Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Not Much In Man's Eyes, But A Giant To Jesus

I am not a popular preacher and I don't expect to be. It isn't because people are jealous of my stellar righteousness. Just the opposite. I am clearly a sinner saved by grace. My sins are obvious to everyone, but the grace of Yahweh should be just as evident. My unpopularity doesn't come from jealousy over my preaching skills because most people can out preach me in the flesh. I have not been called by the Lord because he needed my public speaking skills and I certainly need his anointing to complete the task. In fact, I possess nothing that the Lord needs because he needs nothing from me at all. But I am called nonetheless. No, my unpopularity steams from my habit of preaching the Word of God.

Not a lot of people want to hear the real truth any more. Most want to be entertained. Most want to listen to a skilled speaker. Others just want knowledge. Very few are truth seekers and those who start off that way soon abandon their effort when they realize the unpopular cost associated with it. It's not a hard thing to preach the truth. Just open the Word and preach nothing but the Word and the Spirit provides the rest. That is what I am determined to do and I pray I will never stray from it. I am not saying that I am the only true preacher; far from it. I am the least of the least, not worthy to be called a preacher, and I only bring what truth I have grasped and put into practice. Others are of far greater skill and anointing. But there are not many who still abide by the Word.

Sometimes, most likely accidentally, the truth is presented to the masses instead of being confined to small pockets of believers. It is then that people are faced with a decision. They can laugh it off and claim they were mistaken in the hearing, or they can embrace the truth and immediately put it into practice. What Jesus expected from those who claimed to follow him is simple to understand:

And it happened, as He spoke these things, that a certain woman from the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts which nursed You!”
But He said, “More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!” (Luke 11:27-28)

This is the same message Jesus repeated throughout his ministry and one we fail to implement. Receive the Word. Do the Word. That is what is expected of us. Receive his instructions. Obey his instructions. Over and over he repeats it in varying words but the same message, "He who has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me." Again and again. Hear and obey.

Not complicated. "If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me." Obedience. Not a complicated thing to understand but we must first know the Word to know what it is that we are to obey. We need the Truth. It needs to be preached to us, taught to us, set before us. We need to read it for ourselves, study it, consume it and have the Spirit teach it directly to our hearts. And all that we receive must be lived. There is no way around it; it must be found to be the living Word.

Truth makes us uncomfortable, especially when it requires the sacrifice of self and living to love others. We would rather get lost in distractions and be entertained by fine sounding words and arguments. It's hard to come face to face with the truth because we usually end up on our faces before Yahweh. So no, I don't expect to be too popular any time soon because I am determined to know the Word and to put it into action every day for the rest of my life. I expect to live and preach in the power of the Spirit and I don't expect it to win me any popularity contests. That's fine by me because my only desire these days is to be popular with Jesus.

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