOT the way; neither are any programs!  Follow Him exclusively by accepting His free gift of eternal life by Him being your substitute for the death you deserve as a sinner.  Thereafter, you live life by letting Him live His life through you (Galatians 2:19-2) as you not only obey Him in all things at all times but also see your obedience as His will and His strength working through you in that obedience. This is accomplished by “yielding” to the Holy Spirit in you who only wants to live Christ’s live through you (John 16:13-14). That’s following Jesus Christ!  As Christians, Christ is our life! (Colossians 3:4).  If you want to grow into Christ-likeness, live the Person-driven life!

photo credit: Fr. Stephen, MSC via photopin cc

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