Let's Be Inspired Together Blog Articles

 

Who Jesus Died For

Two reactionary answers spring to mind. Both are correct. First, Jesus died for you. You may have heard the old fashioned evangelist, in tender tone, remind us that “if we were the only people on the planet, Jesus would still have died for us”. The second easy answer would be “everyone”. There is not a person on the planet who is not beyond or outside of the victory on Calvary’s hill. That Jesus died for me and Jesus died for everyone are both true statements, but there is a further answer to this question that, like the aforementioned answers, is broadly universal yet also deeply personal.

Weeping Over a City

As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, "If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes. The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God's coming to you." – Luke 19:41-44

As Jesus continues down the Mount of Olives he has an incredible viewpoint. From an elevation of 2660 feet, Jesus would have had spectacular views of The Judean Wilderness on the Eastern side, and the City on the Western side. As he glanced up and saw the city, something stirred within his heart, it moved him – saddened him, wrecked him–and brought tears to his eyes. We read that “Jesus wept over the City”.

It forms a striking contrast to the joy of the crowd who were celebrating the triumphant entry. He saw through all the excitement. He knew that within a few days many of the people of Jerusalem would reject him and remain blind to the activities and events around him.

KNOWING... your mission

I have been studying the first words Jesus uttered about the Church when He began this movement that continues to change the world, 2000 years later. This scripture is found in Matthew 16 and I believe it tells us the four things that we need to know if we want to be a vital and vibrant part of the church’s continual advancement.

 

Amazing Grace

Recently Paul Young, author of The Shack, shared his favorite joke. I love what this story tells us about Grace. What an incredible gift we have been given.

 

A pastor dies and he’s up at the pearly gates, but he’s not sure whether he can just walk in, so he shuffles around wondering what to do. Just then St. Peter shows up, so the pastor addresses him. “Hello, Peter...Um, pardon me, but I don’t know how this works. Do I need a hundred points or something to get in?”

 

“What do you think?” Peter replies.“Well,” the pastor says, “for thirty-five years I served in our local soup kitchen every week.” “OK,” Peter says, “I’ll give you a point for that.”“All right. And for fifteen years I faithfully served my flock as a pastor.”

 

“I don’t know...” Peter replies, rubbing his chin.“C’mon!” the pastor insists. “Fifteen years!” “Oh, all right, I’ll give you a point for that too.”

 

The pastor thinks, “Wow, that’s my whole life, and all I have are two points.”

 

Just then a fellow walks by the pastor and without even thinking about it goes right through the pearly gates. The pastor recognizes the man. He was a nice enough guy on earth, went to church a few times a year, owned a shop downtown.

 

But the pastor’s not happy. “Wait a minute, Peter. You mean to tell me that guy has a hundred points, and I have just two?”

Peter looks him in the eye and says, “No, he just doesn’t play that game.”

Grace is free, you can't and don't earn it. Receive it.

Get email updates from
The Church Together

* indicates required