Who is Jesus and what is He really like? People around the world have been impacted by the story of Jesus, whether or not they believe in Him as anything more than a good teacher. Millions of lives have been changed through an encounter with Him and His teachings. Some have even died for Him. So, who is He?
I invite you to join me for my Breakfast Book Club as for the next few weeks I look at the story of Jesus. Each Thursday I’ll be sharing readings on The Breakfast Show and thoughts here from the book Messiah by Jerry D Thomas.
Whatever your background and beliefs, I hope that you will see Jesus with fresh eyes as we explore this story together.
Chapter One – God becomes one of us
How did this world get so broken? If God is good, where did evil come from?
These are hard questions with no easy answers, but the Bible does give us some clues and teachings about what is happening behind the scenes. There is an Enemy, and the world is a battleground, but there is hope.
So what I love about chapter one of The Messiah is that it weaves all these biblical clues together to form a narrative around what happened and why Jesus became “God with us.”
I’ve often been impatient with God. Why doesn’t He just wipe evil out right now? Why doesn’t he force everyone to be good? For me, a key quote from this chapter provides the start of an answer:
“By misrepresenting God’s character, Satan pulled humans into his rebellion. The long dark night of earth’s history began. The only way to lighten the shadows was to show that Satan’s description of God was wrong.
This couldn’t be done by force. Force has no place in God’s plans. He wants only a response of love, and love does not happen on demand. Love cannot be forced or ordered of anyone. Love is returned only when love is offered.
To know God is to love Him. So the way to lead people back to God was to show them what God was really like. This could be done by only one Being in the universe. Only Jesus, who knew the limitless love of His Father, could make that love clear to all others.” The Messiah p 13
I believe God is love, but honestly, that doesn’t always get from my head to my heart. Sometimes I can fall into thinking I have to bribe God to be good to me, or that God is some kind of heavenly policeman waiting to punish me for my offenses.
Sometimes I just think that God is distant.
We all have twisted pictures of God. It’s an enormously hopeful thought for me that by looking at the life of Jesus, I can know what God is really like.
Join in our book club discussion in the comments below!
- What stands out to you from the quote above?
- How have you viewed God? Does your picture of God change at all after reading this quote?
- If you could ask God one question, what would it be?
Listen to Lynette share chapters from The Messiah on The Breakfast Show every Thursday after 8am. Or catch up later via the podcast.
If you have questions, or you’d like to find out more about what the Bible teaches on the great conflict between good and evil, let us know.