Summary: There is one particular teaching that Christ gave us that has proven throughout history to have been offensive to many people.
Opening Reading – Psalms 85:7 thru 11
It is important for us to be as loving, caring and concerned people we can be. This is the example that Jesus portrayed. That is, for the most part. There is one particular teaching that Christ gave us that has proven throughout history to have been offensive to many people.
And yet, this particular teaching should draw us ever closer to a better relationship with the Lord.
Text: John 14:1 thru 6
I want us to notice that Jesus did not say to the disciples that:
· He was one of the great truths to life.
· “I only say things that are true…”
· “I know what I am talking about, so listen to me…”
Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth and the life.”
When the world considers the teachings of Christ, for the most part most people agree with what He had to say.
All through history, philosophers and teachers have given respect to Jesus to one degree or another.
With the exception of this one statement declared by Christ, when the world has to consider Jesus saying He is the Truth, they can’t agree.
Because Jesus is telling us that there is no other Truth.
Consider in the Old Testament that people were happy with the beliefs of Judaism. That is, until prophets like Ezekiel and Elijah came against the gods that claimed to be have the truth.
Consider the events of the New Testament. The early N.T. believer didn’t have problems with anyone until they realized they could no longer acknowledge the false gods of Rome.
The governments didn’t have a problem with Christianity until they saw that the Christians were not going to worship and bow down to Caesar, Zeus, and Mars…
When the Christians stood in defiance to having anything to do with the more acceptable gods, they were thrown to the lions, beaten with rocks, tortured and even crucified.
These Christians declared that Jesus was the only Truth.
This became an offense to everyone.
Consider the reformation that took place in the early 1500’s. Those who embraced the new revelation of grace and faith were the only ones persecuted and thrown into prison by the church.
These Christians didn’t have problems until they decided not to worship the Pope and his Papacey (Roman church government).
Consider the day and time we live in today. It is no different.
People don’t have a problem with Christians until they make the claim that without Jesus they will spend eternity in Hell.
Then they are called “born-again bigots”.
As we read in Psalms 85:10, Mercy and Truth are met together. They co-habitate with one another. That is the way God has intended it to be, but many people only look to the Lord for his Mercy. Many times, people do not want to accept the absolute Truth that Jesus is the only Truth.
Perhaps this is why many churches do not experience revivals, great healings, signs and wonders. Because we only want the sweet non offensive side of Jesus taught. Meanwhile, Jesus is declaring to be the only Truth. HE said, “I am the Truth…”
Perhaps this is why people do not attend church, because they want to see only the real thing. The real Jesus. The real Truth.
Many churches send mixed signals to their communities by agreeing with only half truths, and mediocrity.
I am convinced that there are folks looking for other folks who are genuine in their beliefs.
Can I ask ourselves a question?
How convinced are we that Jesus is the only Truth?
Read John 17:17
What does that mean? “Sanctify them” is “Make them Holy”.
What does that mean? We must separate ourselves from the things of this world that we have added to the only Truth.
We often find ourselves relying on other half-truths. That will only bring idolatry to our lives. Half-truths can confuse us and cause us to get off track with where God would have us to be.
Let me give you some examples how this has happened.
In our country this was sanctioned by well meaning (but ignorant) Christians. Christians took half-truths and justified their actions of greed. Sad but true.
Today we realize that slavery is wrong and inhumane. We don’t accept it in our country, but what made this thinking change in the last 150 years? A civil war that cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of lives. This war nearly destroyed our nation.
As a result of ignorance in the early American churches, over four million African Americans were sold into slavery.
We know this to have been a church problem, in that the SBC split from the Baptist churches solely on the slavery issue.
That is facts we cannot deny. The SBC repented of their practicing half-truths in the south.