“We know Jesus of Nazareth was a historical person, a human being who lived his convictions even to the point of death. He bore witness in his time and context to a God of compassion and unconditional forgiveness. He healed and exorcised. He rejected violence and included public outcasts in his table-fellowship. He stood…for a domination free order. As Christians we believe, furthermore, that God emerged most fully in Jesus. By faith, we hold that Jesus the Christ makes God present to us. Or, as Roger Haight would put it, that ”it is no less than God with whom we are confronted in Jesus.”
May I live my life in imitation of the life of Jesus.
In the context of my time, how do I bear witness to a God of compassion and unconditional forgiveness? Am I conditioned by prejudice and public opinion not to include certain people in my compassion and forgiveness? What does the life of Christ witness to me?
Then Jesus began traveling through all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every disease and every illness. When he saw the crowds, he was deeply moved with compassion for them, because they were troubled and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is vast, but the workers are few. So ask the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into his harvest.”
Matthew 9:35 -37
As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love… My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you…You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last.This is my command: Love each other.
I know men and I tell you that Jesus Christ is no mere man. Between Him and every other person in the world there is no possible term of comparison. Alexander, Caesar, Charlemagne, and I have founded empires. But on what did we rest the creation of our genius? Upon force. Jesus Christ founded His empire upon love; and at this hour millions of men would die for Him.
Even those who have renounced Christianity and attack it, in their inmost being still follow the Christian ideal, for hitherto neither their subtlety nor the ardour of their hearts has been able to create a higher ideal of man and of virtue than the ideal given by Christ of old.
As the centuries pass, the evidence is accumulating that, measured by His effect on history, Jesus is the most influential life ever lived on this planet. — Historian Kenneth
I have read in Plato and Cicero sayings that are very wise and very beautiful; but I never read in either of them: “Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden.”
As a child I received instruction both in the Bible and in the Talmud. I am a Jew, but I am enthralled by the luminous figure of the Nazarene….No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life.
Our problem is this: we usually discover him within some denominational or Christian ghetto. We meet him in a province and, having caught some little view, we paint him in smaller strokes. The Lion of Judah is reduced to something kittenish because our understanding cannot, at first, write larger definitions.
Whenever the method of worship becomes more important than the Person of worship, we have already prostituted our worship. There are entire congregations who worship praise and praise worship but who have not yet learned to praise and worship God in Jesus Christ.
The message of Christ is not Christianity. The message of Christ is Christ.