Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Conformed To My Image???

For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son. Rom 8:29

Jesus gave His Apostles a command that we have all titled "The Great Commission Mat 28:19". It is a common teaching in Christianity that says that this is also our command to go out and make disciples. I am in no position to debate that, but I would however, like to point out a few things that are rolling around in this thinkers mind.

I would first like to ask who's disciple we are to make people. Was Jesus saying that we are to start a religious order and then teach people to follow a particular doctrinal foundation that has been agreed on by those men and women who have started such an order? Are we to take a person that has believed in Christ and then conform that person into our particular ideal or interpretation of what we believe is "True Doctrine" of Christ?

Where I come from, when one says we need to do better in disciplining someone, what they are really saying is we need to better teach this young mind to be a good Baptist, or Methodist, and so on. You know, I don't think there is one version of the scriptures out there that translates what Jesus says here in Mathew to mean we are to go out and make Pentecostals, or any other such divisionations (aka Denominations). I know each particular denominational structure out there really believes that are living out the true teachings of Christ, thus the disciplining they do is correct. Unfortuantly, I never see where Jesus ever said that what makes a disciple is one who agrees with the ordinances, bi-laws, or particular stance on rather or not one can loose their salvation. Let us quickly take a look at what He did say defined a disciple shall we.

We will find three deffinitions of what qualifies a disciple; all of which are in the same chapter in Luke. 14:26 "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brothers and sisters, yes, even his own life also, he Can Not Be my disciple.
14:27 "who ever does not bear his own cross and come after me Can Not Be my disciple.
14:33 "So then any one who does not renounce all that he has Can Not Be my disciple.

My thought today is simply, should we not do better at making disciples if what they would learn is to lay their life down, all that they are holding on to, and put on Christ? All three of these verses are descriptions of who Jesus is, and what He did for us. Maybe the truth is, it is easier to teach the ways the Baptist believe on certain scriptures than is is to teach someone to lay their life down. Maybe we are not able to teach one to be a true disciple because we don't know how to be one ourselves. It is much easier to teach one to just pay their ten percent, go to church every time the doors are open, and do their best to live out what they have learned in Sunday School, than what it actually looks like when one becomes a living sacrifice that is holly and pleasing to the Lord.

We are not called to be like some denominational structure; we are called to be LIKE CHRIST. We are to be the very image of Christ, yet we are conforming these young believers into OUR image. We even define people by what Name they have on their church sign. I believe I can say with confidence that, just as Paul said, You have not so learned Christ. We must first learn to let go of everything but Christ alone, and then, and only then, we can "MAKE" disciples of Jesus. We must always point people to Christ, and not our doctrinal statement. Christians where first called Christians by non believers who thought that the Christian looked and acted like Jesus. Christians did not label themselves with such a title. When was the last time a non believer called you such a name?

Father, I pray that you would conform us into the image of your Son, and not some image man has created to define what they believe. Teach us to love as you love and to pick up our cross and follow you. Teach us to lay down our lives for the brethren, and to care nothing of our own lives. Teach us to walk in this world in such a way that all who would look on us would only see Jesus. Then help us to teach others to do the same. Amen

No comments:

Post a Comment

Shoot Me Straight