As part of my Lenten Discipline, I am endeavouring to write more and respond less, which means this blog, as well as several others.
Instead of looking at the Tanach directly, we are going to look briefly at the New Testament, and the next few weeks, we will be centering on what it means to be a Christian.
Luke, Chapter 9 beginning at the 28th verse:
+About eight days after these sayings, Yeshuah took with him Peter, John, and James, and went up to the mountain to pray. As he was praying, the appearance of his face was altered, and his clothing became white and
dazzling. And behold, two men were talking with him, who were Moshe
and Eliayahu. They appeared in glory and spoke of his departure,
which he was about to accomplish in Jerusalem.
Now, Kefas and those who were with him were heavy with sleep, but when they were fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men who
stood with him. As Moshe and Eliyahu were departing from him, Kefas said to Yeshuah, “Master, it is good for us to be here! Let us make three tents: one for you, one for Moshe, and one for Eliayahu.” He did not know what he was saying. While Kephas was saying these things, a cloud came and overshadowed them, and they were afraid as they entered into the cloud.
A voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him!” And after the voice had spoken, Yeshuah was found alone. They kept silent and told no one in those days of what they had seen.
The key verse is here: “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him!”
What does a Father mean, when he tells his children to listen to him. Is it not a way of saying, pay attention, because you need to do what I am about to tell you.
The essence then of being a Christian is to listen to God and to obey him. This is how we can test whether or not we are Christian. Do people know we are Christians by our love for one another? Those are Messiah's words, not mine. Many times, in the Gospels, Yeshuah tells us, "If you love me, you will obey me." Do we believe this today? It seems today that there are increasingly flaws in the church, a church which is divided, a church which lacks love. To find the source of these problems, we need to go back to the beginning.
The essence of our faith, is that God is a holy, just loving Father, who created us to be in fellowship with him. Repeatedly we reject him and place our wants before him. He sent Yeshua into the world to take the death penalty for our sins upon himself. To receive the benefit of that sacrifice, we need to accept him as Lord and Saviour. To accept him only as Saviour is to mock him and to place ourselves more firmly in the pit of perdition. Yeshuah, when we accept him as Lord, not only reconciles us to God, one to another, and to nature, gives us the power to conquer sin in our own lives. If we allow that sin to continue in our lives, then we will be weak pitiful Christains, instead of being champions of the faith.
If you are not a champion of the faith, the first question you need to ask, "Have I truly accepted Yeshuah as my Lord and Saviour?" If you haven't, then you need to take this important first step. Next week, we examine Lordship.