Many claim to believe in Jesus or to be Christians. Yet many times people believe in a Jesus of personal or popular imagination.
The real Jesus – the one who died and rose again historically and actually lives today, is the Jesus revealed in the pages of the Bible. Any other Jesus is a false one. The Bible declares, “Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8). The clearest picture of Jesus we can have is not some paint on the wall of a church building, but the picture we see of his life, mission and teaching as revealed in the New Testament. Unlike church traditions, the New Testament has not changed. Any form Christianity based on changing traditions and not on the teachings of Jesus recorded in the New Testament is a false Christianity. It does not matter for how many hundreds of years it has been in existence. The Pharisees also could point to a tradition going back hundreds of years. But Jesus said to them that they were “making the word of God of no effect through your tradition which you have handed down.” (Mark 7:13).
Authority and author are directly related concepts. Because the Holy Spirit (who is God) is the author of the Bible, the authority of the Bible is the authority of God. That means, when the Bible speaks to us then God is speaking to us. To disobey the New Testament is to disobey God.
Jesus said, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word; and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.” (John 14:23)
“He who rejects Me, and does not receive my words, has that which judges him – the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.” (John 12:48). The Word has authority to judge and will judge on the last day. Therefore it is indeed wise to “tremble at God’s Word” (Isaiah 66:2). “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverbs 1:7).
Jesus said, “But why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do the things I say?” (Luke 6:46). Lord means master, and just calling Jesus ‘Lord’ is not enough. In vain we call Him ‘Lord’ if by our lives we demonstrate that we do not know what we say, or we do not mean what we say.
Jesus is Lord of your Life if and only if the true intention of your heart is to do what he says in His Word. We must come to Jesus, hear His sayings, AND do them. (Luke 6:47-49).
We must dig past all the traditions, prejudices and errors of men. We must get to the solid rock of Christ’s Word and put it into practice if our lives are to pass the test.
God has promised to preserve His words forever (Ps. 12.7). If we believe in the faithful God who causes the sun to rise every day, then we should believe He has preserved his Word to us also.
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction
in righteousness.” (2 Timothy 3:16) The true doctrine of Christianity may never contradict the clear meaning of Scripture. We have the right to rebuke and correct people using the Scripture, as long as we ourselves are being led by the Spirit as the Scripture commands us to be (Galatians 5:16).
Copyright (C) 1996, Michael Fackerell.