WE ARE EXACTLY AS JESUS IS
One of my favorite verses is 1 John 4:17
Love has been perfected among us in this; that we may have boldness in the day of judgement; because as He is, so are we in this world.
This verse is one of many that gives us a glimpse into who we are, it points us in truth to our real identity. The body of Christ speaks often of the love of Christ, however they also point each other to the things that they are doing for the Lord. We tell each other that we must go out and evangelise, or we must obey in order to see the blessings of God manifest in our life, or even worse, we must repent for our unrepented of sins in order for the love of God to flow in our life.
Looking at what the Apostle John wrote, I see something totally different. I see that love among us is perfected when we understand who Jesus is. The boldness to stand before God comes from the revelation that you are covered in the finished work of Jesus. I also notice that John did not say that we are the same as Jesus is in this world because we obeyed all of His commandments.
With that attitude we would stand before God and boldly proclaim, “Lord I am worthy to enter into my inheritance because I obeyed all of your commands: I fed the hungry, I clothed the naked, I prayed for the sick, and I spoke to everyone that I came across about Jesus.” There is a scripture where Jesus will say to many, “Get away from me, I never knew you.”
No, the boldness comes from abandoning every work and sitting at His feet. Like Mary, will you do the one needful thing? Or will you be running around trying to serve Him yourself? We are only transformed as we behold Jesus as He is, then His Spirit and Love will pour in to our hearts and transform us into His image without effort.
I totally agree that the body of Christ must live lives worthy of Jesus. I believe that we should feed the hungry, clothe the naked, care for the elderly, visit the prisoners and love our neighbors as we love ourselves. The difference is that I believe these things only come from sitting at the feet of Jesus. Put Jesus back in the center of everything, let Jesus feed you, let Jesus love you, let Jesus save you.
Much like Peter when He got out of the boat, his eyes were on Jesus. It is when you see Jesus as He is that His faith becomes your faith and His faith draws you to Him on top of every storm. When we look away at the tasks we think that we must do, our eyes are diverted from the One who does them through us and we sink.
In Revelation John speaks of Lord talking to the churches and saying that we have forgotten our first love. The first love that He is speaking of is the love of Jesus for us. I can remember when my first love hit me, the wave of joy, peace and love left rushed into my heart and transformed me into a new creation who is in the very image of Jesus. It is not about our love for Him, our love will fail. It is about receiving His love for us by feeding on Him all day every day, that we can even love in the first place. When we put Jesus in the center once again, He will perfect the love among us. We never will.
Thank You and Be Blessed,
Joe D. Willis