Summary: This is part 2 of a 4 part series on CS Lewis’ book "The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe."
Session #2 – What’s so Dangerous about Jesus?
Ch. 8 again- “Is he safe?”
This Sermon attempts to address the following questions:
How do you know who Jesus is? How do you know Jesus is good?
From pictures and movies and your everyday encounters, how do you picture Jesus, like a cute little kitten, or like a roaring lion?
How do you picture Jesus?
What do you think is meant by a “fierce love”?
What could be dangerous about coming close to Jesus?
Do you have times in your life where it has felt dangerous to be like Jesus?
Have you ever thought of Jesus as dangerous? I have to admit that for most of my life I have thought of Jesus as pretty…well…safe. See, all of the pictures I’ve ever seen of Jesus, it just seems like Jesus is always smiling and happy, kind of looking like he’s floating around, and not really connected to the world around him. That made it really hard for me to believe that Jesus ever really came to earth, because I never thought of him as a real person dealing with real issues. But then I started running into some different stories in the bible... Look at these pictures and tell me what you see in them. Does Jesus look safe or dangerous? (showing several “dangerous” moments)
Reread LWW Ch. 8 – “Is he a man?”pg. 79-80
Is he safe? That’s the question we’re asking right today/tonight. See, once we deal with that first important question of who Jesus is, we aren’t done. There’s more. If we say that Jesus is the Savior, the Son of God, if we say that we’re going to follow him, then we have to ask the question, what’s Jesus like? Is Jesus safe? Is he dangerous? Is he both?
There’s another story in the bible that really stands out to me and really helps me understand just what it means for Jesus to be dangerous. Listen to this story from Mark 10:17-22. (Read)
A man runs up to Jesus and I get the feeling that this man thinks Jesus is pretty safe. He wants a simple answer to his question, “what do I have to do to get eternal life?” He doesn’t really want a relationship with Jesus, he’s only interested in what Jesus can give to him. You see, relationships are messy, and complicated, and dangerous. No, this man is looking for something safer, something that won’t cost him anything. He wants Jesus to give him a formula…you know, if I do this, this, and this THEN I’ll get the eternal life. This guy approaches Jesus and he’s looking for something like a math equation. But Jesus doesn’t give him something nice and neat and tidy, does he?
Jesus doesn’t tell the man what he wants to hear. Instead he says to the man, “One thing you lack, sell all you have, give it to the poor and follow me.” See, this man was worshipping his money, his stuff. If you had asked the guy, he probably wouldn’t have realized it, but his money was the most important thing to him in the world, and whatever is the most important thing in the world to us, well, that thing is our god…it controls us, and we spend our lives serving it. We will give up everything else so that we can keep that thing that’s the MOST important to us…do you see where I’m going with this? Basically what Jesus says to this man is, “Stop worshipping your little tiny unimportant stash of money and toys, stop trusting in yourself and the stuff you have and make God the most important aspect of your life, trust only in Him.” And it’s a sad story because the man goes back to his money. He gives up eternal life and a relationship with God for his money.
Jesus has what I like to call a “fierce love” for us. He’s jealous, and he wants us for himself. He came to earth and offered himself for us, even gave his life for us so that we could be called God’s children. That fierce love is dangerous because it won’t let us worship anything but God, even though there’s so much out there that we’re tempted to worship, tempted to treat as more important than God.
Listen, Jesus is dangerous not because he’s mean or bad or scary, but because Jesus won’t let us come to him with any pretense. Do you know what pretense is? It’s like a scheme, or an agenda, or a plan on how we’ll twist the situation so that we get the best out of it. Pretense is deception, or make-believe. See, that’s kind of how most things in the world work. You’ve heard of every man for himself? But that’s not how Jesus works. Jesus says that the only way we’ll really connect with God is if we will live our lives for Him and for other people.